The principles, conventions, and terms used to systematically classify biological information, entities, processes, but also subfields of biology.

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Readers in biological nomenclature

I know that a binomial name may be followed by the name of the reader who has been the first to identify the species and to give it that binomial name. It is not completely clear to me what the same ...
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2answers
2k views

What's the difference between male and female?

As long as we only look at humans the differences are clear: males have chromosomes XY, produce sperm and don't get pregnant. Females have chromosomes XX, produce egg cells and bear babies. But when ...
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25 views

Numbers in the names of tumor markers

In tumor markers such as CA 125, CA 19-9 and many other, CA stands for Carcinoma antigen, but what about the number?
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36 views

Non-descriptive gene nomenclature

I formally come from a physics/physical chemistry background, but I have begun to specialize in the area of the biomedical sciences and biomedical engineering. I found myself reading an article which ...
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1answer
145 views

What is a subspecies?

Within a species there may be subspecies that are named using trinomial nomenclautre. For example the Grizzly Bear, Ursus arctos horribilis is a subspecies of the Brown Bear Ursus arctos. The ...
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109 views

Binomial nomenclature: Why am I seeing different genera with the same species name?

I have looked online but still do not understand how two organisms can have the the same species names but be in different genera? Do all genera share common species names? Also which would be more ...
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14 views

What is the most widely understood phrase that distinguishes “internal coordinates” from other non-Cartesian coordinates?

In structural biology, the phrase "internal coordinates" is usually understood as a spherical coordinate system consisting of bond lengths, bond angles -- determined from 3 atoms and given as internal ...
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6answers
4k views

Why isn't a virus “alive”?

The recent news about a new supermassive virus being discovered got me thinking. What biological differences between viruses and cellular organisms have made viruses be deemed non-living?
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148 views

Why do people in the scientific community use terminology such as renal, hepatic, cardiac instead of kidney, liver and heart? [closed]

Are there differences between renal, hepatic, cardiac and kidney, liver and heart? Is the "jargon" used more commonly because of tradition, or is there some definitive biological basis to it?
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4 views

Where should one start if they want to go about identifying phytoplankton and dinoflagellates?

I'm a first year university student and I really need help on how to identify and recognize the different organisms observed in my water samples. Are there any good references/tips on how to?
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1answer
48 views

What was Protein G named after?

Protein G (the bacterial antibody binding protein) is often used to pulldown antibodies, for example in chromatin immunoprecipitation (ChIP) experiments. However, I was unable to find a site ...
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1answer
239 views

How to understand certain protein names

I am looking for a reference to help me understand what is meant by acronyms such as : H3K9me1, H3K9me2, and H3K9Ac. I know that these are all histone proteins, but is there a general nomenclature ...
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1answer
32 views

Clarification about taxon (plural taxa)

If i am right, then any category placed at any rank in the taxonomical hierarchy is a taxon. For example Panthera, Mammalia, Solanaceae etc. But are general group of organism (casual groups which are ...
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1answer
36 views

Why they choose Positive means diseased person in medical science field? [closed]

In English Literature, positive means good word, but in medical science, Positive means very bad. for example HIV+ is not a good word. It is diseased person. so like that, why positive word chosen for ...
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1answer
35 views

Colorado potato beetle diet

The Colorado potato beetle is best known for being a potato pest. However, I've just learned that it originates from Northern America and the potato itself comes from South America. So the question ...
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1answer
19 views

What is the convention for indicating genomic primer sites?

What is the most common notation for indicating genomic binding sites of primers relative to an ORF? For instance, if I want to indicate a primer like so: ...
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3answers
1k views

Why are plants referred to by their Latin species names, and not by their popular names?

Often the names of herbal ingredients in certain cosmetics products are given by their scientific names like Anthemis nobilis instead of chamomile or Lavandula angustifolia instead of lavender. Is ...
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1answer
38 views

Correct enzyme nomenclature

I notice many wikipedia articles, courses, pathway sites use a different abbreviation for the same enzyme. Eg: Wikipedia lists the abbreviation of phosphoglycerate mutase as PGM, whilst wikipaths ...
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2answers
390 views

Epinephrine vs. Adrenaline

Both names are widely used, with what appears to me as a slight prevalence of “epinephrine” in scientific literature and an overwhelming prevalence of “adrenaline” in popular media. Are there any ...
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137 views

Why is it called “Ebola virus disease”, not just “Ebola” or “Ebola disease”?

Why do scientists (pretty consistently) call it Ebola virus disease, rather than just Ebola, or Ebola disease? Many other diseases are caused by viruses, but they don't seem to have this detail of ...
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1answer
142 views

Are corn kernels considered a grain

I have seen corn described as a seed, a grain and a fruit. What are the kernels or a corncob considered to be? A grain, a seed or a fruit?
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60 views

Why “broad” instead of “large” cross-immunoreactivity? [closed]

From the articles I read, expressions like "broad cross-immunoreactivity" pops up a lot. So, I was wondering, why "broad" is used here instead of large? Is there a specific reason?
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1answer
40 views

NCBI-geo differences between platforms,series and samples

This is the first time that I use NCBI-GEO and I've faced with 3 different categories inside it. They are platform, sample and ...
2
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1answer
160 views

Why are Oxyuranus snake species named Taipan?

It is interesting, why are Oxyuranus species called Taipan. The snakes are Australian but taipan looks like of Chinese origin word (it means big shot - important person).
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67 views

Genetic notations

Genetic testing revealed these two mutations (hypothetically): IVS11+6G>A and IVS11-4G>A Could you please explain every part of this notation, especially "+" and "-" signs.
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8k views

What is the proper format for genus and species names in latin?

When using the latin nomenclature for a fish in printed materials (such as Sander vitreus for walleye), what is the correct capitalization of each word? In this example, should 'S' be uppercase ...
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1answer
1k views

Differences between Gradualism and Uniformitarianism

From what I understand, gradualism is the idea that small changes affect species over time. Uniformitarianism argues that the same processes that occurred in the past are the same as those in the ...
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2answers
215 views

What is called the “area size that an animal usually lives in”?

What is called the "area size that an animal usually lives in" or "needs for a normal life"? Is there any specific term?
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42 views

How do scientists decide which version of a polymorphism is the main one?

This in fact has bugged me for years, but now I finally remembered to ask. I suppose that if one variation is more frequent, it can be labeled as the default, but what about variations that are ...
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1answer
76 views

List of dinosaurs synonyms

Is there a comprehensive list of dinosaurs synonyms with indications of which name is now considered correct? Something like "there's no brontosaurus, there's only Apatosaurus", "there's no ...
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3answers
716 views

Why scientific names of animals & plants are made difficult to spell & remember?

Why scientific names of animals & plants are made difficult to spell & remember? Mango: it is easy to spell. Corvus splendens: it is difficult to spell
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2answers
1k views

Is there an organism which has a common English name which overlaps with another organism's scientific name (or vice versa?)

Many organisms have their common names identical to their scientific names. For example, there exist apes of the genus Gorilla known commonly as gorillas, and plants of the genus Delphinium known as ...
4
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1answer
47 views

Plural of “dibamus”

Migrated from English site. Dibamus is a genus of legless lizards in the family Dibamidae, of the infraorder Dibamia. Genera are usually given in singular, so what is the correct plural of ...
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640 views

Dreadnoughtus: Why are new taxa named using Dog Latin?

Once upon a time, binomial nomenclature was expected to follow Latin rules: the genus had to be a noun and the species had to be an adjective that agreed with the genus according to Latin rules of ...
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584 views

Why does DNA have its name?

Why is DNA called deoxyribonucleic acid and not something else? I get the nucleic acid part (because that's what DNA is made of) but what about the deoxyribo- part, especially the ribo- part. Maybe ...
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493 views

When writing about past research should I use the species name they employed or the modern version?

I am currently writing a literature review in which I am talking about the old research on the subject. When this research was carried out the species I'm talking about were classed under a different ...
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2answers
375 views

What are the rules for plasmid names?

What are best practices for naming newly created plasmids? For example, a common format is pABC123. What is the exact specification? Must there be 3 letters? What ...
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1answer
231 views

What does the root “phyllum” mean used botanical binomial nomenclature

I often encounter the root "phyllum" in bionomial names in botany, but I've had trouble finding an actual definition for this root in any Latin dictionary outside of its taxonomic meaning. From ...
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635 views

What are the genus and species name of different breeds of dog?

Can you refer me to a good source containing the genus and species name of different breeds of dogs?
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132 views

What is the context in which a species gets the name “elegans”

Quite a lot of Latin binomials from different genera contain the same species name. For example, there are a number of that reflect the physical properties of the species (Tables have the latin name, ...
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174 views

Which species were first described by Charles Darwin?

There are many plants and animals named for the naturalist Charles Darwin, such as Darwin's Frog (Rhinoderma darwinii), but which were named by him? I'm finding it difficult to find such a list.
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138 views

What would be the scientific name of this worm

I saw this pic while crawling online and it was a bit different for me to predict which worm is this. Source: http://www.seafishingtackle4u.com/softbaits/ragworms-latex-lures/ It appears somewhat ...
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1answer
125 views

what would be the scientific name of this variety of dove

recently i came across a small dove who had its feathers tied by a rubber band so that it $would'nt$ fly. it looks some what like this i was stunned by seeing it as i have never seen a dove in ...
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2answers
325 views

What are these strings used to describe animals?

For example, what's a $dt^{sz}$ hamster? (http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1144494/). What's a Rgs9-Cre/+;gtROSA/+ mouse? ...
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2answers
163 views

Is the tomato a very very close relative of the pepper?

I ask because if you look at a tomato, the way it grows on a vine, its color, the texture, and make up of its skin and internal structure it seems very much like a pepper. The only thing I can think ...
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3answers
58k views

What is the difference between orthologs, paralogs and homologs?

These three terms are often misused in the literature. Many researchers seem to treat them as synonyms. So, what is the definition of each of these terms and how do they differ from one another?
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3answers
2k views

Polymorphism in cnidarians?

To me, the phenomenon of polymorphism in cnidarians is particularly troubling. I gather that it essentially refers to existence of various different forms or kinds of individuals, i.e. zooids and ...
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2answers
521 views

translation of scientific names [closed]

I am trying to determine the "translated" meanings (not seeking the common names) of different insects, (presently some bees and wasps). Does anyone know of a printed or internet resource that ...
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2answers
41 views

Could alpha-numeric taxonomy of fungi make things simpler?

Please feel free to construe this question broadly--I don't see why the question would not apply to branches of biology other than mycology. If the goal of taxonomy is to create classification of ...
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734 views

What does orbital mean in orbital frontal cortex?

Orbital frontal cortex is where decisions are made. What does the word orbital there mean? I looked around in wikipedia and never find it.