2
votes
1answer
23 views

Relative sweetness

I have noticed that when I eat something sweet, then afterwards, I eat something else that is sweet, the second sweet food is not as sweet as it usually is. I am pretty sure many others have a similar ...
3
votes
1answer
282 views

Why isn't the insertion of a single nucleotide destructive for DNA?

As far as I know proteins are built by sequentially reading triplets of nucleotides. But if at a certain point a nucleotide is inserted in the sequence, the following sequence of triplets is ...
14
votes
1answer
293 views

Do species other than humans have distinct daily feeding patterns?

I have a general interest in complex adaptive systems and I have found that nature and the organisms within it is a perfect natural case of a rich adaptive system with a lot of possibilities for ...
4
votes
4answers
187 views

Are there known examples where an evolved mechanism “echoes” one originally provided by the environment?

Short summary I am a researcher in origins of life, a field that deals with hypotheses about evolutionary processes that took place before LUCA (the last universal common ancestor), and with the ...
2
votes
1answer
123 views

Concentration of degenerate primers should you dilute to?

I'm a little embarrassed to ask but when you have for example four degenerate primers and the end protocol says that the final primer concentration should be 10 µM working stock, should you make the ...
3
votes
1answer
38 views

Has any research lab done serious work to engineer new bacteria which assemble graphene wafers?

I was thinking about crazy uses for engineered bacteria. Nano-assembly of Graphene seems like a potentially excellent target for the technology. Have any research/full-blown labs worked on this? Any ...
5
votes
1answer
640 views

Besides hemoglobin, what proteins are present in red blood cells?

I knew that mature red blood cells (RBCs) lacked nuclei, but I wasn't aware until just now that they also lacked ribosomes and mitochondria. Most cells in the human body all contain a common laundry ...
4
votes
1answer
31 views

Is there a risk of localised die-off when plants bud too early?

I've been taking a few walks in the countryside in Scotland and England this winter (end of December 2014). Some parts of England haven't had any frosts yet, which is very unusual, and it's been ...
4
votes
3answers
1k views

Why is mRNA needed in the Protein translation?

The original question was to predict the basic requirements for information storage. Then the discussion moved to why is it necessary to include mRNA in the protein translation process. Why can't ...
5
votes
1answer
119 views

What is an operon?

What is an operon in a eukaryotic cell, and how does it regulate the expression of genes? I've already read Wikipedia, but it is not enough clear to me. Unfortunately my knowledge in genetics are very ...
4
votes
2answers
232 views

Phylogenetics and the Tree of Life

As far as I understand, evolution is nowadays pretty much analyzed through phylogenetic trees, that is cladograms. These are constructed using the available records and taking some key structures and ...
6
votes
1answer
89 views

Blood cells penetration

Is there a type of blood cell that can reach all other body cells? By "reach", I mean to "touch" the surface of the target cell. If we look at the red blood cell for example, that moves in blood ...
16
votes
9answers
6k views

Why didn't the polar bear change its color from white to black during evolution to absorb heat?

Polar bears are white in color and white color is not a good absorbant of heat. Why then didn't they evolve a black color to absorb more heat?
1
vote
1answer
55 views

how to reconcile PDB structures' sequences via Uniprot references?

I’m trying to reconcile structures in PDB entries with their sequences as reported in their chemList.polymer.dbref entries. E.g.: considering structures for HIV ...
3
votes
1answer
64 views

Why are canines not nauseated by similar foodstuffs/state of decay as human beings?

I am continually surprised at the items my pet dog is willing to ingest. I understand part of the consumption is driven by nutritional instincts (licking salty liquids such as sweat) or nurturing ...
1
vote
0answers
38 views

What genetic distance model should be used when calculating genetic differences in Arelquin?

I'm using Arelquin to look at the genetic structure between a number of different populations. I want to compare the populations by producing pairwise FST values, however I don't know what model for ...
0
votes
0answers
28 views

what's the vascular cambium?

is the vascular cambium equivalent to interfascular cambium or intrafascular cambium? isn't the vascular cambium similar to the intrafascular cambium because both occur inside the vascular bundle
10
votes
1answer
486 views

Cloning and Telomeres

I read that the length of telomeres in Dolly was shorter, because the DNA was taken from an old sheep. Shorter telomeres may lead to early aging. What is happening now with cloning? Do we use a ...
5
votes
1answer
45 views

Is there any conclusive study relating the food consumed and the occurrence of acne?

The internet says a million things about what to eat and what not to in case of acne. For instance: Refrain from dairy products. Refrain from food heavy in unsaturated fat. Refrain from too much ...
3
votes
3answers
78 views

Identifying a tree with an image

I have trouble identifying a tree that I saw on a vacation. This is the image: I would like to know the name of the tree, I only know that its not European.
6
votes
1answer
54 views

Can plants grow under extreme (>1%) carbon dioxide concentrations?

Related to but distinct from this question due to the concentrations involved. While small carbon dioxide concentration increases can positively impact plant growth under some circumstances and at ...
1
vote
0answers
54 views

How organized is the inside of a cell? [closed]

I know cells have many ways of organizing and controlling what goes on inside their membranes. But just how ordered or chaotic is it inside a cell? Here's a few thoughts I had. Consider the ...
1
vote
0answers
39 views

Superpatients for Cancer resistance

I was reading an article on MIT Technology review about superpatients for low cholesterol that got me thinking whether such patients exist for cancer. The article is ...
3
votes
1answer
167 views

How do CO₂ and carbonic acid (H₂CO₃) work in buffering the blood?

Been struggling with this for the past few days even after reading half of the acid base tutorial here, if someone could help me that'd be great. What I don't understand is how HCO3- is supposed to ...
1
vote
0answers
147 views

The skin color of bonobos

Why is that bonobos skin color on the areas not covered by hair are dark throughout life unlike the chimpanzee?
6
votes
2answers
231 views

Advantage of opponent color?

Opponent process is a color theory that states that the human visual system interprets information about color by processing signals from cones and rods in an antagonistic manner (source). What is ...
1
vote
1answer
56 views

About the apoptosis mechanisms in a cell

The apoptosis mechanisms in a cell are like a type of 'self-destruction mechanism': is this correct? As with any type of complex system with various necessary functions, if it has a set of ...
6
votes
1answer
175 views

The origin of molecular machines

DNA holds genetic information and holds the key to the evolution of living organisms. Transcription and translation mechanisms enable living cells to process information encoded in DNA. To that end, ...
8
votes
2answers
253 views

Why don't we see turbulence in the aorta even in normal situations?

I read about the Windkessel effect. Then I read about pulse pressure waves getting reflected from the periphery. If the pulse pressure wave is reflected during diastole and at the same time blood is ...
3
votes
3answers
824 views

If ants have an antibiotic gland, how can they spread hospital infections?

Wikipedia describes how antibiotics are produced in ants: "Metapleural glands ... are responsible for the production of an antibiotic fluid that then collects in a reservoir ... also referred ...
1
vote
1answer
128 views

What's the meaning of 'plasma' in 'plasma membrane'?

I wonder why is it called plasma membrane - what's the biological meaning of the word 'plasma'?
0
votes
0answers
76 views

I brought a hibernating yellow jacket queen into my house accidentally. What will happen?

There was apparently a hibernating yellow jacket queen in my stack of firewood outside. An hour or so after bringing in the firewood, we saw the queen fly off into the house, where we can't find her. ...
1
vote
1answer
456 views

How does salinity affect the bonds of an enzyme?

According to my textbook, "Too much or too little salt can interfere with the hydrogen bonds that hold an enzyme in its three-dimensional shape". I know that NaCl is held together by an ionic bond, ...
2
votes
1answer
102 views

How do catalase and other antioxidants neutralize free radicals?

In learning about how cofactors are essential to proper enzyme function, my textbook mentioned catalase and its relation to the human body. According to my textbook, catalase is similar to hemoglobin ...
9
votes
1answer
4k views

What's the smallest size a human eye can see?

During a biology experiment at school, where we would look at waterweeds under a microscope, my teacher said something about that it's impossible for the human eye to see the cells without a ...
6
votes
1answer
171 views

When did our ancestors switch to a menstrual cycle instead of the estrous cycle?

The Wikipedia page on the Estrous cycle says: Humans have menstrual cycles instead of estrous cycles. They shed their endometrium instead of reabsorbing it. Unlike animals with estrous cycles, ...
2
votes
0answers
37 views

How much difference in genome is enough to prevent interbreeding? [closed]

I am not a biologist. I am a software developer interested in genetic algorithms therefore i am probably talking to biologists who also have a knowledge of genetic algorithms. I need to "breed" ...
2
votes
2answers
58 views

Are we more/less resistant to infectious diseases during an allergic reaction?

To my understanding, an allergic response is a non-adaptive response of the immune system to some molecule. The molecule in question is therefore "thought by the immune system" to be infectious ...
3
votes
2answers
95 views

Need help in codon optimization

I want to chemically synthesize a GFP gene for expressing in rice.I am using the IDT Codon Optimization program and found that not all the codons are 100% optimized. Some of them are the 2nd or 3rd in ...
5
votes
1answer
97 views

How does the body “know” how to metabolize foreign substances

As a freshman biochemistry major, I find myself befuddled by our body's ability to perform complex chemical reactions to break down foreign substances. I can see how we would evolve explicit pathways ...
3
votes
0answers
35 views

Color perception vs shade perception demo

I can't seem to find one of the best demos I've seen of color vs brightness perception. It consisted of a rotating animation of earth made of red of bright red points on a dark green background. As ...
4
votes
1answer
41 views

Medium for Pseudomonas?

What is a good minimal medium for Pseudomonas bacteria? Do I need different media for different Pseudomonas species?
1
vote
0answers
34 views

Download FunCat Database for Programmatic Access

I am enriching RNA-seq data for the fungus Neurospora crassa and would like to be able to search the genome by functional category, determine similarity of genes by category membership, and any other ...
1
vote
0answers
19 views

What are the main principles of the Bacteriological Code?

Although the Bacteriological Code is an important guideline for taxonomists and microbiologists, describing the criteria for delineating species and higher taxa of the prokaryotes, I, and plenty of ...
6
votes
1answer
140 views

Why doesn't Sanger (fluorescent) DNA sequencing double count nucleotides?

My understanding is that PCR is carried out until a fluorescent nucleotide halts replication. The segments of DNA are fed through the capillary tube based on size, sifting through the segments from ...
2
votes
1answer
52 views

Repair of cloning vector nicks digested with antarctic phosphatase and ligated with T4 enzyme

The vector product obtained by ligation between a vector previously digested with antarctic phosphatase lacks 5' phosphate groups. T4 ligase can ligate it to an insert with complementary sticky ends ...
1
vote
0answers
56 views

How does anxiety cause chest pain?

An acute instance of anxiety can cause a sudden sharp chest pain for a very brief period of time. What is the mechanism behind anxiety leading to chest pain? Is the pain coming from the heart ...
2
votes
2answers
103 views

Downloading specific yeast genes in an automated manner?

I have 6 genes of Candida albicans yeast namely orf19.723, orf19.5908, orf19.610, ...
5
votes
1answer
59 views

About radiation therapy

With radiation therapy, could some of the radiation used cause new mutations in non-cancerous cells that are near the tumour that is being irradiated? If so could these new mutations lead to new ...
5
votes
1answer
96 views

Is funnel web spider venom poisonous?

Does the venom of the Sydney funnel web spider have to be injected into the bloodstream to have an effect? If the venom was swallowed (e.g. if a spider was eaten), would it still have an effect? Or ...

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