3
votes
2answers
151 views

Why and how does complexity usually tends to increase through time?

The question of complexity is classic in the very first lectures of evolutionary biology where the teacher usually tries to tell the students that complexity does not necessary increases and that ...
3
votes
1answer
587 views

What is the definition of “dry weight” and “dry cell weight”?

As I understand it, the dry weight of something is its weight minus the weight of its water content. Is this the definition? What about dry cell weight?
3
votes
1answer
95 views

Evolutionary Cell Structuring

I'm a total novice when it comes to biology, and I'm really just looking for an answer to a question that has been posed to me by people who deny evolution fervently. Evolution dictates that we've ...
3
votes
1answer
44 views

Euthyrodism and goitre

I read in Tortora and Derrickson that goitre is associated with euthyrodism. How is that possible?
3
votes
1answer
131 views

Number of genes required to sustain life

Are there estimates of the minimum number of genes required to sustain life? In what I mean by life here, I don't include viruses.
3
votes
1answer
257 views

Is there an optimal composition and length for protein linkers in FRET?

I'm designing a protein that I'd like to use in FRET reporting. General idea on the shape is: FRETprotein1--Linker--CleavageSite--Linker--FRETprotein2. I would like to know what AA are best for the ...
3
votes
1answer
126 views

Identification of this fly?

So I find these flies every year in my mulch, and I've never seen them anywhere else. The mulch becomes full of their larvae, which I feed to my toad and lizards. There are so many that you can hear ...
3
votes
1answer
251 views

What hair color will result in someone inheriting both blond and ginger genes?

Both the genes for blond hair and ginger hair are recessive, so they need both parents to give the same gene for it to take affect. What happens when a person has 1 copy of a recessive gene and ...
3
votes
1answer
102 views

Are similar smells usually based on similar chemicals?

Building off of this question: Why does freshly cut grass smell like a watermelon?, is it usually the case that things that we perceive as having similar smells are, in fact, the same or a similar ...
3
votes
3answers
335 views

What is the viability of Intelligent Design as a supplement to chemical abiogenesis and Darwinian Evolution?

First of all I am not endorsing Intelligent Design (Wikipedia link); I'm asking this because I (someone who does not have a background in biology, organic chemistry, or philosophy) got into a ...
3
votes
1answer
109 views

Are any organisms known to use meiosis I to create non-identical offspring asexually?

So, there are numerous species of animals who use parthenogenesis, but to my knowledge the reproduction is clonal. That is, the offspring are identical to the mother. Are there any documented cases ...
3
votes
1answer
194 views

Macroevolution vs. microevolution

Where is the line usually drawn between macroevolution and microevolution? I thought that, although similar processes govern both, the line was at the species level, with macroevolution being changes ...
3
votes
2answers
76 views

Do dolphins really sleep?

I have always wondered, if dolphins sleep with one eye opened, do they really sleep at all? According to this article dolphins indeed shut down their brains. I already googled it. No help from ...
3
votes
2answers
82 views

Is there a way to measure the amount of bytes that are possible to encode in a DNA molecule?

When I saw a DNA molecule for the first time, it kinda reminded me of a hard drive. It consists of slots and there are some possible combinations for each slot; in the hard drive these possible ...
3
votes
2answers
372 views

Why does Glutamine have the symbol Q?

Spent a half hour googling this and the best I could find was this: Now for some rhymes: Arginine = R. R we having fun yet? Asparagine = N The kNights of Ne say "Ne". Glutamine is a cute ...
3
votes
2answers
841 views

What is the evolutionary rationale for palm sweating?

Sweaty palms seems to be a reaction to stress, anxiety, etc. For our forest-inhabiting primate ancestors sweaty palms could cause unwanted side-effects such as slipping off tree branches under ...
3
votes
1answer
227 views

How are melatonin levels measured in humans?

I'm wondering how it is possible to measure diurnal variations of melatonin levels in humans. I keep reading that there should be a large difference in amplitude between melatonin levels measured at ...
3
votes
2answers
284 views

Why is the frog genome so much larger than a fish's?

As we have heard in the summaries of the human ENCODE project, 80 per cent of junk DNA appears to have an essential function. Many fish have a genome with only one tenth the size of a usual vertebrate ...
3
votes
3answers
5k views

Evolutionarily speaking, why do humans have 46 chromosomes

In humans, each cell normally contains 23 pairs of chromosomes, for a total of 46. Monkeys, chimpanzees, and Apes have 24 pairs (twenty-four pairs), for a total of 48. What caused humans to have 46? ...
3
votes
4answers
1k views

Can the third sex be categorized as Male or Female?

Hijra are people who have a penis (not sure if sexually active) but look much like a female (perhaps for some feminine biological property). Wikipedia says they are "physiological males who have ...
3
votes
1answer
398 views

Could inhibition of progerin formation slow the rate at which a body ages?

According to wikipedia, progerin is activated in senescent cells. The protein itself is known to be the cause of a rare affliction 'progeria' - a disease marked by accelerated aging of the body. This ...
3
votes
2answers
295 views

Why do plants' leaves become enlarged in low light areas?

Why do almost all plants in shade have a smaller stem structure and larger leaf than that same species grown in a well lit, sunny area?
3
votes
1answer
908 views

Is secondary follicle or Graafian follicle arrested in the second metaphase of oogenesis?

My note about which I am not sure: Secondary oocyte is arrested in the metaphase II monthly after puberty until fertilization with sperm. The following picture also satisfies my sentence: . So ...
2
votes
1answer
41 views

Can I identify this black ant queen?

I have an ant queen in a jar. This is what she looks like: Because I'm planning to start an artificial ant nest, I'd like to learn something about that specific species of ant. This particular ...
2
votes
1answer
32 views

Do Ants have a sense of Direction?

Do ants understand which way is up or down? Could they differentiate between uphill and downhill?
2
votes
2answers
73 views

Ni-NTA purification, problem with the chaperone protein

I'm trying to purify the protein by Ni-NTA affinity chromatography. It seems that my protein (size about 54 kDa) is co-purified with chaperone protein (probably GroEL - as the band is around 57kDa). ...
2
votes
1answer
68 views

Why are hybrids infertile?

Let's take a quote from Wikipedia about zebroids. Donkeys are closely related to zebras and both animals belong to the horse family. These zebra donkey hybrids are very rare. In South Africa, they ...
2
votes
1answer
42 views

List of heritability estimates in humans?

Many people on this site ask questions that directly or indirectly have to do with heritability in human. Do you know a list of estimates of heritability of various traits in humans? Or could you try ...
2
votes
1answer
377 views

Why do three nucleotides code for one amino acid? Why not 5 nucleotides? [duplicate]

We all know why there are 3-base codons, and why there aren't any 2-base codons. But why is there not a 4-base a 5-base codon?
2
votes
1answer
24 views

Can animals absorb atmospheric sulfur?

This is a follow up to this previous question: In biosynthesis of cysteine and methionine, where does the sulfur come from? Can animals use gaesous H2S in the atmosphere, say for instance from a ...
2
votes
1answer
48 views

Evolution from Mating types to different sexes

Imagine a lineage of multicellular organisms that had mating types and evolved their mating types into sexes. What are the possible mechanisms that might have brought this lineage to evolve sexes from ...
2
votes
1answer
41 views

How usable is the Human Metabolic Model to predict biomass?

In order to use the Human Metabolic Model for Flux Balance Analysis of specific cancer cell lines, we would like to know what sort of flux values have been determined for the Human Metabolic Model. ...
2
votes
2answers
74 views

Why do people use anti-inflammatory drugs?

Why people should take anti-inflammatory drugs, when inflammation is a physiological way to defend our organism?
2
votes
1answer
120 views

Why do genetic drift generates negative linkage disequilibrium?

The very first sentence of the abstract of this article are: "In finite populations subject to selection, genetic drift generates negative linkage disequilibrium, on average, even if selection ...
2
votes
2answers
396 views

On which strand does the promoter sit?

My book keeps giving different indicators as to whether the promoters are on the coding or template strand. It says the -35 region in prokaryotes must be on the coding strand. It also mentions, that ...
2
votes
2answers
397 views

Are there genetic similarity between humans and pigs that don't exist in chimps?

Chimps are our closer relative. Any genetic similarity between humans and chimps must exist on the common ancestor. Pig branch out sooner. So, any genetic similarity between humans and pigs must be ...
2
votes
2answers
87 views

Sources for common laboratory Saccharomyces strains?

I'm used to working with bacteria - some of the more common laboratory strains sometimes come with an order from some vendors. What's the most convenient source to order common straings of ...
2
votes
2answers
1k views

What is the equivalent of shutter-speed in Human eye?

I just learned that in video cameras, every frame of the video has its own shutter speed. And I know how frame-rate in human eye works out, well, not completely, hence the question. ...
2
votes
3answers
161 views

Mechanical cause of loss of consciousness

Consciousness is an electrical and chemical interaction in the brain, caused by neurons firing and chemical interactions. How does a mechanical "force" cause this to stop working? i.e. How does a ...
2
votes
1answer
114 views

Does Blood Loss Shorten Telomeres?

If blood loss necessitates immediate cell division to replace lost cells, does the increase in cell division correlate to shortening of telomeres? Does it further cause the Hayflick Limit to be ...
2
votes
1answer
438 views

Why does freshly cut grass smell like a watermelon?

I found that, when I smell watermelon aroma outdoors, someone nearby has mowed the grass. Is there an underlying basis?
2
votes
2answers
166 views

A source for leaf architecture of different plant species/genus?

I'm currently working on extracting some features of the leaf architecture based on their images (like L:W ratio, laminar shape, ...). I use the Manual of Leaf Architecture as the reference. It is ...
2
votes
0answers
100 views

Good poly-A filtering rules or tools

I am aligning a large number of ESTs. It seems poly-A tails show in many different ways. In addition to occurring at the very end, they can be flanked by the cloning sequence one one end, or have ...
2
votes
1answer
361 views

What is the relationship between UV wavelength and penetration depth into human skin?

Some background - Some recent research has strongly suggested that UVA penetration into the skin is far more dangerous than UVB, a very good example is this paper by Agar et al. (2004). My query is, ...
2
votes
2answers
290 views

Transcription factor binding site located in intron

I have noticed that some TF binding sites are located in the introns of the genes. I am puzzled about whether the TF only binds to DNA in the initiation stage of transcription and will detach during ...
2
votes
1answer
195 views

What is this insect?

These photographs were taken today in Marseille, in the Mediterranean coast of France. My French friends inform me that these beasties are called cousins because they are "cousins" of mosquitoes ...
2
votes
1answer
96 views

Why is elevated homocysteine considered a risk factor for angina?

Elevated homocysteine levels are listed among risk factors for angina. How is homocysteine related to the heart? Or the coronary arteries? How do these relationships make it a risk factor for angina? ...
2
votes
2answers
44 views

Can stress echocardiography show coronary blood flow difference before and after exercise?

Stress echocardiography means a pair of cardiac ultrasound imaging examinations, before and after exercise. I assume that coronary blood flow is increased after exercise. Is cardiac ultrasound ...
2
votes
2answers
268 views

What would it take to recognize a deer by its photo?

I am trying to recognize a deer by its antlers or any other means. Elaborating: I was hoping to use their antlers to recognize them but I have heard that most deers shed their antlers every year so ...
2
votes
1answer
88 views

Confusion related to a term probe-by-background interaction

I was reading a paper related to bioinformatics where it uses the drug response on the cancer cells and the gene expression of the individual cells are studied to find any useful insights. Specially, ...

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