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Jun
12
comment What does the human body use oxygen for besides the final electron acceptor in the electron transport chain?
@WYSIWYG You seem to know more about this than I do clearly. So far I had no reason to doubt the text books in this regard. I’ll happily defer to your expertise.
Jun
12
comment What does the human body use oxygen for besides the final electron acceptor in the electron transport chain?
@WYSIWYG Your analysis is better. I didn’t actually want to get too hung up on the $\ce{O2->CO2}$ conversion (that was by accident), I just wanted to show that the stuff we breathe in is used up in respiration. Maybe I’ll clarify that and reference your answer.
Jun
12
comment What does the human body use oxygen for besides the final electron acceptor in the electron transport chain?
@WYSIWYG Better?
Mar
23
comment Genes-of-interest analysis between organisms
@AliceD RNA-seq is a gene expression profiling technique akin to microarrays. The sequencing step is just a technical detail.
Feb
7
comment Why cancer is not a communicable disease?
@Kendall I have to admit that I don’t know anything about that, but please feel free to add your own answer and/or edit mine. Also, thanks for this interesting piece information, I didn’t know that.
Feb
7
comment Why cancer is not a communicable disease?
@GoodGravy No, it’s not a moot point at all, because it doesn’t explain why cancers generally aren’t transmissible, and that was the whole question. (I also disagree with your edit, since it changed the answer substantially, and such edits are frowned upon on Stack Exchange – you should have written your own answer instead.)
Feb
7
comment How do I find a protein from this DNA sequence?
Translation would fail on this sequence since it’s not a complete open reading frame (doesn’t start with a start codon, doesn’t stop with a stop codon, and length not divisible by three). As such, we don’t even know whether it’s in frame, or maybe shifted by a nucleotide.
Feb
7
comment Why cancer is not a communicable disease?
I’m unhappy with this answer, and although I haven’t downvoted it, let me try explaining why it was downvoted. First of all, as you note yourself later on, your initial sentence is simply wrong: many cancers are caused by infectious agents. More importantly though, your premise is fundamentally flawed: again, as you show yourself, cancer itself is an infectious agent (ever heard of metastases?). So why, then, is it usually not transmissible between individuals? Your answer doesn’t explain that at all.
Jan
21
comment What were the first neural systems like?
@ChrisStronks We know tons about evolution that isn't preserved at all in the fossil record. For instance, we can study evolutionary model organisms and do comparative genomics. In fact, fossils play a fairly minor role in the modern study of evolution.
Jul
2
comment Did animals evolve from plants?
@KeithThompson Indeed, it does have these implications: There are potential hard-to-cross thresholds to higher life forms, which prevents their abundance in the Universe (and may help explain the Fermi paradox), but evolution of multicellularity is not one of them.
Jul
2
comment Did animals evolve from plants?
@Keith Ha! Actually, “Multicellularity has evolved independently at least 46 times …
Mar
23
comment How did the first sexual animal come to exist?
Actually your text already convinced me, concerning the number of times sex evolved (hence the edit).
Mar
23
comment How did the first sexual animal come to exist?
I’m not sure I would agree with “no brainer”. As far as I know, sexuality has only evolved once. Also, could you expand a bit on the heterogamy argument? In particular, wouldn’t the same apply to plasmids? Yet we don’t see anything particularly resembling sexual selection emerge from that. /EDIT: Your answer might actually contradict my first assertion (I should have read the full post first) – I’m still interested in an answer to the second.
Mar
23
comment How did the first sexual animal come to exist?
I’ve had to edit your answer, “just one theory” sounds a bit too similar to the “just a theory” creationist canard for comfort. I’m wary that it might feed the common misconceptions about what makes a scientific theory.
Feb
20
comment Aren't current explanations for the evolution of human cooperation a little too reductionist?
Inclusive fitness proponents will tell you that this explanation is completely wrong, by they way (without being an expert, I tend to agree).
Dec
26
comment Why has evolution made neurons use spiking?
You should read up on how neurons work. You admitted that you don’t know this, yet it directly answers your question.
Dec
24
comment Why it is rare for person to get infected with two Pathogens?
Your example is actually quite bad because the “common cold” is often an infection by several strains of viruses (and even bacteria) simultaneously.
Dec
21
comment Is light required for seed germination?
The riddle can be solved by realising that different plants have different requirements, and that some requirements are “soft” – i.e. not absolutely necessary but nevertheless beneficial. I’ll let somebody else with more knowledge provide a more in-depth answer – my comment wasn’t meant to imply that this is a bad question.
Dec
21
comment Is light required for seed germination?
Given that germination often happens underground, the answer seems trivially “no”, doesn’t it?
Dec
7
comment How easy is it to carry out de novo sequence assembly?
tl;dr: It’s blood, sweat and tears. I haven’t been involved in this myself yet but I know people who are. Depending on the complexity of the genome, you’ll get tons (they got in the order of 1M) non-overlapping contigs.