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For many animals, knowing the time of year and predicting the forthcoming season is crucial for their survival and that of their offspring. Recent research sheds light on hormonal mechanisms that perform this calendar function in birds and mammals.
Background Components of the genetic network specifying eye development are conserved from flies to humans, but homologies between individual neuronal cell types have been difficult to identify. In the vertebrate retina, the homeodomain-containing transcription factor Chx10 is required for both...
Planning a motor action in advance of its possible execution doesn't require cortical complexity: a recent paper demonstrates that even fruit flies prepare for movement some time before they decide whether or not to take action.
Most bat species breed communally, but how their colonies are founded is a mystery. A recent study suggests that the formation of a new colony starts with related females splitting off from an existing colony.
Podosomes are self-organized, dynamic, actin-containing structures that adhere to the extracellular matrix via integrins (1–5) . Yet, it is not clear what regulates podosome dynamics and whether podosomes can function as direct mechanosensors, like focal adhesions (6–9) . We show here that...
Proper growth and development of multicellular organisms require the tight regulation of cell growth, cell division and cell death. A recent study has identified a novel regulatory link between two of these processes: cell growth and cell death.
Although the iconic mammoth of the Late Pleistocene, the woolly mammoth ( Mammuthus primigenius ), has traditionally been regarded as the end point of a single anagenetically evolving lineage, recent paleontological and molecular studies have shown that successive allopatric speciation events...
In animals, both siRNAs and miRNAs are thought to diminish protein synthesis from transcripts that are perfectly complementary by directing endonucleolytic cleavage where they anneal, thereby triggering rapid degradation of the entire message (1–4) . By contrast, partially complementary...
A key feature of reactive behaviors is the ability to spatially localize a salient stimulus and act accordingly. Such sensory-motor transformations must be particularly fast and well tuned in escape behaviors, in which both the speed and accuracy of the evasive response determine whether an...
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