Scientists at the University of California, Davis, have for the first time sequenced the genome of a commercial walnut variety. The information should accelerate the rate of breeding and variety improvement in walnuts and help breeders select for desired traits such as insect and disease resistance, and drought tolerance.
The genome of California’s legendary sugar pine, which naturalist John Muir declared to be “king of the conifers” more than a century ago, has been sequenced by a research team led by UC Davis scientists.
Taking advantage of advances in genetic technologies, researchers led by Alex Nord, assistant professor of neurobiology, physiology and behavior with the Center for Neuroscience at the University of California, Davis, are gaining a better understanding of the role played by a specific gene involved in autism. The collaborative work appears June 26 in the journal Nature Neuroscience.
While the definitive causes remain unclear, several genetic and environmental factors increase the likelihood of autism spectrum disorder, or ASD, a group of conditions covering a “spectrum” of symptoms, skills and levels of disability.
The Hydra, a small freshwater invertebrate, is an advantageous model organism for regenerative biologists. Named after the serpent from Greek mythology that grew two new heads for each one cut off, this tiny, jellyfish-like creature holds within its genomic code the key to biological immortality.
In a study appearing in Genome Biology and Evolution, Assistant Professor Santiago Ramirez, Department of Evolution and Ecology, and postdoctoral researcher Julie Cridland provide a genetic snapshot of the state’s honey bee populations, defining how the species has changed over the past 105 years.