Wednesday, November 25, 2015

Whoa! DNA sequenced Water Bears...

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These creatures affectionately known as Water Bears, due to their bear like cute faces and bear like claws on the extremities are 'Tardigrades'.  These little creatures are simply phenomenal in what they do and how they survive.

Read Full articles Here :Gizmodo Australia      Science
From the Article: Water bears, known to scientists as tardigrades, are famously adorable microscopic creatures who can survive anything: freezing, total dehydration, radiation bombardment, and even the vacuum of deep space. Now scientists have sequenced a tardigrade genome, and are very surprised by the results.

Yesterday a group of researchers led by University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill biologist Thomas Boothby published their analysis of the tardigrade genome in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. What they found was that 17.5 per cent of the tardigrade genome actually comes from other organisms, including plants, fungi, bacteria, and viruses. These genes entered tardigrade DNA in a process known as horizontal gene transfer, which is quite common among single-celled organisms but rare among animals. The closest comparison with the tardigrade is a microscopic form of plankton called a rotifer (pictured below, eating), which has about 9 per cent of its DNA from other organisms.

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