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Genetics

The Black Death has been hiding among us for thousands of years

Fossil DNA reveals that the plague is much older than previously suspected. The discovery could shed new light on the evolution of a deadly disease.

Genetics confirm: Migrants brought farming to the Mediterranean

Scientists have sequenced the genomes of early farmers from Spain, confirming that they descended from the same group of migrants who brought farming to Northern Europe.

Scientists discover gene to prevent blindness in diabetics

Diabetics who carry a specific genetic variant may be protected from a severe eye disease, which can lead to blindness if untreated.

Scientists solve the riddle of eel evolution

European and American eels emerged as separate species 3.5 million years ago -- yet they can still breed with each other. Scientists can now tell us how.

Mysterious link between people from South America and Australia

Two DNA studies show that South Americans have an unexpected link to indigenous people of Australia and Melanesia, but disagree on how and when the Americas were populated

When did Tibetans have sex with prehistoric humans?

Sex with ancient humans enabled the Tibetans to adapt to a life at 4,000 metres above sea level and sheds light on our own evolutionary history.

Nose bacteria can reduce risk of hospital infections

Changing the bacterial composition in your nose could combat MRSA and help to avoid infections during surgery.

A new GMO technique that organic farmers will love

Genetic engineering of plants can restore characteristics lost through traditional breeding.

Kennewick Man’s genome suggests Native American ancestry

New genetic evidence turns existing theories on their head and settles a fierce debate over the remains of a prehistoric man once and for all.

Obesity epidemic is not caused by genes or lifestyle

Neither genes nor lifestyle are responsible for widespread obesity. Instead, it may be entirely down to our environment during childhood.