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Computational Geneticists Revisit A Mystery In Evolution

Date:
August 8, 2002
Source:
Stanford University
Summary:
Why, biologists first asked 60 years ago, do members of the same species have such similar traits, or phenotypes, despite the fact that they have such diverse genes, or genotypes? They couldn't fully explore that question until now - when, aided by computers, they can sift through mountains of experimental data. In the June 24 issue of the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, senior research scientist Aviv Bergman of Stanford's Center for Computational Genetics and Biological Modeling (CCGBM) and postdoctoral scholar Mark Siegal of the Department of Biological Sciences provide a surprisingly simple answer.

You and I are both human, with hearts that beat at roughly the same rates, nervous systems that churn out just about the same chemicals, bodies that are similar enough to peg us as people and not chimpanzees. But despite the fact that we both belong to the same species, our genes are pretty different. Only half the genes are identical among siblings who aren't twins, for example, and for most of us, the degree of genetic relatedness is much smaller. Why, biologists first asked 60 years ago, do members of the same species have such similar traits, or phenotypes, despite the fact that they have such diverse genes, or genotypes? They couldn't fully explore that question until now - when, aided by computers, they can sift through mountains of experimental data. In the June 24 issue of the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, senior research scientist Aviv Bergman of Stanford's Center for Computational Genetics and Biological Modeling (CCGBM) and postdoctoral scholar Mark Siegal of the Department of Biological Sciences provide a surprisingly simple answer.


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The above story is based on materials provided by Stanford University. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


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Stanford University. "Computational Geneticists Revisit A Mystery In Evolution." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 8 August 2002. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2002/08/020807065302.htm>.
Stanford University. (2002, August 8). Computational Geneticists Revisit A Mystery In Evolution. ScienceDaily. Retrieved April 18, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2002/08/020807065302.htm
Stanford University. "Computational Geneticists Revisit A Mystery In Evolution." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2002/08/020807065302.htm (accessed April 18, 2014).

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