EASY RIDER Gut bacteria have been passed down from the ancestors of humans and African apes for millennia, evolving alongside their hosts, says a new study that looked at bacteria from gorillas, bonobos, chimpanzees and humans.
J. Segre and N. Salafsky/Science 2016
Nail-biting and thumb-sucking bring germs into the mouth — and possibly fewer allergies, too.
COMMON GROUND Yeast, bacteria and plants are very different organisms, but have many genes that look alike. New research shows about half of those analogous genes can substitute for each other.
Scientists have identified a protein that chops up the mitochondrial DNA in a dad’s sperm after it fertilizes an egg. The finding helps explain why mitochondrial DNA is usually passed on only by mothers.