TRUE BLUE The blue coloring in this mouse embryo shows that a genetic switch that controls production of a bone- and tissue-building protein turns on genes in the lower half of the embryo’s body.
V.B. Indjeian et al/Cell 2016
LOOK, NO HENS Roosters sometimes hand mitochondria down to their chicks, DNA analysis of White Plymouth Rock chickens reveals. Usually mitochondria, energy-producing organelles in cells, are inherited from the mother.
NO WATER, NO PROBLEM Known as water bears, tardigrades (one seen under a light microscope) are famous for withstanding desiccation. Drying out allows the animals to absorb DNA from other organisms, which may confer stress tolerance.