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Center for Physiology and Biophysics: News of the Day
  1. Why animals diversified on Earth: Cancer research provides clues
    Can tumors teach us about animal evolution on Earth? Researchers believe so and now present a novel hypothesis of why animal diversity increased dramatically on Earth about half a billion years ago. A biological innovation may have been key.

  2. Convergent evolution of gene regulation in humans and mice
    Organisms that aren't closely related may evolve similar traits as they adapt to similar challenges. It's called convergent evolution, and familiar examples include the wings of birds, bats, and insects, and echolocation in bats and dolphins. Now, molecular biologists have found evidence of convergent evolution in an important mechanism of gene regulation in humans and mice.
    Prospective birth control pill for men has its origin in an arrow poison
    Women have many options for oral contraceptives that are safe, effective and reversible, but despite decades of research, men have none. Now, scientists report a rat study that shows they finally have a good lead for a male birth control pill. It's based on ouabain, a plant extract that African warriors and hunters traditionally used as a heart-stopping poison on their arrows.

  3. Midbrain 'start neurons' control whether we walk or run
    Strolling around or running to catch the train similarly requires us to move. However, the neuronal mechanisms in the brain that allow us to initiate and control these movements are different, a new study reveals. 'Start neurons' in the midbrain are essential to take the first step to initiate locomotion and control the speed, mice models show.

  4. Scientists zoom in to watch DNA code being read
    Scientists have unveiled incredible images of how the DNA code is read and interpreted -- revealing new detail about one of the fundamental processes of life.

  5. Of quirky channels and a fond farewell

    This final installment of Generally Physiological concerns F-selective channels, a surprising role for a tryptophan in determining channel identity, and a farewell note from the Executive Editor of The Journal of General Physiology.

(a) Bordetella pertussis...



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