From journal club

GENETIC BASIS FOR FORCE-SENSITIVITY IN WOOKIEES

(This is the second paper on a special issue on Wookiee science. You can read the first here). Annals of Praetachoral Mechanics. (2014). Vol 1. pp21-28 pdf download. ABSTRACT Midi-chlorians are sentient life forms, which live in endosymbiosis with all living cells (1). The number of midi-chlorians per cell has been found to correlate with influence in the force (2) and, as such, blood analysis has become common practice for the identification of force-sensitives, particularly by the Jedi Order. However, the genetic basis for increased midi-chlorian replication in force-sensitives is unknown. Here we show drivers to be mutations at both…

TRANSCRIPTOME DIVERGENCE BETWEEN COMMON AND CAVE-ADAPTED WOOKIEES

– – – Annals of Praetachoral Mechanics. (2014). Vol 1. pp7-19 pdf download. ABSTRACT: Cave-adapted organisms commonly evolve convergent morphological, physiological and behavioral traits. The rare cave-adapted wookie species, Wookiee troglodytus, presents an opportunity to characterize underlying evolutionary mechanisms driving phenotypic expression in a complex sentient humanoid. The cave wookie presents several features associated with adaptation to subterranean habitats: pigment-less hair, reduced visual acuity, overall smaller stature, elongated limbs and decreased aggression. Uncovering the evolutionary processes directing the complex morphological and behavioral traits requires genome-level analysis. To unpack these complex traits, complete nuclear transcriptomes and enrichment profiles were assessed for…

IDENTIFICATION OF HUMAN CHROMOSOME γ AND ITS EPIGENETIC CONTROL FOR THE EXPRESSION OF “SUPER” GENES

– – – New England Journal of Medicine. (March 2013). Vol 328 No 12. DOI: 10.1738/NEJMoal219833 – pdf download ABSTRACT BACKGROUND Superheroes possess exceptional characteristics that far exceed the scope of human capabilities, such as the tremendous strength and pigmentation observed in The Incredible Hulk following his exposure to γ-radiation. Here, we explore the underlying molecular mechanisms for the “superhuman” abilities seen in the Hulk, as compared to semi-superheroes Papa Smurf and Popeye the Sailor. In particular, we examine the role of epigenetic mechanisms, principally DNA methylation, in the genotypic expression of “super” genes and their phenotypic manifestation. METHODS Whole…

UPREGULATED MEMBRANE EXPRESSION OF A CONSERVED VOLTAGE-GATED SODIUM CHANNEL, Nav1.4a AND ELECTRICAL ORGAN DISCHARGE IN ELECTRIC MOUSE, P. pikachu

– – – PLOS BIOLOGY (March 2013). Vol 11 Issue 3. e1001501 p1-6 pdf download ABSTRACT Electrocytes contain membrane proteins that allow the polarization of the plasma membrane, thereby allowing the generation of electricity in animals. It has been long established how electricity is generated in the electric eel, but recent studies found similar electrocytes to be active in electric mice. We aimed to study the basis behind electric discharge in a land animal. We found that the voltage-gated sodium channel, Nav1.4a, was expressed in electric organs of the electric mouse, Pokemon pikachu and the electric eel, Electrophorus electricus. However, Nav1.4a…

CLEAVAGE OF SUPERPOWER PROTEIN DETERMINES THE SUPERPOWER PHENOTYPE IN A TISSUE DEPENDENT MANNER: HOW INCREDIBLE!

JOURNAL OF SUPERHERO RESEARCH (2013). Vol 13 Vol 547. pp328-3332 doi:23.1724/SR20130328 pdf download We demonstrated that the presence of superpower (SP) protein cleavage is responsible for the diversity of superpowers in a tissues-specific manner within The Incredibles family. This cleavage event produces two fragments, 135 kDa and 85 kDa, without a loss of peptide, as confirmed by Edman degradation. We speculate that the 85 kDa protein fragment is involved in the generation of superpower. Key words: Superpower phenotype, Supers, Supers Relocation Program, The Incredibles. INTRODUCTION The study of humans with unusual intrinsic superpowers, or Supers, has been an ongoing effort…

HOWLETT: NOVEL WOLVERINE PROTEIN CONTRIBUTES TO RAPID REGENERATION AND HEIGHTENED CELLULAR REPLICATION

JOURNAL OF SUPERHERO MUTATIONAL SCIENCE (February 2013). Vol 13 Issue 2. pp297-302 pdf download Wolverine, a mutant from the X-men team, possesses super healing abilities. Wolverine’s healing abilities have striking similarities to that seen in axolotl, an amphibian with the capacity to regenerate amputated limbs. In this study we sought to determine the mechanisms by which Wolverine regenerates. We identified a novel protein, dubbed Howlett, that is nearly identical to the Amblox protein in axolotl which is known to be responsible for the amphibian’s limb regeneration. siRNA knockdown of the howlett and amblox genes demonstrated decreased replication in Wolverine and…

PRELIMINARY DATA FROM THE UNICORN GENOME: THE FIRST POSSIBLE INDICATION IN HISTORY OF MAMMALIAN EVOLUTION OF HYBRIDIZATION ACROSS ORDERS

Journal of Fantastic Phylogenetics 2012 8(9): 42-49 Authors: Jean-Pierre Marielle III & Justin Case | pdf version In this study we present the preliminary finding of what could be the first record in history of hybridization between mammalian Orders (Perissodactyla and Cetacea). Phylogenetic analyses from the unicorn (Equus unicornus) mitochondrial genes (protein-coding Cytochrome b, Cytb) show a matriline belonging to the Narwhal (Monodon monceros) while nuclear (V-kit Hardy-Zuckerman 4 feline sarcoma viral oncogene homolog, Kit) clearly show a sister relationship of the unicorn-pegasus (Equus alatus) clade with the rest of the Perissodactyl family Equidae. Our preliminary study strongly suggests the…

NIPPING IT AT THE BOOB: THE GATEWAY PROPERTIES OF MOTHER’S MILK

Introduction Illicit drug use is a problem that drains public health and medical resources around the world. There are many ways in which we, as a society, can deal with this problem. We may adopt: drug treatment programs in order to get drug users permanently off their drugs; harm reduction programs that have the aim of limiting the damages from drug use; or find the root causes of drug use in an effort to prevent the problem before it even begins. One aspect of this latter approach is to identify these substance(s) that leads to more severe drug use. This…