Skip to main content
Premium Trial:

Request an Annual Quote

No Offense, But This Is the Best Question You've Got?

It's both a Friday and a holiday here in the US, so there's really no better time for a laugh with Jonathan Eisen. At his blog, Eisen lists the other metaphors Darwin considered before choosing the "tree of life" analogy (based, he says, on direct communication with the historic scientist). These include the "watershed of life" and GTO's favorite, the "shrub of life" -- the latter rejected because, Eisen writes, "even then, [shrub] was used as a derogatory term to refer to height challenged individuals. And Darwin did not want to upset this key constituency."


The Scan

Study Finds Sorghum Genetic Loci Influencing Composition, Function of Human Gut Microbes

Focusing on microbes found in the human gut microbiome, researchers in Nature Communications identified 10 sorghum loci that appear to influence the microbial taxa or microbial metabolite features.

Treatment Costs May Not Coincide With R&D Investment, Study Suggests

Researchers in JAMA Network Open did not find an association between ultimate treatment costs and investments in a drug when they analyzed available data on 60 approved drugs.

Sleep-Related Variants Show Low Penetrance in Large Population Analysis

A limited number of variants had documented sleep effects in an investigation in PLOS Genetics of 10 genes with reported sleep ties in nearly 192,000 participants in four population studies.

Researchers Develop Polygenic Risk Scores for Dozens of Disease-Related Exposures

With genetic data from two large population cohorts and summary statistics from prior genome-wide association studies, researchers came up with 27 exposure polygenic risk scores in the American Journal of Human Genetics.