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In a paper published in the online advance of Nature Genetics this week, an international research team reports a draft sequence of the domestic apple genome. "We show that a relatively recent (>50 million years ago) genome-wide duplication has resulted in the transition from nine ancestral chromosomes to 17 chromosomes in the Pyreae," the authors write. The team suggests that in apple, MADS-box genes — involved in flower and fruit development — include 15 members.

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A New Zealand minister says the country's genetic modification laws need to be re-examined to help combat climate change, the New Zealand Herald reports.

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An Australian mother's conviction in the deaths of her children may be re-examined after finding that two of the children carried a cardiac arrhythmia-linked gene variant.

In Science this week: comparative analysis of sex differences in mammal gene expression, and more.