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This Week in Science: Oct 26, 2007

If you're curious to know why and how it took you forever to make that big decision, check out Science's special section. A series of reviews discusses aspects of the decision making process from new insights on how the anterior prefrontal cortex functions to social influences to decision theory.

Some Neandertals might have had red hair and pale skin. Researchers led by Michael Hofreiter report in an online early Science paper that they amplified and sequenced a fragment of the MC1R gene from two Neandertal remains. In humans, that gene regulates pigmentation and hair color. The Neandertal copy has a mutation that humans do not.

Israeli scientists report on programmed cell death in E. coli, as regulated by the toxinantitoxin MaxEF. They say that this type of mediated cell death is population-dependant and requires a quorum-sensing molecule. This molecular, which they named the extracellular death factor, is a linear pentapeptide of Asn-Asn-Trp-Asn-Asn.


The Scan

Fertility Fraud Found

Consumer genetic testing has uncovered cases of fertility fraud that are leading to lawsuits, according to USA Today.

Ties Between Vigorous Exercise, ALS in Genetically At-Risk People

Regular strenuous exercise could contribute to motor neuron disease development among those already at genetic risk, Sky News reports.

Test Warning

The Guardian writes that the US regulators have warned against using a rapid COVID-19 test that is a key part of mass testing in the UK.

Science Papers Examine Feedback Mechanism Affecting Xist, Continuous Health Monitoring for Precision Medicine

In Science this week: analysis of cis confinement of the X-inactive specific transcript, and more.