In five years, Biopolis in Singapore has grown to 1,000 scientists, and it’s not lacking in scientific output: the number of papers produced at the flagship Institute of Molecular and Cell Biology grew from 82 in 2000 to 165 in 2006, and Singapore’s Genome Institute became the first in the world to sequence the SARS virus in 2003. However, critics there are beginning to argue whether the current strategy of importing scientists is best for the long run.
This report shows that yappy little dogs vary from great hulking ones by a single gene. First, the researchers identified a major quantitative trait locus on chromosome 15 through a genome-wide scan. Then, by looking at the area surrounding this locus in small and large breeds, the researchers found that one IGF1 allele is the major determinant of small size in dogs. As the New York Times points out, small dogs are much easier to lug around in our bags.
Another report, led by Erin O’Shea, gives some insight into the regulation of starvation response genes in yeast. When budding yeast undergo phosphate starvation, Pho81 inhibits the Pho80-Pho85 cyclin-CDK compound and leads to the expression of nutrient homeostasis genes. The researchers report that Pho81 is regulated by IP7 and suggests that a complex network is involved in regulating phosphate availability.