NEW YORK (GenomeWeb) – A research team has identified proteins in hair that can be used instead of DNA to identify individual humans.

Because DNA is subject to environmental and chemical degradation that limits its usefulness over time, archeologists, forensic scientists, and others have looked for other ways to identify individual human beings. Proteins are more stable and also demonstrate variations in single amino acid polymorphisms which translate to non-synonymous single nucleotide polymorphisms (nsSNPs) present in the genome.

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 Senator Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.), who chairs the Senate health committee, will be retiring at the end of his term, Stat News reports.

UCSF researchers find that having two X chromosomes may contribute to women's longer lifespans, according to Discover's D-brief blog.

The Wall Street Journal reports on the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's use of genetic approaches to study foodborne illnesses.

In PNAS this week: immune cell profiling of wild baboons by social status, metabolomics profiling of esophageal tumors, and more.