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Shiitake Mushroom Relationships, History Explored With Sequencing

For a paper appearing in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, researchers at Clark University, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory's US Department of Energy Joint Genome Institute, and other international centers retrace the history of shiitake mushrooms and related mushrooms in the Lentinula genus. Based on genome sequences for 24 Lentinula individuals from eight Lentinula species and additional unnamed lineages, collected across four continents, the team flagged four main Lentinula clades going back millions of years in the Americas or Asia/Australasia. When the authors took a closer look at the shiitake species L. edodes by bringing in published short-read genome sequences for 60 isolates from China, they tracked down protein-coding genes within the L. edodes pangenome, while highlighting gene groups that appeared specific to wild mushroom populations. Together, the results suggest that L. edodes "comprises three independent lineages that may warrant recognition as species," they write. "One lineage of L. edodes is represented by a single Nepalese isolate, while the others are broadly distributed across East and Southeast Asia and show evidence of hybridization."

The Scan

ChatGPT Does As Well As Humans Answering Genetics Questions, Study Finds

Researchers in the European Journal of Human Genetics had ChatGPT answer genetics-related questions, finding it was about 68 percent accurate, but sometimes gave different answers to the same question.

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Researchers in Nature Ecology & Evolution find gene regulatory network differences between soldiers and foragers, suggesting bees can take on either role.

Analysis of Ashkenazi Jewish Cohort Uncovers New Genetic Loci Linked to Alzheimer's Disease

The study in Alzheimer's & Dementia highlighted known genes, but also novel ones with biological ties to Alzheimer's disease.

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In papers appearing in Nature Communications and elsewhere, the team reports on findings from the two-year excursion examining coral reefs.