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This Week in Nature: Nov 20, 2014

In Nature this week, researchers from the Mouse ENCODE Consortium publish several papers describing potentially functional elements in the mouse genome, helping to validate the animal as a model organism for human disease, and providing a new resource for the study of mammalian biology. The papers specifically report on DNA elements in the mouse genome, the conservation of trans-acting circuitry during mammalian regulatory evolution, the principles of regulatory information conservation between mouse and human, and topologically associating domains as stable units of replication-timing regulation. GenomeWeb has more on these studies here.

Meanwhile, in Nature Biotechnology, a multi-institute team of scientists presents the draft genome of the ferret, which serves as an important model for various human respiratory diseases including influenza. The researchers also characterized the ferret host response to two influenza virus infections and showed distinct signatures in ferret trachea and lung tissues specific to 1918 or 2009 human pandemic flu outbreaks. GenomeWeb also covers the ferret genome here.

Filed under

The Scan

Interfering With Invasive Mussels

The Chicago Tribune reports that researchers are studying whether RNA interference- or CRISPR-based approaches can combat invasive freshwater mussels.

Participation Analysis

A new study finds that women tend to participate less at scientific meetings but that some changes can lead to increased involvement, the Guardian reports.

Right Whales' Decline

A research study plans to use genetic analysis to gain insight into population decline among North American right whales, according to CBC.

Science Papers Tie Rare Mutations to Short Stature, Immunodeficiency; Present Single-Cell Transcriptomics Map

In Science this week: pair of mutations in one gene uncovered in brothers with short stature and immunodeficiency, and more.