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evolutionary biology

In Genome Research this week: gene expression in primate brain regions, inversions and breakpoint inverted repeats in the human genome, and more.

The researchers studied the admixture of humans and Neanderthals using 14 million archaic chromosome fragments detected in whole genomes from 27,566 Icelanders.

Researchers have been using Nextstrain, which includes data for thousands of SARS-CoV-2 genomes, to study how the virus accrues mutations over time.

Though it is unclear whether the virus became pathogenic before or after the jump from animals to humans, genomic features point to a natural source for the COVID-19 coronavirus.

A sequencing analysis of New York City rats indicates they have adapted to the urban environment there, according to a recent preprint.

Ars Technica reports that a multicellular eukaryotic parasite has lost its mitochondria.

In Nature this week: epigenetic factors that prevent healthy aging and more.

Parakeet Extinction

A new genetic analysis implicates people in the extinction of Carolina parakeets, according to National Geographic.

Nuclear and mitochondrial genome sequences from 120,000-year-old Neanderthal remains from Germany and Belgium revealed genetic ties to more recent Neanderthal populations.

In PNAS this week: copy number changes arose during polar bear evolution, genomic and transcriptomic analysis of the Siberian hamster, and more.

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President-elect Joe Biden has nominated Eric Lander to serve as director of the Office of Science and Technology Policy, the Associated Press says.

Nature News writes that scientists are trying to figure out how to name the new strains of SARS-CoV-2 that are emerging.

The New York Times reports that researchers are studying identical twins who had COVID-19 to understand the influence of genetics on disease severity.

In PNAS this week: epistasis affecting cystic fibrosis, Tiger rattlesnake genome gives venom insight, and more.