genetics

A mother and daughter who share a rare genetic mutation and who routinely need just six hours of sleep a night have led to researchers taking a further step in untangling the genetic web of sleep[1]. “Before we identified the first short-sleep gene, people really weren’t thinking about sleep duration in genetic terms,” said Ying-Hui… Read more

Neurons, the fundamental component of the nervous system, exist in a multitude of forms and types. There may be as many as 10,000 specific types of neurons in the human brain. There is even a type of cell discovered in 2005 known as the “Jennifer Aniston neuron” that specifically responds to images of well-known celebrities… Read more

Researchers have created a high-resolution picture of the cells at work inside a key hub of metabolism — the liver — and shown how disease reprograms individual cell types. In every tissue throughout our bodies, various cell types communicate and coordinate their efforts to perform vital functions and maintain health. The new research not only… Read more

In recent years, MIT scientists have developed a new model for how key genes are controlled that suggests the cellular machinery that transcribes DNA into RNA forms specialized droplets called condensates. These droplets occur only at certain sites on the genome, helping to determine which genes are expressed in different types of cells. In a… Read more