In this episode, we hear about the emerging field of palaeoshellomics, wasp eggs that keep their food fresh, a monkey with a missing visual cortex, new biological methods inspired by astronomy and how to mix a family with a research career.
In this episode we hear about the cocktail party effect, the role of psuedogene RNA in the immune response, the genetic origins of a common form of blindness, the flu vaccine, and the origins of schistosomiasis.
Gene knock-out of the omega-1 ribonuclease of Schistosoma mansoni eggs resulted in immunologically impaired phenotype, showcasing the novel application of CRISPR/Cas9 genome editing and utility for functional genomics in schistosomes.
Different developmental stages of a venomous animal (e.g. Nematostella vectensis) with a complex life cycle produce vastly different venoms that can serve in different antagonistic interactions with other species.
The complex chromatin-based genomic regulatory system controlling developmental gene expression in complex bilaterians predates the evolution of morphological complexity and may have been a prerequisite for the evolution of the first simple multicellular animals.