Category: Research news

  • Rhythms in red blood cells and the ever-present casein kinase

    My latest research was published in Journal of Biological Rhythms this week. It is open access here: Casein Kinase 1 Underlies Temperature Compensation of Circadian Rhythms in Human Red Blood Cells.

  • Sleep during the early stages of urbanisation

    This week, I publised an article entitled Comparison between an African town and a neighbouring village shows delayed, but not decreased, sleep during the early stages of urbanisation in the journal Scientific Reports. The article is Open Access, which means it is freely available for all to read. I hope the research has contributed to the discussion […]

    Advertisement

  • Parasitoid wasps and GM butterflies

    Foreign pieces of DNA are found in the genomes of many animals – these ‘Genomic parasites‘ are pure, genome hopping pieces of DNA code which embed their lifecycle within the DNA in our own cells. You could call this genomic parasitisation a form of genetic modification, just as scientists in labs the world over use […]

  • Circadian clocks in the great outdoors

    We’re all aware of our natural body clock pattern: some people are early birds, some people are night owls, a phenomenon known as your chronotype. You can override this with alarm clocks and coffee, which is especially important for shift workers. But have you ever noticed your chronotype shift when you go on holiday, especially […]

  • Shifting your clock: shift work and the circadian clock

    To many people, the phenomenon known scientifically as the circadian rhythm is bleeding obvious. We sleep in the night and are awake during the day, long-haul flights like those from the UK to Australia gives you jetlag, and night shifts are a right pain in the bum. Detailed explanations involving transcription-translation feedback loops and phase […]

  • Colourful Chameleons and Stripy Zebras – The Coolest Animals in Africa

    You can say all you like about lions or elephants being the coolest animals in Africa. They are awesome for sure but they’re not quite the top. I suggest that that title goes to the chameleon and the zebra. Why? They are just so unique: one changes colour as much as a fashion model, and […]

  • Mosquitos – fine-tuned by evolution to preferentially feed on humans

    Would you look at that! The story of mosquitos, cheese and body odour has taken another leap into scientific respectability with a paper being published in the pinnacle of journals, Nature. “Evolution of mosquito preference for humans linked to an odorant receptor” by McBride and colleagues was published towards the end of last year and […]

  • A genetic atlas of human history

    Two papers caught my eye recently that have taken advantage of the proliferation of whole genome sequencing techniques in recent years. With prices of sequencing whole genomes coming down and down, biologists are having access to vast amounts of data. The 1000 Genomes Project was one of the first to collect the vast amounts of […]

  • Plants, polyploidy and producing new species

    When I talk about my career and my interest in evolutionary biology, I often get asked, “How do you actually get new species?”. It’s not a stupid question; for people without a background in biology it really is very hard to imagine how the diversity of life we see today has formed from the types […]

  • Predicting your academic career

    Publication metrics and success on the academic job market David van Dijk, Ohad Manor, Lucas B. Carey Current Biology 2014 Vol 24 No 11 R516 I caught this paper in a TOC email from Current Biology. “Predict who becomes a PI” they say. “Hmm,” I think, “This should be interesting.” The abstract sets out the […]