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Genetics Society of America's Genetics journal highlights for March 2013
Date:3/5/2013

noncoding RNAs: Past, present, and future, pp. 651-669
Johnny T. Y. Kung, David Colognori, and Jeannie T. Lee

Long noncoding RNAs are emerging as potential key players in all aspects of biology. However, the claim that much of the genome is transcribed into a complex "regulatory machinery" is controversial. The authors frame the debate in its historical context and offer general lessons distilled from current knowledge of the functions of these RNAs, providing an incisive snapshot of this rapidly moving field.

Population and Evolutionary Genetics:
Synchronous waves of failed soft sweeps in the laboratory: Remarkably rampant clonal interference of alleles at a single locus, pp. 943-952
Ming-Chun Lee and Christopher J. Marx

From populations of microbes evolving in the laboratory to human genomic diversity, it is increasingly clear that adaptation often involves multiple beneficial alleles at the same locus that rise in frequency together as a "soft sweep". This article reports a dramatic example of this during experimental evolution of Methylobacterium, where up to 17 similar alleles were simultaneously present in a single population. Their frequencies rose and fell at different times across populations but synchronously within each population as a single wave of genotypes of nearly equivalently fit genotypes.

Genome and Systems Biology:
Modeling causality for pairs of phenotypes in system genetics, pp. 1003-1013
Elias Chaibub Neto, Aimee T. Broman, Mark P. Keller, Alan D. Attie, Bin Zhang, Jun Zhu, and Brian S. Yandell

To disentangle causal relationships among phenotypes in segregating populations, these investigators modeled causality for pairs of phenotypes. Their resulting tests enable biologists to choose for investigation a few gene pairs from a short rank-ordered list of candidates. The authors provide software tools and show their utility with yeast datasets.

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Contact: Phyllis Edelman
pedelman@genetics-gsa.org
301-634-7302
Genetics Society of America
Source:Eurekalert

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