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New bird, bat species revealed by extensive DNA barcode studies

r of the University of Alberta’s Genetics Department. While there, he received NSERC grants over a 25-year period after the Council was formed. Von Borstel’s principal research efforts were on the causes of spontaneous mutations and how genes repair themselves.

He remained at the university past his mandatory retirement in 1992, continuing research for another 10 years. It was during his "retirement" years that he discovered how DNA and their components, the nucleosides, can repair chromosomes damaged by radiation. This suggests there are many natural ways for animals and humans to heal themselves. Also, he and his colleague Oksana Iavorovska discovered that human ovarian endometriosis is induced in sun-lovers by the ultraviolet radiation in sunlight.

"It’s been a privilege for me to do my work for so long and, as a matter of fact, I wish I was able to continue doing it today," the 82-year-old professor emeritus says. "Just before my laboratory was closed, my team of researchers was studying the number of genes responsible for spontaneous mutation rates in yeast, and in our first random sample we discovered that one-third of them control the mutation rate, and we had expected that only about 4 per cent might affect the rate. This shows that no matter how long you carry out research, there’s always something surprising around the corner."
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Source:terrycollins@rogers.com


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