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Epigenetics is a fast-growing field of research all over the world. Ecological epigenetics has now been further advanced thanks to the development of a new research technique. ‘This technique is cheaper and faster and enables research that was previously impossible to conduct.’ The time has come to look at how important epigenetic changes really are for dealing with climate change, plagues and other stress-factors. The research team led by the Netherlands Institute of Ecology (NIOO-KNAW) is publishing its technique in the scientific journal Nature Methods.
The great tit has revealed its genetic code, offering new insight into how species adapt to a changing planet. Initial findings suggest that epigenetics – what’s on rather than what’s in the gene – may have played a key role in the evolution of the ability to learn. And not just that of birds...
British enthusiasm for feeding birds may have caused UK great tits to have evolved longer beaks than their European counterparts, according to new research. The findings, published in Science, identify for the first time the genetic differences between UK and Dutch great tits which researchers were then able to link to longer beaks.
Facilitating the search for new antibiotics: that's what Gilles van Wezel aims to do by looking at similarities in the DNA of antibiotic-producing bacteria.