Sleep Evolved Before Brains. Hydras Are Living Proof.
Studies of sleep are usually neurological. But some of nature’s simplest animals suggest that sleep evolved for metabolic reasons, long before brains even existed.
Longevity Linked to Proteins That Calm Overexcited Neurons
New research makes a molecular connection between the brain and aging — and shows that overactive neurons can shorten life span.
The Body’s Clock Offers a Rhythmic Target to Viruses
Viruses and other parasites may sync with their host’s biological clock — or reset it — to gain an advantage.
How Nature Defies Math in Keeping Ecosystems Stable
Paradoxically, the abundance of tight interactions among living species usually leads to disasters in ecological models. New analyses hint at how nature seemingly defies the math.
You Are Getting Sleepy — Tagged Proteins May Point to Why
The identification of SNIPPs, a set of proteins found primarily at the brain’s synapses, brings science closer to understanding why we need to sleep.
Theory Suggests That All Genes Affect Every Complex Trait
The more closely geneticists look at complex traits and diseases, the harder it gets to find active genes that don’t play some part in them.
How Many Genes Do Cells Need? Maybe Almost All of Them
An ambitious study in yeast shows that the health of cells depends on the highly intertwined effects of many genes, few of which can be deleted together without consequence.
Why Don’t Patients Get Sick in Sync? Modelers Find Statistical Clues.
The long, variable times that some diseases incubate after infection defies simple explanation. An idealized model of tumor growth offers a statistical solution.