Month: March 2013

Much of the universe is thought to be made up of invisible ‘dark matter’; in the same way, much of the genome consists of DNA that does not code for a protein and was thought to be unimportant. However, this ‘genomic dark matter’ may be important in controlling gene function in health and disease, and it is these interactions that Steven Witte is exploring [Image Credit: ESA/Hubble]

Is arthritis due to DNA’s dark matter?

27 March 2013: Steven Witte explains how his fascination with the cause of autoimmune diseases such as arthritis has brought him to the Sanger Institute to study the effects of non-coding DNA [Image credit: ESA/Hubble]

No more free rides for tapeworms?

13 March 2013: Tapeworm’s leave all the hard work to their hosts. But their laziness could be their undoing. Genome sequencing has revealed that the parasites’ genetic simplicity makes them extremely reliant on certain genes and processes to live, and these ‘weak spots’ may be vulnerable to existing drugs