Archive for January, 2008

Recombination week at Science

It’s like shark week, only better! Whet your appetite with “High-Resolution Mapping of Crossovers Reveals Extensive Variation in Fine-Scale Recombination Patterns Among Humans“, then top it off with “Sequence Variants in the RNF212 Gene Associate with Genomewide Recombination Rate“. Enjoy! Labels: Association, Genetics, Population genetics

Skin color is a deceptive character

The figure to the left is from Signatures of Positive Selection in Genes Associated with Human Skin Pigmentation as Revealed from Analyses of Single Nucleotide Polymorphisms. I thought of this chart when considering the idea that the phenotypic races that we see around us might be relatively new; perhaps an artifact of recent human evolution. […]

HERC2 & blue eye color & Danes

I was doing some snooping around due some questions about the HERC2 & eye color papers I mentioned yesterday. Guess what? Earlier this month a Danish group published a similar paper, Blue eye color in humans may be caused by a perfectly associated founder mutation in a regulatory element located within the HERC2 gene inhibiting […]

Plagues & molecules?

Two interesting articles out in the PNAS early release feed. Molecular insights into human daily behavior: Human beings exhibit wide variation in their timing of daily behavior. We and others have suggested previously that such differences might arise because of alterations in the period length of the endogenous human circadian oscillator. Using dermal fibroblast cells […]

Top 10 trafficed GNXP posts for 2007

Yanked out of google analytics, below the fold…. 10 – Why is porn legal but prostitution illegal?9 – IQ comparison site.8 – Converting between IQ and SAT scores .7 – Genetics of Hair Color (again).6 – German penises ‘too small for EU condoms’.5 – Porno Arabica (this is due to Assman over-utilizing our search boxes!)4 […]

Getting a fix on gene expression

A few weeks ago Kambiz of was mentioning how there’s very little mention of gene expression on this weblog. Fair enough, but hey, what about this? And this paper just popped into my RSS today, so check it out, Differential Allelic Expression in the Human Genome: A Robust Approach to Identify Genetic and Epigenetic […]

HERC2 and eye color

There are two new papers out in AJHG about eye color variation and genomics. Three Genome-wide Association Studies and a Linkage Analysis Identify HERC2 as a Human Iris Color Gene and A Single SNP in an Evolutionary Conserved Region within Intron 86 of the HERC2 Gene Determines Human Blue-Brown Eye Color. The second paper is […]

What the shades of humanity should be

From Geographic distribution of environmental factors influencing human skin coloration: …The UVR [ultraviolet radiation] data recorded by satellite were combined with environmental variables and data on human skin reflectance in a geographic information system (GIS). These were then analyzed visually and statistically through exploratory data analysis, correlation analysis, principal components analysis, least-squares regression analysis, and […]

Genetic variation & cattle

The New York Times Magazine has a long piece about replacement of Uganda’s native Ankole breed with Holsteins: “You know, in Uganda, we have to look for survival of the fittest,” Mugira said once he finished sorting out the confusion. “These ones, they are the fittest,” he went on to say, gesturing toward his Holsteins. […]

Genomic noise and individual variation

In classic heritability studies, the variance of some phenotype Y is decomposed (in the simplest model) into the variance attributable to genetic effects, G, and the variance attributable to environment, E, such that Var(Y) = G+E. As the majority of heritability studies are done by geneticists, who are in general more interested in G than […]

Kibra up in the air

The first genome-wide association study on human episodic memory back in 2006 showed an association between the T allele of a gene called KIBRA and better performance on certain list-learning tasks. That study contained two replications in different populations, and the outcome was independently replicated in healthy, elderly folks. Next, another group showed an association […]

What needs to change in academia?

more Labels: academia, bigthink, Larry Summers, science wars, Women in science

The games people play

Reza Aslan and Rod Dreher had a disagreement about the general concept of “Clash of Civilizations” on the latest I think people who actually read Samuel Huntington’s original book would feel that the caricature of his thesis is a bit unfair; granted, such macro-scale typologies invite criticism, and there were some embarrassing factual errors. […]

The Neolithic transitions

I’ve been posting a fair amount on the transition from hunter-gatherer to farmer in northern Europe lately. Though I’m obviously interested in historical scholarship in and of itself, my focus on this period has been triggered by the spate of recent papers on selection within the last 10,000 years or so. It seems that the […]

North vs. south genetic differentiation in China

Via Dienekes, a new paper, A spatial analysis of genetic structure of human populations in China reveals distinct difference between maternal and paternal lineages: Analyses of archeological, anatomical, linguistic, and genetic data suggested consistently the presence of a significant boundary between the populations of north and south in China. However, the exact location and the […]

Notes on Correlation: Part 3

I’m sure you have been waiting with bated breath (not!) for the final part of these notes. Part 1 is here and Part 2 here. This final part deals with the basics of multivariate correlation and regression, that is, correlation and regression involving more than two variables. Multivariate correlation and regression are among the most […]

Fitness is scalable for the rich

When fecundity does not equal fitness: evidence of an offspring quantity versus quality trade-off in pre-industrial humans: Maternal fitness should be maximized by the optimal division of reproductive investment between offspring number and offspring quality…We used a dataset of humans spanning three generations from pre-industrial Finland to test how increases in maternal fecundity affect offspring […]

Lactase peristence & Cystic Fibrosis

Yann points to a new paper, new paper, Cystic Fibrosis: Cystic fibrosis and lactase persistence: a possible correlation (Open Access): The simplest and most economical explanation is that a dairy-milk diet became established in a single area and remained restricted to that area for a period of time sufficient to allow the T and the […]

Gender bias in publications?

Check out this post. I found it via Research Blogging. I’m going to try out the RSS when they get it up and see if it’s worth it…. Labels: sex differences

$$$ X Politics ⇒ Red vs. Blue

The always interesting Andrew Gelman, Rich state, poor state, red-state, blue-state: it’s all about the rich: Thus, the familiar “red America, blue America” pattern, the “culture war” between red and blue states, is really something happening at the higher range of incomes. I believe that the details of history are always driven by battles between […]