A previously unappreciated interaction in the genome turns out to have possibly been one of the driving forces in the emergence of advanced life. This discovery began with a curiosity for retrotransposons, known as "jumping genes," which are DNA sequences that copy and paste themselves within the genome, multiplying rapidly. Researchers inserted a retrotransposon into bacteria, and the results could give depth to the history of how advanced life may have emerged billions of years ago.
- Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences
- National Science Foundation Center for the Physics of Living Cells, Alfred P. Sloan Foundation, NASA Astrobiology Institute through the Science Mission Directorate