How invading jumping genes are thwarted

Turbo

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Almost half of our DNA is made up of jumping genes, moving around the genome in developing sperm and egg cells. They trigger DNA damage, mutations, sterility or death. Organisms have survived these invasions, but little is known about where this adaptability comes from. Now, researchers have discovered that reproductive stem cells boost production of non-coding RNA elements that suppress jumping gene activity and activate a DNA repair process allowing for normal egg development.

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