This section contains reviews/summaries/critiques of selected published research articles in broad areas of biology, including evolutionary biology, developmental biology, and genetics. Some of these evaluations are part of my F1000 reviews (see my F1000 profile here).
Answering evolutionary questions: A guide for mechanistic biologists
Masel J and Promislow DE. Bioessays 2016 Jul; 38(7):704-11
PMID: 27151396 DOI: 10.1002/bies.201600029
Gupta B: F1000Prime Recommendation of [Masel J and Promislow DE, Bioessays 2016, 38(7):704-11].
In F1000Prime, 31 Oct 2016; DOI: 10.3410/f.726338043.793524332.
This primer takes an interesting approach to teaching how one could design good hypotheses to answer evolutionary questions. It is aimed at researchers who are trained to investigate mechanistic problems in cellular, molecular and developmental biology, but should also be helpful to many others.
Evolution of New cis-Regulatory Motifs Required for Cell-Specific Gene Expression in Caenorhabditis
Barkoulas et al. PLoS Genet 2016 Sep; 12(9):e1006278
PMID: 27588814 DOI: 10.1371/journal.pgen.1006278
Gupta B: F1000Prime Recommendation of [Barkoulas M et al., PLoS Genet 2016, 12(9):e1006278].
In F1000Prime, 20 Sep 2016; DOI: 10.3410/f.726706285.793523035.
Comparative studies have shown that changes in cis-regulatory sequences contribute to gene expression differences. However, cis evolution may also occur without altering gene expression.
In this paper, authors have investigated the regulation of lin-3 (EGF-family) in Rhabditidae nematode species, and report significant cis changes within a 58-bp cell-specific enhancer fragment even though the enhancer activates lin-3 expression in a conserved manner.