What we're reading

New York Public Library, Nov 2012 - 01

In the journals
Wang, J., Wurm, Y., Nipitwattanaphon, M., Riba-grognuz, O., Huang, Y., Shoemaker, D., et al. 2013. A Y-like social chromosome causes alternative colony organiziation in fire ants. Nature. doi: 10.1038/nature11832

In the fire ant Solenopsis invicta, the existence of two divergent forms of social organization is under the control of a single Mendelian genomic element marked by two variants of an odorant-binding protein gene4, 5, 6, 7, 8. Here we characterize the genomic region responsible for this important social polymorphism, and show that it is part of a pair of heteromorphic chromosomes that have many of the key properties of sex chromosomes.

Vines, T., Andrew, R. & Bock, D. 2013. Mandated data archiving greatly improves access to research data. The FASEB Journal. doi: 10.1096/fj.12-218164

Here we examine the effectiveness of four approaches to data archiving: no stated archiving policy, recommending (but not requiring) archiving, and two versions of mandating data deposition at acceptance. We control for differences between data types by trying to obtain data from papers that use a single, widespread population genetic analysis, STRUCTURE.

In the blogosphere
You’ve had a flu shot for this year, right? Why haven’t you had a flu shot yet?!
Clinical trial shows that fecal microbial transplants can be more effective than antibiotics for preventing recurrent infections of the lower digestive tract.
This behind-the-scenes tour of The University of Montana’s zoological museum is pretty excellent. Money quote: “The whole museum is basically overflow skull storage.” Also watch out for the orgy. No, really. (h/t Hannah Waters)

About Jeremy Yoder

Jeremy B. Yoder is an Associate Professor of Biology at California State University Northridge, studying the evolution and coevolution of interacting species, especially mutualists. He is a collaborator with the Joshua Tree Genome Project and the Queer in STEM study of LGBTQ experiences in scientific careers. He has written for the website of Scientific American, the LA Review of Books, the Chronicle of Higher Education, The Awl, and Slate.
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