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Bird Louse Study Shows How Evolution Sometimes Repeats Itself

Published: August 16, 2012.
Released by University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign  

CHAMPAIGN, Ill. — Birds of a feather flock together and – according to a new analysis – so do their lice.


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More news from University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign


biology
New Method Helps Map Species' Genetic Heritage
CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - Where did the songbird get its song? What branch of the bird family tree is closer to the flamingo - the heron or the sparrow? These questions seem simple, but are actually difficult for geneticists to answer. A new, sophisticated statistical technique developed by researchers at the University of Illinois and the University of Texas at Austin can help researchers construct more accurate species trees detailing the lineage of genes and the relationships between species.

biology
Birds Find Their Place in the Avian Tree of Life
CHAMPAIGN, Ill. -- An international effort involving more than 100 researchers, nine supercomputers and about 400 years of CPU time has yielded the most reliable avian tree of life yet produced, researchers report in the journal Science. The tree reflects the evolutionary relationships of 48 species of birds.

biology
Now Researchers Can See How Unfolded Proteins Move in the Cell
CHAMPAIGN, Ill. -- When a large protein unfolds in transit through a cell, it slows down and can get stuck in traffic. Using a specialized microscope -- a sort of cellular traffic camera -- University of Illinois chemists now can watch the way the unfolded protein diffuses.

biology
Study: Different Species Share a 'Genetic Toolkit' for Behavioral Traits
CHAMPAIGN, Ill. -- The house mouse, stickleback fish and honey bee appear to have little in common, but at the genetic level these creatures respond in strikingly similar ways to danger, researchers report. When any of these animals confronts an intruder, the researchers found, many of the same genes and brain gene networks gear up or down in response.

medicine
Women with Serious Mental Illness Less Likely to Receive Cancer Screenings
CHAMPAIGN, Ill. -- Women with symptoms of serious mental illness are significantly less likely to receive three routine cancer screenings - Pap tests, mammograms and clinical breast exams - than women in the general population, despite being at elevated risk for medical comorbidities and early death, a new study indicates.

psychology
Not All Baseball Stars Treated Equally in TV Steroid Coverage, Says Study of Network News
CHAMPAIGN, Ill. -- Retired baseball stars Barry Bonds, Mark McGwire and Rafael Palmeiro each had Hall of Fame-worthy numbers, each hitting more than 500 home runs. All three also were tarred by allegations of steroid use.

medicine
Longer Work Hours for Moms Mean Less Sleep, Higher BMIs for Preschoolers
CHAMPAIGN, Ill. -- The majority of preschoolers may not be getting the amount of sleep they need each night, placing them at higher risk of being overweight or obese within a year, according to a new study.

psychology
Study: Teens Who Mature Early at Greater Risk of Depression
CHAMPAIGN, Ill. -- Youth who enter puberty ahead of their peers are at heightened risk of depression, although the disease develops differently in girls than in boys, a new study suggests. Early maturation triggers an array of psychological, social-behavioral and interpersonal difficulties that predict elevated levels of depression in boys and girls several years later, according to research by led by psychology professor Karen D. Rudolph at the University of Illinois.

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