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Faculty Research in the News

Landweber Research Featured on New Jersey Network

A group of scientists in Princeton's Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology has uncovered a new biological mechanism that could provide a clearer window into a cell's inner workings. This mechanism could represent an "epigenetic" pathway -- a route that bypasses an organism's normal DNA genetic program -- for so-called Lamarckian evolution, enabling an organism to pass on to its offspring characteristics acquired during its lifetime to improve their chances for survival. Lamarckian evolution is the notion, for example, that the giraffe's long neck evolved by its continually stretching higher and higher in order to munch on the more plentiful top tree leaves and gain a better shot at surviving.

The research also could have implications for a new method for controlling cellular processes, such as the splicing order of DNA segments, and increasing the understanding of natural cellular regulatory processes, such as which segments of DNA are retained versus lost during development. The team's findings was published Jan. 10 in the journal Nature.

Associate Professor Laura Landweber's findings were recently featured on New Jersey Network. View the video of the broadcast at  http://www.princeton.edu/main/news/archive/S19/94/60E39/. For the full story, see  http://win90va.mmpros.net/va90win15019/newspublicaffairs/science/dnabypass.wmv

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