Danger avoidance can be genetically encoded for four generations

Princeton University researchers have discovered that learned behaviors in worms of the species C. elegans can be inherited for multiple generations, transmitted from parent to progeny via eggs and sperm cells. The paper detailing this Continue Reading →

For infection-fighting cells, a guideline for expanding the troops

T cells are like the special ops forces of the immune system, detecting and killing infected cells. When a new threat is detected, the cells ramp up from just a few sentry cells to a Continue Reading →

Finding meaning among the junk

By Kevin McElwee Only about 10 percent of the human genome are actually genes. The other 90 percent? Once called “junk DNA,” researchers now know that this genetic material contains on-off switches that can activate Continue Reading →

Lights, camera, action – of genes in development

By Yasemin Saplakoglu MOLECULAR BIOLOGIST MIKE LEVINE likes to recall his childhood when he talks about the reason he came to Princeton. “I grew up near Hollywood and I always loved movies as a kid, so Continue Reading →

Imaging system tracks brain activity of a freely moving worm

TO EXPLORE HOW THE BRAIN controls behavior, researchers have for the first time captured the whole-brain activity of a freely moving animal, in this case a nematode worm called Caenorhabditis elegans. Using an imaging system Continue Reading →

Bioengineering: Unlocking the secrets of human health

By Takim Williams RED-HOT RIVERS OF MOLTEN COPPER and aluminum alloys streamed from one receptacle to another. As an undergraduate watching the demonstration in a materials science class, Clifford Brangwynne was reminded of cells migrating Continue Reading →

Striking resemblance: A physical law may govern very different biological activities

FLOCKS OF BIRDS FLY ACROSS THE SKY in shifting configurations. In the retina of an eye, millions of neurons ignite in ever-changing combinations, translating light into meaningful images. Yet both of these seemingly random behaviors Continue Reading →

Math and music spark student’s research interests

WHILE PRINCETON SENIOR Alexander Iriza, of Astoria, New York, credits his parents for sparking his interest in math — his mother gave him math workbooks when he was a toddler — that was merely “a Continue Reading →

How to train your worm to explore the circuits involved in learning

AS AN UNDERGRADUATE, Angelina Sylvain was fascinated to learn that devastating declines in cognition and muscle coordination could be caused by changes in a single gene — the cause of Huntington’s disease. She was intrigued Continue Reading →

Far from random, evolution follows a predictable pattern

Evolution, often perceived as a series of random changes, might in fact be driven by a simple and repeated genetic solution to an environmental pressure, according to new research. “Is evolution predictable? To a surprising Continue Reading →