Lepidoteuthis - with scales.

Dec 24, 2002
Yo, Dudes!

There's an interesting article in the recent Scientific American about the supression of genes due to the cellular use of RNA interferase (which, as the name suggests, is an enzyme that interferes with gene expression). RNAi is the cell's adaptive response to certain viruses, "junk" DNA sequences, and can possibly be used to fight the expression of cancers.

I totally forgot about this enzyme in our earlier posts. See, in humans it might be a clue about why so much of our DNA is pretty much non-coding junk. Oh, it probably codes for something, but is suppressed by RNAi and the like. We don't want to let our cells be viral factories, nor do we want a sudden spontaneous expression of all of our ancestral traits, right?

So here's my thought for the "wall of weird" that TONMO occasionally has: These traits that we have been discussing may be a weird form of ancestral, stretching back into the mollusc line. Then again, they may just be convergent coolness.

DRAT!! If we only had a good teuthoid genetic map, we might be able to find out about these scales!!


Oh well, sushi and sake... And say hi to Kat for me.