512 research outputs found

    Leveraging base-pair mammalian constraint to understand genetic variation and human disease

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    Thousands of genomic regions have been associated with heritable human diseases, but attempts to elucidate biological mechanisms are impeded by an inability to discern which genomic positions are functionally important. Evolutionary constraint is a powerful predictor of function, agnostic to cell type or disease mechanism. Single-base phyloP scores from 240 mammals identified 3.3% of the human genome as significantly constrained and likely functional. We compared phyloP scores to genome annotation, association studies, copy-number variation, clinical genetics findings, and cancer data. Constrained positions are enriched for variants that explain common disease heritability more than other functional annotations. Our results improve variant annotation but also highlight that the regulatory landscape of the human genome still needs to be further explored and linked to disease

    The James Webb Space Telescope Mission

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    Twenty-six years ago a small committee report, building on earlier studies, expounded a compelling and poetic vision for the future of astronomy, calling for an infrared-optimized space telescope with an aperture of at least 4m4m. With the support of their governments in the US, Europe, and Canada, 20,000 people realized that vision as the 6.5m6.5m James Webb Space Telescope. A generation of astronomers will celebrate their accomplishments for the life of the mission, potentially as long as 20 years, and beyond. This report and the scientific discoveries that follow are extended thank-you notes to the 20,000 team members. The telescope is working perfectly, with much better image quality than expected. In this and accompanying papers, we give a brief history, describe the observatory, outline its objectives and current observing program, and discuss the inventions and people who made it possible. We cite detailed reports on the design and the measured performance on orbit.Comment: Accepted by PASP for the special issue on The James Webb Space Telescope Overview, 29 pages, 4 figure

    The James Webb Space Telescope Mission

    No full text
    Twenty-six years ago a small committee report, building on earlier studies, expounded a compelling and poetic vision for the future of astronomy, calling for an infrared-optimized space telescope with an aperture of at least 4 m. With the support of their governments in the US, Europe, and Canada, 20,000 people realized that vision as the 6.5 m James Webb Space Telescope. A generation of astronomers will celebrate their accomplishments for the life of the mission, potentially as long as 20 yr, and beyond. This report and the scientific discoveries that follow are extended thank-you notes to the 20,000 team members. The telescope is working perfectly, with much better image quality than expected. In this and accompanying papers, we give a brief history, describe the observatory, outline its objectives and current observing program, and discuss the inventions and people who made it possible. We cite detailed reports on the design and the measured performance on orbit

    A genomic timescale for placental mammal evolution.

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    The precise pattern and timing of speciation events that gave rise to all living placental mammals remain controversial. We provide a comprehensive phylogenetic analysis of genetic variation across an alignment of 241 placental mammal genome assemblies, addressing prior concerns regarding limited genomic sampling across species. We compared neutral genome-wide phylogenomic signals using concatenation and coalescent-based approaches, interrogated phylogenetic variation across chromosomes, and analyzed extensive catalogs of structural variants. Interordinal relationships exhibit relatively low rates of phylogenomic conflict across diverse datasets and analytical methods. Conversely, X-chromosome versus autosome conflicts characterize multiple independent clades that radiated during the Cenozoic. Genomic time trees reveal an accumulation of cladogenic events before and immediately after the Cretaceous-Paleogene (K-Pg) boundary, implying important roles for Cretaceous continental vicariance and the K-Pg extinction in the placental radiation

    Integrating gene annotation with orthology inference at scale

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    Annotating coding genes and inferring orthologs are two classical challenges in genomics and evolutionary biology that have traditionally been approached separately, limiting scalability. We present TOGA (Tool to infer Orthologs from Genome Alignments), a method that integrates structural gene annotation and orthology inference. TOGA implements a different paradigm to infer orthologous loci, improves ortholog detection and annotation of conserved genes compared with state-of-the-art methods, and handles even highly fragmented assemblies. TOGA scales to hundreds of genomes, which we demonstrate by applying it to 488 placental mammal and 501 bird assemblies, creating the largest comparative gene resources so far. Additionally, TOGA detects gene losses, enables selection screens, and automatically provides a superior measure of mammalian genome quality. TOGA is a powerful and scalable method to annotate and compare genes in the genomic era

    Three-dimensional genome rewiring in loci with human accelerated regions

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    Human accelerated regions (HARs) are conserved genomic loci that evolved at an accelerated rate in the human lineage and may underlie human-specific traits. We generated HARs and chimpanzee accelerated regions with an automated pipeline and an alignment of 241 mammalian genomes. Combining deep learning with chromatin capture experiments in human and chimpanzee neural progenitor cells, we discovered a significant enrichment of HARs in topologically associating domains containing human-specific genomic variants that change three-dimensional (3D) genome organization. Differential gene expression between humans and chimpanzees at these loci suggests rewiring of regulatory interactions between HARs and neurodevelopmental genes. Thus, comparative genomics together with models of 3D genome folding revealed enhancer hijacking as an explanation for the rapid evolution of HARs

    Non-standard neutrino interactions in IceCube

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    Non-standard neutrino interactions (NSI) may arise in various types of new physics. Their existence would change the potential that atmospheric neutrinos encounter when traversing Earth matter and hence alter their oscillation behavior. This imprint on coherent neutrino forward scattering can be probed using high-statistics neutrino experiments such as IceCube and its low-energy extension, DeepCore. Both provide extensive data samples that include all neutrino flavors, with oscillation baselines between tens of kilometers and the diameter of the Earth. DeepCore event energies reach from a few GeV up to the order of 100 GeV - which marks the lower threshold for higher energy IceCube atmospheric samples, ranging up to 10 TeV. In DeepCore data, the large sample size and energy range allow us to consider not only flavor-violating and flavor-nonuniversal NSI in the Ό−τ sector, but also those involving electron flavor. The effective parameterization used in our analyses is independent of the underlying model and the new physics mass scale. In this way, competitive limits on several NSI parameters have been set in the past. The 8 years of data available now result in significantly improved sensitivities. This improvement stems not only from the increase in statistics but also from substantial improvement in the treatment of systematic uncertainties, background rejection and event reconstruction

    Scintillation light detection in the 6-m drift-length ProtoDUNE Dual Phase liquid argon TPC