The following is an edited excerpt.
Transposons, so-called ‘jumping genes’, make up 50 percent of the DNA in humans. They can change their position within the genome, thereby creating or reversing mutations, and this process, known as DNA transposition, plays a critical role in creating genetic diversity and enabling species to adapt and evolve.
How this actually occurs has, however, remained a mystery — until now. For the first time, the new study, carried out by researchers at The University of Nottingham, The University of Cambridge and the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Centre in Seattle, successfully identified the mechanism through which DNA transposition is regulated.
Read the full story here: Why Our Prehistoric, Parasitic ‘Jumping’ Genes Don’t Send Us Into Meltdown