Sunday, April 22, 2012

Did you know? [warning: lame useless facts that I somehow love]

Time for some fun facts. :) Hehehe (No, I'm not a geneticist. I just thought these fun facts were neat and worth sharing! That's why I provided links, 'cause I sure can't explain the complexities of these facts.)

Wild-type banana!
  • The bananas sold commercially are triploid because their wild-type diploid counterparts have tough inedible seeds! I had always wondered how bananas were grown as a kid, I mean, it didn't seem like there were really any seeds inside of them, but now I know. Apparently mutant triploid seedless plants are grown from "suckers" that grow at the bottom of the plant, and which are separated and replanted every year, so that you get a bunch of identical plants! If you're deeply interested in bananas, read more 

    Tympanoctomys barrerae
  • There is a species of rodent found in Argentina that is polyploid! The Plains Viscacha Rat is a normal looking rodent, but it turns out that it is tetraploid. Humans are diploid, meaning we have double of every chromosome, however these rats have 4 copies of each chromosome! Polyploidy is more common in plants than animals. There isn't much info about this critter but you can still: Read more!

  • Platypuses have 10 sex chromosomes! Platypuses are monotremes, a group of mammals that split off from modern-day mammals at least 166 million years ago. Therefore, they have retained characteristics of early mammals, such as their egg-laying and milk producing traits. The male platypus is also venomous! It has spurs on his hind legs. Reading about their evolution and genome is pretty interesting. Read more!

1 comment:

  1. I knew about the platypus and suspected the bananas, I love genetics!