Great Post Ivan!! Purdue scientists certainly make you stop and wonder
(not that I'm biased, I also caught this one in our alumni bulletin)
I wasn't able to view your link at CNN, perhaps that post made it into the bit bucket, here is another site where you may read about this. They also published their findings in Nature, Mar 24 (2005). Here is an abstract.
Wow! Very interesting. Ouabache, thanks for linking to the Nature abstract; I read the original article and they clearly covered all the obvious questions that jumped to my mind. That should keep geneticists and molecular biologists busy for a while.
Hey. I'm a boilermaker. How's the chocolate shop? That's where we started my pubcrawl when I turned 21, several centuries ago. When did you finish up there? (Purdue, not Harry's.)
Edit: Guess I should make a token effort to keep this on topic, eh?
OK. If I recall correctly, the thought is that the grandparent DNA is kept sequestered somewhere, for use "if needed" in the F2 generation.
How is it sequestered? as RNA or DNA? In a special organelle? The cellular mechanism for keeping this extra NA from being degraded will be most interesting --- RNA has a short half life in vivo, and non-genomic/non plasmid DNA shouldn't be exceptionally stable either. Certainly surviving for two plant generations (weeks to months or longer) is quite an accomplishment for a vegetative-phase eukaryote. I wonder if the NA is copied during this time frame, or if it is kept completely dormant?
The original link is dead now. Here is a current one.
Moonbear, pleased to hear you enjoyed the article. Yes it's always fun learning of new unexpected twists in our collective scientific knowledge.
pattylou: Yup, I'm a boiler. though no longer at W. Laf, however I have noticed at least a couple others on PF who are at Purdue. I can give you details in PM. You also raise some good questions. Hopefully they may be resolved in subsequent studies.
Curious, thanks for your link.. Not sure if you missed it, my post also points to a reference of the article (see underlined blue hypertext).
Separate names with a comma.