Skip to Content
Uncategorized

Mitochondria and the Mob

An article in USA Today reports that new mitochondrial DNA testing techniques may help to identify the murderer of a number of Mob figures buried in swamps around the New York City metropolitan area.Mitochondria, the organelles in animal cells responsible…
February 22, 2005

An article in USA Today reports that new mitochondrial DNA testing techniques may help to identify the murderer of a number of Mob figures buried in swamps around the New York City metropolitan area.

Mitochondria, the organelles in animal cells responsible for respiration, carry their own DNA. The discovery of mitochondrial DNA was one of the triggers for the Endosymbiosis Hypothesis of cell evolution, which holds that eukaryotic cells, which have differentiated internal parts, evolved from an alliance of prokaryotes (such as bacteria), early in the history of life on earth.

Here’s the funny part: because mitochondria are inherited through the maternal line, m-DNA analysis is particularly good at identifying blood relatives. (Strike one for Cosa Nostra.) Also, mitochondria appear to be closely related to blue-green algae, which brings us back to the swamps mentioned earlier. (Oh, the irony!)

Who says evolution doesn’t have a sense of humor?

Keep Reading

Most Popular

It’s time to retire the term “user”

The proliferation of AI means we need a new word.

Sam Altman says helpful agents are poised to become AI’s killer function

Open AI’s CEO says we won’t need new hardware or lots more training data to get there.

An AI startup made a hyperrealistic deepfake of me that’s so good it’s scary

Synthesia's new technology is impressive but raises big questions about a world where we increasingly can’t tell what’s real.

Taking AI to the next level in manufacturing

Reducing data, talent, and organizational barriers to achieve scale.

Stay connected

Illustration by Rose Wong

Get the latest updates from
MIT Technology Review

Discover special offers, top stories, upcoming events, and more.

Thank you for submitting your email!

Explore more newsletters

It looks like something went wrong.

We’re having trouble saving your preferences. Try refreshing this page and updating them one more time. If you continue to get this message, reach out to us at customer-service@technologyreview.com with a list of newsletters you’d like to receive.