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Genes of the tsetse fly decoded

After 10 years, a team led from [b]Yale School of Public Health[/b] has finally decoded the genes of the tsetse fly, a bloodsucking scourge of Africa. And, [s]The New York Times[/s] reports, with that knowledge they hope to find new ways to repel or kill the insects, whose bite transmits sleeping sickness, a parasitic disease that, like rabies, drives its victims mad before they lapse into a coma and die. The flies also carry nagana, which weakens or kills cattle and renders whole regions of Africa inhospitable to most livestock. Sequencing the genome of Glossina morsitans, one of several tsetse species, took a decade, partly because tsetses have highly unusual biology – they are the only insects that nurse their young, among other traits – and partly because of global health politics, said Dr Serap Aksoy, who ran the tsetse sequencing project.

[link url=http://www.nytimes.com/2014/04/25/science/tsetse-fly-genome-is-solved-raising-hope-in-battling-sleeping-sickness.html?emc=edit_th_20140425&nl=todaysheadlines&nlid=42505380&_r=0]Full report in The New York Times[/link]

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