Dubbed a “living fossil” by researchers, the Yao silkworm has been domesticated in virtual isolation for a millennium by the Baiku Yao ethnic group in China. New genetic research on the strain finds that the Yao silkworm is a primitive form of the domestic silkworm species Bombyx mori and more distantly related to other wild silkworm species.
A team of researchers reviewed the status of mitochondrial DNA as a molecular marker in insect ecology studies, given recent evidence that mitochondrial DNA may be more complicated than once thought.
When scientists discovered specimens of the invasive giant hornet Vespa mandarinia on both sides of the border between Washington and British Columbia in 2019, they sought to find out how they arrived from Asia. Analysis of their mitochondrial DNA provided an interesting twist: The hornets on each side of the border likely did not come from the same location in Asia.