A Darwin Day delve into how the chipmunk got its stripes

In celebration of Darwin Day, the 208thanniversary of Charles Darwin’s birthday, Stanford Medicine spoke with HudsonAlpha Faculty Investigator Greg Barsh, MD, PhD, about his research in the genetics of color patterns in mammals. Last year, he published a paper on dun-colored horses. This year, he looked into chipmunks and striped mice.

“Many people would like to know why zebras have stripes,” Barsh said. “But you can’t really bring zebras into the lab.” So he and a group of other researchers — including lead author Ricardo Mallarino, PhD, at Harvard — recently published a paper in Nature on how stripes develop in the Southern African striped mouse.

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