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“Do you know what unc-64 stands for?”

This is actually a reasonable question, coming from a “fly person” to a “worm person.”


I’m the worm person — I got my Ph.D. studying aging in the model organism C. elegans. Recently, I got to talk to Hugo Bellen, a well-known fruit fly researcher at Baylor College of Medicine, about something that I’ve always appreciated, but never quite understood: Why are fruit fly gene names so … cool?

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