Neanderthals, represented here by a museum's reconstruction, had been living in Eurasia for 200,000 years when Homo sapiens first passed through, and the communities intermingled. The same genes that today play a role in allergies very likely fostered a quick response to local bacteria, viruses and other pathogens, scientists say. Pierre Andrieu/AFP/Getty Images hide caption

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Itchy Eyes? Sneezing? Maybe Blame That Allergy On Neanderthals

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Fetal Cells May Protect Mom From Disease Long After The Baby's Born

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Psyched that it's finally spring? Shifts in the season may affect more than your mood. Corbis hide caption

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Seasons May Tweak Genes That Trigger Some Chronic Diseases

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Kids, Allergies And A Possible Downside To Squeaky Clean Dishes

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Kathy Liu and her son Joey Xu talk to friends back home in Gainesville, Fla., from his hospital room in Cincinnati. Amanda Aronczyk/WNYC hide caption

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Son's Rare Cancer Leads Family On Quest For Cure

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David Vetter was born without a functioning immune system and spent his life in a bubble that protected him from germs. He died at age 12 in 1984. Scientists are using gene therapy to treat the disorder so that children can live normally. Science Source hide caption

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The genetic factors responsible for a cat's stripes might help researchers understand disease resistance in humans. kennymatic via Flickr hide caption

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Could Genes For Stripes Help Kitty Fight Disease?

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Bacteroides species are some of the most common bacteria in the human gut. Enviornmental Health Perspectives hide caption

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Thriving Gut Bacteria Linked To Good Health

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Finally, A Map Of All The Microbes On Your Body

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Even in the remote Faroe Islands, some children have high levels of perfluorinated compounds in their blood. The chemicals may interfere with the immune system. Stig Nygaard/Flickr hide caption

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Common Chemicals Could Make Kids' Vaccines Less Effective

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Dr. Ralph Steinman of Rockefeller University died Friday, three days before he was named a winner of the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine for "his discovery of the dendritic cell and its role in adaptive immunity."

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