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Charles Darwin

Scientists discover second-oldest gene mutation

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1000pa (Dec. 15, 2011) — A new study has identified a gene mutation that researchers estimate dates back to 11,600 B.C., making it the second oldest human disease mutation yet discovered.

Researchers with the Ohio State University Comprehensive Cancer Center -- Arthur G. James Cancer Hospital and Richard J. Solove Research Institute led the study and estimate that the mutation arose in the Middle East some 13,600 years ago. Only a mutation...

1000pa (Dec. 15, 2011) — A new study has identified a gene mutation that researchers estimate dates back to 11,600 B.C., making it the second oldest human disease mutation yet discovered.

Researchers with the Ohio State University Comprehensive Cancer Center -- Arthur G. James Cancer Hospital...

Birds caught in the act of becoming a new species

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1000pa (Dec. 8, 2011) — A study of South American songbirds completed by the Department of Biology at Queen's University and the Argentine Museum of Natural History, has discovered these birds differ dramatically in colour and song yet show very little genetic differences which indicates they are on the road to becoming a new species.

"One of Darwin's accomplishments was to show that species could change, that they were not the unaltered,...

1000pa (Dec. 8, 2011) — A study of South...

Why aren't we smarter already? Evolutionary limits on cognition

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1000pa (Dec. 7, 2011) — We put a lot of energy into improving our memory, intelligence, and attention. There are even drugs that make us sharper, such as Ritalin and caffeine. But maybe smarter isn't really all that better. A new paper published in Current Directions in Psychological Science, a journal of the Association for Psychological Science, warns that there are limits on how smart humans can get, and any increases in thinking...

1000pa (Dec. 7, 2011) — We put a lot of energy into...

New horned dinosaur announced nearly 100 years after discovery

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1000pa (Dec. 6, 2011) — A new species of horned dinosaur was just announced by an international team of scientists led by Alf Museum staff, 95 years after the initial discovery of the fossil.

The animal, named Spinops sternbergorum, lived approximately 76 million years ago in southern Alberta, Canada.

Spinops was a plant-eater that weighed around two tons when alive, a smaller cousin of Triceratops. A single large horn projected from the top...

1000pa (Dec. 6, 2011) — A new species of...

Acquired traits can be inherited via small RNAs

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1000pa (Dec. 5, 2011) — Columbia University Medical Center (CUMC) researchers have found the first direct evidence that an acquired trait can be inherited without any DNA involvement. The findings suggest that Lamarck, whose theory of evolution was eclipsed by Darwin's, may not have been entirely wrong.

The study is slated to appear in the December 9 issue of Cell.

"In our study, roundworms that developed resistance to a virus were able to...

1000pa (Dec. 5, 2011) — Columbia University...

Ancient environment found to drive marine biodiversity

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1000pa (Nov. 24, 2011) — Much of our knowledge about past life has come from the fossil record -- but how accurately does that reflect the true history and drivers of biodiversity on Earth?

"It's a question that goes back a long way to the time of Darwin, who looked at the fossil record and tried to understand what it tells us about the history of life," says Shanan Peters, an assistant professor of geoscience at the University of...

1000pa (Nov. 24, 2011) — Much of our knowledge about...

Spiders, webs and insects: A new perspective on evolutionary history

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1000pa (Nov. 24, 2011) — The orb web, typical of a large number of spider species, has a single evolutionary origin, according to molecular phylogenetic research reported in the Proceedings of the Royal Society. The study in question, which was contributed to by the lecturer Miquel A. Arnedo from the Department of Animal Biology, who conducts research for the Institute for Research on Biodiversity (IRBio) of the University of Barcelona,...

1000pa (Nov. 24, 2011) — The orb web, typical of a...

Studying bat skulls, evolutionary biologists discover how species evolve

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1000pa (Nov. 23, 2011) — A new study involving bat skulls, bite force measurements and scat samples collected by an international team of evolutionary biologists is helping to solve a nagging question of evolution: Why some groups of animals develop scores of different species over time while others evolve only a few. Their findings appear in the current issue of Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences.

To answer this...

1000pa (Nov. 23, 2011) — A new study involving bat...

Mutants with heterozygote disadvantage can prevent spread of transgenic animals

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1000pa (Nov. 21, 2011) — Genetically modified animals are designed to contain the spread of pathogens. One prerequisite for the release of such organisms into the environment is that the new gene variant does not spread uncontrollably, suppressing natural populations. Scientists at the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Biology in Plön, Germany, have now established that certain mutations are maintained over an extended period if two s...

1000pa (Nov. 21, 2011) — Genetically modified...

Do long-lived crops differ from annual crops in their genetic response to human domestication?

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1000pa (Sep. 27, 2011) — Most of what we have come to think of as our daily fruits, vegetables, and grains were domesticated from wild ancestors. Over hundreds and thousands of years, humans have selected and bred plants for traits that benefit us -- traits such as bigger, juicier, and easier-to-harvest fruits, stems, tubers, or flowers. For short-lived, or annual, plants, it is relatively easy to envision how such human-induced selection...

1000pa (Sep. 27, 2011) — Most of what we have...

Experts discover oldest DNA regulatory region known to date in vertebrates and invertebrates

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1000pa (Sep. 19, 2011) — A team of scientists has discovered the oldest known DNA regulatory region, as reported in an article in the journal Proceedings of the National Academies of Sciences (PNAS). The team identified a small DNA fragment, with a deeply conserved noncoding sequence region (CNR), in the vicinity of soxB2 regulatory genes, which plays a role in gene regulation.

The article was written by Jordi Garcia-Fernández, Ignacio...

1000pa (Sep. 19, 2011) — A team of scientists has...

Unknown ocean bacteria lead scientists to entirely new theories

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1000pa (Sep. 16, 2011) — Earth's most successful bacteria are found in the oceans and belong to the group SAR11. In a new study, researchers from Uppsala University provide an explanation for their success and at the same time call into question generally accepted theories about these bacteria. In their analysis they have also identified a rare and hitherto unknown relative of mitochondria, the power stations inside cells.

The findings were...

1000pa (Sep. 16, 2011) — Earth's most...

Previously unknown ocean bacteria lead scientists to entirely new theories

  • PDF
1000pa (Sep. 16, 2011) — Earth's most successful bacteria are found in the oceans and belong to the group SAR11. In a new study, researchers from Uppsala University provide an explanation for their success and at the same time call into question generally accepted theories about these bacteria. In their analysis they have also identified a rare and hitherto unknown relative of mitochondria, the power stations inside cells.

The findings were...

1000pa (Sep. 16, 2011) — Earth's most...

Woolly mammoth's secrets for shrugging off cold points toward new artificial blood for humans

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1000pa (Sep. 14, 2011) — The blood from woolly mammoths -- those extinct elephant-like creatures that roamed Earth in pre-historic times -- is helping scientists develop new blood products for modern medical procedures that involve reducing patients' body temperature.

The report appears in ACS' journal Biochemistry.

Chien Ho and colleagues note that woolly mammoth ancestors initially evolved in warm climates, where African and Asian...

1000pa (Sep. 14, 2011) — The blood from woolly...

Evolution keeps sex determination flexible

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1000pa (Sep. 12, 2011) — There are many old wives' tales about what determines a baby's sex, yet it is the tight controls at the gene level that determine an organism's sex in most species. Researchers at Michigan State University have found that even when genetic and genomic mechanisms are disrupted, organisms quickly evolve ways to compensate.

In research published this week in Evolution, scientists from MSU's BEACON Center for the Study...

1000pa (Sep. 12, 2011) — There are many old...

Circadian clocks in a blind fish

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1000pa (Sep. 6, 2011) — Do animals that have evolved for millions of years underground, completely isolated from the day-night cycle, still "know" what time it is? Does a normal circadian clock persist during evolution under constant darkness? A new study directly tackles these fundamental questions by investigating a species of cavefish, Phreatichthys andruzzii, which has lived isolated for 2 million years beneath the Somalian desert.

Many...

1000pa (Sep. 6, 2011) — Do animals that have...

Mystery of disappearing bird digit solved

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1000pa (Sep. 4, 2011) — Researchers have solved the evolutionary mystery of origin of bird digits. Evolution adds and subtracts, and nowhere is this math more evident than in vertebrates, which are programmed to have five digits on each limb. But many species do not. Snakes, of course, have no digits, and birds have three.

Yale scientists now have a good handle on how these developmental changes are orchestrated in the embryo, but there is...

1000pa (Sep. 4, 2011) — Researchers have...

First lizard genome sequenced: Green anole lizard's genome sheds light on vertebrate evolution

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1000pa (Aug. 31, 2011) — The green anole lizard is an agile and active creature, and so are elements of its genome. This genomic agility and other new clues have emerged from the full sequencing of the lizard's genome and may offer insights into how the genomes of humans, mammals, and their reptilian counterparts have evolved since mammals and reptiles parted ways 320 million years ago. The researchers who completed this sequencing project...

1000pa (Aug. 31, 2011) — The green anole lizard...

How an 'evolutionary playground' brings plant genes together

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1000pa (Aug. 29, 2011) — Plants produce a vast array of natural products, many of which we find useful for making things such as drugs. There are likely to be many other plant natural products that remain undiscovered or under-exploited, and research from The John Innes Centre is uncovering more about the genetics and evolution of natural product pathways in plants. Researchers at JIC have recently discovered that the genes producing two...

1000pa (Aug. 29, 2011) — Plants produce a vast...

Not so fast: Lasting evolutionary change takes about one million years, researchers find

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1000pa (Aug. 22, 2011) — In research that will help address a long-running debate and apparent contradiction between short- and long-term evolutionary change, scientists have discovered that although evolution is a constant and sometimes rapid process, the changes that hit and stick tend to take a long time.

Give or take a little, one million years seems to be the magic number.

A new study, published in Proceedings of the National Academy of...

1000pa (Aug. 22, 2011) — In research that...

Yeast's epic journey 500 years ago gave rise to lager beer

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1000pa (Aug. 22, 2011) — In the 15th century, when Europeans first began moving people and goods across the Atlantic, a microscopic stowaway somehow made its way to the caves and monasteries of Bavaria.

The stowaway, a yeast that may have been transported from a distant shore on a piece of wood or in the stomach of a fruit fly, was destined for great things. In the dank caves and monastery cellars where 15th century brewmeisters stored...

1000pa (Aug. 22, 2011) — In the 15th century, when...

First Bird

First Bird
What was the earliest known bird?

Unexplained artifacts

unexplained artifacts
The 10 most amazing unexplained artifacts

Evolution

Timeline: Human Evolution

Biggest Dinosaurs

The 10 Biggest Dinosaurs

Fossils 

Fossil Formation: How Do Fossils Form?
 

Book review

Dinosaurs Encyclopedia

Book Review

Dinosaurs: The Most Complete, Up-to-Date Encyclopedia for Dinosaur Lovers of All Ages ... WRITTEN BY A PROFESSIONAL paleontologist specifically for young readers, this guide to the Dinosauria is packed...