Archives for posts with tag: science

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Contrary to previous theories, there may only have been one human species walking the earth millions of years ago. According to a paper in Science, Homo habilis, Homo rudolfensis and Homo erectus may have been part of the evolution of humans, rather than separate species.

Ants are more closely related to bees than to wasps, according to a study of the insects’ genomes and transcriptomes (the genes that are actively being translated into proteins).

Fruit flies given a supplement of polyamines such as spermidine slows the memory loss caused by aging. The next step is to test this in mice and humans.

See the original paper in Nature Neuroscience.

This year’s IgNobel Awards handed prizes to ten winners from 18 countries, including the Japanese team who accepted their award dressed in mouse costumes.

A Facebook game could help scientists find out how to protect ash trees from ash dieback, caused by infection with the Chalara fraxinea fungus.

The lycopenes in tomatoes can protect you from sunburn – and there’s even a recipe to help too! Don’t stop using the suncream too though… especially in Death Valley.

a pile of tomatoes

Plants can do basic maths and this helps them to know how much stored starch to use overnight.

Cockroaches have evolved to taste sugar as bitter, helping them to avoid poisoned bait – they will spit it out like a baby trying something new.

Read the paper in Science.

Researchers have sequenced the coelacanth genome. This deep-sea fish has changed little physically in the last 300 million years, and the genome analysis shows few changes in its protein-coding genes.

The research could tell us more about how animals evolved from fish. Read more in the paper in Nature.

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