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Archive for the ‘evolution’ category: Page 69

Jan 22, 2021

Episode 34 — Why Geology Is Crucial To Unlocking The Mysteries Of Our Solar System

Posted by in categories: evolution, space

Great new episode with University of Arizona planetary geophysicist Erik Asphaug who talks candidly about what we know and don’t know about the structure of our inner solar system. Well worth a listen.


Planetary geophysicist Erik Asphaug of the University of Arizona discusses what we really know about our solar system; its age; its formation; and its evolution. Asphaug also addresses some major puzzles. Is our solar system truly anomalous? Is the composition and spacing of our eight planets also anomalous? And what we need to do to further planetary science.

Continue reading “Episode 34 --- Why Geology Is Crucial To Unlocking The Mysteries Of Our Solar System” »

Jan 21, 2021

Discovery of new praying mantis species from the time of the dinosaurs

Posted by in categories: biological, evolution

A McGill-led research team has identified a new species of praying mantis thanks to imprints of its fossilized wings. It lived in Labrador, in the Canadian Subarctic around 100 million years ago, during the time of the dinosaurs, in the Late Cretaceous period. The researchers believe that the fossils of the new genus and species, Labradormantis guilbaulti, helps to establish evolutionary relationships between previously known species and advances the scientific understanding of the evolution of the most ‘primitive’ modern praying mantises. The unusual find, described in a recently published study in Systematic Entomology, also sheds light on wing evolution among mantises and their relatives more generally.

Digging through mountains of rubble

The research team, which included members from the Muséum national d’Histoire naturelle in Paris, and the Musée de paléontologie et de l’évolution in Montreal, found the specimens during fieldwork at an abandoned iron mine located in Labrador, near Schefferville (Quebec).

Jan 16, 2021

Study investigates emission from a distant red quasar

Posted by in categories: cosmology, evolution, existential risks

Using the Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array (ALMA) in Chile, an international team of astronomers has performed observations of HSC J120505.09−000027.9—the most distant red quasar so far detected and found that it showcases an extended emission of ionized carbon. The finding is reported in a paper published January 4 on arXiv.org.

Quasars, or quasi– (QSOs), are extremely luminous active galactic nuclei (AGN) containing supermassive central black holes with accretion disks. Their redshifts are measured from the strong spectral lines that dominate their visible and . Some QSOs are dust-reddened, hence dubbed red quasars. These objects have a non-negligible amount of dust extinction, but are not completely obscured.

Astronomers are especially interested in studying high-redshift quasars (at redshift higher than 5.0) as they are the most luminous and most distant compact objects in the observable universe. Spectra of such QSOs can be used to estimate the mass of supermassive black holes that constrain the evolution and formation models of quasars. Therefore, could serve as a powerful tool to probe the early universe.

Jan 13, 2021

Researchers create a highly sensitive biohybrid olfactory sensor

Posted by in categories: bioengineering, biotech/medical, chemistry, evolution

A keen sense of smell is a powerful ability shared by many organisms. However, it has proven difficult to replicate by artificial means. Researchers combined biological and engineered elements to create what is known as a biohybrid component. Their volatile organic compound sensor can effectively detect odors in gaseous form. They hope to refine the concept for use in medical diagnosis and the detection of hazardous materials.

Electronic devices such as cameras, microphones and pressure sensors enable machines to sense and quantify their environments optically, acoustically and physically. Our sense of smell however, despite being one of nature’s most primal senses, has proven very difficult to replicate artificially. Evolution has refined this sense over millions of years and researchers are working hard to catch up.

“Odors, airborne chemical signatures, can carry useful information about environments or samples under investigation. However, this information is not harnessed well due to a lack of sensors with sufficient sensitivity and selectivity,” said Professor Shoji Takeuchi from the Biohybrid Systems Laboratory at the University of Tokyo. “On the other hand, biological organisms use information extremely efficiently. So we decided to combine existing biological sensors directly with artificial systems to create highly sensitive volatile organic compound (VOC) sensors. We call these biohybrid sensors.”

Jan 12, 2021

Here’s How Humans Have Evolved In the Last 100 Years

Posted by in categories: bitcoin, evolution, space

You can buy Universe Sandbox 2 here: http://amzn.to/2yJqwU6
Or get a shirt: https://teespring.com/stores/whatdamath.

Hello and welcome! My name is Anton and in this video, we will talk about some of the recent discoveries in regards to our own evolution in the last 250 years.
Paper: https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/joa.

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Jan 12, 2021

The “Last Eden?” First Human Culture Lasted 20,000 Years Longer Than Thought

Posted by in category: evolution

Some 11 thousand years ago, Africa’s furthest west harbored the last populations to preserve tool-making traditions first established by the earliest members of our species.

Fieldwork led by Dr. Eleanor Scerri, head of the Pan-African Evolution Research Group at the Max Planck Institute for the Science of Human History in Germany and Dr. Khady Niang of the University of Cheikh Anta Diop in Senegal, has documented the youngest known occurrence of the Middle Stone Age. This repertoire of stone flaking methods and the resulting tools includes distinctive ways of producing sharp flakes by carefully preparing nodules of rock, some of which were sometimes further shaped into tool forms known as ‘scrapers’ and ‘points.’ Middle Stone Age finds most commonly occur in the African record between around 300 thousand and 30 thousand years ago, after which point they largely vanish.

It was long thought that these tool types were replaced after 30 thousand years ago by a radically different, miniaturized toolkit better suited to diversified subsistence strategies and patterns of mobility across Africa. In a paper published in Scientific Reports this week, Scerri and colleagues show that groups of hunter-gatherers in what is today Senegal continued to use Middle Stone Age technologies associated with our species’ earliest prehistory as late as 11 thousand years ago. This contrasts with the long-held view that humanity’s major prehistoric cultural phases occurred in a neat and universal sequence.

Jan 11, 2021

Crocodiles Have Looked Exactly the Same for 200 Million Years, Which Is Weird

Posted by in category: evolution

Take your evolution and shove it.


It’s been 200 million years, but crocodiles haven’t aged a day.

Jan 10, 2021

Octopuses, Some Squid Edit RNA Sequences to Adapt to Environment

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, evolution, genetics

Octopus and squid make strange evolutionary shortcuts in adaptation. Evolution is an intricate process of change.


By Jonny Lupsha, News Writer

According to Science Alert, species of squid and octopus may yet have some surprises in store for us. “In a surprising twist, scientists discovered that octopuses, along with some squid and cuttlefish species, routinely edit their RNA (ribonucleic acid) sequences to adapt to their environment,” the article said.

Continue reading “Octopuses, Some Squid Edit RNA Sequences to Adapt to Environment” »

Jan 10, 2021

Vocal convergence in a multi-level primate society: insights into the evolution of vocal learning

Posted by in categories: evolution, genetics, neuroscience

The extent to which nonhuman primate vocalizations are amenable to modification through experience is relevant for understanding the substrate from which human speech evolved. We examined the vocal behaviour of Guinea baboons, Papio papio, ranging in the Niokolo Koba National Park in Senegal. Guinea baboons live in a multi-level society, with units nested within parties nested within gangs. We investigated whether the acoustic structure of grunts of 27 male baboons of two gangs varied with party/gang membership and genetic relatedness. Males in this species are philopatric, resulting in increased male relatedness within gangs and parties. Grunts of males that were members of the same social levels were more similar than those of males in different social levels (N = 351 dyads for comparison within and between gangs, and N = 169 dyads within and between parties), but the effect sizes were small. Yet, acoustic similarity did not correlate with genetic relatedness, suggesting that higher amounts of social interactions rather than genetic relatedness promote the observed vocal convergence. We consider this convergence a result of sensory–motor integration and suggest this to be an implicit form of vocal learning shared with humans, in contrast to the goal-directed and intentional explicit form of vocal learning unique to human speech acquisition.

One of the key preconditions for the development of speech is the ability to adjust vocal output in response to auditory input. Humans are exceptionally proficient at vocal learning. Although effortless speech learning is confined to the early years [1], humans still possess the ability to imitate sounds voluntarily and acquire further languages throughout their lives. Numerous comparative studies have aimed at elucidating the evolutionary origins of vocal learning within the primate lineage, to uncover the extent to which nonhuman primates reveal evidence for vocal plasticity, and whether such plasticity may be conceived as a pre-adaptation for the evolution of speech [2, 3].

Despite considerable research effort, it appears that the ability to learn sounds from auditory experience in most nonhuman primate species is limited. Unlike humans or some songbird species, nonhuman primates are not obligatory vocal learners that require species-specific auditory input to develop their normal vocal repertoires [4, 5]. Early attempts to train a young chimpanzee to produce speech sounds yielded disappointing results and prompted most of the ‘ape language’ projects to turn to another modality, using either symbol systems or sign languages [6]. Studies of the neural basis of vocal production in different monkey species found that the animals lack the neural connections necessary for the volitional control over the fine structure of vocalizations, although they exert greater control over the usage of calls (reviewed in [2]).

Jan 8, 2021

Scientists Have Created Synthetic DNA with 4 Extra Letters

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, evolution

Circa 2019 o.o


Will scientists ever be able to create ‘better’ DNA in the lab than evolution did in nature?

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