A new study by scientists from the University of Bristol's School of Earth Sciences, shows a well-known group of extinct marine reptiles had an early burst in their diversity and evolution - but that a failure to adapt in the long-run may have led to their extinction.
Beetle parasites clinging to a primitive bee 100 million years ago may have caused the flight error that, while deadly for the insect, is a boon for science today.
In trout, the University of Pennsylvanias J. Oriol Sunyer and colleagues discovered that a particular type of primitive antibody is essential for fighting microbes that cause disease while preserving others that make up a healthy microbiome.
University of Arizona researchers studied recent extinctions from climate change to estimate the loss of plant and animal species by 2070. Their results suggest that as many as one in three species could face extinction unless warming is reduced.
Many amphibians and fish are able to change their color in order to better adapt to their environment. Munich-based scientists have now investigated the molecular mechanisms in the cytoskeleton necessary for this and revealed potential evolutionary paths.
One of the most controversial hypotheses for the origin of human language faculty is the evolutionary conjecture that language arose instantaneously in humans through a single gene mutation.
Researchers from the University of Turku (UTU) in Finland, and veterinarians from the Myanma Timber Enterprise (MTE) in Myanmar have investigated the trends behind Asian elephant calf mortality during the taming period. They found that calves that were younger at the onset of taming and those with less experienced mothers were more likely to die during taming. Calf mortality in taming age was notably higher than that of wild elephants of the same age.
Paleobiologists from the University of Zurich have discovered exceptional specimens in Venezuela and Colombia of an extinct giant freshwater turtle called Stupendemys. The carapace of this turtle, which is the largest ever known, measured between 2.4 to almost 3 meters. Moreover, the shell of male Stupendemys had horns - a rare feature in turtles.
Ancestors of modern West Africans interbred with a yet-undiscovered species of archaic human, similar to how ancient Europeans mated with Neanderthals, researchers report. Their work helps inform how archaic hominins added to the genetic variation of present-day Africans, which has been poorly understood, in part because of the sparse fossil record in Africa.
Researchers suggest that climate change may hurt the survival chances of an Australian marsupial. A new paper demonstrates that at least one species of marsupial 'mice' may struggle to adapt to a warming world. The study found that changes in ambient temperatures experienced during the development and growth of yellow-footed antechinus (Antechinus flavipes) can influence their behavioral and physiological traits, making them less resilient in a hotter Australia.