The human journey from Asia to the New World was interrupted by a 20,000 -year layover in Beringia, a once-habitable region that today lies submerged under the icy waters of the Bering Strait. Furthermore, the New World was colonized by approximately 1,000 to 5,000 people - a substantially higher number than the 100 or fewer individuals of previous estimates.
If humans had see-through skin like a jellyfish, spotting disease like cancer would be a snap: Just look, and see a tumor form or grow.
A new species of dinosaur unearthed in Mexico is giving scientists fresh insights into the ancient history of western North America, according to an international research team led by scientists from the Utah Museum of Natural History at the University of Utah.
Dartmouth College researchers and colleagues from the University of Bristol in the U.K. have traced the beginnings of complex life, i.e. vertebrates, to microRNA, sometimes referred to as 'junk DNA.' The researchers argue that the evolution of microRNAs, which regulate gene expression, are behind the origin of early vertebrates.
Scientists from the Wildlife Conservation Society and Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology have released the first known photographs of gorillas performing face-to-face copulation in the wild. This is the first time that western gorillas have been observed and photographed mating in such a manner.
New research from the UC Davis M.I.N.D. Institute and Center for Children's Environmental Health has found that antibodies in the blood of mothers of children with autism bind to fetal brain cells, potentially interrupting healthy brain development. The study authors also found that the reaction was most common in mothers of children with the regressive form of autism, which occurs when a period of typical development is followed by loss of social and/or language skills. The findings raise the possibility that the transfer of maternal antibodies during pregnancy is a risk factor for autism and, at some point, that a prenatal test and treatment could prevent the disorder for some children.
Laws protecting the critically endangered Sumatran Tiger have failed to prevent tiger body parts being openly sold in Indonesia, according to a new TRAFFIC report. Tiger body parts, including canine teeth, claws, skin pieces, whiskers and bones, were on sale in 10 percent of the 326 retail outlets surveyed during 2006 in 28 cities and towns across Sumatra. Outlets included goldsmiths, souvenir and traditional Chinese medicine shops, and shops selling antique and precious stones.
Comparing the survival of wild salmonid populations in areas near salmon farms with unexposed populations reveals a large reduction in survival in the populations reared near salmon farms. Since the late 1970s, salmon aquaculture has grown into a global industry, producing over 1 million tons of salmon per year. However, this solution to globally declining fish stocks has come under increasing fire. In a new study Jennifer Ford and Ransom Myers provide the first evidence on a global scale illustrating systematic declines in wild salmon populations that come into contact with farmed salmon.
The discovery of a remarkably well-preserved fossil representing the most primitive bat species known to date demonstrates that the animals evolved the ability to fly before they could echolocate. The new species, named Onychonycteris finneyi, was unearthed in 2003 in southwestern Wyoming. Bats represent one of the largest and most diverse orders of mammals, accounting for one-fifth of all living mammal species. The well-preserved condition of the new fossil permitted the scientists to take an unprecedented look at the most primitive known member of the order Chiroptera.
Nepalese scientists have recorded a new subspecies of bird at Koshi Tappu Wildlife Reserve (KTWR) of east Nepal. The bird was identified as Rufous-vented Prinia bringing Nepal's total bird list to 862 species. The warbler-like bird is known as Prinia burnesii to the scientific community. The new taxon from Nepal is referred to as Nepal Rufous-vented Prinia Prinia burnesii nipalensis.