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Fossils & Ruins News
December 9, 2019

Top Headlines
 

How did life survive the most severe ice age? A team has found the first direct evidence that glacial meltwater provided a crucial lifeline to eukaryotes during Snowball ... read more
Ancestors of modern bacteria cultured from an iron-rich lake in Democratic Republic of Congo could have been key to keeping Earth's dimly lit early climate warm, and in ... read more
Some of the same mutations allowing humans to fend off deadly infections also make us more prone to certain inflammatory and autoimmune diseases, such as Crohn's disease. ... read more
Researchers have succeeded in reconstructing the evolutionary relationship between a two million year old giant primate and the living orangutan. It is the first time genetic ... read more
Latest Headlines
updated 7:24am EST

Earlier Headlines
 

Compound Eyes: The Visual Apparatus of Today's Horseshoe Crabs Goes Back 400 Million Years

The extinct sea scorpion species Jaekelopterus rhenaniae had eyes comparable to those of today's horseshoe crabs. The two-and-a-half-meter predator was particularly apt at perceiving contrasts ... read more

Whaling and Climate Change Led to 100 Years of Feast or Famine for Antarctic Penguins

New research reveals how penguins have dealt with more than a century of human impacts in Antarctica and why some species are winners or losers in this rapidly changing ... read more

1940s Blood Samples Reveal Historical Spread of Malaria

DNA from 75-year old eradicated European malaria parasites uncovers the historical spread of one of the two most common forms of the disease, Plasmodium vivax, from Europe to the Americas during the ... read more

Breathing? Thank Volcanoes, Tectonics and Bacteria

A new study suggests Earth's first burst of oxygen was added by a spate of volcanic eruptions brought about by tectonics. In addition to explaining the appearance of significant concentrations ... read more

Facial Deformity in Royal Dynasty Was Linked to Inbreeding, Scientists Confirm

The 'Habsburg jaw,' a facial condition of the Habsburg dynasty of Spanish and Austrian kings and their wives, can be attributed to inbreeding, according to new ... read more

New Evolutionary Insights Into the Early Development of Songbirds

An international team has sequenced a chromosome in zebra finches called the germline-restricted chromosome (GRC). This chromosome is only found in germline cells, the cells that hold genetic ... read more

Ostrich Eggshell Beads Reveal 10,000 Years of Cultural Interaction Across Africa

Researchers present an expanded analysis of African ostrich eggshell beads, testing the hypothesis that larger beads signal the arrival of herders. The data reveals a more nuanced interpretation that ... read more

Inbreeding and Population/demographic Shifts Could Have Led to Neanderthal Extinction

Small populations, inbreeding, and random demographic fluctuations could have been enough to cause Neanderthal extinction, according to a new ... read more

Researchers Study Chickens, Ostriches, Penguins to Learn How Flight Feathers Evolved

If you took a careful look at the feathers on a chicken, you'd find many different forms within the same bird -- even within a single feather. The diversity of feather shapes and functions ... read more

Unique Sled Dogs Helped the Inuit Thrive in the North American Arctic

The legacy of these Inuit dogs survives today in Arctic sled dogs, making them one of the last remaining descendant populations of indigenous, pre-European dog lineages in the ... read more

Barbequed Clams on the Menu for Ancient Puerto Ricans

Scientists have reconstructed the cooking techniques of the early inhabitants of Puerto Rico by analyzing the remains of ... read more

Nearly 40% of Plant Species Are Very Rare and Are Vulnerable to Climate Change

Almost 40 percent of global flora is categorized as 'exceedingly rare,' and these species are most at risk of extinction by human development and as the climate continues to change, ... read more

A Carnivorous Dinosaur Species Regrew All Its Teeth Every Few Months

A meat-eating dinosaur species that lived in Madagascar some 70 million years ago replaced all its teeth every couple of months or so, a new study has found, surprising even the researchers. In fact, ... read more

Imaging Uncovers Secrets of Medicine's Mysterious Ivory Manikins

Little is known about the origins of manikins -- small anatomical sculptures thought to be used by doctors four centuries ago -- but now advanced imaging techniques have offered a revealing glimpse ... read more

Animal Embryos Evolved Before Animals

A new study has discovered that animal-like embryos evolved long before the first animals appear in the fossil ... read more

The search for evidence of life on Mars could be helped by fresh insights into ancient rocks on ... read more

Recrutement of a Lateral Root Developmental Pathway Into Root Nodule Formation of Legumes

Peas and other legumes develop spherical or cylindrical structures -- called nodules -- in their roots to establish a mutually beneficial relationship with bacteria that convert atmospheric nitrogen ... read more

Human Migration out of Africa May Have Followed Monsoons in the Middle East

A new study by geoscientists and climatologists provides evidence that summer monsoons from Asia and Africa may have reached into the Middle East for periods of time going back at least 125,000 ... read more

People, Climate, and Water Played a Role in the Extinction of Australia's Megafauna

For the first time, the research suggests a combination of climate change and the impact of people sealed the fate of megafauna, at least in south-eastern Australia. And that distribution of ... read more

16-Million-Year-Old Fossil Shows Springtails Hitchhiking on Winged Termite

A newly reported, 16-million-year-old fossil is shedding light on how a group of tiny arthropods may have traversed the globe -- by ... read more

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