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Tag: "evolutionary" at biology news

Researchers track how spores break out of dormant state

...emical resistance of Bacillus spores suggests that evolutionary forces have captured the mechanical rigidity and resistance of these amyloid self-assembling biomaterials to structure the protective outer spore surface,” Plomp said. When exposed to a solution that triggers germination, nanometer sized etch pits...

Bigger horns equal better genes

...he bigger, the better," said Dr. David Coltman, an evolutionary geneticist at the University of Alberta and co-author of the study, which was published this month in the journal Molecular Ecology. The researchers found that horn sizes among younger ibex (one- to six-years-old) are relatively similar regardless...

Caribbean frogs started with a single, ancient voyage on a raft from South America

... region," explained Penn State's Blair Hedges, the evolutionary biologist and professor of biology who directed th...biology because of the poor understanding of their evolutionary history," explained Hedges. Scientists consider the knowledge of evolutionary relationships, also c...

Physicist cracks women's random but always lucky choice of X chromosome

...demi believes the randomness actually does give an evolutionary advantage. The mechanism means equal numbers of both the maternal and paternal X chromosome are preserved in the gene pool and the resultant population thus has more chance of surviving any biological threat targeted at a single version of the X chro...

Study shows lizard moms dress their children for success

... Coauthor Barry Sinervo, professor of ecology and evolutionary biology, is Lancaster's adviser and has been studying side-blotched lizards for nearly 20 years. He said the lizards' main predator, the coachwhip snake, is a highly efficient hunter, and the lizards need just the right combination of traits to avoid...

New findings challenge established views on human genome

...on would be in areas of the genome most subject to evolutionary constraint – that is, most likely to be conserved ... According to ENCODE researchers, this lack of evolutionary constraint may indicate that many species’ genomes contain a pool of functional elements, including ...

Potent possibilities for parasite attack

...ies. "Clearly there must have been considerable evolutionary pressure over time to maintain the structure and sequence of the Leishmania genomes - the degree of similarity between these species was unexpected," explained Professor Deborah Smith, collaborator on this project at the University of York. "Perhaps ...

The kapok connection -- Study explains rainforest similarities

...ion years ago. Research by University of Michigan evolutionary ecologist Christopher Dick and colleagues shows that kapok---and perhaps other rainforest--trees colonized Africa after the continents split when the trees' seeds traveled across the ocean. The findings, funded by the National Science Foundation (...

Endosome-mediated signaling in plants

..."These findings will influence our thinking of the evolutionary origins of endosomes and hopefully help us to understand why cells use them as signaling compartments," noted lead author of the paper, Dr. Niko Geldner. Endosomes were once thought to function solely in the inactivation of receptors and the down-...

The mouflons of the Kerguelen archipelago

...ety of the population becomes impoverished and its evolutionary potential decreases. Furthermore, consanguinity is known to produce genetic diseases. The most heterozygous individuals are better able to resist these diseases,” explains Renaud Kaeuffer. The researchers stress the point that the genetic variety of ...

Ancient retrovirus sheds light on modern pandemic

...erman and co-authors Harmit Singh Malik, Ph.D., an evolutionary biologist and an assistant member of the Center's Basic Sciences Division, and Shari Kaiser, a graduate student in Emerman's laboratory, used DNA sequences from the chimp genome to reconstruct a small part of the PtERV1 virus. They reassembled abou...

Ants show us how to make super-highways

...ghlights the importance of considering ecology and evolutionary history in the study of social organisation in animal societies....

Lessons from the orangutans: Upright walking may have begun in the trees

...een trees," said Thorpe. The authors propose an evolutionary scenario that begins as other researchers have envisioned. Somewhere toward the end of the Miocene epoch (24 to 5 million years ago), climate in East and Central Africa became alternately wetter and drier, and the rainforest grew increasingly patchy....

'Personality-gene' makes songbirds curious

...aers. "If we want to understand the ecological and evolutionary importance of variation in personality in natural, free-living animal populations, it would help a lot to know the molecular genetic mechanisms behind the trait." Typing the behavioural relevant Drd4 polymorphism it should be possible to follow micro...

US control strategies may make flu epidemics worse, UCLA study shows

...n missing, according to Blower, a mathematical and evolutionary biologist, is the human factor. The human factor involves two biological characteristics, "memory and how adaptable people can be," Blower said. "These characteristics drive human behavior." Blower and her group used people's attitudes toward ...

Corals -- More complex than you?

...rkably, although it is very distant from humans in evolutionary terms, it has many of the immune system genes that protect people against disease. In fact, it is possible some of these were pioneered by corals. Corals are among the simplest animals in the world ?yet they may possess a set of genes as large and...

Invasion of the island bats

... These views suffered a severe blow recently when evolutionary studies of birds of the South Pacific and Caribbean lizards uncovered at least three separate cases of island-to-continent colonization. Then again, these few instances could be interpreted as the exceptions that prove the rule, anomalies easily expl...

Survival of the rarest: Fruit flies shed light on the evolution of behavior

...patches than sitters. The researchers explored the evolutionary mechanism that favours the persistence of both of these types in nature. Doctoral student Mark Fitzpatrick raised colonies of flies with different ratios of rovers to sitters and different concentrations of nutrients in their food, and assessed th...

Researchers publish first marsupial genome sequence

...ovides researchers with a fresh perspective on the evolutionary origins of the human genome. It sheds light on the...e human genome arose during this relatively recent evolutionary period. By focusing on the recent genetic innovations, the scientists made two major findings: ...

Asexual worm quickly adapts to soil contamination

...such as ecology, toxicology, molecular biology and evolutionary biology provide insights into the effect of soil pollution at different levels of biological organisation. Genetic adaptation The nematode was exposed to a combination of different pH and copper values. As well as their individual effects, the...

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