Evolution News

Low Atmospheric Oxygen Levels Delayed Rise of Animals

October 31, 2014

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Low Oxygen Levels Delayed the Appearance of Animals on Earth

A new study reveals that oxygen levels during the “boring billion” period were only 0.1% of what they are today, providing the first evidence that oxygen levels were low enough during this period to potentially prevent the rise of animals. Geologists are letting the air out of a nagging mystery about the development of animal […]

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Research Reveals Evolution Used Similar “Toolkits” to Shape Flies, Worms, and Humans

August 29, 2014

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Evolution of Flies, Worms and Humans Share Patterns of Gene Expression

Several newly published studies reveal that flies, worms and humans share ancient patterns of gene expression. Although separated by hundreds of millions of years of evolution, flies, worms, and humans share ancient patterns of gene expression, according to a massive Yale-led analysis of genomic data. Two related studies led by scientists at Harvard and Stanford, […]

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Theorists Show How Energy Landscapes Dominate Both Evolution and Folding of Proteins

August 19, 2014

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Theorists Show How Energy Landscapes Dominate Both Evolution and Folding of Proteins

A team of biophysicists at Rice University used computer models to show that the energy landscape involved in the long-term evolution of proteins is essentially the same as that involved in the folding process that takes as little as microseconds. Nature’s artistic and engineering skills are evident in proteins, life’s robust molecular machines. Scientists at […]

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New Study Presents “Water World” Theory for the Emergence of Life

April 16, 2014

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New Study Describes How Electrical Energy Naturally Produced at the Sea Floor Might Have Given Rise to Life

A new study describes how electrical energy naturally produced at the sea floor might have given rise to life, assembling decades of field, laboratory and theoretical research into a grand, unified picture. Life took root more than four billion years ago on our nascent Earth, a wetter and harsher place than now, bathed in sizzling […]

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New Research Tests Theory that Life Originated at Deep Sea Vents

April 9, 2014

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Study Tests Theory that Life Originated at Deep Sea Vents

New research from Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution tests the theory that simple metabolic reactions near ancient seafloor hot springs enabled life as we know it to begin. One of the greatest mysteries facing humans is how life originated on Earth. Scientists have determined approximately when life began (roughly 3.8 billion years ago), but there is […]

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Evidence That Organic Material Can Survive the Impact of a Meteorite

November 13, 2013

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Study Shows Organic Molecules Can Survive Meteorite Impact

In a newly published study, researchers from the Natural History Museum provide the first evidence that any organic material, either inside a meteorite or already on Earth, can survive the impact of a meteorite striking the planet at high speed. New research shows that organic molecules, on which life is based, can survive the impact […]

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Rudimentary Form of Life Sidesteps Normal Replication Processes

November 4, 2013

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Rudimentary Form of Life Sidesteps Normal Replication Process

Researchers from the University of Nottingham have shown that in some organisms the genetic switches that control DNA replication are unnecessary and that cells will actually grow faster when the replication origins are not present. A rudimentary form of life that is found in some of the harshest environments on earth is able to sidestep […]

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Scientists Recreate Patterns of Oxygen Found in the Oldest Rocks in the Solar System

October 25, 2013

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Scientists Solve Mystery of Oxygen Patterns in Early Solar Systems Rocks

UC San Diego cosmochemists demonstrated that a chemical reaction, governed by known physical principles, can generate silicate dust with oxygen anomalies that match those found in the oldest rocks in the solar system. Cosmochemists at the University of California, San Diego, have solved a long standing mystery in the formation of the solar system: Oxygen, […]

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New Findings Challenge Assumptions about the Origins of Life

September 17, 2013

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New Findings Challenge Assumptions about Origins of Life

New research from biochemists at the UNC School of Medicine offers an intriguing new view on how life began, challenging current assumptions about the origins of life. Chapel Hill, North Carolina — Before there was life on Earth, there were molecules. A primordial soup. At some point a few specialized molecules began replicating. This self-replication, […]

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A Natural Example of a Functioning Gear Mechanism Discovered in an Insect

September 13, 2013

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Natural Example of a Functioning Gear Mechanism Discovered in an Insect

Scientists from the University of Cambridge have discovered a natural example of a functioning gear mechanism in an insect. Previously believed to be only man-made, a natural example of a functioning gear mechanism has been discovered in a common insect – showing that evolution developed interlocking cogs long before we did. The juvenile Issus – […]

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Could Life on Earth Have Originated from Somewhere Else?

September 12, 2013

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Could Life on Earth Have Originated from Somewhere Else

New research presented at the European Planetary Science Congress at UCL examines whether life forms would be able to survive an impact with the surface of the Earth, opening the door to the possibility that life did not originate on Earth but came from elsewhere in the universe. It sounds like science fiction, but the […]

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Earliest Known Iron Artifacts Were Made from Meteoritic Iron

August 20, 2013

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Earliest Known Iron Artifacts Came from Meteorites

Archaeologists from the University College London have discovered ancient Egyptian iron beads that were made from meteoritic iron, rather than iron ore. Researchers have shown that ancient Egyptian iron beads held at the UCL Petrie Museum were hammered from pieces of meteorites, rather than iron ore. The objects, which trace their origins to outer space, […]

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DNA Study Reveals Clues about Primate Evolution

July 17, 2013

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New DNA Study Reveals Clues about Factors That Shaped Primate Evolution

In a new DNA study, an international team of scientists reveal clues to human and ape evolution, finding that the evolutionary history of ancestral great ape populations was far more complex than that of humans. A massive effort to catalog the genetic variation in humans, chimpanzees, gorillas and orangutans has helped researchers piece together a […]

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New Study Links Expanding Human Population to Threats of Animal Extinction

June 19, 2013

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Outlook Grim for Animals as Human Population Grows

A newly published study paints a grim outlook for the future of certain mammals and birds, suggesting that the average growing nation should expect at least 3.3 percent more threatened species in the next decade and an increase of 10.8 percent species threatened with extinction by 2050. Columbus, Ohio – The ongoing global growth in […]

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Study Suggests Life on Earth is the Result of Icy Comets

June 6, 2013

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New Research Suggests Life on Earth Came from Comets

A newly published study suggests that life on earth may have started as a result of icy comets that crashed into Earth billions of years ago. Early Earth was not very hospitable when it came to jump starting life. In fact, new research shows that life on Earth may have come from out of this […]

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