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An experiment in the Saanich Inlet has provided new insight on how dissolved oxygen levels affect the marine scavengers that determine the fate of decomposing bodies (Photo credit: SFU University Communications, via Flickr)

Dissolved oxygen is key for underwater forensics

A new study indicates that dissolved oxygen has a big impact on how bodies decay underwater, a finding that could help in forensic investigations. Researchers deployed three pig carcasses outside the Victoria Experimental Network Under the Sea (VENUS), a cabled underwater laboratory with underwater cameras and sensors to record oxygen levels, temperature, pressure, salinity, density […]

Researchers Kurt Rademaker and Sonia Zarrillo in an excavation at Cuncaicha, in Peru. New evidence suggests that humans colonized the extreme environment over 12,000 years ago, a mere 2000 years after they first arrived in South America. (Photo credit: Kurt Rademaker)

Early mountain-dwellers offer insight on adaptation

Evidence of the highest and oldest human settlements in the Peruvian andes offers insight on how quickly humans can adapt to extreme environments. Researchers found tools, animal bones and plant remains that suggest a human habitation in three locations: the Pucuncho workshop site (4355 metres above sea level), the Cunchaicha workshop (4445 metres above sea […]

How to reduce damage from unregulated fisheries

Canadians are used to the idea that governments regulate fisheries, but around the world more than 100 million people – 90 per cent of the worlds’ fishers – operate in small-scale fisheries with no records or controls. In a Policy Forum article, the authors recommend methods to reduce the damage that illegal, unregulated and unreported […]

Artist’s impression of Deinocheirus mirificus, the largest of the ornithomimid dinosaurs. New fossils of this species shed light on how it lived and suggest it may have been an omnivore. (Image credit: Michael Skrepnick)

Largest ‘ostrich-like’ dinosaur may have been an omnivore

New fossils of a rare dinosaur found in Mongolia shed light on its dietary habits, and may indicate an omnivorous diet. Deinocheirus mirificus was previously known only from two large forelimbs found in the 1960s, and was thought to be the largest of the ornithomimids, a group of dinosaurs that superficially resemble modern ostriches. The […]

The femur of a 45,000 year-old male found near the settement of Ust'-Ishim in Sibera. (Credit: Bence Viola, MPI EVA)

Genome of a 45,000-year-old modern human

Researchers have found that the genome of a 45,000-year-old human from Siberia is quite similar to the genome of modern Native Americans and East Asians and carries similar amount of Neanderthal ancestry. The remains of the Siberian male are believed by the authors to represent the oldest directly radiocarbon-dated modern human outside Africa and the […]

Pushing the limits of chemistry with iridium

A chemical containing the element iridium has set a new record for the highest recorded formal oxidation state in the periodic table of the elements. Formal oxidation state describes the number of electrons an atom loses or gains when it joins with other atoms in chemical compounds; the higher the oxidation state, the greater the […]

Controlling Ebola outbreak in West Africa most effective way to decrease international

Controlling the Ebola virus outbreak at the source in West Africa is the most effective way to decrease international risk of transmission, a new study of global airline travel patterns shows. The authors used a model that predicts that three people infected with Ebola are predicted to fly from West Africa (Guinea, Liberia, and Sierra […]

Got milk? No? Check your vitamin D

Children who drink rice, almond, soy or goat’s milk have lower levels of vitamin D in their blood than those who drink cow’s milk, according to a new study. Canadian regulations stipulate that every 100 millilitres of cow’s milk must be fortified with 40 International Units of vitamin D, non-cow’s milk is not subject to […]

Religious reminders could quell hostility

A new study suggests that reminding someone of their religious beliefs could help quell hostile urges. Christian, Jewish, Muslim and Hindu participants were exposed to either threatening experiences (such as thinking about their own death or failing at an academic assignment) or not. They were then given a chance to judge and assign punishments for […]

Gamers can be quick learners

A new study suggests that while people who play video games don’t necessarily have better sensorimotor skills than non-gamers, they are significantly faster at learning sensorimotor tasks. A group of 18 gamers and 18 non-gamers were asked to complete a task that involved keeping a cursor in the centre of a moving target. When the […]

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