Why the brain has its folds

The folds  on the surface of the human brain exist because of physics, not biology, according to a new study using 3D printing. The researchers believe their results suggest that physical forces play a crucial role in neurodevelopment, and may provide insights into diagnosing and treating some neurological disorders. The study proves a model from […]

The secret to surviving without oxygen

The Red-eared slider, a species of turtle, is able to survive months of low oxygen, without apparent damage to the brain tissue. Researchers believe they have now found the secret to this ability in the mitochondria of the brain cells. The mitochondria, where the respiration and energy processes of the brain take place, of Red-eared […]

Mammals, including humans, shape their microbiome

Humans create small molecules inside the GI tract to help regulate the composition of gut microbes and to protect against intestinal diseases. The researchers believe the findings of the study reveal a host defense mechanism and show that microRNAs can be used to regulate the microbiome of individuals. The researchers found microRNAs produced by intestinal cells in both mice and humans regulate the activity […]

Don’t forget the other pollinators

  Butterflies, wasps, beetles and flies might not be as effective pollinators as bees but new research shows their impact shouldn’t be discounted. Non-bee pollinators visit more flowers than bees so that even if they’re not such effective pollinators, their rates pollination are similar to bees. The analysis of 39 field studies revealed there is […]

Research is too conservative

A pair of papers calls for researchers to take greater risks when choosing research problems to study in order to speed up scientific discovery and innovation. The two papers, one from PNAS and another from the American Sociological Review, used computer models to analyze millions of research papers. The study published by PNAS found that […]

Dogs evolved with climate change

The evolution of North American dogs shows that evolution can be a direct consequence of climate change, and is not always associated with an “arms race” between ancient dogs and their prey. Researchers studied fossil elbows and teeth of 32 species of dogs from 40 million years to two million years ago, the same period when climate […]

T. Rex’s secret weapon: Revealing a unique tooth structure

The unique tooth structure of carnivorous theropods such as Tyrannosaurus rex allowed them to tear through the flesh and bones of other dinosaurs with ease, and likely led to their success according to new research. The research team found that the deeply serrated structure, and the special arrangement of tissue inside, strengthened the teeth and […]

Completing the puzzle of arthropod evolution

Newly discovered fossils from the Burgess Shale region are providing scientists with evidence of the evolutionary history of arthropods, a group including insects, spiders and crustaceans. The fossils have also allowed scientists to gather a complete picture of what Hallucigenia, an arthropod existing 508 millions years ago, looked like. The new fossils show that Hallucigenia had […]

Life history of Pacific Salmon revealed through the ears

Studying small bones in the ears of Pacific Salmon may be able to tell researchers where the salmon were born and lived during critical developmental years according to new research. Studying them might allow researchers to determine which habitats produce the largest salmon populations, and where the fish live during critical periods of their life. […]

Maternal hypertension and the baby

While almost 10 per cent of pregnant women have hypertension, a new study suggests that should not worry them too much when it comes to their baby’s health. An international team of physicians followed 987 pregnant women in 16 countries, 75 per cent of which suffered from hypertension. They randomly assigned them to either a […]

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