A UC Berkeley and University of Texas, Austin study of the gut microbiomes of humans, chimps, bonobos and gorillas shows that at least two major groups of bacteria have cospeciated with these hosts, with a lineage going back at least 15 million years to our last common ancestor. Postdoc Andrew Moeller hopes to reconstruct the ancestral 'paleo gut' that went with our paleo diet, and use the gut bacteria to track human migration.
A new species of megaraptorid dinosaur discovered in Patagonia may help discern the evolutionary origins of the megaraptorid clade, according to a study published July 20, 2016 in the open-access journal PLOS ONE by Rodolfo Coria from the Consejo Nacional de Investigaciones Científicas y Técnicas, Argentina, and Phillip Currie from the University of Alberta, Canada.
A new study of fossil fishes from Middle Triassic sediments on the shores of Lake Lugano provides new insights into the recovery of biodiversity following the great mass extinction event at the Permo-Triassic boundary 240 million years ago.
A new study of nearly 22,000 fossils finds that ancient plankton communities began changing in important ways as much as 400,000 years before massive die-offs ensued during the first of Earth's five great extinctions. The research suggests that the effects of environmental degradation can be subtle until they reach a tipping point, at which dramatic declines in population begin.
Research by postdoctoral fellow Alexander Dececchi challenges long-held hypotheses about how flight first developed in birds.
It is common knowledge that the modern turtle shell is largely used for protection. No other living vertebrate has so drastically altered its body to form such an impenetrable protective structure as the turtle. However, a new study on the earliest partially shelled fossil turtles suggests the broad ribbed proto shell was initially an adaptation for burrowing underground.
Dr. Tyler Lyson, Curator of Paleontology at the Denver Museum of Nature & Science, along with scientists from Africa and Switzerland, has discovered the real reason turtles have shells. While many thought turtle shells were for protection, new findings show that the shells were actually for digging underground to escape the harsh South African environment where these early proto turtles lived.
A team of international scientists from China, France, Scotland, United States and led by Canadian Professors Nigel Blamey and Uwe Brand of Brock University in southern Ontario made a scientific breakthrough by measuring the oxygen content of Earth's ancient atmosphere. They discovered that gases trapped by halite (rock salt) during crystallization may contain atmospheric gases, among them oxygen.
This week, an international research team led by palaeogeneticists of Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz published a study in the journal Science showing that the earliest farmers from the Zagros mountains in Iran, i.e., the eastern part of the Fertile Crescent, are neither the main ancestors of Europe's first farmers nor of modern-day Europeans.
The discovery of a theropod dinosaur with Tyrannosaurus rex-like arms suggests that these unusual forelimbs may have evolved multiple times, according to a study published July 13, 2016 in the open-access journal PLOS ONE by Sebastián Apesteguía from the Universidad Maimónides, Argentina, and colleagues.