by Rebecca Silberman figures by Aparna Nathan Seen through the harsh, unsentimental lens of evolutionary biology, menopause doesn’t make sense. Why don’t women live like giraffes, like tarantulas, like pigeons, reproducing throughout their lives in order to maximize each person’s “fitness,” or reproductive success? Even in other long-lived, social species like elephants, females don’t stop having children before the end of their lives, and while … Continue reading An Evolutionary Argument for why Grandmas Rule
by Catherine Gutierrez figures by Aparna Nathan Forty-nine years ago, President Richard Nixon launched a “War on Cancer”. That war has not ended—it rages on today, with cancer right behind heart disease as the leading cause of death in the United States. Nearly 1.8 million new cases of cancer are expected in 2020 in the U.S. alone, and rising rates of cancer risk factors such … Continue reading Cancers Evolve – Tagging and Tracking Can Help Us Understand How
Researchers at Max Planck Institute for Brain Research have discovered a mammalian claustrum in reptiles, believed to impact decision-making and consciousness. The study hints at the claustrum’s prehistoric existence, in mammals, reptiles, and possibly their common ancestor. Continue reading Study finds a classically mammalian brain region in reptilian brains
A bird known for “brood parasitism”, laying its eggs in other birds’ nests, also has a strong preference for more brightly colored offspring. A new study shows that the two behaviors are unrelated. Continue reading Playing favorites: a new study investigates parental preferences in American Coot
The Earth has warmed so much since the 1950s that scientists can detect climate change from literally any day of global weather since 2012.
Continue reading Seeing Climate Change in any Random Day Across the Globe
CIFAR Fellows’s paper questions whether diabetes, heart attacks and strokes are actually non-communicable diseases (NCDs). Microbiota (bacteria, viruses, fungi) that spread flu, HIV/AIDS, may also carry NCDs. People with NCDs have damaged microbiota, causing disease when transmitted into healthy animals. Spouses and cohabitants’ shared lifestyles and environments also lead to gut bacteria transfer.
Continue reading Is diabetes communicable?
Is eating vegan really the best dietary way to limit your environmental impact? Study shows that eating sweets and at restaurants is associated with higher carbon footprints than eating meat. Continue reading Beyond Beef: Study finds Sweets, Alcohol and Eating Out Lead to Higher Carbon Footprint in Households
CRISPR is a highly effective immune system that defends bacteria from viruses. It was recently shown that some viruses have evolved counter-defenses that protect their DNA with a nucleus-like structure. Continue reading Some viruses can defeat CRISPR with nucleus-like compartments
40 new species of fish have been found in Lake Mweru in East Africa. Breeding of related lineages may have allowed the cichlids to rapidly evolve to fill different ecological niches. Continue reading New Fish Species and Rapid Evolution Found in African Lake
A research team from the University of South Australia has new evidence to suggest that the Antarctic ice sheet could be melting faster than previously thought – which means sea levels will rise more quickly. Continue reading The Antarctic Ice Sheet Could Melt Faster Than Predicted