Rapid evolution in waterfleas yields new conservation insights

The extraordinary ability of animals to rapidly evolve in response to predators has been demonstrated via genetic sequencing of a waterflea population across nearly two decades. In a new study, published in Nature Communications , scientists at the Universities of…

New evidence of menopause in killer whales

Scientists have found new evidence of menopause in killer whales – raising fascinating questions about how and why it evolved. Most animals breed throughout their lives. Only humans and four whale species are known to experience menopause, and scientists have…

Population-specific diversity within fungi species could enable improved drug discovery

Scientists at Oak Ridge National Laboratory and the University of Wisconsin–Madison have discovered that genetically distinct populations within the same species of fungi can produce unique mixes of secondary metabolites, which are organic compounds with applications in medicine, industry and agriculture.

Climate changed the size of our bodies and, to some extent, our brains

The average body size of humans has fluctuated significantly over the last million years and is strongly linked to temperature. Colder, harsher climates drove the evolution of larger body sizes, while warmer climates led to smaller bodies. Brain size also…

Ancient ostrich eggshell reveals new evidence of extreme climate change thousands of years ago

Evidence from an ancient eggshell has revealed important new information about the extreme climate change faced by human early ancestors. The research shows parts of the interior of South Africa that today are dry and sparsely populated, were once wetland…