A study of insects, including the large milkweed bug (above), suggests evolution may be driven by a simple and repeated genetic solution to an environmental pressure that a broad range of species happen to share.
New research by Andolfatto and colleagues published in the journal Science suggests that knowledge of a species’ genes—and how certain external conditions affect the proteins encoded by those genes—could be used to determine a predictable evolutionary pattern driven by outside factors.
Scientists could then pinpoint how the diversity of adaptations seen in the natural world developed even in distantly related animals. The researchers carried out a survey of DNA sequences from 29 distantly related insect species, the largest sample of organisms yet examined for a single evolutionary trait. Fourteen of these species have evolved a nearly identical characteristic due to one external influence—they feed on plants that produce cardenolides, a class of steroid-like cardiotoxins that are a natural defense for plants such as milkweed and dogbane.
Many different insects independently evolved the same molecular tricks to defend themselves against the same toxin suggests that studying a small number of well-chosen model organisms can teach us a lot about other species. Yes, evolution is predictable to a certain degree.
Every year for nearly four decades, Nikon has received hundreds of entries in its Small World microscope photography contest. Every year, the images are more amazing, and this year's winners -- selected from nearly 2,000 submissions -- are undoubtedly the best yet.
Super-close-ups of garlic, snail fossils, stinging nettle, bat embryos, bone cancer and a ladybug are among the top images this year. The first place winner (above) shows the blood-brain barrier in a living zebrafish embryo, which Nikon believes is the first image ever to show the formation of this barrier in a live animal.
“We used fluorescent proteins to look at brain endothelial cells and watched the blood-brain barrier develop in real-time,” the winners, Jennifer Peters and Michael Taylor of St. Jude Children's Research Hospital, in Memphis, said in a press release. “We took a 3-dimensional snapshot under a confocal microscope. Then, we stacked the images and compressed them into one – pseudo coloring them in rainbow to illustrate depth.”
Here are the top 20 photomicrographs from the 38th Nikon Small World competition, selected for their originality, informational content, and visual impact by a panel of scientists, journalists and optical imaging experts.
Robotic probes launched by NASA, the European Space Agency (ESA), and others are gathering information all across the solar system. We currently have spacecraft in orbit around the Sun, Mercury, Venus, Earth, Mars, and Saturn -- and one new rover recently landed on Mars. Several others are on their way to smaller bodies, and a few are heading out of the solar system entirely. Although the Space Shuttle no longer flies, astronauts are still at work aboard the International Space Station, performing experiments and sending back amazing photos. With all these eyes in the sky, I'd like to take another opportunity to put together a recent photo album of our solar system -- a set of family portraits, of sorts -- as seen by our astronauts and mechanical emissaries. This time, we have some great shots from the new Mars rover Curiosity, a parting shot of the asteroid Vesta, some glimpses of Saturn and its moons, and lovely images of our home, planet Earth. [33 photos]
For the first time, people with broken spines have recovered feeling in previously paralysed areas after receiving injections of neural stem cells. Three people with paralysis received injections of 20 million neural stem cells directly into the injured region of their spinal cord. The cells, acquired from donated fetal brain tissue, were injected between four and eight months after the injuries happened. The patients also received a temporary course of immunosuppressive drugs to limit rejection of the cells. None of the three felt any sensation below their nipples before the treatment. Six months after therapy, two of them had sensations of touch and heat below their belly button. The third patient has not seen any change. The patients are the first three of 12 who will eventually receive the therapy. The remaining recipients will have less extensive paralysis.
Earthquake machines! Death rays!Those far-fetched gadgets are part of a plan to build a museum dedicated to one of history's most famous mad scientists.
Many of the inventor's fans think Tesla was more brilliant than his more famous contemporaries, including Alexander Graham Bell and Thomas Edison. Even though Tesla isn't exactly a household name, his unsung accomplishments and wild imagination have turned him into something of a folk hero. Here, a rundown of five of Tesla's craziest inventions: . . .
An international team of scientists has discovered the oldest record of arthropods -- invertebrate animals that include insects, arachnids, and crustaceans -- preserved in amber. The specimens, one fly and two mites found in millimeter-scale droplets of amber from northeastern Italy, are about 100 million years older than any other amber arthropod ever collected.
"Amber is an extremely valuable tool for paleontologists because it preserves specimens with microscopic fidelity, allowing uniquely accurate estimates of the amount of evolutionary change over millions of years," said corresponding author David Grimaldi, a curator in the American Museum of Natural History's Division of Invertebrate Zoology and a world authority on amber and fossil arthropods.
Globules of fossilized resin are typically called amber. Amber ranges in age from the Carboniferous (about 340 million years ago) to about 40,000 years ago, and has been produced by myriad plants, from tree ferns to flowering trees, but predominantly by conifers. Even though arthropods are more than 400 million years old, until now, the oldest record of the animals in amber dates to about 130 million years. The newly discovered arthropods break that mold with an age of 230 million years. They are the first arthropods to be found in amber from the Triassic Period.
The amber droplets, most between 2-6 millimeters long, were buried in outcrops high in the Dolomite Alps of northeastern Italy and excavated by Eugenio Ragazzi and Guido Roghi of the University of Padova. About 70,000 of the miniscule droplets were screened for inclusions -- encased animal and plant material -- by a team of German scientists led by Alexander Schmidt, of Georg-August University, Göttingen, resulting in the discovery of the three arthropods. The tiny arthropods were studied by Grimaldi and Evert Lindquist, an expert on gall mites at Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada in Ottawa.
Soft horns and a tinkling piano form the backbone of "Fifty Degrees North, Four Degrees West," a jazz number with two interesting twists: it has no composer and no actual musicians. Unless you count bacteria and other tiny microbes, that is.
The song is the brainchild of Peter Larsen, a biologist at the U.S. Department of Energy's Argonne National Laboratory. Larsen, it turns out, has no musical training at all; his interests run less towards the blues and more towards blue-green algae.
In 1983 comic book writer Alan Moore (Watchmen) wrote a great essay on Stan Lee called, "Blinded By The Hype: An Affectionate Character Assassination". The essay breaks down how Lee is both a hero and a villain in the ...
Samsung Galaxy Note was once considered as the best combination of smartphone and tablet and was hence called as phablet. Following the success of Galaxy note which we think is designed for "taller humans" for obvious reasons. Below are the download links for Samsung Galaxy Note GT-N7000 ICS firmwares for various countries. ICS 4.0.3 and 4.0.4 for all countries are listed. If you find that your device is not listed below, please let us know so we can find and add it to the data base but DO NOT flash any incorrect rom on your device. It might cause serious trouble to your device specially after knowing about the ECC bug discovered by XDA team.
It is assumed that you are sound enough to flash the stock rom that is designed for your device. You can check this by going to settings => about device => build number. If you have already flashed ICS on your device and would like to downgrade your device back to Gingerbread 2.3.6, follow this guide.
This page will be updated everytime there is a new software update from Samsung.
Samsung Galaxy Note GT-N7000 Firmwares Country/Carrier Date Version PDA CSC Download Israel 2012 October Android 4.0.3 N7000JKLP8 N7000ILOLP3 Download Germany (Vodafone)
Since its founding in 1992, Image Comics has become a bastion for creator-owned comics — printed creator-owned comics, that is. Its 20th anniversary is a banner year for Image, with a multitude of prominent new series as ...
JAKARTA, Indonesia — A unique species of near-toothless rat that lives off earthworms and doesn’t chew or gnaw has been seen in Indonesia.
The shrew-like animal with a long, pointed snout was described online in this week’s British journal Biology Letters. Paucidentomys vermidax, which translates loosely to “few-toothed rat” and “worm eater,” is the only rodent out of more than 2,200 known species that does not have molars and instead has bicuspid upper incisors, it said....
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