Origin of Life News
June 28, 2022

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By Odin's Beard! Tubulins Named After the Norse God May Be the Missing Link Between Single-Celled Organisms and Human Cells

The 'missing link' between bacterial cells and human and plant cells offers key to the process of eukaryogenesis, the point at which animal and plant ...

Ancient Microbes May Help Us Find Extraterrestrial Life Forms

Using light-capturing proteins in living microbes, scientists helped reconstruct what life was like for some of Earth's earliest organisms. These efforts could help us one day recognize signs of life ...

Many Human Genomes Shaped by Past Events That Caused Sharp Dips in the Population, Study Finds

The genomes of many human populations show evidence of founder events, which occur when a small number of initial members start a new population, and ...

1,700-Year-Old Korean Genomes Show Genetic Heterogeneity in Three Kingdoms Period Gaya

Scientists have successfully sequenced and studied the whole genome of eight 1,700-year-old individuals dated to the Three Kingdoms period of Korea ...
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Breakthrough Study Examines Evolution of Snake Venom Genes

A new study provides the first comprehensive explanation of how snake venom regulatory systems evolved -- an important example that illuminates the evolution of new complex ...

How Electric Fish Were Able to Evolve Electric Organs

A new study explains how small genetic changes enabled electric fish to evolve electric organs. The finding might also help scientists pinpoint the genetic mutations behind some human ...

Study Suggests That Most of Our Evolutionary Trees Could Be Wrong

New research suggests that determining evolutionary trees of organisms by comparing anatomy rather than gene sequences is misleading. The study shows that we often need to overturn centuries of ...

'Fuel of Evolution' More Abundant Than Previously Thought in Wild Animals

The raw material for evolution is much more abundant in wild animals than we previously believed, according to new ...

A Family of Termites Has Been Traversing the World's Oceans for Millions of Years

A comprehensive family tree, based on DNA sequences, has revealed that drywood termites have made at least 40 oceanic journeys over the last 50 million years to reach far flung ...

Scientists Reveal How Seascapes of the Ancient World Shaped Genetic Structure of European Populations

Scientists have explored the importance of sea travel in prehistory by examining the genomes of ancient Maltese humans and comparing these with the genomes of this period from across Europe. Previous ...

Algae Reveal Clues About Climate Changes Over Millions of Years

Organisms adjust their cell walls according to environmental conditions such as temperature. Some adaptations involve changes in lipids which may still be preserved long after the rest of the ...

Using Shark Teeth to Decipher Evolutionary Processes

From embryo to turtle cracker: Palaeobiologists studied the multiple changes in tooth shape in the tiger shark. The study is also central in drawing conclusions about extinct species from the myriad ...

The Origin of Life: A Paradigm Shift

According to a new concept, it was a novel molecular species composed out of RNA and peptides that set in motion the evolution of life into more complex ...

The Genetic Origins of the World's First Farmers Clarified

The genetic origins of the first agriculturalists in the Neolithic period long seemed to lie in the Near East. A new study shows that the first farmers actually represented a mixture of Ice Age ...

Ancient DNA Gives New Insights Into 'Lost' Indigenous People of Uruguay

The first whole genome sequences of the ancient people of Uruguay provide a genetic snapshot of Indigenous populations of the region before they were decimated by a series of European military ...

Ancient Microorganisms Found in Halite May Have Implications for Search for Life

Primary fluid inclusions in bedded halite from the 830-million-year-old Browne Formation of central Australia contain organic solids and liquids, as documented with transmitted light and UV-vis ...

DNA Provides Unique Look at Moa and Climate Change

Ancient moa DNA has provided insights into how species react to climate change, a new study has ...

'Lost' Coral Species Resurrected

With about one-third of the world's corals currently under threat of extinction due to climate change, researchers have made the encouraging discovery of a 'lost' species of coral that ...

Squid and Octopus Genome Studies Reveal How Cephalopods' Unique Traits Evolved

Squid, octopus, and cuttlefish -- even to scientists who study them -- are wonderfully weird creatures. Known as the soft-bodied or coleoid cephalopods, they have the largest nervous system of any ...

How the Black Rat Colonized Europe in the Roman and Medieval Periods

New ancient DNA analysis has shed light on how the black rat, blamed for spreading Black Death, dispersed across Europe -- revealing that the rodent colonized the continent on two occasions in the ...

What Happens When Traits Jump Between Branches of the Tree of Life

We all must play the game of life with the cards we're dealt, so the common aphorism goes. In biology, this means organisms must compete through natural selection with the genes and anatomy they ...

Researchers Discover Overlooked Jurassic Park of Lizards

New research moves back the moment of the radiation of squamates -- the group of reptiles that includes lizards, snakes and worm lizards -- to the Jurassic, a long time before current ...

Dinosaur Extinction Changed Plant Evolution

The absence of large herbivores after the extinction of the dinosaurs changed the evolution of plants. The 25 million years of large herbivore absence slowed down the evolution of new plant species. ...

Sampling the Deep Graveyard of Earth's Earliest Crust

Scientists show that remnants of the roots of Earth's first crust are still present in the terrestrial mantle and contribute to magmas erupted at the surface over Earth's ...

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