Category Archives: Science

Study dates origin of plant photosynthesis to 2.1 billion years ago

Peer into a plant cell and you’ll find the engine at its heart is a stowaway. In size, shape, and the genes it carries it resembles a bacterium: a cyanobacterium, to be precise. It’s a very valuable stowaway. Known as … Continue reading

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Study solves mystery of how first animals appeared on Earth

Research led by The Australian National University (ANU) has solved the mystery of how the first animals appeared on Earth, a pivotal moment for the planet without which humans would not exist. Lead researcher Associate Professor Jochen Brocks said the … Continue reading

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Why do we have blood types?

More than a century after their discovery, we still don’t really know what blood types are for. Do they really matter? Carl Zimmer investigates. Listen to or download an audiobook of this story on SoundCloud and iTunes. When my parents informed me that … Continue reading

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The Incredible Biodiversity of the Oceans

Thanks to Phil Krause for bringing this to our attention.

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Scientists can now clone thousands of genes in a single reaction

Things are about to speed up dramatically in genetic research, with scientists developing a new technique that can clone thousands of genes in a single reaction. The new technology, called a LASSO probe, could be used to create libraries of … Continue reading

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Epigenetics between the generations: Researchers prove that we inherit more than just genes

We are more than the sum of our genes. Epigenetic mechanisms modulated by environmental cues such as diet, disease or lifestyle take a major role in regulating the DNA by switching genes on and off. It has been long debated … Continue reading

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Carbon nanotubes mimic biology

Proteins in lipid membranes are one of the fundamental building blocks of biological functionality. Lawrence Livermore researchers have figured out how to mimic their role using carbon nanotube porins. Using high-speed, atomic force microscopy (HS-AFM), the team showed that a … Continue reading

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Humans show no sign of a maximum age limit, says new study

Who wants to live forever – Highlander Global life expectancy rates continue to rise, which poses the question: will the trend ever stop? New research reports there’s no sign of a fixed age limit for the human body, with human … Continue reading

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From DNA to Protein

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The oldest living thing on Earth

Mayflies live a day, humans live a century, if we’re lucky, but what is the oldest living organism on the planet? For scientists, accurately proving the age of any long-lived species is a hard task. Under the boughs of a … Continue reading

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When a star meets a black hole

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5 very interesting facts about your thigh bone!

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First chance to take a picture of the supermassive black hole at the centre of our galaxy

Thanks to Phil Krause for sending us this article. Get ready to peek into the unknown this week as we get our first chance to take a picture of the supermassive black hole at the centre of our galaxy. The … Continue reading

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An Unexpected New Lung Function Has Been Found – They Make Blood

Researchers have discovered that the lungs play a far more complex role in mammalian bodies than we thought, with new evidence revealing that they don’t just facilitate respiration – they also play a key role in blood production. In experiments … Continue reading

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Cell Division Time lapse

If you’ve ever wondered what cell division actually looks like, this incredible time-lapse by francischeefilms on YouTube gives you the best view we’ve ever seen, showing a real-life tadpole egg dividing from four cells into several million in the space … Continue reading

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Human Y and X chromosomes

The Y chromosome has the least amount of genes in all the human genome. With a 30% difference between humans and chimpanzees, the Y chromosome is one of the fastest evolving parts of the human genome. To date, over 200 … Continue reading

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Visualising the genome: researchers create first 3D structures of active DNA

For the first time, scientists have been able to model the physical structure of mammalian genomes from individual cells, giving us a unique 3D perspective on how DNA packages itself inside our cells. Through the new technique, scientists can see how … Continue reading

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Genome Editing with CRISPR-Cas9

This animation depicts the CRISPR-Cas9 method for genome editing – a powerful new technology with many applications in biomedical research, including the potential to treat human genetic disease. Feng Zhang, a leader in the development of this technology, is a … Continue reading

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Skeleton Typogram

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Very creative skeleton typogram by Aaron Kuehn

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The True Story of a Man Who Survived Without Any Food for 382 Days

Most people can survive without food for at least a few weeks, maybe a bit longer. Eventually, however, starvation kills. Yet the limits on how long people can go without eating are complicated; without water people are unlikely to last a … Continue reading

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