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Latest Adaptation Stories

honeybee evolution
2014-08-25 06:27:46

redOrbit Staff & Wire Reports - Your Universe Online Honeybees are more genetically diverse than originally thought, and the species might have originated from Asia and not Africa as previously believed, according to new research published online Sunday in the journal Nature Genetics. As part of their study, researchers from the Uppsala University Department of Medical Biochemistry and Microbiology and an international team of colleagues present the first global analysis of genome...

pygmy phenotype
2014-08-21 03:00:37

A'ndrea Elyse Messer, Penn State The small body size associated with the pygmy phenotype is probably a selective adaptation for rainforest hunter-gatherers, according to an international team of researchers, but all African pygmy phenotypes do not have the same genetic underpinning, suggesting a more recent adaptation than previously thought. "I'm interested in how rainforest hunter-gatherers have adapted to their very challenging environments," said George H. Perry, assistant professor...

2014-04-02 10:48:27

As the climate continues to change, it's unclear to what extent different species will be able to keep pace with altered temperatures and shifted seasons. Living organisms are the survivors of previous environmental changes and might therefore be expected to adapt, but are there limits? According to research to be published in the Open Access journal PLOS Biology on April 1, some species may be much less able to cope with the effects of climate change than previously thought. The study, by...

Advantage Held By Home Team
2013-12-10 08:59:08

Michigan State University The home team holds the advantage over visitors – at least in the plant world. However, a mere handful of genetic adaptations could even the playing field. In the current issue of the Proceedings for the National Academy of Sciences, Michigan State University researchers and their collaborators found that plant adaptation to different environments involves tradeoffs in performance. Genetic tradeoffs, in part, explain the rich diversity of species on earth....

Two Mouths For One Worm
2013-11-07 11:58:54

Max-Planck-Gesellschaft A devious evolutionary path between genetics and environment Depending on the environment in which the worm grows, the larva of the roundworm Pristionchus pacificus develops into either a wide-mouthed predator or a narrow-mouthed bacteria eater. A team of researchers at the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Biology in Tübingen, Germany, headed by Ralf J. Sommer have now discovered a developmental biological switch that determines the worm's mouth form....

Evolution Is Predictable Shown by Lizards
2013-07-19 10:21:14

University of California - Davis If you could hit the reset button on evolution and start over, would essentially the same species appear? Yes, according to a study of Caribbean lizards by researchers at the University of California, Davis, Harvard University and the University of Massachusetts. The work is published July 19 in the journal Science. The predictability of evolution over timescales of millions of years has long been debated by biologists, said Luke Mahler, a postdoctoral...

2013-07-10 12:04:22

A new study has shed light on the potential of birds to survive in the face of climate change. In the analysis, based on more than fifty years' detailed study of a population of great tits near Oxford, UK, a team of scientists were able to make predictions about how the birds could cope with a changing climate in the future. They found that for small, short-lived birds like the great tit, evolution can work fast enough for genetic adaptation to keep pace with a changing environment. However,...

Lizards Facing Mass Extinction
2013-03-08 05:14:08

Alan McStravick for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online One adage has held true throughout the whole of global history for every living organism on earth; When faced with a challenging situation, a species must either adapt or die. Researchers from the University of Exeter (UofE) and the University of Lincoln (UofL) believe they have discovered a dire situation for one specific species where its earlier adaptation will likely lead to its eventual death and ultimate extinction. In...

Mutant Champions Save Vulnerable Species From Almost-certain Extinction
2013-02-20 12:52:16

University of Washington Species facing widespread and rapid environmental changes can sometimes evolve quickly enough to dodge the extinction bullet. Populations of disease-causing bacteria evolve, for example, as doctors flood their “environment,” the human body, with antibiotics. Insects, animals and plants can make evolutionary adaptations in response to pesticides, heavy metals and overfishing. Previous studies have shown that the more gradual the change, the better the...


Word of the Day
out-herod
  • In the phrase to out-herod Herod, to be more violent than Herod (as represented in the old mystery plays); hence, to exceed in any excess of evil.
Herod refers to 'Herod the Great,' a Roman client king and 'a madman who murdered his own family and a great many rabbis.' According to the OED, the term is 'chiefly with allusion to Shakespeare's use' in Hamlet.
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