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Latest Philosophy of biology Stories

Genetic Hitchhikers Picked Up By Evolution
2013-07-23 11:01:42

Princeton University In a twist on "survival of the fittest," researchers have discovered that evolution is driven not by a single beneficial mutation but rather by a group of mutations, including ones called "genetic hitchhikers" that are simply along for the ride. These hitchhikers are mutations that do not appear to have a role in contributing to an organism's fitness and therefore its evolution, yet may play an important role down the road. Researchers from Princeton University...

2013-07-22 10:16:49

Painstaking new analysis of the genetic sequence of the X chromosome—long perceived as the "female" counterpart to the male-associated Y chromosome—reveals that large portions of the X have evolved to play a specialized role in sperm production. This surprising finding, reported by Whitehead Institute scientists in a paper published online this week in the journal Nature Genetics, is paired with another unexpected outcome: despite its reputation as the...

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...

2013-07-15 23:18:33

Dunes, Reefs, and Other Habitats Vital to Protecting Millions of US Coastal Residents and Billions of Dollars in Property, says new study by The Nature Conservancy scientist Peter Kareiva. Arlington, VA (PRWEB) July 15, 2013 A new study by scientists at the Natural Capital Project says that natural habitats are critical to protecting millions of U.S. residents and their property from devastation by coastal storms. And neglecting those habitats, say the study’s authors, could double the...

Evolution Not Fast Enough For Climate Change
2013-07-10 15:17:43

Brett Smith for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online New research from two biologists at the University of Arizona and Yale suggests that evolution is not an option for species looking to cope with rising global temperatures. According to a study, terrestrial vertebrate species could not adapt to the 4 degree Celsius rise in average global temperatures, and many of these species could be driven to extinction. "Every species has a climatic niche, which is the set of temperature and...

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,...

2013-07-09 16:40:48

By studying rapidly evolving bacteria as they diversify and compete under varying environmental conditions, researchers have shown that temporal niches are important to maintaining biodiversity in natural systems. The research is believed to be the first experimental demonstration of temporal niche dynamics promoting biodiversity over evolutionary time scales. The temporal niches – changes in environmental conditions that occur during specific periods of time...

Global climate change Will Induce Large Changes To The Plant Communities On Earth
2013-07-02 14:44:09

Aarhus University The forest we are used to looking at is not at all in equilibrium. Since the Ice Age, a number of plants have been 'missing' in Northern Europe, i.e. species that have not yet arrived. The same applies in many other parts of the world. Similarly, there is evidence that -- even today -- it often takes a very long time before plants follow when glaciers retreat, or the climate changes. In future, such disequilibrium will become the norm in the plant communities on Earth....

Females Choose Biological Fitness Over Other Traits In Mating Game
2013-06-20 10:46:19

National Institute for Mathematical and Biological Synthesis When a new species emerges following adaptive changes to its local environment, the process of choosing a mate can help protect the new species' genetic identity and increase the likelihood of its survival. But of the many observable traits in a potential mate, which particular traits does a female tend to prefer? A new study from the National Institute for Mathematical and Biological Synthesis finds that a female's mating...


Word of the Day
bibliopole
  • A bookseller; now, especially, a dealer in rare and curious books.
This word comes from a Greek phrase meaning 'book seller.'
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