Book review: Who knew the world of paleoanthropology could be so cutthroat?

Book review: Who knew the world of paleoanthropology could be so cutthroat?

[T]he scientists looking for ever older bones of our ancestors always seem to be squabbling. At least that’s their reputation ...
Are women superior to men? Research suggests most of us are more likely to believe that sex differences favor females

Are women superior to men? Research suggests most of us are more likely to believe that sex differences favor females

In [a new] study, 492 participants — most of whom resided in the United States, the United Kingdom, or Canada ...
Want to breed a horse that’s disease free and can run faster? CRISPR may offer that possibility

Want to breed a horse that’s disease free and can run faster? CRISPR may offer that possibility

Argentine researchers have successfully edited the genes in an equine embryo, raising the possibility of producing horses with custom-designed DNA ...
400 children worldwide are born each year with ‘fast-aging disease’ – Hutchinson-Gilford progeria syndrome. Now CRISPR offers hope

400 children worldwide are born each year with ‘fast-aging disease’ – Hutchinson-Gilford progeria syndrome. Now CRISPR offers hope

[R]esults from a new study have inspired hope for treating children born with progeria, a rare, fatal, genetic disease that ...
Vegetarianism might be in your genes: Study suggests genetic predisposition to a meat-free diet

Vegetarianism might be in your genes: Study suggests genetic predisposition to a meat-free diet

Analysis of the genomes of British vegetarians found a link between their rejection of meat and mutations in their DNA ...
Cave bears: Neanderthals may have survived harsh winters by hibernating

Cave bears: Neanderthals may have survived harsh winters by hibernating

Evidence from bones found at one of the world’s most important fossil sites suggests that our hominid predecessors may have ...
Athletic boost? A year after starting hormone treatments, transgender women still have an advantage over cisgender peers

Athletic boost? A year after starting hormone treatments, transgender women still have an advantage over cisgender peers

A new study suggests transgender women maintain an athletic advantage over their cisgender peers even after a year on hormone ...
Viewpoint: Why Francis Collins is a bad choice to head the NIH

Viewpoint: Why Francis Collins is a bad choice to head the NIH

[I]n his eight years in charge of federal efforts to understand, diagnose and cure disease, current NIH Director Francis Collins ...
How honest are you? When do you think it’s okay to deceive? It may be hard-wired

How honest are you? When do you think it’s okay to deceive? It may be hard-wired

Humans are a social species. There is pretty compelling evidence that without cooperation, people are much less likely to survive ...
Mosquitoes are one of humanity’s most dangerous enemies. Here’s how synthetic biology might lead to a long-lasting repellant

Mosquitoes are one of humanity’s most dangerous enemies. Here’s how synthetic biology might lead to a long-lasting repellant

Vector-borne diseases, such as malaria, dengue, and Zika, are pathogens that can be transmitted through the bite of an insect ...
Colonizing Mars? Here’s the technology we need to make that happen

Colonizing Mars? Here’s the technology we need to make that happen

Though it is the most livable non-Earth planet within our grasp, Mars is brutally hostile to life: It is as cold as Antarctica, ...
CRISPR, forests and climate change: Gene editing poised to engineer faster growing, carbon sucking trees—if activists don’t block it

CRISPR, forests and climate change: Gene editing poised to engineer faster growing, carbon sucking trees—if activists don’t block it

For years, scientists have recommended planting more trees to fight climate change. With more trees, the rate of photosynthesis will ...
Will gene editing human embryos ever be safe?

Will gene editing human embryos ever be safe?

Debates continue about whether the societal risks of heritable genome editing are too great to proceed, as do calls for ...
Genetic genealogy launched 20 years ago with a whimper. Here’s where we are now

Genetic genealogy launched 20 years ago with a whimper. Here’s where we are now

Lots of people have had more time to focus on genealogy in 2020, so let’s take a look at what’s ...
We may have a CRISPR cure for red blood diseases sickle cell anemia and beta thalassemia

We may have a CRISPR cure for red blood diseases sickle cell anemia and beta thalassemia

Sickle cell anemia and thalassemia are genetic diseases that result in the production of anomalous hemoglobin (protein that carries oxygen) ...
Humans and chimpanzees share 99% of the same DNA. This is the 1% difference

Humans and chimpanzees share 99% of the same DNA. This is the 1% difference

With only 1% difference, the human and chimpanzee protein-coding genomes are remarkably similar. Understanding the biological features that make us ...
100+ countries have outlined legal restrictions on editing human embryos. Here’s a guide

100+ countries have outlined legal restrictions on editing human embryos. Here’s a guide

Discussions and debates about the governance of human germline and heritable genome editing should be informed by a clear and ...
Crash effort to develop coronavirus vaccines has revolutionized disease treatment

Crash effort to develop coronavirus vaccines has revolutionized disease treatment

The COVID-19 experience will almost certainly change the future of vaccine science, says Dan Barouch, director of the Center for ...
Video: How the unique immune system of prehistoric-like jawless lamprey fish may unlock cures for brain diseases

Video: How the unique immune system of prehistoric-like jawless lamprey fish may unlock cures for brain diseases

You might expect to find these fish at the core of an ancient, distant asteroid, but we find them instead ...
Neanderthals, COVID-19 and you: Exploring how our inherited genes are harming us and could have decimated our hominid ancestors

Neanderthals, COVID-19 and you: Exploring how our inherited genes are harming us and could have decimated our hominid ancestors

[Researchers Svante] Pääbo and colleague Hugo Zeberg announced that the major genetic risk factor for severe COVID-19 is inherited from Neanderthals… By ...
How RNA-based vaccines will revolutionize medicine and disease treatments

How RNA-based vaccines will revolutionize medicine and disease treatments

The two vaccine candidates produced by Pfizer/BioNTech and Moderna are unlike any other vaccine that’s come before. Should they achieve ...
Nature’s mistake? Meet the ‘world’s ugliest orchid’

Nature’s mistake? Meet the ‘world’s ugliest orchid’

[A new species], Gastrodia agnicellus, was discovered earlier this year in the deep shade underneath leaves on the forest floor in Madagascar ...
How do physiological processes produce a conscious state of mind?

How do physiological processes produce a conscious state of mind?

I believe there are two reasons why we have failed to solve the hard part of the problem [of consciousness] ...
How dangerous is a lack of sleep?

How dangerous is a lack of sleep?

Whether sleep deprivation can kill is somewhat debatable. That’s because people who forgo sleep for extended periods of time may ...
When did modern humans emerge? 350,000-year-old tool discovered in Israel may challenge date for debut of Homo sapiens

When did modern humans emerge? 350,000-year-old tool discovered in Israel may challenge date for debut of Homo sapiens

Archaeologists believe they've found the oldest known tool used for grinding or scraping, dating back some 350,000 years. Found in ...
Advanced cancers in humans linked to rogue evolutionary mutation

Advanced cancers in humans linked to rogue evolutionary mutation

Compared to chimpanzees, our closest evolutionary cousins, humans are particularly prone to developing advanced carcinomas — the type of tumors ...
Dream engineering: Virtual reality and brain stimulation yield surprising insight into the brain

Dream engineering: Virtual reality and brain stimulation yield surprising insight into the brain

[Adam] Haar Horowitz is one of a small but growing group of researchers who call themselves dream engineers and are ...
Neuroscientist Catherine Dulac challenges misperceptions about ‘male’ and ‘female’ instincts

Neuroscientist Catherine Dulac challenges misperceptions about ‘male’ and ‘female’ instincts

Though she is trained as a developmental biologist, [Catherine] Dulac takes her research into territory usually explored by social scientists ...
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