Male birds-of-paradise are justly world famous for their wildly extravagant feather ornaments, complex calls, and shape-shifting dance moves -- all evolved to attract a mate. New research published in the open-access journal PLOS Biology suggests for the first time that female preferences drive the evolution of physical and behavioral trait combinations that may also be tied to where the male does his courting: on the ground or up in the trees.
Research at the Earlham Institute into one of the 'genetic orchestra conductors', microRNAs, sheds light on our selectively guided evolution of domestic pets and farmyard animals such as dogs and cows.
A new study reveals the negative effects of traffic noise on frogs and how some frogs have adapted. Traffic noise is stressful to frogs and impairs the production of skin peptides that defend against pathogens like chytrid fungus. Frogs from ponds near noisy highways show a dampened stress response and altered immune profile when exposed to noise compared to frogs from quiet ponds, suggesting they have adapted to reduce the negative effects of traffic noise.
The Mexican tetra fish can repair its heart after damage -- something researchers have been striving to achieve in humans for years. Now, new research funded by the British Heart Foundation (BHF) published in Cell Reports suggests that a gene called lrrc10 may hold the key to this fish's remarkable ability.
Frogs from groups exposed to a deadly virus are breeding at younger ages, new research suggests.
Male birds-of-paradise are notorious for their wildly extravagant feather ornaments, complex calls, and shape-shifting dance moves -- all evolved to attract a mate. New research published in the open-access journal PLOS Biology on Nov. 20 suggests for the first time that female preferences drive the evolution of combinations of physical and behavioral traits that may also be tied to where the male does his courting: on the ground or up in the trees.
In a box, within a canister, surrounded by snow, tucked tightly into a backpack strapped to one determined ecologist. Twenty at a time they travel, these unassuming, iconic frogs, departing places where they're thriving for sites from which their species has vanished. Their mission: population recovery.
Researchers at Portland State University discover that vitamin D plays a key role in embryonic development in vertebrates and by blocking vitamin D in embryos of zebrafish, researchers were able to induce dormancy in a species that doesn't enter dormancy. The discovery could have major implications in human health research.
Scientists at the University of Liverpool have uncovered some unexpected 'foreign' genes in the tiny itch-inducing chigger mite and its more benign but enormous cousin, the giant velvet mite. Genome sequencing of these mites, both members of the trombidid mite family, reveals them to have functional genes for producing terpenes -- naturally occurring and often fragrant compounds that are commonly found in plants, but extremely rare in the animal world.
A previously unappreciated interaction in the genome turns out to have possibly been one of the driving forces in the emergence of advanced life. This discovery began with a curiosity for retrotransposons, known as "jumping genes," which are DNA sequences that copy and paste themselves within the genome, multiplying rapidly. Researchers inserted a retrotransposon into bacteria, and the results could give depth to the history of how advanced life may have emerged billions of years ago.