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Ensayos sobre la evolución biológica
Autor: Antonio Barbadilla
Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona



Science Daily:
Evolutionary Biology  News

Evolutionary Biology
Recent Headlines

Headline (Posted) Abstract
Pausing evolution makes bioproduction of chemicals affordable and efficient (19 Feb 2018) Circumventing evolution in cell factories can pave the way for commercializing new biobased chemicals to large-scale.

Plants colonized Earth 100 million years earlier than previously thought (19 Feb 2018) A new study on the timescale of plant evolution has concluded that the first plants to colonize the Earth originated around 500 million years ago -- 100 million years earlier than previously thought.

You are what you eat: Diet-specific adaptations in vampire bats (19 Feb 2018)
Vampire bats feed exclusively on blood, a mode of feeding unique amongst mammals. It has therefore been long suspected that vampire bats have highly specific evolutionary adaptations, which would be documented in their genome, and most likely also have an unusual microbiome, the community of micro-organisms assembled in their digestive tract which [+]

Duplicate genes help animals resolve sexual conflict (19 Feb 2018) Duplicate copies of a gene shared by male and female fruit flies have evolved to resolve competing demands between the sexes. New genetic analysis describes how these copies have evolved separate male- and female-specific functions that are crucial to reproduction and fertility.

Evolutionary origin of termite gut microbiome revealed (16 Feb 2018) Researchers have shown that the bacterial communities in termite guts came about through both inheritance and transfer between colonies.

Soft tissue fossil clues could help search for ancient life on Earth and other planets (16 Feb 2018)
Fossils that preserve entire organisms (including both hard and soft body parts) are critical to our understanding of evolution and ancient life on Earth. However, these exceptional deposits are extremely rare. New research suggests that the mineralogy of the surrounding earth is key to conserving soft parts of organisms, and finding more exception [+]

At last, butterflies get a bigger, better evolutionary tree (15 Feb 2018) Butterflies offer key insights into community ecology, how species originate and evolve, climate change and interactions between plants and insects. But a comprehensive map of how butterflies are related to each other has been lacking -- until now.

'Evolutionary rescue' areas for animals threatened by climate change (15 Feb 2018) As winters arrive later and snow melts earlier, the worldwide decrease in snow cover already may have dramatic impacts on animals that change coat colors with the seasons. An international scientific team has set out to discover whether adaptive evolution can rescue these animals in the face of rapidly changing climate.

Birds and primates share brain cell types linked to intelligence (15 Feb 2018)
In a new study scientists show that some neurons in bird brains form the same kind of circuitry and have the same molecular signature as cells that enable connectivity between different areas of the mammalian neocortex. The researchers found that alligators share these cell types as well, suggesting that while mammal, bird and reptile brains have v [+]

Comes naturally? Using stick insects, scientists explore natural selection, predictability (15 Feb 2018) Predicting evolution remains difficult. Scientists have studied evolution of cryptic body coloration and pattern in stick insects for insights.

Rapid evolution of a calcareous microalgae (14 Feb 2018)
Laboratory experiments are easy to control and reproduce but are insufficient to mimic the complexity of natural ecosystems. In contrast, experiments under real conditions in nature are much more complicated and difficult to control. Scientist have combined both approaches to investigate the response of a major plankton species to increasing ocean [+]

Diet or regular? Decoding behavioral variation in ant clones (13 Feb 2018) Clonal ants appear to be diverse in responding to sweetened water, suggesting epigenetic regulation in behavioral variation and colony survival.

Scientists identify factors which drive the evolution of herbicide resistance (13 Feb 2018) Scientists have identified factors which are driving the evolution of herbicide resistance in crops -- something which could also have an impact on medicine as well as agriculture.

New guide for finding genes linked with behavior (12 Feb 2018) Scientists interested in finding specific genes that influence the behavior of humans and animals have a new tool, thanks to a two-year research effort aimed at describing how to apply the latest techniques of molecular genomics to the study of complex behavior.

Researchers raise a 170-million-year question over mysterious moss gene (12 Feb 2018) A surprise discovery provides insight into how cells build their external walls and raises questions about a one-of-a-kind, fused gene.

No sex for all-female fish species (12 Feb 2018) They reproduce through gynogenesis. Their offspring are clones of the mother. According to established theories, the Amazon molly should have become extinct a long time ago. A new study shows how the fish avoids this fate.

Mutation in single rice gene cancels interspecific hybrid sterility (09 Feb 2018) Scientists successfully employed mutagenesis to identify the gene that causes hybrid sterility in rice, which is a major reproductive barrier between species.

Cockroach ancient geographic and genomic history traced back to last supercontinent (08 Feb 2018)
Armed with a vast amount of genomic information, a team of researchers has performed the first molecular dating to gain the clearest picture yet of the biogeographical history of cockroaches. They have traced back the key evolutionary time points of the cockroach -- all the way back almost 300 million years ago when the Earth's mass was organized i [+]

Evolution -- and skill -- help hefty hummingbirds stay spry (08 Feb 2018) Evolved differences in muscle power and wing size -- along with a touch of skill -- govern hummingbirds' inflight agility, according to new research. As opposed to other winged animals, larger species of hummingbirds are able to adapt to outmaneuver smaller species.

When it comes to genes, lichens embrace sharing economy (08 Feb 2018) Researchers have discovered the first known molecular evidence of obligate symbiosis in lichens, a distinctive co-evolutionary relationship that could shed new light on how and why some multicellular organisms consolidate their genomes in order to co-exist.

Walking fish suggests locomotion control evolved much earlier than thought (08 Feb 2018) Cartoons that illustrate evolution depict early vertebrates generating primordial limbs as they move onto land for the first time. But new findings indicate that some of these first ambulatory creatures may have stayed under water, spawning descendants that today exhibit walking behavior on the ocean floor.

Termites' unique gut 'factory' key to global domination (08 Feb 2018)
Termites have achieved ecological dominance and now some ingredients for their success have been determined to lie in their unique gut microbiome 'factories' -- which enable the creatures to eat wood and other material relatively free of competition. New research shows the majority of termite gut microorganisms is not found in any other animals and [+]

Could an 8-million-year-old gene help the citrus industry? Researchers think so (07 Feb 2018) After 100 years of assertions about the roots of citrus, a global group of scientists has traced the evolutionary history of Florida's signature crop up to 8 million years ago in the Himalayas of Southeast Asia.

The social evolution of termites (07 Feb 2018) How did huge, complex insect societies evolve from solitary ancestors? This was the case with termites and ants, which have the same eusocial lifestyle, including for instance a complex system of division of labor among workers and soldiers. New research sheds light on the molecular basis for the evolution of the eusocial lifestyle.

Large-group living boosts magpie intelligence (07 Feb 2018) Growing up in a large social group makes Australian magpies more intelligent, new research shows.

Better knowledge of evolution leads to greater acceptance of the concept (07 Feb 2018) Prevailing theories about evolution state that belief in the concept is tied only to a person's politics or religion. But according to new research, whether Americans accept or reject the subject also depends on how well they understand it.

Giant viruses may play an intriguing role in evolution of life on Earth (07 Feb 2018) A virus may have influenced the evolution of multicellular life. Biologist have found a virus family that has a similar set of genes as eukaryotes, placing giant viruses in the evolutionary journey of most plants, insects, and animals.

Rainforest collapse 307 million years ago impacted the evolution of early land vertebrates (07 Feb 2018) Researchers have discovered that the mass extinction seen in plant species caused by the onset of a drier climate 307 million years ago led to extinctions of some groups of tetrapods, the first vertebrates to live on land, but allowed others to expand across the globe.

Sleepless in Latin America: Blind cavefish, extreme environments and insomnia (06 Feb 2018) A new study has found that differences in the production of the neuropeptide Hypocretin, previously implicated in human narcolepsy, may explain variation in sleep between animal species, or even between individual people. It may also provide important insight into the evolution of sleep and how we might build a brain that does not need to sleep.

Another piece to the puzzle in naked mole rats' long, cancer-free life (06 Feb 2018)
Cellular senescence is an evolutionary adaptation that prevents damaged cells from dividing out of control and developing into cancer. However, senescence has a negative side: by stopping cell division, it also accelerates aging. In a surprising finding, biologists have shown that naked mole rats experience the same cellular senescence as much shor [+]

The recipe for life (06 Feb 2018)
Life as we know it originated roughly 3.5 to 4 billion years ago in the form of a prebiotic ("before life") soup of organic molecules that somehow began to replicate themselves and pass along a genetic formula. Or so goes the thinking behind the RNA World, one of the most robust hypotheses of the origin of life. Researchers have now found evidence [+]

Scientists make it possible to rank the risk of resistance genes (06 Feb 2018) A new study will help to predict antibiotic resistance evolution and thus guide future drug development.

Evolutionary biology: Sponges can economize on oxygen use (06 Feb 2018) Sponges lack a signaling pathway that responds to low intracellular oxygen levels in more complex animals. Do they use a different mechanism for this purpose or did their earliest ancestors evolve at a time when less oxygen was available?

Online tool speeds up evolution education (05 Feb 2018) The biology teacher's pedagogical toolbox is evolving. Bright colors, replicating computer code and a digital petri dish bring evolution science to life for students.

Ray-finned fishes: Natural born survivors (05 Feb 2018) Scientists have revealed that ray-finned fishes are perhaps one of Earth's most resilient groups of animals, having survived four mass extinction events that wiped out many other groups.

When did flowers originate? (05 Feb 2018) Flowering plants likely originated between 149 and 256 million years ago according to new research.

New genome-editing method 'cuts back' on unwanted genetic mutations (05 Feb 2018)
Gene therapy can potentially correct genetic disorders by directly editing defective genes. CRISPR-Cas9 is a popular gene-editing technology whose clinical utility is limited by its tendency to produce unintended genetic errors. Researchers centered at Osaka University developed a modified CRISPR-Cas9 system that uses single-stranded nicking, rathe [+]

Solving the puzzle of multicellularity (02 Feb 2018)
One of the big evolutionary questions in life is how and why single cell organisms organized themselves to live in a group, thereby forming multicellular life forms. Scientists have answered at least part of this question, by decoding the genomic sequence of one of the simplest of all multicellular organisms -- the four-celled alga Tetrabaena socia [+]

Cheetahs' inner ear is one of a kind, vital to high-speed hunting (02 Feb 2018)
The world's fastest land animal, the cheetah, is a successful hunter not only because it is quick, but also because it can hold an incredibly still gaze while pursuing prey. For the first time, researchers have investigated the cheetah's extraordinary sensory abilities by analyzing the speedy animal's inner ear, an organ that is essential for maint [+]

House dust mites evolved a new way to protect their genome (01 Feb 2018) House dust mites are common pests with an unusual evolutionary history. They are tiny, free-living animals that evolved from a parasitic ancestor, which in turn evolved from free-living organisms millions of years ago.