Andre Duval

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Scientists announce new gene-editing techniques aimed at common mutations

Genetics is having a moment in the sun. Last year, biologists at the University of Bath in England created mice with neon feet. Scientists edited human embryos for the first time in the United States in August, cutting out a mutation for a heritable heart disease. Earlier this month, research …

Genetics

A brief history of origin theories

From spontaneous materializing to a "warm little pond."<p>Ancient Greece<p>Leading thinkers conjecture that life arose spontaneously—just as maggots seem to appear on carcasses.<p>1871<p>Charles Darwin writes that life may have emerged in a “warm little pond” with the right mixture of light, heat, and …

Comets

A new finding raises an old question: Where and when did life begin?

Science Source/Getty Images<p>Geologists are analyzing ancient clues to tell our origin story.<p>The rock is a deep rusty red, shot through with gray stripes. It rises above shrubby tundra, part of a hummocky terrain that slopes down to the Hudson Bay in northern Quebec, as it has for a very long …

Earth Science

Central Nervous System Function

The nervous system includes the brain, spinal cord, and a complex network of neurons. This system is responsible for sending, receiving, and …

Whether heroes or villains, the Knights Templar were inept crusaders

They were the most famous military order in the world, says Dan Jones. But their tactics were suicidally stupid<p>In W.B. Yeats’s ‘Meditations in Time of Civil War’, a testing allusion emerges amid a scene of nightmare:<p>Monstrous familiar images swim to the mind’s eye<br>‘Vengeance upon the murderers,’ the …

9,000-Year-Old Stonehenge-Like Structure Found Under Lake Michigan

Is it possible a structure similar to Stonehenge lies at the bottom of Lake Michigan?<p>The site was discovered in 2007, 40 feet below the surface of …

Finding North America’s lost medieval city

Cahokia was bigger than Paris—then it was completely abandoned. I went there to find out why.<p>A thousand years ago, huge pyramids and earthen mounds …

Homo naledi: Scientists just discovered something amazing about our early human relatives

In 2013, two recreational cavers accidentally stumbled upon pieces of human history while exploring the Rising Star cave system at the Cradle of …

Humans and Neanderthals had sex a lot earlier than scientists thought

Some humans may have left Africa over 100,000 years ago<p>An analysis of the genome of a Siberian Neanderthal, published today in <i>Nature</i>, reveals for the first time that humans contributed DNA to the Neanderthal genome about 100,000 years ago; that's 50,000 years earlierthan the previous estimate. The …

The Black Hole That Birthed the Big Bang

In his Allegory of the Cave, Greek philosopher Plato described prisoners who have spent their entire lives chained to the wall of a dark cavern. …

‘Brutally murdered’ Pictish man brought back to life by CAHID team

Researchers from the University of Dundee’s Centre for Anatomy and Human Identification (CAHID) have reconstructed the face of a Pictish man they …

Archaeology

Santorini eruption: new theory says 'pyroclastic flows' caused devastating Bronze Age tsunamis

Take the ferry to the beautiful Greek islands of Santorini and you will sail into a truly unique landscape forged by a cataclysm towards the end of …

Scientists find 'oldest human ancestor'

<b>Researchers have discovered the earliest known ancestor of humans - along with a vast range of other species.</b><p>They say that fossilised traces of the 540-million-year-old creature are "exquisitely well preserved".<p>The microscopic sea animal is the earliest known step on the evolutionary path that led …

Evolution

Nitrous, weed, opium and peach-pits: the intoxicants of 18th C England

icotill001p1<p>Historical novelist Debra Daley posts a master guide to the intoxicants of 18th century England, which ranged from modern favorites …

Scientists Find Legendary Sea Blob After Century Of Searching

MBARIAfter more than a century of searching, scientists have rediscovered a relatively giant sea blob that some assumed never truly existed to begin …

Monterey Bay Aquarium

What Zen “Acceptance” and “Non-Attachment” Really Are

September 6, 2016 by Domyo Burk<p>The practices of acceptance and non-attachment are critical to Zen and Buddhist practice – but they are easily …

How to Be a Stoic

Born nearly two thousand years before Darwin and Freud, Epictetus seems to have anticipated a way out of their prisons.<p>The Stoic philosopher Epictetus was born a slave, around 55 A.D., in the Greco-Roman spa town of Hierapolis—present-day Pamukkale, Turkey. I first encountered his teachings in …

A New History Looks at a Time When Europe Came Together

<b>THE PURSUIT OF POWER</b><b><br>Europe 1815-1914</b><br>By Richard J. Evans<br>Illustrated. 819 pp. Viking. $40.<p>Europe is more than the sum of its parts. Its history is not merely a collection of national pasts standing side by side. Historians have long understood this. So did the 19th-century Italian nationalist and …

These Ancient Structures Are So Advanced, They Shouldn't Exist... Even If Built Today

We either need to stop underestimating ancient cultures or it's time we rule out primitive tools and hop on the alien bandwagon. These five ancient …

Archaeology

51 natural wonders so amazing it’s hard to believe they exist

The world’s an incredible place, but sometimes I’ll find myself somewhere and actually have to take a second and ask, “Really? This is exists?”<p>This …

National Parks

This is your brain on meditation

The brain processes more thoughts, feelings during meditation than when you are just relaxing, study shows.<p>Mindfulness. Zen. Acem. Meditation …

Split brains reconnect via alternate routes

Scientists uncover how patients born without a corpus callosum can still communicate information between right and left brain.<p>Your brain is divided …

The Secret History Behind The Science Of Stress

The modern idea of stress began on a rooftop in Canada, with a handful of rats freezing in the winter wind.<p>This was 1936 and by that point the owner of the rats, an endocrinologist named Hans Selye, had become expert at making rats suffer for science.<p>"He would subject them to extreme temperatures, …

The Five Biggest Threats To Human Existence

The big and bad crises that could wipe out humanity<p>In the daily hubbub of current “crises” facing humanity, we forget about the many generations we hope are yet to come. Not those who will live 200 years from now, but 1,000 or 10,000 years from now. I use the word “hope” because we face risks, …

Singularity

Homo floresiensis: scientists clash over claims 'hobbit man' was modern human with Down's syndrome

Tiny skeleton from Indonesia's Flores island is unique ancient species, insist researchers<p>A furious international dispute has erupted over the publication of a paper that claims the hobbit man of Flores was a modern human who had Down's syndrome. Published in the <i>Proceedings of the</i> <i>National Academy</i> …

Sugar: the evolution of a forbidden fruit

Sweetness was meant to be irresistible.<p>We are born with a sweet tooth. Babies drink in sugar with their mother’s milk. Sweetness represents an instant energy boost, a fuel that kept our ancestors going in a harsher world where taste buds evolved to distinguish health-giving ripeness and freshness …

2014 Dialogue of Civilizations Opens in Istanbul

Human Journey<p>The 2014 Dialogue of Civilizations is kicking off in Istanbul this weekend, bringing together archaeologists and other experts in five of the world’s great ancient civilizations. For the next week, they will converse with each other and the public, learning more about these cultures …