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Tag: Humans

Neanderthals made first cave paintings 20,000 years before modern humans

Neanderthals made first cave paintings 20,000 years before modern humans

Science
Feb. 23 (UPI) -- Modern humans weren't the first hominin with an artistic side. New research suggests Neanderthals were painting the walls of caves at least 64,000 years ago, roughly 20,000 years before modern humans began populating Europe.Archaeologists discovered a series of ancient cave paintings in Spain. The artwork was made with paint derived from rich red-colored minerals. Scientists were able to date the paintings by analyzing the layers of carbonate deposited atop the paint.The analysis method, called deuranium-thorium dating, proved the paintings were made more than 64,000 years ago."Our results show that the paintings we dated are, by far, the oldest known cave art in the world," Chris Standish, an archaeologist at the University of Southampton, said in a news release.[embedded...
Alzheimer's disease reversed in mice, offering hope for humans, new research shows

Alzheimer's disease reversed in mice, offering hope for humans, new research shows

Health
"Remarkable" -- that’s how researchers are describing the results of a new study done on mice displaying traits associated with Alzheimer's disease. The deletion of just a single enzyme saw the near total reversal of the deposition of amyloid plaques found in brains of those with Alzheimer's, improving cognitive functions in the mouse subjects, according to the study from researchers at the Cleveland Clinic, published Feb. 14 in the Journal of Experimental Medicine. These promising research findings center around deleting a gene that produces an enzyme called BACE1, which helps make the beta-amyloid peptides that accumulate abnormally in the brains of people with Alzheimer’s disease. Studies have shown that stopping or reducing that enzyme’s activity dramatically reduces production of b
Scientists successfully clone monkeys; are humans up next?

Scientists successfully clone monkeys; are humans up next?

Technology
For the first time, researchers have used the cloning technique that produced Dolly the sheep to create healthy monkeys, bringing science an important step closer to being able to do the same with humans. Since Dolly's birth in 1996, scientists have cloned nearly two dozen kinds of mammals, including dogs, cats, pigs, cows and polo ponies, and have also created human embryos with this method. But until now, they have been unable to make babies this way in primates, the category that includes monkeys, apes and people. "The barrier of cloning primate species is now overcome," declared Muming Poo of the Chinese Academy of Sciences in Shanghai. In a paper released Wednesday by the journal Cell, he and his colleagues announced that they successfully created two macaques. The female baby monkey...
Evidence of convergent evolution found in gene regulation of humans, mice

Evidence of convergent evolution found in gene regulation of humans, mice

Science
Jan. 18 (UPI) -- New research shows humans and mice regulate their genes in similar ways.Because many living organisms face similar problems and ecological pressures, they sometimes develop similar solutions. When species that aren't closely related evolve similar adaptations, it's called convergent evolution.A new study, published this week in the journal PNAS, presents new evidence of convergent evolution among humans and mice. The pair deploy similar mechanisms for regulating noncoding RNA, segments which aren't translated into proteins."This study highlights the importance of noncoding RNA and transposable elements in the regulation of gene expression and in the evolution of gene expression networks in mammalian genomes," Manuel Ares, professor of molecular, cell and developmental biol...
Black Death 'spread by humans not rats'

Black Death 'spread by humans not rats'

Science
Rats were not to blame for the spread of plague during the Black Death, according to a study. The rodents and their fleas were thought to have spread a series of outbreaks in 14th-19th Century Europe.But a team from the universities of Oslo and Ferrara now says the first, the Black Death, can be "largely ascribed to human fleas and body lice".The study, in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Science, uses records of its pattern and scale. The Black Death claimed an estimated 25 million lives, more than a third of Europe's population, between 1347 and 1351."We have good mortality data from outbreaks in nine cities in Europe," Prof Nils Stenseth, from the University of Oslo, told BBC News. "So we could construct models of the disease dynamics [there]."He and his colleagues then simula...