Articles on Evolution

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The teeth in these Australopithecus africanus skulls contain important evidence about the nutrition of these individuals as they grew up. Luca Fiorenza

Teeth ‘time capsule’ reveals that 2 million years ago, early humans breastfed for up to 6 years

A new study shows the enigmatic hominin species Australopithecus africanus may have breastfed young for around 5-6 years – a very costly practice for the mother.
Artistic view of the evolution of elephants. From left to right, Moeritherium (30 million years old), Deinotherium (5 million years old) and a modern African elephant. Alex Bernardini (Simplex Paléo) and Sophie Vrard (Creaphi).

How did elephants evolve such a large brain? Climate change is part of the answer

A shift in climate, along with other environmental disruptions and the invasion of competitors and new predators all likely played an important role in reshaping ancient elephants' brains.
Jumping spiders, like this one, usually have eight eyes: two very large front eyes to get a clear, colour image and judge distance, and extra side eyes to detect when something is moving. Flickr/Thomas Shahan

Curious Kids: why do spiders need so many eyes but we only need two?

Human eyes are very complex and are good at doing many jobs at once, while spiders have different sorts of eyes that do different jobs.
Researchers have discovered a lineage of yeast species that ignores the laws of cell growth. Alexander Kirch/Shutterstock.com

An outlaw yeast thrives with genetic chaos – and could provide clues for understanding cancer growth

Yeast isn't just important for the foods we consume. A rogue lineage of yeast species that evolves faster than any other is revealing secrets that may help illuminate the molecular causes of cancer.

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