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Articles on PNAS (journal)

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Let’s start an ice age. asgeirkroyer

Indonesia’s Samalas volcano may have kickstarted the Little Ice Age

A volcano in Indonesia may be the location of a massive “mystery eruption” that has perplexed volcanologists for decades, according to a new study. The eruption occurred in 1257, and it could also be one…
Empires were built through the art of war. kaptainkobold

Computer simulations reveal war drove the rise of civilisations

According to British historian Arnold Toynbee, “History is just one damned thing after another.” Or is it? That is the question Peter Turchin of the University of Connecticut in Storrs tries to answer…
Bigger isn’t always better. Aquistbe

Better fathers have smaller testicles, study suggests

Father’s involvement in raising a child, on average, brings good news. It leads to lower child mortality and better social, psychological and educational outcomes. So why do some men choose not to invest…
This little tyke is already hard at work studying. petitshoo

Language learning begins in the womb

Human foetuses begin to hear sounds outside the womb at about 27 weeks. But whether foetuses can learn from these sounds in ways that shape speech perception and development during infancy has remained…
Abracadabra: words can make the invisible visible. listentothemountains

Hearing can make ‘invisible’ objects appear

Words that make objects appear from thin air are generally the stuff of the magical worlds of Harry Potter or The Hobbit. But a new experiment has been shown that words can make objects easier to recognise…
Food from the Stone Age has raised doubts about the causes of the human revolution. Breville

Shellfish size may disprove cause of ‘human revolution’

About 50,000 years ago, modern humans left Africa and began occupying the rest of the world. The common thought is that a sudden growth in population caused the so-called “human revolution”, which gave…
Bryophytes regrowing in the lab after 400 years in a glacier. Catherine La Farge

Frozen plants from the Little Ice Age regenerate spontaneously

Retreating glaciers are proving to be good news for plant scientists. Underneath one such glacier on Ellesmere Island in Canada, researchers have found plants they believe have regrown after being entombed…
The authors say their findings raise important questions about the central role of animal models in biomedical research. Understanding Animal Research

Of mice and men: role of mice in biomedical research questioned

A study recently published in the peer-reviewed journal PNAS (Proceedings of the National of Academy Sciences) shows that mice are poor models for human inflammatory diseases. The paper, which focused…

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