How Single Cells Evolved
The question of how single celled organisms evolved into more dynamic multicellular ones is difficult to answer, but scientists in Tennessee believe genetic on/off switches provide a clue.
The question of how single celled organisms evolved into more dynamic multicellular ones is difficult to answer, but scientists in Tennessee believe genetic on/off switches provide a clue. "How colonies of single cells evolved into multicellular organisms has long been a puzzle. The process requires single cells to band together and divide the tasks of life. To do so, some cells must give up their ability to reproduce," says the New Scientist. "To investigate, Sergey Gavrilets of the University of Tennessee in Knoxville created a mathematical model describing a colony of identical cells able to survive and reproduce. He assumed trade-offs between the tasks: being better at reproducing made cells worse at survival, and vice versa. In the simplest case, the colony evolved into organisms made of cells that were mediocre at both tasks."
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It's one factor that can help explain the religiosity gap.
- Sociologists have long observed a gap between the religiosity of men and women.
- A recent study used data from several national surveys to compare religiosity, risk-taking preferences and demographic information among more than 20,000 American adolescents.
- The results suggest that risk-taking preferences might partly explain the gender differences in religiosity.
She met mere mortals with and without the Vatican's approval.
- For centuries, the Virgin Mary has appeared to the faithful, requesting devotion and promising comfort.
- These maps show the geography of Marian apparitions – the handful approved by the Vatican, and many others.
- Historically, Europe is where most apparitions have been reported, but the U.S. is pretty fertile ground too.
A NASA astronomer explains how astronauts dispose of their, uh, dark matter.
- When nature calls in micro-gravity, astronauts must answer. Space agencies have developed suction-based toilets – with a camera built in to ensure all the waste is contained before "flushing".
- Yes, there have been floaters in space. The early days of space exploration were a learning curve!
- Amazingly, you don't need gravity to digest food. Peristalsis, the process by which your throat and intestines squeeze themselves, actually moves food and water through your digestive system without gravity at all.
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