In his theory of evolution, which dates back to the 1800s, Darwin argues that living organisms evolve over time to promote survival and to produce the fittest offspring. This evolutionary model is based on two concepts: That all life on Earth is interconnected and that its diversity results from certain […]
Scientists have long wondered about the function of rudimentary structures which have no apparent use, such as organs like the appendix and tonsils. In On The Origin of Species, Charles Darwin hypothesized that these vestigial structures are remnants of our evolutionary past and explained their presence using his widely-accepted theory […]
At first glance, a chicken and a dinosaur may seem as distantly related as any two species could be. For Hans Larsson, McGill associate professor of paleontology and biology and director of the Redpath Museum, the correlation between the two could not be clearer. In his presentation on Sept. 14, […]
Ever pictured a cross between Squidward from Spongebob and a grumpy English Bulldog? If not, look at a picture of the infamous “blobfish” and wonder at the mysteries of life. According to the New York Daily News, the blobfish, or Psychrolutes marcidus, was voted “World’s Ugliest Fish” by the Ugly Animals […]
Instead of building a time machine to travel back to prehistoric times, scientists might be able to engineer dinosaurs out of chickens to live in our own backyards. In a study published this past January in the Journal of Organic Evolution, researchers were able to genetically modify chicken embryo legs […]
The origin of life on Earth remains a heavily researched topic in evolutionary biology. Among the myriad of questions yet to be answered is how simple, single-celled organisms evolved to be complex and multicellular. While the mechanism for this phenomenon has been elucidated in plants and fungi, little is known […]
Physicists transport marbles with optical tractor beam The tractor beam—a long-distance invisible attraction beam—is a legendary staple in science fiction. In real life, moving objects using only light seems absurd, if not impossible. However, in a paper published in Nature Photonics, a team of Australian and American physicists successfully transferred […]
A team of researchers led by Dr. Hans Larsson from McGill University has made a key discovery in the process by which creatures evolved from aquatic to terrestrial animals. The study used the Polypterus fish as a means to investigate phenotypic evolutionary changes.