Cassandra Extavour is the author of a new study that points to a different mechanism as an ancestral process for specifying germ cells.
New research not only sheds new light on how hearing works, but could help clarify how it deteriorates over time.
People spend 46.9 percent of their waking hours thinking about something other than what they’re doing, and this mind wandering typically makes them unhappy, according to research by Harvard psychologists Matthew A. Killingsworth and Daniel T. Gilbert.
New research conducted at Harvard demonstrates sharing behavior in African grey parrots.
Behind glass cases, Harvard’s Peabody Museum of Archaeology displays ancient tools, weapons, clothing, and art — enough to jar you back into the past. But the venerable museum offered a jarring moment of another sort in its Geological Lecture Hall last month (March 20). Paleoanthropologist Leslie Aiello delivered a late-afternoon talk on diet, energy, and evolution. It was jolting to see her, slight and matronly, stand before a story-high screen filled with images of rugged early hominids on a savannah, gathered around fallen game.
A Harvard study shows that although an optimistic outlook may help women live longer, one other possibility is that higher optimism directly impacts our biological systems.
The Wyss Institute and Harvard Medical School’s Personal Genome Project are collaborating with Lumos Labs, the makers of Lumosity, to investigate the relationship between genetics and memory, attention, and reaction speed.
Researchers have created embryonic stem cells without an embryo. This discovery of a novel reprogramming method of adult cells, without introducing external genetic material, could dramatically shift stem cell research.
Hairless, clawless, and largely weaponless, ancient humans used the unlikely combination of sweatiness and relentlessness to gain the upper hand over their faster, stronger, generally more dangerous animal prey, Harvard Anthropology Professor Daniel Lieberman said Thursday (April 12).
While recent federal guidelines enhanced the nutritional quality of school lunches, there are no standards regarding lunch period length. Many students have lunch periods that are 20 minutes or less, which can be an insufficient amount of time to eat, according to a new study from the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health.
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Remnants of Neanderthal DNA in modern humans are associated with genes affecting type 2 diabetes, Crohn’s disease, lupus, biliary cirrhosis, and smoking behavior. They also concentrate in genes that influence skin and hair characteristics. At the same time, Neanderthal DNA is conspicuously low in regions of the X chromosome and testes-specific genes.
A philosophy professor’s summer of diving in Sydney Harbour has gotten him thinking about what octopus intelligence might mean.
In a first-of-its-kind study, Harvard researchers have shown that cooked meat provides more energy than raw meat, a finding that challenges the current food labeling system and suggests humans are evolutionarily adapted to take advantage of the benefits of cooking.
Human embryos that are discarded every day as medical waste from in vitro fertilization (IVF) clinics could be an important source of stem cells for ...
Harvard geneticist George Church discussed the future of genetic engineering, including possible technological applications allowing new treatment techniques. He saw the potential to improve human health, revolutionize pest management, and perhaps even bring back the mammoth and other extinct species.
A vivid illustration of natural selection at work: Harvard scientists have found that deer mice quickly evolved lighter coloration after glaciers deposited sand dunes atop what had been much darker soil.
Experiments conducted in a Harvard lab reveal that, while sharks’ sandpaperlike skin does allow the animals to swim faster and more efficiently, the structure of some high-tech swimsuits has no effect when it comes to reducing drag as swimmers move through the water.
Assistant professor Arkhat Abzhanov looks to birds’ relatives by way of dinosaurs — alligators — for clues to their evolution.
After 26 years of workdays spent watching bacteria multiply, Richard Lenski has learned that evolution doesn’t always occur in steps so slow and steady that change can’t be observed.
New findings have the potential to help researchers more accurately identify microbiome enzymes and quantify their relative abundance.
A Graduate School of Education alumna brings her family history into the dance studio as she teaches children with disabilities the art of movement and the rewards they can reap.
Keith Ellenbogen captures the ecosystems deep within the oceans, bringing them to life through his underwater photography.
Most of us do it every night but we don't know why. If you miss too many nights, it might kill you. We know why we eat, drink, breathe, and move around, but no one can explain why we need to sleep. What does seven or eight hours of snoozing really do for us? Van Savage at the Harvard Medical School and Geoffrey West of the Santa Fe Institute in New Mexico believe they have found a good answer.
New research challenges the notion that the small pelvic bones found in whales are evolutionary vestiges.
Relaxation-response techniques, such as meditation, yoga, and prayer, could reduce the need for health care services by 43 percent, according to a Harvard-affiliated Massachusetts General Hospital study that looked at participants in a relaxation-response-focused training program.
Inspired by his experience in the 2005 New York Marathon, an M.D./Ph.D. student has taken a rigorous approach to calculating just how much carbohydrate a runner needs to fuel himself or herself through 26.2 miles, and what pace that runner can reasonably expect to sustain.
Harvard Business School social psychologist Amy Cuddy explains how tapping into our inner strength can help us make the most of life’s big challenges.
Research led by a Harvard professor describes in detail how termite mounds are ventilated.
The positive effects of mindfulness meditation on pain and working memory may result from an improved ability to regulate a crucial brain wave called the alpha rhythm. This rhythm is thought to "turn down the volume" on distracting information, which suggests that a key value of meditation may be helping the brain deal with an often overstimulating world.
Researchers at Harvard have shown that Nodal and Lefty — two proteins linked to the regulation of asymmetry in vertebrates and the development of precursor cells for internal organs — fit a mathematical model first described by Alan Turing six decades ago.
Evidence is mounting that Earth’s water arrived during formation, aboard meteorites and small bodies called “planetesimals.”
An assistant professor of evolutionary biology, Katie Hinde is also the creator of Mammal March Madness, a tournament that emulates the college basketball playoffs and pits species against each other in simulated combat.
Biologists at Harvard University have identified the ancient fossilized remains of a pollen-bearing bee as the first hint of orchids in the fossil record, a find they say suggests orchids are old enough to have coexisted with dinosaurs.
Researchers in the Department of Neurobiology at Harvard Medical School have developed a technique for unraveling these masses. Through a combination of microscopy platforms, researchers can crawl through the individual connections composing a neural network, much as Google crawls web links.
Harvard researchers at the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute have identified the root molecular cause of a variety of ills brought on by advanced age, including waning energy, failure of the heart and other organs, and metabolic disorder.
State wildlife biologists installed a peregrine falcon nesting platform high on Memorial Hall’s tower.
Robert A. Lue, faculty director of the Harvard Ed Portal, offered his audience insight into his upcoming HarvardX course “Cell Biology: Mitochondria,” during a talk on April 21.
Harvard stem cell researchers at Massachusetts General Hospital have taken a critical step toward discovering in the relatively near future a drug to control cystic fibrosis, a fatal lung disease that claims about 500 lives each year, with 1,000 new cases diagnosed annually.
Studies have suggested that the Zika virus enters neural progenitor cells by grabbing onto a specific protein called AXL on the cell surface. Now, scientists at the Harvard Stem Cell Institute and Novartis have shown that this is not the only route of infection. The scientists demonstrated that Zika infected neural progenitor cells even when the cells did not produce the AXL protein.
The narwhal tusk has now been mapped, showing a pathway between the spiral tooth and the narwhal brain. The study reflects how the mysterious animal may use its tusk to suss out its environment.
Harvard neuroscientist Venkatesh N. Murthy has a sunny second-floor office on Divinity Avenue, where he is a professor in Harvard’s Department of Molecular and Cellular Biology. In one corner is a set of weights and a soccer ball — both untouched in over a year, he said, because of an intensely busy schedule.
Harvard stem cell biologists have proven that it is possible to turn one type of already differentiated neuron into another inside the brain, and their findings may have enormous implications for the treatment of neurodegenerative diseases.
A new study finds no connection between hip width and efficient locomotion, and suggests that scientists have long approached the problem in the wrong way.
The Harvard Museum of Natural History opens a new marine life gallery, which uses the seas off New England as a lens for learning about marine life around the world.
Researchers at Harvard University and the SETI Institute are proposing a new spin on the giant-impact model to match the observed composition of the moon and its relationship to Earth.
Researchers create complex kidney structures from human stem cells derived from the skin of adult patients.
A state-of-the-art microscope built by Harvard researchers will allow scientists to capture 3-D images of all the neural activity in the brains of tiny, transparent C. elegans worms as they crawl.
Harvard Stem Cell Institute researchers have used a colorful cell-labeling technique to track the development of the blood system and trace the lineage of an adult blood cell traveling through the vast networks of veins, arteries, and capillaries back to its parent stem cell in the marrow.
Using ultra-fast MRI scans, scientists are able to track rapid oscillations in brain activity that previously would have gone undetected, a development that could open the door to understanding fast-occurring cognitive processes that once appeared off-limits to scientists.
Back in the depths of time, an event almost miraculously improbable happened, creating a long, unlikely molecule. And life arose on Earth. Or, if you prefer, back in the depths of time, in a soup of small, relatively common molecules, an unknown chemical reaction occurred, sustained itself, replicated … and life arose on Earth.