'Animal embryo' fossils are actually microbes (Update)
Tiny fossils that scientists have thought for decades were the embryos of the earliest animals ever found have turned out to be the remains of much simpler microbial organisms.
Experiments explain why almost all multicellular organisms begin life as a single cell
Any multicellular animal, from a blue whale to a human being, poses a special difficulty for the theory of evolution. Most of the cells in its body will die without reproducing, and only a privileged few will ...
Self or non-self: Social amoeba rely on genetic 'lock and key' to identify kin
The ability to identify self and non-self enables cells in more sophisticated animals to ward off invading infections, but it is critical to even simpler organisms such as the social amoebae Dictyostelium discoideum.
Virus-eating virus identified in Antarctic lake
Like humans, amoebae pack a lunch before they travel
(PhysOrg.com) -- Some amoebae do what many people do. Before they travel, they pack a lunch. In results of a study reported today in the journal Nature, evolutionary biologists Joan Strassmann and David Quelle ...
In amoeba world, cheating doesn't pay
(PhysOrg.com) -- Cheaters may prosper in the short term, but over time they seem doomed to fail, at least in the microscopic world of amoebas where natural selection favors the noble.
Findings uncover new details about mysterious virus
(PhysOrg.com) -- An international team of researchers has determined key structural features of the largest known virus, findings that could help scientists studying how the simplest life evolved and whether the unusual virus ...
Group dynamics, not star proteins, drive mechanics of crucial cell process
Like a surgeon separating conjoined twins, cells have to be careful to get everything just right when they divide in two. Otherwise, the resulting daughter cells could be hobbled, particularly if they end ...
Amoeba study puts bite on dysentery
An amoeba parasite that causes potentially fatal dysentery in poor countries wreaks its havoc by eating intestinal cells alive, scientists reported on Wednesday.
Researchers discover new organism: Finding will help scientists understand the origins of multicellular life
Researchers at the University of Arkansas have discovered and characterized a new organism that will help scientists understand the molecular mechanisms and ancestral genetic toolkit that enabled animals ...
Amoebas farm bacteria and carry guards to protect their crops in the wild
Model organisms, brought into labs because they are easy to work with, adapt to the lab, often shedding characteristics that allowed them to survive in the wild. Scientists who work with model organisms rarely ...
Even miniscule changes in environment can cause cytoskeleton of the amoeba Dictyostelium discoideum to oscillate
(Phys.org) —The amoeba Dictyostelium discoideum is the "favourite animal" for many biologists and some physicists: the unicellular organism, which usually lives in the soil, serves as a model for a very ...
Cheating—and getting away with it: Gene allows amoebae to pass on more than their fair share of their genes
We would all like to believe that there is a kind of karma in life that guarantees those who cheat eventually pay for their bad behavior, if not immediately, then somewhere down the line. But a study of a ...
Researchers uncover a synthetic material that rebuilds itself through chemical communication
(Phys.org)—Self-moving gels can give synthetic materials the ability to "act alive" and mimic primitive biological communication, University of Pittsburgh researchers have found.