Evolution of new species requires few genetic changes

Only a few genetic changes are needed to spur the evolution of new species—even if the original populations are still in contact and exchanging genes. Once started, however, evolutionary divergence evolves rapidly, ultimately ...

Out of Africa date brought forward

(Phys.org) —A study on human mitochondrial DNA has led to a new estimate of the time at which humans first began to migrate out of Africa, which was much later than previously thought.

Oldest existing lizard-like fossil hints at scaly origins

The fossilised remains of a reptile closely related to lizards are the oldest yet to be discovered. Two new fossil jaws discovered in Vellberg, Germany provide the first direct evidence that the ancestors of lizards, snakes ...

Ancestors of land plants revealed

It was previously thought that land plants evolved from stonewort-like algae. However, new research published in BioMed Central's open access journal BMC Evolutionary Biology shows that the closest relatives to land plants ...

Salamanders spell out evolution in action

Lungless salamanders (Ensatina eschscholtzii) live in a horseshoe-shape region in California (a 'ring') which circles around the central valley. The species is an example of evolution in action because, while neighboring ...

Shape-shifting coral evade identification

The evolutionary tendency of corals to alter their skeletal structure makes it difficult to assign them to different species. Researchers writing in the open access journal BMC Evolutionary Biology have used genetic markers ...

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