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Thursday, August 6, 2020
Quarrying stone for Easter Island statues made soil more fertile for farming

Quarrying stone for Easter Island statues made soil more fertile for...

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Easter Island’s Polynesian society cultivated crops in soil made especially fertile by the quarrying of rock for massive, humanlike statues, a new study suggests. Soil analyses indicate that weathering of volcanic sediment created by quarrying enriched the slopes of Easter Island’s major rock quarry with phosphorus and other elements crucial for farming. Microscopic plant remains…
People’ maternal forefathers might have developed 200,000 years back in southern Africa

People’ maternal forefathers might have developed 200,000 years back in southern...

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Humankind’s maternal roots extend back about 200,000 years to what was then a lush region of southern Africa, a study suggests. But these results highlight how much remains unknown about human origins. Examining variations in a type of maternally inherited DNA, scientists concluded that the founding maternal line of Homo sapiens arose in what’s now…
Why screening DNA for ‘designer children’ most likely will not work

Why screening DNA for ‘designer children’ most likely will not work

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Picking embryos based on genetics might not give prospective parents the “designer baby” they’re after. DNA predictions of height or IQ might help would-be parents select an embryo that would grow into a child who is, at most, only about three centimeters taller or about three IQ points smarter than an average embryo from the…
Evolving an arch across the foot’s width helped hominids walk upright

Evolving an arch across the foot’s width helped hominids walk upright

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The arch running across the width of the human foot might be a big part of the reason that people can walk and run upright, a new study suggests. People have a prominent arch along the insides of their feet from ball to heel — a structure that helps make feet stiff to withstand forces…
NASA prepares to send out people to an icy part of the moon for the very first time

NASA prepares to send out people to an icy part of...

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NASA wants to send people to explore the moon's South Pole.  NASA NASA's ambitious plan to return astronauts to the moon within five years has a target: the lunar South Pole. The Apollo missions of the '60s and '70s all landed around the moon's equator, but the pole has something very special those sites don't:…
Vaping-related health problem reports have actually risen to 805 from 46 U.S. states

Vaping-related health problem reports have actually risen to 805 from 46...

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The number of vaping-related lung injuries has soared in the last week, up to 805 from 530, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports. Forty-six states and one territory, the U.S. Virgin Islands, have been affected. Twelve people in 10 states — California, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Kansas, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri and Oregon…
50 years ago, income inequality was severe in the U.S. It still is

50 years ago, income inequality was severe in the U.S. It...

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Trends in inequality, Science News, December 6, 1969 — The share of the total national income going to the poorest 20 percent of the [United States] has increased very little in the past 20 years … only from 5.1 to 5.4 percent … between 1947 and 1967. The proportion of the low-earning group that is…
Zombie Diet Plan: 10 Real-Life Examples of People Consuming People

Zombie Diet Plan: 10 Real-Life Examples of People Consuming People

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In AMC's "Fear the Walking Dead," the number one fear is the fear of becoming lunch for vicious human corpses. Credit: AMC In AMC's "Fear the Walking Dead," returning Sunday (June 2) at 9 p.m. EDT/8 p.m. CDT, undead human corpses roam the world in their hunt for human flesh. Now, we know zombies aren't…
Human embryos have additional hand muscles discovered in lizards however not most grownups

Human embryos have additional hand muscles discovered in lizards however not...

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Human embryos are more muscle-bound than adult humans, new microscope images cataloging early development show. For instance, at seven weeks of gestation, embryonic hands have about 30 muscles. Adults have about 19. Many of the muscles are lost, and some fuse with others, adopting the adult arrangement by 13 weeks of gestation, researchers report October…
Children born by C-section have more possibly contagious germs in their guts

Children born by C-section have more possibly contagious germs in their...

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Babies born by Caesarean section may miss out on many of mom’s helpful gut microbes. Instead, these infants’ guts harbor more bacteria that commonly lurk in hospital rooms, scientists found. The finding, described September 18 in Nature, adds weight to the idea that C-sections, and the antibiotics that often come with the procedure, may change…

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