The next generation of weapons against antibiotic-resistant superbugs
Biology / Evolution / Medicine

The next generation of weapons against antibiotic-resistant superbugs

From Cosmos Magazine, June 30, 2017 (Image: naturalismus via Flickr)  At his North Adelaide practice, Peter-John Wormald has the unenviable job of unblocking the noses of people with chronic sinusitis. Many of his patients have spent years on antibiotics that have failed to budge their infection, providing the perfect breeding ground for resistant superbugs. For … Continue reading

Killer whale menopause evolved from mother-daughter conflict
Biology / Evolution

Killer whale menopause evolved from mother-daughter conflict

From Cosmos Magazine, January 13, 2017 (Image: Shawn McCready via Flickr) Menopause is an evolutionary anomaly. Only in three species – humans, orcas and short-finned pilot whales – does female reproduction grind to a halt part-way through life. For orcas (Orcinus orca), a new study published in Current Biology shows that menopause isn’t just a … Continue reading

Evolution

On multicellularity and slime molds

Human beings are great big conglomerates of millions upon millions of cells. In this respect, we are very similar to other animals, as well as land plants, algae and filamentous fungi — we are multicellular. Multicellularity is thought to have evolved independently several times throughout history. Traditional thinking was that the ancestors of land plants evolved … Continue reading