Lockdown challenges – what evolution tells us about our need for personal space

Freedom of movement for survival.

Isabelle Catherine Winder, Lecturer in Zoology, Bangor University • conversation
May 1, 2020 ~6 min

evolution coronavirus primates self-isolation lockdown zoos

Monkey teeth fossils hint several extinct species crossed the Atlantic

New research suggests African monkeys crossed the ocean to South America earlier than previously thought.

Isabelle Catherine Winder, Lecturer in Zoology, Bangor University • conversation
April 9, 2020 ~7 min

 evolution  primates  palaeontology  monkeys  non-human-primates  palaeobiology

Here's how scientists are tracking the genetic evolution of COVID-19

The SARS-CoV-2 virus that causes COVID-19 is constantly mutating. What do this mutations reveal about this virus's evolution? And will this knowledge help us to develop a long-lasting vaccine?

Niema Moshiri, Assistant Teaching Professor of Computer Science & Engineering, University of California San Diego • conversation
April 6, 2020 ~7 min

 evolution  covid-19  coronavirus  rna  vaccines  coronavirus2020  mutation

Social distancing works – just ask lobsters, ants and vampire bats

Using distance to avoid getting sick has deep evolutionary roots for humans and many other species.

Julia Buck, Assistant Professor of Biology, University of North Carolina Wilmington • conversation
April 3, 2020 ~8 min

 evolution  covid-19  mice  colonies  animals  social-distancing  isolation  coronavirus-2020  altruism  bats  animal-behavior  ants  contagion  monkeys

Is racism and bigotry in our DNA?

If we are not careful, the coronavirus pandemic could lead to a rise in xenophobic attitudes.

Tom Oliver, Professor of Applied Ecology, University of Reading • conversation
April 2, 2020 ~16 min

 dna  evolution  genetics  environment  psychology  ecology  lifes-big-questions  racism  bigotry  xenophobia

Coronavirus: experts in evolution explain why social distancing feels so unnatural

The evolution of the strong human bond.

Vivien Shaw, Lecturer in Anatomy, Bangor University • conversation
March 25, 2020 ~7 min

 evolution  social-media  covid-19  coronavirus  society  primates  social-distancing  non-human-primates  relationships

Ancient bird skull found in amber was tiny predator in the time of giant dinosaurs

The skull of Oculudentavis, found encased in amber, provides new clues into the transition from dinosaurs to birds and may be smallest of either ever found.

Jingmai Kathleen O'Connor, Senior Professor of Paleontology, Chinese Academy of Sciences • conversation
March 11, 2020 ~7 min

 evolution  birds  dinosaurs  paleontology  fossils  amber  myanmar  feathered-dinosaurs  bones  fossil-record  fossil-skulls  phylogeny

Modern tomatoes are very different from their wild ancestors – and we found missing links in their evolution

Through genetic detective work, scientists have identified missing links in the tomato’s evolution from a wild blueberry-sized fruit in South America to the larger modern tomato of today.

Ana Caicedo, Associate Professor of Biology, University of Massachusetts Amherst • conversation
Jan. 30, 2020 ~6 min

 evolution  genetics  agriculture  genomics  research-brief  global-perspectives  crops  tomato  latin-america  plant-breeding  domestication