Research

First-ever cast of ‘Hobbit’ to be unveiled on April 21

Washington, March 24: A cast of a ‘Hobbit’ skeleton will be publicly displayed for the first time ever at Stony Brook University’s 7th Human Evolution Symposium on April 21, thanks to the National Research and Development Centre for Archaeology in Jakarta, Indonesia.

As the debate rages on about whether Homo floresiensis – the so called “Hobbit” – fossils discovered on the Indonesian island of Flores in 2003, represent a separate human species, the symposium will bring together the researchers currently in the process of describing and analyzing the remains.

Adult human testes cells can become embryonic stem-like

Adult human testes cells can become embryonic stem-likeWashington, Mar 24: Researchers at Georgetown University Medical Center have shown that adult human testes cells can be turned into embryonic stem-like cells.

The researchers used a simple method to extract stem/progenitor cells from adult testes and successfully converted them back into pluripotent embryonic-like stem cells.

In their opinion, the naive cells are now potentially capable of morphing into any cell type that a body needs, from brain neurons to pancreatic tissue.

‘Ice that burns’ may provide clean, sustainable energy in future

‘Ice that burns’ may provide clean, sustainable energy in futureWashington, March 24: Researchers have reported that gas hydrates, known as “ice that burns”, which is derived from chunks of ice that workers collect from beneath the ocean floor, show increasing promise as an abundant, untapped source of clean, sustainable energy for the future.

These so-called “gas hydrates,” a frozen form of natural gas that bursts into flames at the touch of a match, may one day may fuel cars, heat homes, and power factories.

‘Use of stem cells for research allowed in Islam’

‘Use of stem cells for research allowed in Islam’Lahore, Mar 24: The use of stem cells for research was allowed in Islam, but not for human cloning, said Dr. Israr Ahmed, an internationally recognised Pakistani religious scholar and founder of Tanzeem-e-Islami Quran Academy.

He was speaking on the issue at a seminar organised by the Punjab University Centre of Excellence in Molecular Biology (CEMB) on “Ethical Issues Related to Work on Stem Cells”.

Evidence indicates maize was domesticated 8,700 years ago in Mexico

Evidence indicates maize was domesticated 8,700 years ago in MexicoWashington, March 24: An international team of researchers has found the earliest physical evidence for domesticated maize in Mexico, dating back to at least 8,700 calendar years ago, which is 1,500 years earlier than previously documented.

According to the researchers, the maize was probably domesticated by indigenous peoples in the lowland areas of southwestern Mexico, not the highland areas.

Evidence of early agriculture found in dog and pig bones from China

Evidence of early agriculture found in dog and pig bones from ChinaWashington, March 24: Researchers have gathered evidence of early human experiments with agriculture in dog and pig bones, as well as bones of other animals, from an archaeological site in a region of northwest China.

The bones come from a Neolithic site known as Dadiwan, in China’s western Loess Plateau, excavated first by a Chinese team in the late 70s and early 80s, and in 2006 by a team from the University of California, Davis, and Lanzhou University in China.

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