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Ashley Yeager

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Fish gill fossils gnaw at ideas of jaw evolution

This three-dimensional reconstruction shows the skull of the sharklike Ozarcus mapesae. The braincase appears in light gray, the jaw in red, the gill arches in yellow and the horseshoe-shaped hyoid bone in blue.

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Bony fishes, not modern sharks, may provide a better understanding of the earliest jawed animals and the evolution of the jaw itself.

Fossils of a 325-million-year-old sharklike creature show that the newly named Ozarcus mapesae had a gill structure more similar to bony fishes, such as sunfish, than to modern sharks, rays and other non-bony fishes. Described April 16 in Nature, the bones also appear to counter the idea that modern sharks are living relics of earlier times and suggest that the fish group acquired bone structures and other features that may have evolved with time.

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Quantum Physics

Excitons' motions captured in images

By Ashley Yeager 12:45pm, April 16, 2014
Scientists have observed how quasiparticles called excitons move.
Planetary Science,, Astronomy

Saturn may be getting a new moon

By Ashley Yeager 2:36pm, April 15, 2014
An icy object within Saturn's rings may be a new moon in the making.
Genetics

Modern hunter-gatherers' guts host distinct microbes

By Ashley Yeager 12:27pm, April 15, 2014
A healthy collection of gut bacteria depends on the environment in which people live and their lifestyle, research shows.
Clinical Trials,, Biomedicine,, Health

Hepatitis C treatment appears extremely effective

By Ashley Yeager 12:24pm, April 14, 2014
A mix of four medications has provided the most effective way to date to counter the hepatitis C virus in humans.
Cells,, Genetics

How cells keep from popping

By Ashley Yeager 2:43pm, April 11, 2014
The protein SWELL1 stops cells from swelling so much that they burst, a new study shows.
Earth

Huge space rock rattled Earth 3 billion years ago

By Ashley Yeager 12:28pm, April 10, 2014
An asteroid almost as wide as Rhode Island may have plowed into Earth 3.26 billion years ago, leaving its mark in South Africa’s Barberton greenstone belt.
Microbiology,, Microbes

Amoebas’ munching may cause diarrheal disease

By Ashley Yeager 5:20pm, April 9, 2014
Amoebas biting and swallowing pieces of human cells may be what causes amebic dysentery, a potentially fatal diarrheal disease in the developing world.
Quantum Physics

Small step taken for quantum communication

By Ashley Yeager 1:07pm, April 9, 2014
A single atom can change the state of a photon, which may help build quantum networks.
Technology

Atlantic razor clam inspires robot to dig deeper

By Ashley Yeager 12:07pm, April 9, 2014
A robot digs using the same method as the Atlantic razor clam.
Astronomy

El Gordo galaxy cluster as hefty as 3 million billion suns

By Ashley Yeager 11:52am, April 8, 2014
The galaxy cluster El Gordo, which is Spanish for “the fat one," is roughly 43 percent more massive than earlier estimates.
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