We’re watching a ‘horror story’ in which the casualty is Earth’s wilderness

Only 23% of the world can now be considered wilderness.

Why do people self-harm? New study offers surprising answers

Definitely an unexpected finding.

One broken gene made us very good runners

A genetic fluke two to three million years ago turned humans into the best endurance runners around.

The UK’s HPV-vaccine effort paid off: infections are down 86%

Good news from the UK!

There are huge differences in how animals see the world — we’re among the crisp-eyed

Enjoy the world in HD.

Three confirmed, six suspected deaths from emerging Nipah virus in India

The WHO has previously placed this virus on its watchlist of pathogens with high “epidemic potential” and no known treatment.

Human-like walking evolved before the genus Homo, more than 3.6 million years ago

Well if it sounds like a human and walks like a human…

We can’t grow new neurons in adulthood after all, new study says

Neurogenesis fully stops after the age of thirteen, researchers suggest.

Man-made: we’ve domesticated our own species

Does this make us pets?

Humans got a brain upgrade less than 200,000 years ago, and it made us what we are today

The brain changes and the skull follows.

Oldest human fossil outside Africa suggests our species left the continent 100,000 years earlier than thought

A 200,000-year-old human jawbone found in a cave in Israel is rewriting history.

Humans got taller, then bulkier in ‘bursts’ during our evolution

Growing strong!

Experimental male birth control seems to work, but the side effects are pretty nasty

The shots were 97% effective but were not very pleasant to handle.

Study wants to track EVERYTHING 10,000 New Yorkers do over 20 years, to unravel the mysteries of the human condition

It’s very creepy, but might be a game changer in science.

‘Pristine’ landscapes haven’t existed for thousands of years, says new study

If you want to escape civilisation and head into the unaltered wilderness you may be in for a shock: it doesn’t exist.

Humans are the world’s super predator – by far

Though humans might not be as fierce as a lion or white shark, we’re definitely the greatest predatory species in the world, ever. The extent of humanity’s super-predation was assessed by a team at University of Victoria in British Columbia which compared our hunting abilities to those of both land and marine predators in all the oceans and continents, besides Antarctica. The findings reveal humans lack any real competition preying on adults of other species at rates up to 14 times higher than other predators, especially marine ones.

Why in the world do we have chins? Maybe, because we evolved from being just brutes

Ever wondered what chins are good for? Upon a quick reflection, you might think it actually has some practical value, supporting your jaw against the massive chewing forces. But that’s nonsense. It doesn’t do any of that, as a recent research concludes. In fact, the chin – the last facial feature to stop growing – actually makes the jaw less resistant to the bending stress of chewing as we age. Though still a mystery, scientists believe the chin is actually a side effect of the rest of the face having become smaller. Much smaller than that of early ancestors or cousin Neanderthals, at least.

Neanderthals and humans interbred in the Middle East over 50,000 years ago

An ancient skull found in Israel indicates that early Homo sapiens likely interbred with Neanderthals 50,000 years ago. The female skull is the first skeletal evidence to support the idea that Neandertals and moderns mated. The finding is published in the journal Nature. The Neanderthals (Homo neanderthalensis) are closely related to modern humans, differing in DNA by only 0.12%. Genetic evidence published in 2014 suggests

The cost of culture and learning is disease, but it’s been worth it

Transferring knowledge from one individual to the other forms the basis of all human cultures, whether we’re talking about learning how to chop wood, how the Earth actually revolves in a counter-intuitive manner around the sun and no the other way around, or how the Earth is a planet in the first place and everything it entails. Each human consciousness

When interacting with other people, we first notice race and gender

What’s the first thing you notice when you first look at a person? Is it the shoes? The eyes? The nose? The mouth? There’s one thing to consciously notice and another to passively acquire data, something the brain constantly does. Harvard researchers have found that the first things the brain recognizes when interacting with other people is race and gender.