Top Science Stories This Week

Posted: Apr 23 2016, 3:04pm CDT | by , Updated: Apr 23 2016, 3:09pm CDT, in News | Latest Science News


Top Science Stories this Week
The Bubble Nebula NGC 7635 Credit: NASA, ESA, Hubble Heritage Team

Dinosaurs were already Dying out before Mass Extinction  

The extinction of dinosaur has been a hotly debated topic for years. A new research suggests that many species of dinosaurs were already dying out before the asteroid hit the Earth about 65.5 million years ago.

Previously, researchers thought that dinosaurs were flourishing right up until the massive meteorite impact. But when researchers looked at the extensive information about their fossil record, they found that many species of dinosaurs were already on the brink of extinction and it was not solely the meteorite impact that wiped out dinosaurs from the surface of the Earth.

Human Limbs may have Evolved from Shark Gills

Human limbs may have originated from shark gills. A new research backs up the 138 year old theory which has been once discredited due to the lack of evidence.

Using latest genetic techniques on the embryos of the little skate – a cartilaginous fish – researchers have found the genetic mechanism used in the development of its gill arches and those in human limbs are strikingly similar. 

The gene named ‘Sonic hedgehog plays a critical role in limb development and the finding provides a greater understanding of the origin of the jawed vertebrates – a group of animals in which humans are also included.

Fossil Remains of First North American Monkey Points to a Monumental Migration 21 Million Years Ago

Researchers have recently discovered the monkey fossil teeth in the Panama Canal Basin. The fossil remains date back to 21 million years and belonged to a previously unknown species Panamacebus transitus. 

Research indicates that the newfound monkey fossil is the earliest evidence of primate’s existence in North America and also challenges the preexisting theory about monkeys’ arrival in the region. 

The previous theory suggests that monkey first ventured from South America to North America no earlier than 4 million years ago after two continents merged. But latest research reveals that epic migration took place far earlier than originally thought and primates crossed at least 100 miles of open ocean 21 million years ago before the two continents joined together. 

Hubble Space Telescope Captures Massive Bubble Nebula on 26th Birthday  

Twenty six years ago, Hubble Space Telescope was sent to the outer space, where it has been capturing stunning images ever since. To celebrate this year’s anniversary, Hubble team has released the spectacular picture of Bubble Nebula located 8000 light years away from the Earth in the constellation Cassiopeia. The object is a giant cloud of gas and dust which is illuminated by the brightness of the star inside it.

New Coral Reef System Discovered at the Mouth of Amazon River

Researchers have discovered an extensive coral reef system near the mouth of Amazon River. The system stretches 3,700 square miles from the edge of South American continental shelf to Brazil Maranhao state and is located inside Amazon’s plume where the river empties into the ocean. 

The mouth of Amazon is thick and muddy and researchers are perplexed over how such an vibrant and complicated coral reef system has been able to grow and survive in less-than ideal conditions.

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Hira Bashir covers daily affairs around the world.




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