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October 3 2014

Evolution Is Not Random (At Least, Not Totally)


Evolution is often said to be "blind," because there's no outside force guiding natural selection. But changes in genetic material that occur at the molecular level are not entirely random, a new study suggests. These mutations are guided by both the physical properties of the genetic code and the need to preserve the critical function of proteins, the researchers said.

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October 3 2014

Did Cancer Evolve to Protect Us?


Could cancer be our cells’ way of running in “safe mode,” like a damaged computer operating system trying to preserve itself, when faced with an external threat? That’s the conclusion reached by cosmologist Paul Davies at Arizona State University in Tempe (A.S.U.) and his colleagues, who have devised a controversial new theory for cancer’s origins, based on its evolutionary roots. If correct, their model suggests that a number of alternative therapies, including treatment with oxygen and infection with viral or bacterial agents, could be particularly effective.

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October 3 2014

HIV pandemic originated in Kinshasa in the 1920s, say scientists


A “perfect storm” of urban change that began in 1920s Kinshasa led to the catastrophic spread of HIV across Africa and into the wider world, according to scientists who used genetic sequencing and historical records to trace the origins of the pandemic.

Though the virus probably crossed from chimpanzees to humans in southern Cameroon years earlier, HIV remained a regional infection until it entered the capital of what is now the Democratic Republic of the Congo.

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October 3 2014

Archaeologists In Turkey Say They've Discovered Dracula's Dungeon


Dracula might be a fictional character, but archaeologists believe they've found the haunts of Vlad the Impaler--the real-life figure who inspired Bram Stoker's vampire tale.

The researchers said this week they had uncovered a secret tunnel and two dungeons in Tokat Castle in northern Turkey, where Vlad the Impaler is believed to have been imprisoned in the mid-1400s.

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October 3 2014

Roman City Uncovered in Egypt?


In the latest exciting archaeological find in Egypt, the remains of a city, which is widely suspected to be from the Roman era, has been uncovered under a layer of silt in the Nile.

The Romans had a long history of stretching their empire far beyond their own borders. The Romans also had a particular inclination towards Egypt's mystical origins. Those two facts coupled together have left us with a rich plethora of Roman-era artifacts here in Egypt, and the latest exciting find is a city dating back to this era.

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October 3 2014

The first South Americans: Extreme living


From the mouth of a cave high in the Andes, Kurt Rademaker surveys the plateau below. At an altitude of 4,500 metres, there are no trees in sight, just beige soil dotted with tufts of dry grass, green cushion plants and a few clusters of vicuñas and other camel relatives grazing near a stream.

The landscape looks bleak, but Rademaker views it through the eyes of the people who built a fire in the rock shelter, named Cuncaicha, about 12,400 years ago. These hunter-gatherers were some of the earliest known residents of South America and they chose to live at this extreme altitude — higher than any Ice Age encampment found thus far in the New World.

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October 2 2014

Stop Press - Latest News From The Excavations At Gunung Padang


Stop Press - Latest News From The Excavations At Gunung Padang, The Mysterious Ancient Pyramid In Indonesia That Is Rewriting History
By Graham Hancock.

The archaeological establishment is scrambling to find some reason to reject and pour scorn on the extraordinary consequences of the excavations now taking place at Gunung Padang in Indonesia.

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October 2 2014

The U.S. Is Saving Nukes So It Can Blow Up Asteroids


That’s right, the U.S. isn’t dismantling its old nuclear weapons, because we might need them to destroy an asteroid hurtling toward earth. To clarify some of the bureaucratic language above, NNSA is the “National Nuclear Security Administration”; CSAs are “canned subassemblies” that contain highly enriched uranium for use in nuclear weapons. And senior-level government evaluation means that somewhere in government, there is contingency planning going on around what to do in the event of an asteroid heading toward earth.

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October 2 2014

UFO Appears Above Hong Kong Pro-Democracy Protesters


Ongoing pro-democracy protests in Hong Kong have drawn tens of thousands of citizens, taking to the streets, demonstrating their opposition to news that China will choose the candidates for the upcoming 2017 election.

During one of those protests, the crowd got a little something extra as a brightly lit object appeared in the sky above the throng, moving slowly at first and then, as the BBC caught it on camera, the UFO suddenly shot up in the air out of sight.

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October 2 2014

How do you get from dinosaur arms to bird wings? It's all in the wrist


Has a team of Chilean scientists finally put an end to the decades-long debate over how birds evolved from dinosaurs? Well, not entirely. But they have clarified some critical details about one small but significant part: the wrist.

Led by University of Chile biologist Alexander Vargas, the team sought to understand how the wrist evolved from a rigid fixture in dinosaurs to the hyperflexible structure found in the wings their only known living descendants.

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October 2 2014

Ghosts of mother's sexual past show up in fly offspring, study shows


What if that sexual partner you'd rather forget remained forever a part of your life?

Sydney scientists have shown for the first time that offspring can resemble their mother's previous sexual partner – in flies, at least.


Related: Previous Sex Partners' Semen Can Influence Fly Offspring

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October 2 2014

UV light removes 80% of allergens from peanuts


Scientists are using pulsed light to remove allergens from peanuts in the hope that most people will be able to eat them safely.

If allergens can be cut from 150 milligrams of protein per peanut to below 1.5 milligrams, 95 percent of people with peanut allergies would be safe, researchers say.

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October 2 2014

Yes, Some Rainbows Only Have One Color


Not all rainbows are as colorful as their reputation suggests. There are some spectacular monochrome rainbows, when the conditions are right. The cooler shades drop out of the rainbow, leaving bands of yellow, orange, and red. Sometimes the rainbow narrows down to a bright red streak of light.

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October 2 2014

Tibetan plateau gets wired up for monsoon prediction


The gigantic, remote Tibetan plateau is being flooded with sensors in an unprecedented attempt to understand its influence on climate — especially the Asian monsoons, which caused deadly flooding in India and Pakistan in September. The US$49-million Chinese effort could help to predict extreme weather — both in Asia and as far afield as North America — and give scientists a steer on how climate change affects these events.

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October 2 2014

Woodstock New York’s Main Streets Act as a Giant Cosmic Calendar and Compass


It’s not hard to speculate; long before modern roads crisscrossed our landscape, before carriage roads, wagon roads and railroads existed, when nothing but a network of foot paths connected important places, some of these paths may have held a very particular importance themselves. Many were probably used by ancient populations as transportation routes and corridors from village to village, connecting important renewable resources or from waterway to waterway, acting as portages for light craft. Others may have been used for more ceremonial purposes and aligned with celestial events such as equinox and solstice sunrises and sunsets. Could some of these original pathways still exist and be discernable today? Well, the answer is yes.


See also: Happy Autumnal Equinox! by Walter Cruttenden for GrahamHancock.com

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October 2 2014

'Strikingly Geometric' Shapes Hidden on Moon's Surface


A massive feature on the moon formed due to lunar rifts, in a surprise revision to earlier theories, research shows. Previously, scientists thought the moon's Ocean of Storms was a round crater left after a giant impact, but now researchers have found it is underlain by a giant rectangle created by cooling lunar lava as the moon formed.


Related: Solving the mystery of the 'man in the moon': Volcanic plume, not an asteroid, likely created the moon's largest basin

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October 2 2014

Huge Cloud on Saturn's Moon Titan Is Made of Toxic Cyanide


A giant cloud that covers the south pole of Titan, Saturn's largest moon, has a surprisingly poisonous nature: It's made of cyanide. The giant cloud, first spotted by NASA's Cassini spacecraft in 2012, is the size of Egypt and covers Titan's south pole.

The discovery suggests that the air above Titan's poles can get much cooler than previously thought, scientists said.

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