Dyani Lewis

Dyani Lewis

Dyani Lewis is a freelance science journalist based in Melbourne, Australia.

Dyani Lewis is a freelance science journalist based in Melbourne, Australia. Her work has been published in Science, Nature Medicine, ABC Health & Wellbeing, The Conversation, Australasian Science Magazine and elsewhere. She is the science and technology producer and host for Up Close, the University of Melbourne’s audio podcast, and is also a regular co-host on Triple R’s Einstein-a-Go-Go science radio show. Dyani has a PhD in plant genetics and a Masters in Journalism/Professional Writing. She occasionally tweets @dyanilewis.

  • COVID-19: the open data pandemic?

    Scientists are sharing like never before.

    As the world grapples with how to forecast and forestall the impact of COVID-19, researchers have stepped up, produci...

    May 4, 2020
  • Diverse genomes shed new light on our history

    Global gene sequencing effort tells of our evolutionary past.

    Genomic sequencing of nearly 1000 people – from minority communities often overlooked by geneticists – has provided a...

    March 23, 2020
  • Indonesian rocks show ubiquity of ancient art

    Pocket-sized rock art found in cave a first for Southeast Asia.

    Two pocket-sized stone artworks found in an ancient pile of Indonesian cave rubbish have put the out-dated notion tha...

    March 17, 2020
  • Tiny bird-like dinosaur smallest ever found

    Fossil has been trapped in amber since the age of the dinosaurs.

    The discovery of a tiny, toothy-beaked skull of a creature that lived about 99 million years ago has given scientists...

    March 12, 2020
  • Skulls and skills varied in archaic Homo erectus

    Ethiopian finds suggest larger males and technological variety.

    In the harsh desert badlands of the Afar triangle in north-eastern Ethiopia, the earth is slowly giving up its secret...

    March 5, 2020
  • Society structure impacts innovation

    Study finds fewer interactions, not more, fuel cultural evolution.

    Over time, evolution has endowed humans with bigger, better brains, but a study of Agta hunter-gatherers in the Phili...

    March 1, 2020
  • Distant human relative mixed with our cousins

    Who were these superarchaic humans?

    A map of human prehistory is starting to look more like a tangled web than a family tree. First, we heard that our o...

    February 20, 2020
  • West African gene shared with ancient man

    Genome analysis suggests ‘ghost’ hominin interbred.

    Human prehistory is littered with tales of ancient trysts between the ancestors of modern-day people and populations ...

    February 13, 2020
  • Tools reveal travels of the Neanderthals

    Siberian cave yields trove of blades linked to eastern Europe.

    Stone blades found in a Siberian cave once occupied by Neanderthals bear a striking resemblance to tools made by the ...

    January 27, 2020
  • Children’s graves reveal genetic diversity

    Ancient genomes point to unique population of hunter-gatherers.

    Remains from an ancient gravesite in Cameroon have opened a window into the world of the people who lived in western ...

    January 22, 2020
  • Java Man not so old after all

    First human species out of Africa reached Asia later than thought.

    The oldest human remains in Southeast Asia aren’t as old as we thought they were. An Indonesian-Japanese team of s...

    January 9, 2020
  • Java Man’s last stand

    Most recent Homo erectus lived more than 100,000 years ago, research finds.

    By Dyani LewisThe disputed age of the youngest known Homo erectus remains on the Indonesian island of Java has been r...

    December 18, 2019
  • The world’s oldest hunting scene

    Earliest evidence of storytelling pushed back over 20,000 years.

    A prehistoric painting depicting what looks to be a hunting scene pushes back the earliest evidence of human storytel...

    December 11, 2019
  • Did bad luck kill the Neanderthals?

    We need to consider demography, not just external factors: study.

    The last Neanderthals were snuffed out around 40,000 years ago. But what led to their demise – and whether our own an...

    November 27, 2019
  • Ancient enamel sheds light on extinct giant ape

    Now we have some information to go with this face.

    An artistic representation of Gigantopithecus blacki.Ikumi Kayama (Studio Kayama LLC) By Dyani LewisScientists have e...

    November 13, 2019
  • Sacred Egyptian ibises were wild birds

    Ancient DNA study suggests they were captured, not bred.

    By Dyani LewisAn analysis of ancient DNA extracted from the mummified remains of sacred ibises suggests ancient Egypt...

    November 13, 2019
  • Likely human homeland identified

    Genetic analysis pinpoints ancient African wetlands.

    A vast inland oasis in present-day northern Botswana was once home to the founder population of all modern humans, ac...

    October 28, 2019
  • How mammals inherited the Earth

    Scientists map out first million years of life after the dinosaurs

    Sixty-six million years ago, an asteroid roughly the size of Malta slammed into the Yucatán Peninsula in Mexico. The...

    October 24, 2019
  • The afterglow of archaic human pairings

    Archaic traces remain in Melanesian genomes.

    People living on the islands of Melanesia have inherited large slabs of DNA from Neanderthals and Denisovans, accordi...

    October 17, 2019
  • Bunny bone bonanza shows Neanderthal link

    The clues lie in missing paws from an ancient rock shelter.

    A bonanza of bunny bones found in a rock shelter in the south of France provides the first evidence that Neanderthals...

    October 16, 2019
  • Early Cretaceous predator discovered in Thailand

    Siamraptor is the first carcharodontosaur to be found in Southeast Asia. Dyani Lewis reports.

    A reconstruction of the Siamraptor skull.Chokchaloemwong et al., 2019Palaeontologists digging through red sandstone a...

    October 9, 2019
  • There was life, but not as we know it

    Ancient ecosystems where humans evolved were unlike those of today.

    A decent chunk of human evolution took place in ecosystems that bear little resemblance to the ones we know today, ac...

    October 7, 2019
  • What Denisovans looked like

    Scientists paint a picture using genetic data alone.

    Figuring out what our extinct relatives looked like usually requires fossils – preferably as many as you can get your...

    September 19, 2019
  • Genome study reveals South Asia’s prehistory

    Migrations spread farming and languages across Eurasia.

    A massive study of ancient and modern genomes stretching from Europe to Central and South Asia and spanning the last ...

    September 5, 2019
  • Why are fossils more often male?

    Genetic sexing reveals some interesting anomalies.

    When you dig up an ancient bison leg, you’d be forgiven for thinking that the odds of it being a bull versus cow leg ...

    September 2, 2019
  • A long history of changing the planet

    Unique archaeological study takes a new look at land use.

    Long before people started documenting their own existence, their way of life was already taking a toll on the planet...

    August 29, 2019
  • Ape-like face of early human ancestor

    Nearly complete skull from Ethiopia raises questions about our evolution.

    The ape-like face of one of our earliest known ancestors has been revealed for the first time, thanks to the discover...

    August 28, 2019
  • Lifting the lid on primate brains

    Rare find provides important evolutionary clues. Dyani Lewis reports.

    A fossilised primate skull the size of a chicken egg has yielded insights into how primate brains – including our own...

    August 21, 2019
  • Humans pushed cave bears towards extinction

    Numbers were declining before the onset of the ice age. Dyani Lewis reports.

    If it weren’t for humans, things might have turned out differently for the European cave bear. Before their extinctio...

    August 15, 2019
  • European pigs shook off their ancestry

    Modern breeds show virtually no signs of arrival from Near East.

    When ancient Near Eastern farmers migrated westward into Europe about 8500 years ago, they brought their pigs with th...

    August 13, 2019
  • Living the high life in the stone age

    People ventured onto the Ethiopian highlands more than 30,000 years ago. Dyani Lewis reports.

    A rock shelter located in the hostile environment of southern Ethiopia’s Bale Mountains has pushed back high-altitude...

    August 8, 2019
  • A Millennium Falcon from back in the Cambrian

    Half-billion-year-old marine predator found in the famous Burgess Shale. Dyani Lewis reports.

    A prehistoric marine predator that lived half a billion years ago has been named after the Millennium Falcon starship...

    July 31, 2019
  • What makes this dragon fierce

    Komodo’s genome reveals the secrets of a renowned hunter.

    The world’s largest lizard – the Komodo dragon (Varanus komodoensis) – is no lazybones. Adults grow up to three metre...

    July 29, 2019
  • Ancient ancestors cared about their kids

    Mothers breastfed toddlers when food was scarce. Dyani Lewis reports.

    Artist’s impression of Australopithecus africanus. Jose Garcia and Renaud Joannes-BoyauWhen times were tough and food...

    July 15, 2019
  • The peopling of the Americas

    New archaeological and genetic evidence is fleshing out the story.

    Exactly when and how the first people populated the final continental frontiers of North and South America has been a...

    July 12, 2019
  • Ancient DNA sheds light on early cattle

    Genomic analysis reveals a complex history.

    Cows are seemingly simple creatures. Their history is anything but. An analysis of ancient genomes from domestic cat...

    July 11, 2019
  • Europe’s oldest known modern human

    Skull from a Greek cave is at least 210,000 years old.

    Two skulls chiselled from a slab of Greek rock have deepened our understanding of early humans living on the European...

    July 10, 2019
  • A rare dental trait lives on

    Three-rooted molars could have come from Denisovans.

    A rare dental trait that is more common in Asian and Native American populations could have its origins in trysts wit...

    July 8, 2019
  • World could support many more trees, research shows

    Nearly a billion hectares, in fact, which could capture a lot of carbon. Dyani Lewis reports.

    The world has room for nearly a billion hectares of extra trees, new research shows. That would be enough to capture ...

    July 4, 2019
  • Ancient DNA sheds some light on mystery

    How Philistine culture came to the ancient near east.

    Migrants from Southern Europe were the likely source of distinctive architecture and pottery associated with the anci...

    July 3, 2019
  • Some prehistoric crocs were vegetarians

    The shape of their teeth tells a complex story. Dyani Lewis reports.

    Today’s crocodiles have some of the most gruesome table manners: drowning and then swallowing their prey whole or lea...

    June 28, 2019
  • Early humans may have shared Europe with a giant bird

    Fossilised remains suggest it was 10 times heavier than an emu. Dyani Lewis reports.

    A massive thigh bone found in a Crimean cave belongs to an extinct flightless bird more than 10 times the weight of a...

    June 27, 2019
  • Neanderthal groups more closely related

    Ancient DNA analysis offers clues to prehistoric movements.

    DNA coaxed from 120,000-year-old Neanderthal fossils suggests that early Neanderthals from Western Europe and later N...

    June 26, 2019
  • Monkey tool design changed over millennia

    Researchers find first evidence of gradual changes in the design of stone tools used by capuchins...

    The satellites humans fling into space and the massive accelerators that smash together subatomic particles are a far...

    June 24, 2019
  • Ediacaran organisms grouped together to access food

    Half a billion years ago, early complex life didn’t rely on luck to get a feed. Dyani Lewis reports.

    An artist's impression of the Ediacaran organisms in situ.Dave MazierskiA lifeform that lived half a billion years ag...

    June 19, 2019
  • Gender inequality arose 8000 years ago

    Neolithic graves in Spain reveal increasing male dominance.

    At a time when human societies were abandoning their wanderlust in favour of agricultural settlements, the first inkl...

    June 19, 2019
  • For those about to rock

    The earliest Homo tools ever found.

    Humans are expert tool-makers, and as far back as 2.6 million years ago our stone age relatives were getting there to...

    June 3, 2019
  • Jawbone puts Denisovans on the Tibetan Plateau at least 160,000 years ago

    Fossil find suggests the mysterious hominins colonise high altitudes way before modern humans. Dy...

    The Denisovan jawbone, with what appears to be the defining trait of absent wisdom teeth.Jean-Jacques Hublin, MPI-EVA...

    May 1, 2019
  • Denisovan DNA found in human genomes

    The archaic hominins weren’t homogenous, and archaic humans weren’t shy.

    Scientists sifting through the genomes of people scattered across the islands of south-east Asia have found echoes of...

    April 11, 2019
  • New fossil human relative found

    Homo luzonensis lived more than 50,000 years ago.

    A handful of teeth and limestone-encrusted hand, foot and leg bones dug out of a cave in the Philippines have been gi...

    April 10, 2019
  • Two millennia pile-on at burial mound

    Ancient grave site found in kindergarten.

    A prehistoric burial mound in southwest France was used and re-used by locals for more than two millennia, according ...

    April 7, 2019
  • Why Neanderthals turned to cannibalism

    Butchered corpses coincide with rapid climate change.

    A rapid period of warming more than 120,000 years ago drove Neanderthals in the south of France to eat six of their o...

    March 28, 2019
  • Claim that Australia was settled 60,000 years earlier than thought disputed

    Evidence unearthed suggests humans were present 120,000 years ago, but not everyone is convinced....

    Opinions among archaeologists are divided over an 11-year investigation of an Australian site containing what could b...

    March 24, 2019
  • Chinese fossil site rivals Burgess Shale

    Some 30,000 soft-bodied fossils more than 500 million years old have so far been excavated. Dyani...

    A snapshot of life on a muddy sea bed 518 million years ago has been revealed at what is being described as a “stunni...

    March 21, 2019
  • Humans have an inbuilt compass

    Can people sense the magnetic pull of the poles?

    The Earth’s magnetic field is faint, yet creatures from birds and bees to lobsters and bacteria have been shown to de...

    March 18, 2019
  • A year in the life of a giant sloth

    A fossillised tooth reveals the secrets of a single animal.

    A massive fossilised tooth from central America has opened a window into life for a giant ground sloth that lived 27,...

    February 27, 2019
  • Ape-like or human? Disagreement erupts over Neanderthal posture

    Recent studies are attempts to render Neanderthals 'less human', researchers say. Dyani Lewis rep...

    The image of Neanderthals as hunched ape-men was dispelled decades ago, but some scientists fear recent research migh...

    February 25, 2019
  • Ancient humans, fearless squirrel hunters

    Sophisticated tools and technologies helped Homo sapiens survive in challenging rainforests. Dyan...

    Ancient humans hunted and killed fleet-footed tree-dwelling mammals – including monkeys and giant squirrels – far ear...

    February 19, 2019
  • Are these Denisovan teeth? We may never know

    Analysis of fossil teeth reveals that the children of mysterious prehistoric human relatives grew...

    Bone by bone, tooth by tooth, the ancient remains of prehistoric human relatives from northern China are giving up th...

    January 16, 2019
  • A tale of two turtles

    A mystery virus has devastated snapping turtles.

    It was a warm February evening in 2015 and Sydney’s Taronga Zoo had emptied of visitors for the day. But behind close...

    January 13, 2019
  • Neanderthal genes influence head shape

    The effects of long-distant interspecies breeding finds expression in modern skulls.

    Researchers have gleaned insights into what makes human brains bulbous from our closest evolutionary relative – the N...

    December 13, 2018
  • Revealed at last: Australia’s fearsome marsupial lion

    Thylacoleo carnifex had a huge jaw, sharp teeth, retractable claws – and feet like a possum. Dyan...

    New fossil finds have enabled the first reconstruction of a complete skeleton of the extinct ‘marsupial lion’, Thylac...

    December 12, 2018
  • Humans and Neanderthals were frequent lovers

    Neanderthal DNA wasn’t the result of a single encounter.

    Once upon a time, prehistoric humans and our ancient Neanderthal cousins met and procreated. Except, that ‘once upon ...

    November 26, 2018
  • Ancient African extinctions: humans off the hook

    Research finds climate, not hominin activity, knocked out the big mammals. Dyani Lewis reports.

    A long-held view that many of Africa’s large-bodied mammals – including relatives of today’s elephants, hippos and gi...

    November 25, 2018
  • Neanderthal head injury less common than thought

    Concussion as common in early modern humans as evolutionary cousins.

    A fossil record littered with broken bones and fractured skulls has given Neanderthals a reputation for having led li...

    November 14, 2018
  • Dead monkeys do tell tales

    DNA analysis sheds light on ancient primate island-hopping.

    A study, published in the journal Proceedings of the National Academies of Sciences reveals that the species Xenothri...

    November 13, 2018
  • Surprise find: Neanderthals show evidence of lead contamination

    Analysis of teeth provides unique insight into life 250,000 years ago. Dyani Lewis reports.

    In the northern spring, 250,000 years ago, a Neanderthal baby was born in the southeast of modern-day France. At nine...

    October 31, 2018
  • Out-of-Africa wasn’t much of a tough gig, findings suggest

    Early human migration into the Arabian Peninsula wasn’t a difficult transition so much as range e...

    Stone tools and animal fossils from Saudi Arabia place early humans on the Arabian Peninsula over 300,000 years ago, ...

    October 29, 2018
  • Madagascar: claims for early settlement debunked

    There is no evidence that humans co-existed with megafauna, new bone study finds. Dyani Lewis rep...

    Recent splashy headlines claiming that humans arrived on the Indian Ocean island of Madagascar as early as 10,000 yea...

    October 10, 2018
  • Making do, at a pinch: Neanderthal used precision grips, not power

    Analysis of Neanderthal hands revealed they used them for delicate and precise purposes, not powe...

    Analysis of Neanderthal hands revealed they used them for delicate and precise purposes, not power gripping.Karakosti...

    September 26, 2018
  • Claim for early humans in Madagascar disputed

    Bird bones suggest humans reached island earlier than thought.

    The butchered remains of extinct elephant birds could push back the date of human habitation of Madagascar by 6000 ye...

    September 12, 2018
  • MDMA research meets Australian antipathy

    Caution in Australia’s medical community is slowing the progress of psychedelic medical trials. D...

    In Australia attempts to establish a trial of MDMA have proven difficult. Sandy McFarlane, a PTSD researcher at the U...

    April 25, 2018
  • Ketamine cure ‘unlike any other treatment’

    Evidence that it may be effective treatment for depression.

    Unlike LSD or MDMA, the hallucinogen ketamine – aka the party drug Special K – is already a recognised pharmaceutical...

    April 25, 2018
  • Six of nature’s weirdest sex lives

    Some animals have evolved impressive adaptations.

    Going the distance: the barnacle (Balanus nubilus and others) It’s not the size that matters, they say, but it is har...

    February 4, 2018
  • Oxytocin linked to water intake

    The “hug hormone” likely tells the body when it’s had enough to drink. Dyani Lewis reports.

    Circuits in the brain finely tune the amount of water you consume to maintain the delicate balance of water and salts...

    November 13, 2017
  • Neanderthal extinction a fizzle, not a bloodbath

    The end of the Neanderthals does not need human advantage to explain it, just sheer numbers. Dyan...

    The triumph of modern humans over our now-extinct Palaeolithic cousins is often viewed as a classic tale of survival ...

    November 1, 2017
  • Brain’s autopilot is daydream believer

    The part of the brain active when we’re doing nothing turns out to be critical for lots of import...

    Pull on your pants, button your shirt, tie your shoelaces. Unless you’re a toddler, you can probably do these things ...

    October 25, 2017
  • Schizophrenia, cholesterol, eating disorders and a nice tan – our Neanderthal legacy

    Two new studies add breadth and depth to our understanding of the contribution of Neanderthal DNA...

    The genetic legacy of the Neanderthals lives on in modern humans.Tom McHugh / Getty The hallmarks of an ancient try...

    October 5, 2017
  • Kidney disease linked to air pollution

    Even low levels of particulate matter correlate with kidney damage, writes Dyani Lewis.

    Next time you go for a jog with traffic roaring past, spare a thought for your kidneys. A US-based study has found th...

    September 21, 2017
  • A cure for peanut allergy?

    A small study has sent peanut allergy into remission for years after treatment, but it’s not a cu...

    Peanut butter sandwiches at childcare are a thing of the past thanks to an alarming surge in peanut allergies over re...

    September 3, 2017
  • Plant molecules stop worker bees from ascending throne

    Gene-regulating microRNA from plants may help to determine whether a female bee ends up as a quee...

    A bee who has just finished making some bee bread, which contains plant microRNA that will affect the development of ...

    September 1, 2017
  • A body-wide map of gene switches active in different cells

    The atlas of micro-RNAs will help researchers understand how different cell types develop. Dyani ...

    A microRNA molecule. Molekuul / Getty Every cell in the body operates off the same genetic instruction manual – our ...

    August 21, 2017
  • Adult brain’s fear centre can grow new cells

    The discovery of neurogenesis in the amygdala could lead to treatments for anxiety and post-traum...

    A new cradle of brain cell formation has been discovered in the adult amygdala, a region that gives memories their em...

    August 15, 2017
  • The next generation of weapons against antibiotic-resistant superbugs

    For the past 70 years, antibiotics have given us the upper hand against microbial invaders. Now t...

    At his North Adelaide practice, Peter-John Wormald has the unenviable job of unblocking the noses of people with chro...

    June 29, 2017
  • Free software tool aids doctors diagnosing rare genetic disorders

    A tool that sorts the wheat from the chaff in genetic variation could bring relief to patients lo...

    A new online tool offers GPs help in diagnosing genetic illness.Heath Korvola / gettyEveryone is born with a few hund...

    June 8, 2017
  • A deep dive into the genomes of penicillin fungi reveals a trove of potential drugs

    The fungi that gave us penicillin may yet provide hundreds more medical miracles.

    Penicillium chrysogenum fungus culture in a Petri dish.Geoff Tompkinson/Getty ImagesA treasure trove of medicinal com...

    April 3, 2017
  • Fruit, not friends, the key to ape intelligence

    Complex social structures have been assumed to drive the evolution of intelligence. It turns out ...

    Diet is a key driver of primate intelligence, research suggests.Heinrich van der Berg/Getty ImagesWhy do humans and o...

    March 27, 2017
  • Gender-bending virus grants insect-killing wasps longer life

    A newly discovered virus makes a wasp live longer – which is more than the wasp does for caterpil...

    Many species of parasitoid wasps form symbiotic relationships with viruses.Wikimedia CommonsA newly discovered virus ...

    March 9, 2017
  • Rain Man gene identified

    One of the mysteries behind a neurological disorder made famous by Dustin Hoffman has been solved...

    For people with agenesis of the corpus callous, the brain lacks the fibres that connect the left and right hemisphere...

    February 28, 2017
  • Neanderthals’ DNA makes its presence felt

    A gene’s ancestry changes the way it is regulated, affecting appearance and health. Dyani Lewis r...

    An artist's impression of how Neanderthals and modern humans may have interacted.KENNIS AND KENNIS/MSF/Getty ImagesSn...

    February 23, 2017
  • Cocaine-addicted brains stockpile iron

    The finding could lead to much needed treatments to help addicts kick the habit, reports Dyani Le...

    barisonal/getty imagesCocaine addiction leads to a build-up of the dietary micronutrient iron in the brain, according...

    February 22, 2017
  • Four new frog species found in India

    The newly discovered Indian amphibians are small enough to fit on your thumbnail. Dyani Lewis rep...

    Four species of diminutive amphibians, described in PeerJ have been discovered in the Western Ghats mountain range in...

    February 22, 2017
  • Extreme fire weather forecast for Australia and the Mediterranean

    Satellites are helping ecologists better identify the causes of extreme wildfire events, reports ...

    Australia must already cope with devastating bushfires. Climate modelling shows more fire-conducive weather is on the...

    February 6, 2017
  • How acid warps your thoughts and feelings

    The potent hallucinogen grabs hold of serotonin receptors in the brain.

    It's been eight decades since Swiss chemist Albert Hofmann first cooked up the psychedelic drug lysergic acid diethyl...

    January 26, 2017
  • Killer whale menopause evolved from mother-daughter conflict

    A female tug-of-war and grandmother benefits led to the evolution of the rare reproductive strate...

    Mother-daughter conflict drives orca menopause, new research shows.Emma FosterMenopause is an evolutionary anomaly. O...

    January 12, 2017
  • Better feed converts cattle into cash cows

    Better cattle feed is a win-win for farmers and the environment. Dyani Lewis explores.

    Fran Cowley, looking for a ‘win-win’ with cow nutrition.University of New EnglandWhat do cows eat? If you’re about to...

    September 25, 2016
  • Bugs as drugs – medicine’s next frontier

    Prebiotics, probiotics and poo transplants are designed to beef up or top up our microbial commun...

    Lactobacillus is a common addition to probiotic concoctions. But they're just one genus of multitudes being examined ...

    September 8, 2016
  • Mood, mind and memory: can gut bacteria meddle with the brain?

    We may think our grey matter is isolated from the effects of germs living inside our intestines. ...

    Links between the microbiota and psychological disorders such as depression and anxiety have, for the most part, only...

    September 7, 2016
  • Microbe tenants help – and hinder – your immune system

    A gut microbiota imbalance can give rise to autoimmune diseases, allergies and perhaps even cance...

    Have a propensity for hayfever? The bugs in your gut might have something to do with that.Colin Hawkins / Getty Image...

    September 7, 2016
  • How bugs in your gut can make you fat (or thin)

    Tinkering with gut microbes causes more than a tummy ache. They can wring more calories from food...

    While there's no doubt calorific intake does affect weight gain or loss, we shouldn't underestimate the power of our ...

    September 5, 2016
  • Tails gave early land animals a leg up

    Scientists have used mudskippers and a robot to model how early tetrapods might have moved from t...

    Ichthyostega amphibians on marshy shore. Their tails may have played a crucial role in helping them move across land....

    July 7, 2016
  • Is brain training a sham?

    Can brain training make you smarter? It’s a tantalising idea, but such claims are on increasingly...

    A group of people do brain exercises in their old people's home in Germany. But there are doubts that training can ye...

    June 21, 2016
  • Is immunotherapy a cancer game changer?

    At last: the immune system is being recruited in the war against cancer. Dyani Lewis investigates.

    Ron Walker has never been one to shy from a challenge. But at 72, the former lord mayor of Melbourne was thrown a cur...

    June 12, 2016
  • Jawbone and teeth reveal hobbit’s 700,000-year-old ancestors

    The tiny species of early human from Indonesia's Flores Island is older than we thought. Dyani Le...

    A sculpted model of Homo Floresiensis at the Smithsonian Museum of Natural History.Bill O'Leary/The Washington Post v...

    June 8, 2016
  • Antibiotics may play havoc with your memory

    A new study adds to the list of surprising effects of changing the gut ecosytem. Dyani Lewis repo...

    Gut microbes appear to have an unexpected influence over our behaviour. But just how they communicate with the brain ...

    May 20, 2016
  • Shark snouts contain conductive jelly

    The ocean's apex predator can sense weak electrical fields generated as fish muscles contract. A ...

    The pores on the snout of this lemon shark lead to electric field-sensing organs called ampullae of Lorenzini. The je...

    May 16, 2016
  • Zika virus causes birth defects in mice

    Three new studies show the virus' devastating effects on developing foetuses. Dyani Lewis reports.

    Zika virus, marked with red, infects a mouse placenta. The nuclei of the placental cells are marked blue.Bin CaoUnamb...

    May 11, 2016
  • Chubby waistline? Blame your big brain

    Humans expend more energy than other apes. That means trade-offs in a range of areas. Dyani Lewis...

    Chimpanzees are the leanest of the apes with body fat of around 10% compared with more than 40% in some humans. – Pie...

    May 4, 2016
  • Do plants form memories with shape-shifting proteins?

    A protein that nudges plants into flowering could be a prion. Dyani Lewis reports.

    Thanks for the memories ... a protein in a plant that reminds it when to bloom may be a prion. – Wikimedia Commons ...

    April 26, 2016
  • Poo transplants to treat range of diseases

    Other people’s faeces is something we instinctively avoid, but the emerging science of the human ...

    We face some pretty grim treatment options for the sake of our health. We swallow foul-tasting pills, vaccinate ourse...

    May 1, 2012

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