Life Sciences

What is this thing called life? Biologists are life's detectives, discovering how life works and what makes animals, plants and microbes "alive." Organisms don't remain the same forever. Without change, life on Earth would stagnate. Species are in a constant dance with their environment. When an environment changes, the species that live within must change too, evolving to better adapt in order to survive. The end result is the diversity of life we see around us.

Origins of bird species

In a landmark study that researched the origins of bird species, evolutionary biologists have made discoveries about the age of birds, and the genomic relationships among modern birds.

Conserving biodiversity

Funded in part by the National Science Foundation, the Central African Biodiversity Alliance is an international partnership of scientists, students and policy makers working to build a framework to conserve biodiversity in Central Africa. The partnership spans three continents, and includes researchers from the U.S., Cameroon, Gabon, Equatorial Guinea, Germany and the United Kingdom.

Otolith signals

About the size of a diamond and comes from the inner ear of a fish, this tiny construction holds a treasure trove of information--a calcium carbonate microchip made of bone and accessed by a laser. Let's take a look at the science of otoliths.

The anglerfish: The original approach to deep-sea fishing

On November 17, 2014, researchers from the Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute used a used a remotely operated vehicle, a kind of undersea robot, to videotape this rare deep-sea anglerfish in Monterey Canyon, about 580 meters (1,900 feet) below the ocean surface.

How rocks move

Thin sheets of ice push rocks across the desert when conditions are just right

Parasitic plant timelapse

This video shows the relationship between a parasitic plant, dodder, and two host plants, Arabidopsis and tomatoes.

C-DEBI

The mission of C-DEBI is to explore life beneath the seafloor and make transformative discoveries that advance science, benefit society, and inspire people of all ages and origins.

Surprising new role for calcium in sensing pain

Researchers have made a surprising discovery in worms about the role of calcium in pain signaling. They have built a structural model of the molecule that allows calcium ions to pass into a neuron, triggering a signal of pain. These discoveries may help direct new strategies to treat pain in people.