Bones

  • Science
    ​Ah, eggshells … they could already find use in eco-friendly rubber, carbon capture, ceramics, biodegradable packaging, and energy storage. Now, new research shows that the ubiquitous form of food waste may also be utilized to grow bone for use in transplants.
  • Science
    Generally speaking, the animals alive today are mere shadows of their former selves, and birds were no exception. In a Crimean cave, palaeontologists have uncovered the bones of some of the most gigantic birds to have ever walked the Earth, that would have lived alongside early European humans.
  • ​When someone is missing facial bone due to injury or illness, the current treatment involves transplanting a piece of bone extracted from the leg, leaving a deficit there. Now, however, scientists have succeeded in growing extra bone within sheep's bodies, that's preformed to the shape required.
  • Science
    Imprints of ancient bones or footprints are often found in rock, but that’s not the only way they form – in much rarer cases they can also be encased in opal. Now palaeontologists in Australia have uncovered the most complete “opalized” dinosaur, which also happens to be a new species.
  • It’s not known exactly when humans and Neanderthals split off from their last common ancestor, but the estimated window is very wide, between 300,000 and 800,000 years ago. Now a new study has found evidence that this split took place towards the earlier end of that range, or even longer ago still.
  • Science
    A new species of human has been discovered in a cave in the Philippines. Named Homo luzonensis after the island of Luzon where it was found, the hominin appears to have lived over 50,000 years ago, painting a more complete picture of human evolution.
  • ​For some time now, we've been hearing about implantable scaffolding-like material that helps heal injuries to bones. Scientists have now developed a new type of that material, aimed specifically at difficult-to-treat osteochondral injuries.
  • ​Resulting from bone-breaks, deep puncture wounds, severe tooth decay or other causes, osteomyelitis is a bone infection that in serious cases may lead to amputations or even death. It's also notoriously difficult to treat, although a newly-developed implant could help change that.
  • Science
    While dinosaurs were the biggest land animals ever, mammals were mostly rat-sized critters running around underfoot. But now palaeontologists have described a mammal ancestor from the Triassic Period that grew to the size of an elephant, giving those early dinosaurs a run for their money.
  • Science
    To us vampires are the stuff of movies, but for many ancient cultures the undead were seen as a very real threat. Now archaeologists excavating a children’s cemetery in Italy have uncovered the skeleton of a child with a large stone jammed into its mouth, to prevent the body returning from the dead.
  • Science
    A team of scientists from Michigan State University claims to have built a computer algorithm that can analyze a person's complete genome and accurately predict how tall they are with only around a one-inch (2.5-cm) margin of error.
  • Science
    Early hominins were known to have cross-bred when they crossed paths, and now the most direct evidence of those meetings has been found. By sequencing the genome of a hominin bone from a Siberian cave, anthropologists have discovered the direct descendant of a Neanderthal and a Denisovan.