Begging for articles

Can someone send me these two articles?
Craniosynostosis in the Middle Pleistocene human Cranium 14 from the Sima de los Huesos, Atapuerca, Spain
Published online before print March 30, 2009, doi: 10.1073/pnas.0900965106
Evolution, online ahead of print
They can be sent to:

Thank You.
I have them now. Thank You!

Hush-hush Archaeology: An Update

The other day I wrote about a fascinating piece of salvage archaeology. Via Southwest Archaeology today I learned that there is an update/correction to the story:

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Help Stamp Out YouTube In Our LifetIme

Seriously, they suck worse than Disco! They suspended the account of the James Randi Educational Foundation. Life must be tough for YouTube, what with having to exist without a spine and all…
PZ has more on the story.

Chimps, Dogs, Or Ants: Which is a Better Model For Human Sociality

Over at UD Denyse O’Leary is all twitterpated over this news story. The news item concerns a paper accepted for publication in the journal Advances in the Study of Behavior. The paper hasn’t been published yet, so we are dependent on MSNBC for details:

Lead author Jozsef Topal explained to Discovery News “that shared environment has led to the emergence of functionally shared behavioral features in dogs and humans and, in some cases, functionally analogous underlying cognitive skills.”


“In my view, pet dogs can be regarded in many respects as ‘preverbal infants in canine’s clothing,'” he said, adding that many dog-owner relationships mirror human parental bonds with children.
In one of many recent studies conducted by the team, Topal and his colleagues taught both a 16-month-old human child and mature dogs to repeat multiple demonstrated actions on verbal command — “Do it!,” shouted in Hungarian.

The idea that dogs might serve as models of human behavior is not a new idea. Dogs, like humans are highly social animals that evolved from other highly social animals. For example, one line of research looks at the ability of dogs and wolves to perceive and act on cues provided by humans (turns out wolves don’t pay that much attention to cues provided by humans).
Of course, other animal models have been suggested:

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Darwin Quote On Ascidians And A Request For Help

I am currently rereading Darwin’s The Descent of Man: and Selection in Relation to Sex and found an interesting statement.

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2,700 Year Old Cannabis sativa Discovered

An interesting paper in the Journal of Experimental Botany published back in December discusses the discovery of 2,700 Year Old Cannabis sativa. The discovery was made in the Yanghai tombs in China.

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Interesting Evolutionary Research

There are are couple of interesting pieces of research in the news. The first concerns tail shedding in island lizards. PhysOrg has the story:

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Coup In Madagascar Creates Danger for Lemurs

National Geographic has the story:

With Madagascar’s government paralyzed after a recent coup, looters are invading the African island country’s protected wildlife sanctuaries, harvesting trees and threatening critically endangered lemurs and other species, conservationists said this week.
Marojejy National Park in northern Madagascar has been closed to tourism. In other parks, rangers are abandoning their posts, according to reports.

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Stupid Creationist Quote Of The Day

This one comes to us courtesy of Casey Luskin at Evolution News and Views. In a post discussing the NCSE’s views on the supernatural Casey says:

Eugenie Scott better reign in her staff members or the NCSE will not only lose its religion-friendly image–it may land some school districts or state boards of education in court if their advice is followed. [emphasis mine – afarensis]

Because, of course, that has never, ever, happened with people following the advice of the Discovery Institute.
(Hat tip to AtBC)
* Luskin has fixed his spelling error, which is fine with me as that was not the point. His post still contains the hysterically funny “you will get suuuuuueeed if you listen to the NCSE” language.

Pathology of Chimpanzee Skeletons At Kibale

Paleopathology, for all practical purposes, is the study of the diseases and traumas that affect humans in the past. Necessarily, it is restricted to the study of the skeleton which severely limits the scope of what diseases can be studied. Even with that restriction a wide variety of questions can be addressed. We can, for example, ask how the change in lifestyle from hunter-gatherer to agriculturalist impacted human health. Or we can look at disease patterning in a given lifestyle. We can also look at whether disease and trauma differentially affect a given group such as young versus old or male versus female.
Since chimpanzees are our closest living relatives, understanding the diseases and traumas that impact the chimp skeleton might shed some light on human evolution. We can ask, for example, what selective factors impact chimpanzees It goes without saying that it would also be helpful to conservation biologists as well. There is a growing body of literature on the subject.

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