Geologists assume when they find molecules called sterols in soils or rocks they indicate the presence of plants, animals or fungi in ancient environments. But discovering how some bacteria also produce and modify sterols could change those interpretations.
Fossil study finds early human activity — not climate shifts — led to the decline of large animals before the first human migrations out of Africa. The findings add to concerns about continued biodiversity loss.
Super salty water beneath ice may be analogue for habitat for life on other planets
Examining body sizes of ancient and modern aquatic mammals and their terrestrial counterparts reveals that life in water restricts mammals to a narrow range of body sizes – big enough to stay warm, but not so big they can’t find enough food.
Extinct lake landforms provide clues of climate change over millions of years and inform our understanding of rainfall patterns and water management in the arid American West.
Undergraduates study links between human and natural systems in a program that puts them up close with corals. Stanford Earth professor Rob Dunbar is a lead instructor.
Now buzzing and whizzing around every continent, insects were mysteriously scarce in the fossil record until 325 million years ago – when they first took flight and, according to a new study, evolutionarily took off.
Mysterious patches on the planet’s core that dampen seismic waves could be the result of ancient seawater chemically reacting with iron under extreme conditions.
Research with SLAC’s X-ray laser simulates what happens when a meteor hits Earth’s crust. The results suggest that scientists studying impact sites have been overestimating the sizes of the meteors that made them.
With abundant data on plants, large animals and their activity, and carbon soil levels in the Amazon, Stanford research suggests that large animal diversity influences carbon stocks and contributes to climate change mitigation.
Stanford researchers are exploring how corals that re-colonized Bikini Atoll after nuclear bomb tests 70 years ago have adapted to persistent radiation. Their work is featured in a PBS series.
A new analysis by Stanford researchers reveals that the ideal temperature for the spread of mosquito-born diseases like dengue, chikungunya and Zika is 29 degrees C. This finding helps predict disease outbreaks in a warming world.
A new study reveals that organic matter whose breakdown would yield only minimal energy for hungry microorganisms preferentially builds up in floodplains, illuminating a new mechanism of carbon sequestration.
The dino-killing asteroid that crashed into the Yucatan Peninsula of Mexico could have generated massive seismic waves that triggered earthquakes as far away as Colorado, in a region where no previous fault existed,
A model of ion flux in the oceans shows carbon dioxide driving ocean acidity.
A comparison of Antarctic biodiversity and its management with global trends finds that it is more similar to the rest of the world than previously believed.
Researchers at Stanford’s Hopkins Marine Station find that expanded marine protected areas are successful in limiting fishing and increasing reef shark populations.
A fatty molecule once thought to be unique to flowering plants has turned up in bacteria skimmed from the Adriatic Sea and may provide biotech insights.