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A 'Strong Confirmation of Evolutionary Theory' Has Been Found

In a finding that some are calling an evolutionary "game-changer," researchers say they've found two million-year-old bones in South Africa that belonged to a transitional figure that came before modern humans, reports the AP's Randolph Schmid. The bones, belonging to Australopithecus sediba, is a likely candidate to be the ancestor to humans, as the fossils show a combination of features from Australopithecene and Homo genera, Schmid adds. The study, published in Science, says the brain, hand, and foot have characteristics of both modern and early pre-human forms. "This is what evolutionary theory would predict, this mixture of Australopithecene and Homo," Texas A&M University's Darryl DeRuiter, one of the study's authors, tells Schmid. "It's strong confirmation of evolutionary theory."

The Scan

Self-Reported Hearing Loss in Older Adults Begins Very Early in Life, Study Says

A JAMA Otolaryngology — Head & Neck Surgery study says polygenic risk scores associated with hearing loss in older adults is also associated with hearing decline in younger groups.

Genome-Wide Analysis Sheds Light on Genetics of ADHD

A genome-wide association study meta-analysis of attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder appearing in Nature Genetics links 76 genes to risk of having the disorder.

MicroRNA Cotargeting Linked to Lupus

A mouse-based study appearing in BMC Biology implicates two microRNAs with overlapping target sites in lupus.

Enzyme Involved in Lipid Metabolism Linked to Mutational Signatures

In Nature Genetics, a Wellcome Sanger Institute-led team found that APOBEC1 may contribute to the development of the SBS2 and SBS13 mutational signatures in the small intestine.