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Foundations

» evolution, physiology, neuroscience and culture

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image: The First Neuron Drawings, 1870s

The First Neuron Drawings, 1870s

By | October 1, 2015

Camillo Golgi’s black reaction revealed, for the first time, the fine structures of intact neurons, which he captured with ink and paper.

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image: The Body Electric, 1840s

The Body Electric, 1840s

By | November 1, 2014

Emil du Bois-Reymond’s innovations for recording electrical signals from living tissue set the stage for today’s neural monitoring techniques.

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image: Discovering Archaea, 1977

Discovering Archaea, 1977

By | March 1, 2014

Ribosomal RNA fingerprints reveal the three domains of life.

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image: Fantastical Fish, circa 1719

Fantastical Fish, circa 1719

By | January 1, 2014

A collection of colorful drawings compiled by publisher Louis Renard sheds light on eighteenth-century science.

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image: The Neuron Doctrine, circa 1894

The Neuron Doctrine, circa 1894

By | November 1, 2013

Santiago Ramón y Cajal used a staining technique developed by Camillo Golgi to formulate the idea that the neuron is the basic unit of the nervous system.

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image: Sketching out Cell Theory, circa 1837

Sketching out Cell Theory, circa 1837

By | August 1, 2013

How a dinner-table conversation between two biologists led to the formulation of the theory that cells are the building blocks of all living organisms.

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image: Flying Frog, 1855

Flying Frog, 1855

By | May 1, 2013

Alfred Russel Wallace, Darwin’s unheralded codiscoverer of the theory of evolution by natural selection, found inspiration in the specimens he collected on his travels.

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image:

"White-Blooded" Icefish, 1927

By | April 1, 2013

A bizarre group of Antarctic fishes lost their red blood cells but survived to tell their evolutionary tale, revealing a fundamental lesson about the birth and death of genes.

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image: Poetry and Pictures, circa 1830

Poetry and Pictures, circa 1830

By | November 1, 2012

On the bicentennial of his birth, Edward Lear is celebrated for his whimsical poetry and his stunningly accurate scientific illustrations.

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image: Gone Missing, circa 1892

Gone Missing, circa 1892

By | October 1, 2012

A unique organism sighted only once, more than a century ago, could shed light on the evolution of multicellularity—if it ever actually existed.

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