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Science in Action - Dinosaur Embryos

Exploring early embryonic development of dinosaurs; Making the brain transparent; Gelada baboons talk like humans; Appreciating music in the brain

Dinosaur embryos Paleontologists have the rare opportunity to examine a cache of embryonic dinosaur fossilised bones. The embryos are probably Lufengosaurus, very early Sauropod type dinosaurs, which roamed in China over 190 million years ago. The researchers can tell from the bones that the tiny embryonic dinosaurs wriggled in their eggs and grew very fast. Transparent Brain Using a complex recipe called CLARITY, scientists at Stanford University have made a mouse brain completely transparent. The brain still maintains its internal microscopic structure making it ideal for post mortem study of the entire organ. The researchers say they can perform the technique on other organs such as liver and kidneys. Human-like language in Gelada baboons A bizarre sound made by a species of monkey, the Gelada baboon, found in Ethiopian highlands could help to reveal how human language evolved. Scientists say this is the first primate known to make calls that share certain features with human speech. Appreciating new music in the brain It’s no surprise that we find some types of music pleasurable and rewarding. When we hear a tune we like, the pleasure and reward centres of the brain are activated and the chemical dopamine released. But what part of the brain responds when we hear music we like for the first time? Scientists have found that the Nucleus Accumbens is activated in anticipation of pleasurable new music. And the amount of activity relates directly to how much the listener is willing to pay to hear the music again. (Photo credits: Getty Images/Kwanghun Chung and Karl Deisseroth, Howard Hughes Medical Institute, Stanford University/BBC/Getty Images)

  • Broadcast on BBC World Service, 5:32AM Sun, 14 Apr 2013
  • Available until 12:00AM Thu, 1 Jan 2099
  • First broadcast BBC World Service, 7:32PM Thu, 11 Apr 2013
  • Categories
  • Duration 18 minutes

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