5,310-year-old corn cob sheds light on the history of the world's most produced cereal

A prehistoric corn cob dating back 5,310 years has shed fresh light on the domestication of the world's most popular cereal according to Daily mail.

Scientists have sequenced its complete DNA to show the maize grown in central Mexico was genetically more similar to its modern descendant than its wild ancestor.

Modern alchemy: Russian scientists discover how to extract gold from coal

Researchers from the Russian Academy of Sciences’ Far East branch say they are building a facility to make gold out of coal.

Although the science is no fairy tale, to the dismay of business owners, the process is not as productive as they might hope – burning a ton of coal yields one gram of gold, tops, according to RT.

At present, the scientists are setting the bar even lower, expecting a yield of 0.5 grams, or 1,500 rubles, per ton.

Does Facebook affect our self-esteem?

With 1.11 billion users per month on average, Facebook has become a global phenomenon offering continual and direct communication with friends and family. Research into how social media websites define us socially and the influence that social media has on our personal welfare suggests that a lack of social participation on Facebook leads to people feeling less meaningful.

New research looked at how Facebook communication impacts on feelings of social belonging which in turn affects outlook on life; loneliness and self-worth. Researchers, led by Dr Stephanie Tobin, conducted two studies centred on passive Facebook participation, aiming to analyze how participants would feel when deliberately 'snubbed'.

Great valley found on Mercury

Scientists have discovered a new large valley on Mercury that may be the first evidence of buckling of the planet's outer silicate shell in response to global contraction. The researchers discovered the valley using a new high-resolution topographic map of part of Mercury's southern hemisphere created by stereo images from NASA's MESSENGER spacecraft.

The most likely explanation for Mercury's Great Valley is buckling of the planet's lithosphere -- its crust and upper mantle -- in response to global contraction, according to the study's authors. Earth's lithosphere is broken up into many tectonic plates, but Mercury's lithosphere consists of just one plate. Cooling of Mercury's interior caused the planet's single plate to contract and bend. Where contractional forces are greatest, crustal rocks are thrust upward while an emerging valley floor sags downward.

BP (British Petroleum)Deepwater Horizon oil in land-animal food chain

Researchers in Louisiana have discovered traces of oil from the Deepwater Horizon spill in the feathers of birds eaten by land animals.

A team examined the feathers and digestive tract contents of seaside sparrows - measuring signature carbon from spilled oil.

They say it "is the first demonstration that oil from the spill made it into the" food chain of land animals, according to BBC.