Planets and Animals

  • Evolution designed by parasites
    on August 23, 2019 at 10:27 pm

    A new paper explores an overlooked aspect of the relationship between parasites and their hosts by systematically discussing the ways in which parasitic behavior manipulation may encourage the evolution of mechanisms in the host's nervous and endocrine systems.

  • A novel technology for genome-editing a broad range of mutations in live organisms
    on August 23, 2019 at 10:27 pm

    Researchers have developed a new tool -- dubbed SATI -- to edit the mouse genome, enabling the team to target a broad range of mutations and cell types. The new genome-editing technology could be expanded for use in a broad range of gene mutation conditions such as Huntington's disease and the rare premature aging syndrome, progeria.

  • Migrating mule deer don't need directions, study finds
    on August 23, 2019 at 10:26 pm

    Mule deer navigate in spring and fall mostly by using their knowledge of past migration routes and seasonal ranges, according to a new study.

  • How microbes generate and use their energy to grow
    on August 23, 2019 at 6:07 pm

    Researchers have shed light on how bacteria and baker's yeast generate and use their energy to grow. Knowing about cells' energy use is essential for industrial biotech processes.

  • Successful egg harvest breaks new ground in saving the northern white rhinoceros
    on August 23, 2019 at 6:07 pm

    There are only two northern white rhinos left worldwide, both of them female. Saving this representative of megafauna from extinction seems impossible under these circumstances, yet an international consortium of scientists and conservationists just completed a procedure that could enable assisted reproduction techniques to do just that.

  • How gonorrhea develops resistance to antibiotics
    on August 23, 2019 at 6:07 pm

    As public health officials worry about the emergence of antibiotic-resistant gonorrhea, researchers are tracing how antibiotics bind to a gonococcal protein, information that can help lead to new antimicrobials.

  • Bioprinting complex living tissue in just a few seconds
    on August 23, 2019 at 1:48 pm

    Researchers have developed an extremely fast optical method for sculpting complex shapes in stem-cell-laden hydrogels and then vascularizing the resulting tissue. Their groundbreaking technique stands to change the field of tissue engineering.

  • Can researchers engage safely with the food industry?
    on August 23, 2019 at 1:48 pm

    Researchers are exploring ways to help scientists better protect their work from the influence of the food industry.

  • Frying oil consumption worsened colon cancer and colitis in mice, study shows
    on August 23, 2019 at 1:48 pm

    Food scientists have shown that feeding frying oil to mice exaggerated colonic inflammation, enhanced tumor growth and worsened gut leakage, spreading bacteria or toxic bacterial products into the bloodstream.

  • Big brains or big guts: Choose one
    on August 23, 2019 at 12:00 pm

    A global study comparing 2,062 birds finds that, in highly variable environments, birds tend to have either larger or smaller brains relative to their body size. Birds with smaller brains tend to use ecological strategies that are not available to big-brained counterparts.

  • Scurrying roaches help researchers steady staggering robots
    on August 22, 2019 at 8:50 pm

    To walk or run with finesse, roaches and robots coordinate leg movements via signals sent through centralized systems. Though their moving parts are utterly divergent, researchers have devised handy principles and equations to assess how both beasts and bots locomote and to improve robotic gait.

  • Research details impact of energy development on deer habitat use
    on August 22, 2019 at 8:50 pm

    Mule deer avoid areas close to such human disturbance, even when there's quality forage in those areas.

  • The Paleozoic diet: Why animals eat what they eat
    on August 22, 2019 at 8:50 pm

    In what likely is the first study on the evolution of dietary preferences across the animal kingdom, researchers report several unexpected discoveries, including that the first animal likely was a carnivore and that humans, along with other omnivores, belong to a rare breed.

  • How red-eared invaders are hurting California's native turtles
    on August 22, 2019 at 8:50 pm

    Western pond turtles got fatter and healthier after scientists removed nearly 200 invasive red-eared slider turtles from the UC Davis Arboretum, reports a new study. The study is the first to quantify competition between these two species in the wild.

  • What's killing sea otters? Parasite strain from cats
    on August 22, 2019 at 8:50 pm

    Many wild southern sea otters in California are infected with the parasite Toxoplasma gondii, yet the infection is fatal for only a fraction of sea otters, which has long puzzled the scientific community. A new study identifies the parasite's specific strains that are killing southern sea otters, tracing them back to a bobcat and feral domestic cats from nearby watersheds.

  • Nano-thermometer takes temperature inside cells
    on August 22, 2019 at 8:50 pm

    Scientists have developed a nano-thermometer able to take temperatures inside cells. The technique takes advantage of the fluorescent properties of a modified molecular rotor and the viscosity of the cell.

  • A single gene determines whether a fly has a good sense of sight or a good sense of smell
    on August 22, 2019 at 6:19 pm

    Trade-offs in the sizes of visual and olfactory organs are a common feature of animal evolution, but the underlying genetic and developmental mechanisms have not been clear. A study reveals that a single DNA variant that affects the timing of sensory organ development in fruit flies could explain the size trade-off between eyes and antennae, potentially providing a quick route to behavioral changes and adaptation.

  • Genes tell the story of how the Asian tiger mosquito spread
    on August 22, 2019 at 6:19 pm

    Over the last 40 years, the Asian tiger mosquito, Aedes albopictus, has invaded every continent thanks to the transportation of its eggs via human trade and transportation. Researchers have now used the genomes of the mosquitoes to track the history of the invasion and expansion of the species through Albania, Italy, and Greece.

  • Memory T cells shelter in bone marrow, boosting immunity in mice with restricted diets
    on August 22, 2019 at 6:19 pm

    Even when taking in fewer calories and nutrients, humans and other mammals usually remain protected against infectious diseases they have already encountered. This may be because memory T cells, which are located throughout the body and required to maintain immune responses to infectious agents. A new study in mice also found that animals undergoing dietary restriction were better protected against tumors and bacterial infections than animals with unrestricted diets.

  • Cell suicide could hold key for brain health and food security
    on August 22, 2019 at 6:19 pm

    Research into the self-destruction of cells in humans and plants could lead to treatments for neurodegenerative brain diseases and the development of disease-resistant plants. A study has identified the role certain proteins play in cellular suicide.

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