Come Together: Julia Buntaine and the SciArt Center

Movements need champions. People engaged in promoting the cause and presenting it to the uninitiated. They articulate a movement’s central ideas, distilling it to the essentials. Most importantly, they foster a sense of community, physical and mental by planning events and spearheading organizations. Sometimes, the task falls to critics and theorists. Other times, the evangelists … Continue reading Come Together: Julia Buntaine and the SciArt Center

Conversations with Anders Rosengren: On broccoli’s antidiabetic potential

Vegetables. The bane of every child’s culinary existence. It’s divisive even among many adults (Ardent carnivores vs. vegetarians). In the whole pantheon of vegetables your mother forced you to eat,  broccoli elicits the strongest wails of protestation. Maligned by presidents past and anyone going on a first date, it's undesirable reputation precedes itself. Of course, … Continue reading Conversations with Anders Rosengren: On broccoli’s antidiabetic potential

Conversations with Rick Cavicchioli: Antarctic clues to virus evolution

The image of the staid scientist holed up in the laboratory surrounded by similarly tempered collaborators is a quaint and ill-founded one. Not that they don’t knuckle down in the lab. They do. However, there’s a lot more old-fashioned, boots-on-the-ground, adventuring-to-distant-lands than you’d think. The same way there are photographers like James Nachtway and Don … Continue reading Conversations with Rick Cavicchioli: Antarctic clues to virus evolution

The Big Question with Sara Del Valle

Sara Del Valle is a computational epidemiologist at Los Alamos National Laboratory who uses mathematical models to predict the spread of diseases. What is the biggest question facing your field?  The next frontier in epidemiology is forecasting diseases. We’ve spent the last several decades working to understand disease dynamics—what causes them, how they’re transmitted, how … Continue reading The Big Question with Sara Del Valle

Immune system targets bacterial flagella to ID them

The body's homeland security unit is more thorough than any airport checkpoint. For the first time, scientists have witnessed a mouse immune system protein frisking a snippet of an invading bacterium. The inspection is far more extensive than researchers imagined: the immune system protein, similar to those in humans, scans the bacterial protein in six … Continue reading Immune system targets bacterial flagella to ID them

Beetle microbiome allows them to survive

An international team including researchers from the Max Planck Institute for Chemical Ecology has described a bacterium residing in a species of leaf beetles which has an unexpected feature: it provides the beetle with the enzymes required to break down certain plant cell wall components. The genome of the bacterium is the smallest ever sequenced … Continue reading Beetle microbiome allows them to survive

Strong selection for good genes a double edged sword

A new study on passenger pigeon (Ectopistes migratorius) genomics suggests that even species with large and stable populations can be at risk of extinction if there's a sudden environmental change. The passenger pigeon was once the most abundant bird in North America, numbering between 3 billion and 5 billion. While populations this large are usually … Continue reading Strong selection for good genes a double edged sword

The closest earth-like exoplanet is a mere 11 light years away

A team working with ESO's High Accuracy Radial velocity Planet Searcher (HARPS) at the La Silla Observatory in Chile has found that the red dwarf star Ross 128 is orbited by a low-mass exoplanet every 9.9 days. This Earth-sized world is expected to be temperate, with a surface temperature that may also be close to … Continue reading The closest earth-like exoplanet is a mere 11 light years away

Researchers try to edit mosquitoes to oblivion

Researchers at the University of California, Riverside have developed transgenic mosquitoes that stably express the Cas9 enzyme in their germline. The addition of Cas9 will enable the use of the CRISPR gene editing tool to make efficient, targeted changes to the mosquitoes' DNA. As proof of concept, the researchers used the system to disrupt cuticle, … Continue reading Researchers try to edit mosquitoes to oblivion

Study shows that our body clocks adapt quickly

Just how it works is not known - but human beings have an internal clock which enables us to perceive and estimate periods of time subconsciously. A research team under Dr. Roland Thomaschke of the University of Freiburg's Department of Psychology showed in experiments that this mental time-processing system is able to adapt quickly and … Continue reading Study shows that our body clocks adapt quickly

Employing interferons in the AMR fight

Researchers at Queen's University Belfast together with the University of Vienna have discovered that treatment for the antibiotic resistant bacteria Klebsiella pneumoniae could lie within our bodies' natural defences. Multidrug resistance of microbes poses a serious global threat to human health. Globally, 700,000 people die every year due to antimicrobial resistance. The bacteria Klebsiella pneumoniae … Continue reading Employing interferons in the AMR fight

Scientists catch glimpse of contracting white dwarf

Astrophysicists from MSU (Russia) and his colleagues from Italy and Russian Academy of Sciences have found the first observational evidence for a contracting white dwarf. Constant high spin-up rate of a star of this type, located in an enigmatic binary system, can be easily explained if the white dwarf is contracting, the researchers argue. The … Continue reading Scientists catch glimpse of contracting white dwarf

Many Latinos feel science interferes with their beliefs

More than one-third of Latinos interviewed in a recent study believe science education may have a negative impact on the religious faith of their children, according to new research from sociologists at Rice University. The study examined the relationship between STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) education and religious faith from the perspective of blacks … Continue reading Many Latinos feel science interferes with their beliefs

Iron in the Earth’s core may have jump started life

Reservoirs of oxygen-rich iron between the Earth's core and mantle could have played a major role in Earth's history, including the breakup of supercontinents, drastic changes in Earth's atmospheric makeup, and the creation of life, according to recent work from an international research team published in National Science Review. The team -- which includes scientists … Continue reading Iron in the Earth’s core may have jump started life