Feed aggregator

Mosquitoes are eating plastic and spreading it to new food chains

Genetically modified organisms (GMO) - Wed, 2018-09-19 01:01
Aquatic mosquito larvae eat plastic in the water and retain it when they become flies – meaning the plastic ends up in the birds that eat mosquitoes
Categories: Science and society

Dance flies attract males with their hairy legs and inflatable sacs

Genetics - Wed, 2018-09-19 01:01
It’s usually males that go out of their way to attract a mate – but for dance flies it’s the females that dress to impress
Categories: Biology

Mosquitoes are eating plastic and spreading it to new food chains

Genetics - Wed, 2018-09-19 01:01
Aquatic mosquito larvae eat plastic in the water and retain it when they become flies – meaning the plastic ends up in the birds that eat mosquitoes
Categories: Biology

Dance flies attract males with their hairy legs and inflatable sacs

HIV and AIDS - Wed, 2018-09-19 01:01
It’s usually males that go out of their way to attract a mate – but for dance flies it’s the females that dress to impress

Mosquitoes are eating plastic and spreading it to new food chains

HIV and AIDS - Wed, 2018-09-19 01:01
Aquatic mosquito larvae eat plastic in the water and retain it when they become flies – meaning the plastic ends up in the birds that eat mosquitoes

Science in the fight to uphold the rights of children

PLOS Biology (new articles) - Tue, 2018-09-18 23:00

by Arthur L. Caplan, Peter J. Hotez

The United States is the only major nation to not yet have ratified the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC). Recently, there has been an erosion of the rights of children across America, Europe, and elsewhere, but through science, we may have an opportunity to counter some of this alarming trend. In the area of vaccines, the scientific community can raise its voice on the dangers that nonmedical exemptions and delays pose to children at risk for measles, influenza, and other childhood illnesses. Poverty places infants and children at high risk for illness and homelessness. Gun violence and gun-related accidents are killing on average four American children daily, and climate change is promoting global pediatric malnutrition. Increasing international, federal, and state support to seek innovative solutions to these and related issues is a moral imperative.
Categories: Biology, Journals

Large-scale investigation of the reasons why potentially important genes are ignored

PLOS Biology (new articles) - Tue, 2018-09-18 23:00

by Thomas Stoeger, Martin Gerlach, Richard I. Morimoto, Luís A. Nunes Amaral

Biomedical research has been previously reported to primarily focus on a minority of all known genes. Here, we demonstrate that these differences in attention can be explained, to a large extent, exclusively from a small set of identifiable chemical, physical, and biological properties of genes. Together with knowledge about homologous genes from model organisms, these features allow us to accurately predict the number of publications on individual human genes, the year of their first report, the levels of funding awarded by the National Institutes of Health (NIH), and the development of drugs against disease-associated genes. By explicitly identifying the reasons for gene-specific bias and performing a meta-analysis of existing computational and experimental knowledge bases, we describe gene-specific strategies for the identification of important but hitherto ignored genes that can open novel directions for future investigation.
Categories: Biology, Journals

Carnivore conservation needs evidence-based livestock protection

PLOS Biology (new articles) - Tue, 2018-09-18 23:00

by Lily M. van Eeden, Ann Eklund, Jennifer R. B. Miller, José Vicente López-Bao, Guillaume Chapron, Mikael R. Cejtin, Mathew S. Crowther, Christopher R. Dickman, Jens Frank, Miha Krofel, David W. Macdonald, Jeannine McManus, Tara K. Meyer, Arthur D. Middleton, Thomas M. Newsome, William J. Ripple, Euan G. Ritchie, Oswald J. Schmitz, Kelly J. Stoner, Mahdieh Tourani, Adrian Treves

Carnivore predation on livestock often leads people to retaliate. Persecution by humans has contributed strongly to global endangerment of carnivores. Preventing livestock losses would help to achieve three goals common to many human societies: preserve nature, protect animal welfare, and safeguard human livelihoods. Between 2016 and 2018, four independent reviews evaluated >40 years of research on lethal and nonlethal interventions for reducing predation on livestock. From 114 studies, we find a striking conclusion: scarce quantitative comparisons of interventions and scarce comparisons against experimental controls preclude strong inference about the effectiveness of methods. For wise investment of public resources in protecting livestock and carnivores, evidence of effectiveness should be a prerequisite to policy making or large-scale funding of any method or, at a minimum, should be measured during implementation. An appropriate evidence base is needed, and we recommend a coalition of scientists and managers be formed to establish and encourage use of consistent standards in future experimental evaluations.
Categories: Biology, Journals

<i>Jagged1/Notch2</i> controls kidney fibrosis via <i>Tfam</i>-mediated metabolic reprogramming

PLOS Biology (new articles) - Tue, 2018-09-18 23:00

by Shizheng Huang, Jihwan Park, Chengxiang Qiu, Kiwung Chung, Szu-yuan Li, Yasemin Sirin, Seung Hyeok Han, Verdon Taylor, Ursula Zimber-Strobl, Katalin Susztak

While Notch signaling has been proposed to play a key role in fibrosis, the direct molecular pathways targeted by Notch signaling and the precise ligand and receptor pair that are responsible for kidney disease remain poorly defined. In this study, we found that JAG1 and NOTCH2 showed the strongest correlation with the degree of interstitial fibrosis in a genome-wide expression analysis of a large cohort of human kidney samples. Transcript analysis of mouse kidney disease models, including folic-acid (FA)–induced nephropathy, unilateral ureteral obstruction (UUO), or apolipoprotein L1 (APOL1)-associated kidney disease, indicated that Jag1 and Notch2 levels were higher in all analyzed kidney fibrosis models. Mice with tubule-specific deletion of Jag1 or Notch2 (Kspcre/Jag1flox/flox and Kspcre/Notch2flox/flox) had no kidney-specific alterations at baseline but showed protection from FA-induced kidney fibrosis. Tubule-specific genetic deletion of Notch1 and global knockout of Notch3 had no effect on fibrosis. In vitro chromatin immunoprecipitation experiments and genome-wide expression studies identified the mitochondrial transcription factor A (Tfam) as a direct Notch target. Re-expression of Tfam in tubule cells prevented Notch-induced metabolic and profibrotic reprogramming. Tubule–specific deletion of Tfam resulted in fibrosis. In summary, Jag1 and Notch2 play a key role in kidney fibrosis development by regulating Tfam expression and metabolic reprogramming.
Categories: Biology, Journals

The whiff of sandalwood makes the human head sprout more hair

Genetically modified organisms (GMO) - Tue, 2018-09-18 17:00
Your scalp can "smell" things - and when it detects synthetic sandalwood, the rate of hair growth increases
Categories: Science and society

The whiff of sandalwood makes the human head sprout more hair

Genetics - Tue, 2018-09-18 17:00
Your scalp can "smell" things - and when it detects synthetic sandalwood, the rate of hair growth increases
Categories: Biology

The whiff of sandalwood makes the human head sprout more hair

HIV and AIDS - Tue, 2018-09-18 17:00
Your scalp can "smell" things - and when it detects synthetic sandalwood, the rate of hair growth increases

SpaceX’s billionaire moon trip is all about building a luxury brand

Genetically modified organisms (GMO) - Tue, 2018-09-18 13:35
The first passengers to fly to the moon on SpaceX’s BFR rocket will be artists, in an effort to widen the company's appeal beyond governments and satellite firms
Categories: Science and society

SpaceX’s billionaire moon trip is all about building a luxury brand

Genetics - Tue, 2018-09-18 13:35
The first passengers to fly to the moon on SpaceX’s BFR rocket will be artists, in an effort to widen the company's appeal beyond governments and satellite firms
Categories: Biology

SpaceX’s billionaire moon trip is all about building a luxury brand

HIV and AIDS - Tue, 2018-09-18 13:35
The first passengers to fly to the moon on SpaceX’s BFR rocket will be artists, in an effort to widen the company's appeal beyond governments and satellite firms

Quantum mechanics may contradict itself when applied to big objects

Genetically modified organisms (GMO) - Tue, 2018-09-18 12:00
Standard quantum theory explains the behaviour of microscopic things like electrons and atoms. It should also, in principle apply to larger objects – but it might not
Categories: Science and society

Quantum mechanics may contradict itself when applied to big objects

Genetics - Tue, 2018-09-18 12:00
Standard quantum theory explains the behaviour of microscopic things like electrons and atoms. It should also, in principle apply to larger objects – but it might not
Categories: Biology

Quantum mechanics may contradict itself when applied to big objects

HIV and AIDS - Tue, 2018-09-18 12:00
Standard quantum theory explains the behaviour of microscopic things like electrons and atoms. It should also, in principle apply to larger objects – but it might not

Revealed: What the UK public really thinks about the future of science

Genetically modified organisms (GMO) - Tue, 2018-09-18 10:00
The 2018 New Scientist Asks the Public survey reveals that people are well-informed about science and technology, but politicians are ignoring their hopes and fears
Categories: Science and society

Revealed: What the UK public really thinks about the future of science

HIV and AIDS - Tue, 2018-09-18 10:00
The 2018 New Scientist Asks the Public survey reveals that people are well-informed about science and technology, but politicians are ignoring their hopes and fears