Feed aggregator

Explore nature’s dark side with the Natural History Museum

Genetics - Fri, 2018-07-13 18:30
Life in the Dark, a new show at London’s Natural History Museum, is a powerful and creepy exercise in letting go of the normal in nature. It’s also very beautiful…
Categories: Biology

Artificial skin grown from spider silk could help heal wounds

Genetically modified organisms (GMO) - Fri, 2018-07-13 17:02
Wounds and burns could one day be treated by the material spiders use to make their webs
Categories: Science and society

Artificial skin grown from spider silk could help heal wounds

Genetics - Fri, 2018-07-13 17:02
Wounds and burns could one day be treated by the material spiders use to make their webs
Categories: Biology

Artificial skin grown from spider silk could help heal wounds

HIV and AIDS - Fri, 2018-07-13 17:02
Wounds and burns could one day be treated by the material spiders use to make their webs

Will Ireland’s vote to divest from fossil fuels make a difference?

Genetically modified organisms (GMO) - Fri, 2018-07-13 15:38
Ireland is set to become the first country to sell off all its investments in fossil fuels, but efforts to limit global warming must go much further
Categories: Science and society

Can countries divesting from fossil fuels halt climate change?

Genetics - Fri, 2018-07-13 15:38
Ireland is set to become the first country to sell off all its investments in fossil fuels, but efforts to limit global warming must go much further
Categories: Biology

Can countries divesting from fossil fuels halt climate change?

HIV and AIDS - Fri, 2018-07-13 15:38
Ireland is set to become the first country to sell off all its investments in fossil fuels, but efforts to limit global warming must go much further

Dopamine levels in our brains affect the risks we’re happy to take

Genetically modified organisms (GMO) - Fri, 2018-07-13 14:03
The first brain-scanning study to track activity in the brain's decision-making centres during gambling shows fluctuations in dopamine levels affect risk-taking
Categories: Science and society

Dopamine levels in our brains affect the risks we’re happy to take

Genetics - Fri, 2018-07-13 14:03
The first brain-scanning study to track activity in the brain's decision-making centres during gambling shows fluctuations in dopamine levels affect risk-taking
Categories: Biology

Dopamine levels in our brains affect the risks we’re happy to take

HIV and AIDS - Fri, 2018-07-13 14:03
The first brain-scanning study to track activity in the brain's decision-making centres during gambling shows fluctuations in dopamine levels affect risk-taking

Whoops! NASA burned best evidence for life on Mars 40 years ago

Genetics - Fri, 2018-07-13 14:00
The Viking Mars landers famously failed to find any evidence of life, but now it seems a rogue chemical reaction masked the signature of organic molecules
Categories: Biology

Whoops! NASA burned best evidence for life on Mars 40 years ago

HIV and AIDS - Fri, 2018-07-13 14:00
The Viking Mars landers famously failed to find any evidence of life, but now it seems a rogue chemical reaction masked the signature of organic molecules

Whoops! NASA burned best evidence for life on Mars 40 years ago

Genetically modified organisms (GMO) - Fri, 2018-07-13 14:00
The Viking Mars landers famously failed to find any evidence of life, but now it seems a rogue chemical reaction masked the signature of organic molecules
Categories: Science and society

Think your surfing is secret in private browsing mode? Think again

Genetically modified organisms (GMO) - Fri, 2018-07-13 13:06
Governments and employers can still snoop on you when you use Chrome’s Incognito Mode or other private browsers, but many people don’t know this
Categories: Science and society

Think your surfing is secret in private browsing mode? Think again

Genetics - Fri, 2018-07-13 13:06
Governments and employers can still snoop on you when you use Chrome’s Incognito Mode or other private browsers, but many people don’t know this
Categories: Biology

Think your surfing is secret in private browsing mode? Think again

HIV and AIDS - Fri, 2018-07-13 13:06
Governments and employers can still snoop on you when you use Chrome’s Incognito Mode or other private browsers, but many people don’t know this

Feedback: Stork racks up air time with a stolen SIM card

Genetically modified organisms (GMO) - Fri, 2018-07-13 12:00
Plus: fish drown in drink, pet pundits predict points, terrorists ban plastic bags, rats make a million rupee nest, and more
Categories: Science and society

Feedback: Stork racks up air time with a stolen SIM card

Genetics - Fri, 2018-07-13 12:00
Plus: fish drown in drink, pet pundits predict points, terrorists ban plastic bags, rats make a million rupee nest, and more
Categories: Biology

The noisy basis of morphogenesis: Mechanisms and mechanics of cell sheet folding inferred from developmental variability

PLOS Biology (new articles) - Thu, 2018-07-12 23:00

by Pierre A. Haas, Stephanie S. M. H. Höhn, Aurelia R. Honerkamp-Smith, Julius B. Kirkegaard, Raymond E. Goldstein

Variability is emerging as an integral part of development. It is therefore imperative to ask how to access the information contained in this variability. Yet most studies of development average their observations and, discarding the variability, seek to derive models, biological or physical, that explain these average observations. Here, we analyse this variability in a study of cell sheet folding in the green alga Volvox, whose spherical embryos turn themselves inside out in a process sharing invagination, expansion, involution, and peeling of a cell sheet with animal models of morphogenesis. We generalise our earlier, qualitative model of the initial stages of inversion by combining ideas from morphoelasticity and shell theory. Together with three-dimensional visualisations of inversion using light sheet microscopy, this yields a detailed, quantitative model of the entire inversion process. With this model, we show how the variability of inversion reveals that two separate, temporally uncoupled processes drive the initial invagination and subsequent expansion of the cell sheet. This implies a prototypical transition towards higher developmental complexity in the volvocine algae and provides proof of principle of analysing morphogenesis based on its variability.
Categories: Biology, Journals

A bidirectional relationship between sleep and oxidative stress in <i>Drosophila</i>

PLOS Biology (new articles) - Thu, 2018-07-12 23:00

by Vanessa M. Hill, Reed M. O’Connor, Gunter B. Sissoko, Ifeoma S. Irobunda, Stephen Leong, Julie C. Canman, Nicholas Stavropoulos, Mimi Shirasu-Hiza

Although sleep appears to be broadly conserved in animals, the physiological functions of sleep remain unclear. In this study, we sought to identify a physiological defect common to a diverse group of short-sleeping Drosophila mutants, which might provide insight into the function and regulation of sleep. We found that these short-sleeping mutants share a common phenotype of sensitivity to acute oxidative stress, exhibiting shorter survival times than controls. We further showed that increasing sleep in wild-type flies using genetic or pharmacological approaches increases survival after oxidative challenge. Moreover, reducing oxidative stress in the neurons of wild-type flies by overexpression of antioxidant genes reduces the amount of sleep. Together, these results support the hypothesis that a key function of sleep is to defend against oxidative stress and also point to a reciprocal role for reactive oxygen species (ROS) in neurons in the regulation of sleep.
Categories: Biology, Journals