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Wednesday, January 23, 2019

Previously unknown pine marten diversity discovered

The elusive American pine marten, a little-studied member of the weasel family, might be more diverse than originally thought, according to new research.

Can animal diet mitigate greenhouse emissions?

The inclusion of agroindustrial by-products in pig feed can reduce the nitrous oxide emissions (N2O) of the slurry used as manures up to 65%, suggests new research.

Dogs to sniff out chemicals that identify human remains

New research to help improve accuracy of criminal investigations involves a partnership between humans and their canine coworkers.

Pathogen that causes sleeping sickness: Promising new target

The life-threatening African trypanosomiasis, also called sleeping sickness, is caused by protozoa of the species Trypanosoma brucei. A team of researchers has studied the pathogens and reported exciting news: The trypanosomes have a so far unknown enzyme which does not exist in humans and other vertebrates. This makes it a promising target for therapy.

Trash-picking seagulls excrete tons of nutrients

At least 1.4 million seagulls feed at landfills in North America. Aside from the nuisance they pose, a study finds their nutrient-rich feces may threaten the health of nearby waters. The study estimates North American gulls deposit 240 tons of nitrogen and 39 tons of phosphorus into nearby lakes and reservoirs each year, fertilizing algae and weeds and costing local governments about $100 million in nutrient offset costs.

Reconstruction of ancient chromosomes offers insight into mammalian evolution

Researchers have gone back in time, at least virtually, computationally recreating the chromosomes of the first eutherian mammal, the long-extinct, shrewlike ancestor of all placental mammals.

New research leverages big data to predict severe weather

Every year, severe weather endangers millions of people and causes billions of dollars in damage worldwide. But new research has found a way to better predict some of these threats by harnessing the power of big data.

Memory for stimulus sequences distinguishes humans from other animals

Humans possess many cognitive abilities not seen in other animals, such as a full-blown language capacity as well as reasoning and planning abilities. Despite these differences, however, it has been difficult to identify specific mental capacities that distinguish humans from other animals. Researchers have now discovered that humans have a much better memory to recognize and remember sequential information.

Finding the perfect match: New approach to battle drug-resistant bacteria

Antibiotics were the wonder drug of the 20th century, but bacteria evolved resistance. According to the CDC, more than 2 million people in the U.S. develop MDR infections every year. Researchers have now developed a rapid screen to pair existing FDA-approved drugs to combat MDR infections.

How phytoplankton rule the oceans

Photosynthesis is a unique biological process that has permitted the colonization of land and sea by plants and phytoplankton respectively. While the mechanisms of photosynthesis in plants are well understood, scientists are only now beginning to elucidate how the process developed in phytoplankton.

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Urbanization changes shape of mosquitoes’ wings

Research shows that rapid urbanization in São Paulo City, Brazil, is influencing wing morphology in the mosquitoes that transmit dengue and malaria.

No-deal Brexit ‘means hard border’ – European Commission

No deal makes hard border obvious, says EC spokesman, but Irish government calls that unacceptable. Source: BBC

How sex pheromones diversify: Lessons from yeast

What happens to sex pheromones as new species emerge? New research studies sex pheromones in the fission yeast Schizosaccharomyces pombe, revealing an 'asymmetric' pheromone recognition system in which one pheromone operates extremely stringently whereas the other pheromone is free to undergo a certain degree of diversification, perhaps leading to a first step towards speciation.