Earth

Having a faulty gene linked to dementia doubles the risk of developing severe COVID-19, according to a large-scale study.

MEDFORD/SOMERVILLE, Mass. (May 26, 2019)-- Researchers led by biologists at Tufts University have discovered that the brains of developing frog embryos damaged by nicotine exposure can be repaired by treatment with certain drugs called "ionoceuticals" that drive the recovery of bioelectric patterns in the embryo, followed by repair of normal anatomy, gene expression and brain function in the growing tadpole.

Glass frogs are well known for their see-through skin but, until now, the reason for this curious feature has received no experimental attention.

A team of scientists from the University of Bristol, McMaster University, and Universidad de Las Américas Quito, sought to establish the ecological importance of glass frog translucency and, in doing so, have revealed a novel form of camouflage.

When University of Ottawa biologists Kim Mitchell and Vance Trudeau began studying the effects of gene mutations in zebrafish, they uncovered new functions that regulate how males and females interact while mating. We sat down with senior author Professor Trudeau, Research Chair in Neuroendocrinology at the Faculty of Science, to learn more.

Please tell us about this research project.

The world's deep oceans are warming at a slower rate than the surface, but it's still not good news for deep-sea creatures according to an international study.

The research, led by University of Queensland PhD student Isaac Brito-Morales, looked at how ocean life was responding to climate change.

"We used a metric known as climate velocity which defines the likely speed and direction a species shifts as the ocean warms," Mr Brito-Morales said.

Global warming is causing species to search for more temperate environments in which to migrate to, but it is marine species - according to the latest results of a Franco-American study mainly involving scientists from the CNRS, Ifremer, the Université Toulouse III - Paul Sabatier and the University of Picardy Jules Verne (1) - that are leading the way by moving up to six times faster towards the poles than their terrestrial congeners.

An international team of scientists have identified candidate resistance genes that could protect ash trees from the Emerald Ash Borer (EAB), a deadly pest that is expected to kill billions of trees worldwide.

In the new study, published today in Nature Ecology & Evolution, researchers from Queen Mary University of London and the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew, sequenced the genomes of 22 species of ash tree (Fraxinus) from around the world and used this information to analyse how the different species are related to each other.

The deeper layers of the ocean are warming at a slower pace than the surface but animals living in the deep ocean are more exposed to climate warming and will face increasing challenges to maintain their preferred thermal habitats in the future, according to a new model in Nature Climate Change which analyzed contemporary and future global patterns of the velocity of climate change across the depths of the ocean. Their metric describes the temporal rate and direction of temperature changes, as a proxy for potential shifts of marine biota in response to climate warming.

A new species proposed to be classified as Critically Endangered of miniaturised stump-toed frog of the genus Stumpffia, found in Madagascar, is named Stumpffia froschaueri after "the man from the floodplain full of frogs", Christoph Froschauer. The namesake of the new frog is famous for being the first, and European wide renowned, printer from Zürich, famous for printing "Historia animalium" and the "Zürich Bible".

All living things have tipping points: points of no return, beyond which they cannot thrive. A new report in Science shows that maximum daily temperatures above 32.2 degrees Celsius (about 90 degrees Fahrenheit) cause tropical forests to lose stored carbon more quickly. To prevent this escape of carbon into the atmosphere, the authors, including three scientists affiliated with the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute (STRI) in Panama, recommend immediate steps to conserve tropical forests and stabilize the climate.

Tokyo, Japan - Researchers from Tokyo Metropolitan University have surveyed the amount of gadolinium found in river water in Tokyo. Gadolinium is contained in contrast agents given to patients undergoing medical magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scans, and it has been shown in labs to become toxic when exposed to ultraviolet rays. The researchers found significantly elevated levels, particularly near water treatment plants, highlighting the need for new public policy and removal technologies as MRI become even more commonplace.

Researchers have succeeded in detecting anti-avian influenza virus antibody in blood serum within 20 minutes, using a portable analyzer they have developed to conduct rapid on-site bio tests. If a suitable reagent is developed, this technology could be used to detect antibodies against SARS-CoV-2, the causative virus of COVID-19.

The beetles of family Erotylidae (Coleoptera: Cucujoidea) are morphologically and biologically diversified into six subfamilies, 10 tribes, and over 3,500 species. The tribe Toramini includes 4 genera and is distributed worldwide. Although, the biology of this group is poorly investigated, Leschen (2003) reported that larvae of Toramus and Loberoschema retain exuviae on their abdomen throughout larval development.

Researchers have developed a visualization method that will determine the distribution of components in battery electrodes using atomic force microscopy. The method provides insights into the optimal conditions of composite electrodes and takes us one step closer to being able to manufacture next-generation all-solid-state batteries.

Lithium-ion batteries are widely used in smart devices and vehicles. However, their flammability makes them a safety concern, arising from potential leakage of liquid electrolytes.

(LOS ANGELES and CHICAGO) -- Cartilage is far from being like cartilage. As a rubber-like elastic tissue with widely varying properties, it lubricates our joints to keep them healthy and in motion, and forms many of our internal structures such as the intervertebral discs in our spine, the flexible connections between our ribs, and our voice box, as well as external tissues like nose, and ears.