Earth

CORVALLIS, Ore. - Corals and the microbes they host evolved together, new research by Oregon State University shows.

The findings, published today in Nature Communications, add fresh insight to the fight to save the Earth's embattled coral reefs, the planet's largest and most significant structures of biological origin.

Funded by the National Science Foundation, the study involved hundreds of samples of scleractinian corals - also known as stony corals - which since their first appearance 425 million years ago have branched into more than 1,500 species.

Rodent mothers produce more offspring after smelling odors produced by frightened males. This is reported by a team of biologists from Finland and the Netherlands and bring new information the proximate and ultimate explanations of small mammal behavioral responses.

Fear of being eaten has the power to shape populations and drive evolution. The effect the authors report is large: exposed mothers produce litters with about fifty percent more pups compared to unexposed control mothers.

PROVIDENCE, R.I. [Brown University] -- Brown University researchers have shown a way to use graphene oxide (GO) to add some backbone to hydrogel materials made from alginate, a natural material derived from seaweed that's currently used in a variety of biomedical applications. In a paper published in the journal Carbon, the researchers describe a 3-D printing method for making intricate and durable alginate-GO structures that are far stiffer and more fracture resistant that alginate alone.

Frogs from noisy ponds near highways have altered stress and immune profiles compared to frogs from more quiet ponds--changes that reduce the negative effects of traffic noise on the amphibians. According to a new study, when frogs from quiet ponds are experimentally exposed to traffic noise, the noise is stressful and impairs the production of antimicrobial peptides--an important defense mechanism against pathogens. However, frogs taken from ponds near highways show a dampened stress response and altered immune profile, both of which reduce the costs of traffic noise.

Large amounts of the potent greenhouse gas methane are being released from an Icelandic glacier, scientists have discovered.

A study of Sólheimajökull glacier, which flows from the active, ice-covered volcano Katla, shows that up to 41 tonnes of methane is being released through meltwaters every day during the summer months. This is roughly equivalent to the methane produced by more than 136,000 belching cows.

Rutgers scientists have developed catalysts that can convert carbon dioxide - the main cause of global warming - into plastics, fabrics, resins and other products.

Nanyang Technological University, Singapore (NTU Singapore) scientists have developed a 'contact lens' patch with microneedles that could provide a painless and efficient alternative to current methods of treating eye diseases such as glaucoma and macular degeneration.

The Global Precipitation Measurement mission or GPM core satellite is providing data on rain rates within Tropical Cyclone 33W as it moves over the Philippines on Nov. 19.

Tropical Depression 33W is about to traverse the south-central Philippines. In the Philippines, 33W is designated "Samuel."

Tropical Cyclone 04S, known as Bouchra formed in the Southern Indian Ocean during the week of Nov. 12 and by the end of the week it had become a remnant low pressure area. Over the weekend of Nov. 17 and 18 it regenerated into a tropical cyclone and the NOAA-20 satellite passed overhead and captured a visible image of the storm.

CHICAGO - A shoulder muscle that appears unusually bright on ultrasound may be a warning sign of diabetes, according to a study being presented next week at the annual meeting of the Radiological Society of North America (RSNA).

Ultrasound is commonly used to diagnose sources of pain in the shoulder. More than 10 years ago, musculoskeletal radiologist Steven B. Soliman, D.O., from Henry Ford Hospital in Detroit, began noticing a pattern when images of the deltoid muscle, the largest muscle of the shoulder, appeared bright on ultrasound.