Referral Banners

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

ScienceDaily: Top Environment News

ScienceDaily: Top Environment News

Greenland Ice: The warmer it gets the faster it melts

Posted: 20 Jan 2015 12:12 PM PST

Melting of glacial ice will probably raise sea level around the globe, but how fast this melting will happen is uncertain. In the case of the Greenland Ice Sheet, the more temperatures increase, the faster the ice will melt, according to computer model experiments by geoscientists.

Important mechanism involved in production of mosquito eggs identified

Posted: 20 Jan 2015 11:28 AM PST

Female mosquitoes rely on a blood-meal as a source of nutrients required for reproduction. If the mechanisms that govern mosquitoes' egg production are better understood, novel approaches to controlling the reproduction and population of mosquitoes can be devised. A team of scientists has made a research breakthrough in understanding, at the molecular level, one such mechanism related to the mosquito reproductive process. This mechanism includes small regulatory RNA molecules known as microRNAs.

Biggest fish in the ocean receives international protection

Posted: 20 Jan 2015 11:28 AM PST

Tuna and other fish species may congregate around whale sharks, but new rule reduces the chance that the giant sea creatures could get caught in nets targeting those species.

Warming climate likely will change the composition of northern forests, study shows

Posted: 20 Jan 2015 11:28 AM PST

Visitors to northern forests in coming decades probably will see a very different set of trees as the climate warms, a new study shows. The study used a unique long-term outdoor experiment to examine the effects of climate change on trees in the boreal forest along the U.S.-Canadian border.

Vegetation can help prevent soil erosion due to wind

Posted: 20 Jan 2015 11:27 AM PST

Dust from soil erosion due to wind can affect human health, traffic, and, on a larger scale, climate. Investigators compared different models that quantify how the wind energy spreads over an herbaceous surface using data from the Sahel region of Africa, where estimates of dust emissions remain uncertain.

Public attitude toward tiger farming, tiger conservation

Posted: 20 Jan 2015 11:27 AM PST

The wild tiger Panthera tigris is considered critically endangered, and it faces unprecedented threats, including habitat loss and fragmentation, depletion of prey, and continued illegal poaching for trade of tiger bones for traditional medicine and skins for ornamentation and collection. A recent survey in Beijing revealed that people hold clear positions on arguments for and against the ban on tiger trade and were inclined to support the ban on trading tiger products.

Mapping the maize genome

Posted: 20 Jan 2015 11:27 AM PST

Maize is one of the most important cereal crops in the world. The complete genome of maize has been sequenced, but its size and complexity presents a challenge to researchers seeking to identify specific genes responsible for traits. Positional cloning has been used successfully in smaller genomes; researchers have applied this mapping technique to the maize genome and have published their protocol -- the first detailed step-by-step protocol on positional cloning -- in a new article.

A chemical modified version of the second messenger cAMP

Posted: 20 Jan 2015 11:26 AM PST

A new study describes the development of a cAMP analogue that specifically activates only Epac2, one of several cAMP-responsive proteins. Furthermore, the analogue activates Epac2 more potently than cAMP itself. About 100 analogues were synthesized in an interactive design process. Several crystal structures of Epac2 in complex with cAMP analogues were determined. The research helps to explain the molecular basis for the selectivity and the strong activation potential.

Climate change does not bode well for picky eaters

Posted: 20 Jan 2015 09:13 AM PST

In a part of the world that is experiencing the most dramatic increase in temperature and climate change, two very similar species of animals are responding very differently. New research suggests that how these species have adapted to co-exist with one another might be to blame.

Drugs from dirt: Scientists develop first global roadmap for drug discovery

Posted: 20 Jan 2015 09:08 AM PST

Scientists have analyzed soils from beaches, forests, and deserts on five continents and discovered the best places in the world to mine untapped antibiotic and anticancer drugs. The findings provide new insights into the natural world as well as a road map for future drug discovery.

Giant atmospheric rivers add mass to Antarctica's ice sheet

Posted: 20 Jan 2015 08:22 AM PST

Extreme weather phenomena called atmospheric rivers were behind intense snowstorms recorded in 2009 and 2011 in East Antarctica. The resulting snow accumulation partly offset recent ice loss from the Antarctic ice sheet, report researchers.

Burying beetles hatch survival plan to source food, study shows

Posted: 20 Jan 2015 08:17 AM PST

Young beetles pick up sensory signals from adult insects to increase their chances of being fed -- and shorten the odds of being killed instead. Beetle larvae have an in-built ability to identify different adults based on distinct chemicals found on the outside of their shells and adjust their begging behavior accordingly, researchers say.

Researchers prevent type I diabetes in mouse model

Posted: 20 Jan 2015 08:12 AM PST

A new approach developed by scientists stops the destruction of beta cells and preserves insulin production. Type I diabetes is a chronic autoimmune disease that occurs when the body's immune system destroys insulin producing pancreatic beta cells, resulting in insulin deficiency and hyperglycemia. Researchers focused on blocking the autoimmune process that destroys beta cells and leads to diabetes, with the aim of developing therapies that can prevent the illness from developing rather than treating its symptoms.

Silk-weaving ant study sees new behavior

Posted: 20 Jan 2015 07:25 AM PST

A professor's study of silk-weaving ants is promising to change our understanding of how all creatures work together. The study on the behaviour of the ants found the insects could evolve and abandon and then re-evolve the practice of building nests from silk, with different species adapting it in different ways once it was re-adopted.

Ocean floor dust gives new insight into supernovae

Posted: 20 Jan 2015 07:25 AM PST

Extraterrestrial dust from the depths of the ocean could change the way we understand supernovae. Scientists have found the amount of plutonium in the dust is much lower than expected.

Are Asian citrus psyllids afraid of heights? New study may provide clues for stopping them

Posted: 20 Jan 2015 06:02 AM PST

New research shows that the Asian citrus psyllid, the vector of citrus greening disease, does not do well at high elevations, and that populations drop to zero at 600 meters or more above sea level.

First public lighting system that runs on solar and wind energy

Posted: 20 Jan 2015 05:58 AM PST

Scientists have developed the first autonomous industrialized public lighting system that works with solar and wind energy.

Dog-human cooperation is based on social skills of wolves, scientists show

Posted: 20 Jan 2015 05:58 AM PST

Dogs are 'man's best friend.' The origins of this dog-human relationship were subject of a study by behavioral scientists. They showed that the ancestors of dogs, the wolves, are at least as attentive to members of their species and to humans as dogs are. This social skill did not emerge during domestication, as has been suggested previously, but was already present in wolves.

Paleontologist names a carnivorous reptile that preceded dinosaurs

Posted: 20 Jan 2015 05:56 AM PST

Paleontologist have now named a 9-foot-long carnivorous reptile with steak knife-like teeth and bony plates on the back. Its name is Nundasuchus.

Predators, parasites, pests and the paradox of biological control

Posted: 20 Jan 2015 05:56 AM PST

When a bird swoops down and grabs a caterpillar devouring your backyard garden, you might view it as a clear victory for natural pest control. But what if that caterpillar is infected with larvae from a tiny parasitic wasp--another agent of biological pest control. Who should you root for now, the bird or the wasp?

Time to rethink the inner-city asthma epidemic?

Posted: 20 Jan 2015 05:56 AM PST

Challenging the long-standing belief that city dwellers suffer disproportionately from asthma, the results of a new study of more than 23,000 U.S. children reveal that income, race and ethnic origin may play far more potent roles in asthma risk than kids' physical surroundings.

Non-Native Plants Widespread, Plenty of Space to Invade

Posted: 20 Jan 2015 05:56 AM PST

The first comprehensive assessment of native vs. non-native plant distribution in the continental U.S., finds non-native plant species are much more widespread than natives, a finding the authors call very surprising. Even species with only a handful of occurrences were distributed widely.

The seeing power of frogs: Frogs can detect single photons of light

Posted: 20 Jan 2015 05:45 AM PST

A quantum light source demonstrates that light-sensitive cells in frog eyes can detect single photons. Miniature light detectors in frog eyes known as retinal rod cells are directly and unambiguously shown to detect single photons of light -- an astounding sensitivity considering that a humble 60 watt light bulb spews out a staggering 1020 photons per second.

Making waves with lasers could enhance solar cell efficiency

Posted: 20 Jan 2015 05:45 AM PST

Laser processing produces deep ripples in silicon over a wide area — something that could enhance solar cell efficiency.

New decontamination tool expected to help Fukushima cleanup

Posted: 20 Jan 2015 05:45 AM PST

An inexpensive and highly durable new material will prove effective for treating contaminated water at the Fukushima Daiichi plant.

Hidden cell types revealed: New method improves single-cell genomics analyses

Posted: 19 Jan 2015 09:45 AM PST

A new method clarifies the true differences and similarities between cells by modelling relatedness and removing confounding variables. They can can use known molecular pathways to better understand cancer cells, differentiation processes and the pathogenesis of diseases.

No comments: