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News about Climate Change and our Planet

Microbes

History of Mars’ habitability preserved in ancient dunes

On Earth, scientists study rock layers and the fossils embedded in them to learn about ancient life. A new study focused on red Mars – the desert planet – did something similar. It looked at the record of changing habitability preserved in ancient dune fields.

Strange isotopes: Scientists explain a methane isotope paradox of the seafloor

(Max Planck Institute for Marine Microbiology) Deep down in the seafloor anaerobic microbes consume large amounts of methane, a potent greenhouse gas. Even though this process is a crucial element of the global carbon cycle, it is still poorly understood. Scientists from Bremen and Israel now found the solution to a long-standing enigma in this process: why methane carbon isotopes behave so differently than expected. In a joint effort with their colleagues they present the answer in the journal Science Advances.

Tick-Borne Infection Immune to Most Antibiotics May Be Blocked Using Special ‘Nanobodies’

Tiny molecules called nanobodies, which can be designed to mimic antibody structures and functions, may be the key to blocking a tick-borne bacterial infection that remains out of reach of almost all antibiotics, new research suggests. The infection is called human monocytic ehrlichiosis (HME), and is one of the most prevalent and potentially life-threatening tick-borne […]

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Scientists don spacesuits to explore Hawaiian lava tubes as if they were on Mars

(European Geosciences Union) Analog astronauts–scientists living in a habitat atop a Hawaiian volcano to train for living and working on the moon and Mars–are exploring lava tubes, which may hold biosignatures of life. The researchers will present their latest findings at the European Geosciences Union (EGU) General Assembly 2021, which is meeting from 19-30 April 2021.

Wisdom and Loneliness May Be Shaped by Healthy Gut Microbes, Researchers Believe

The evolving science of wisdom rests on the idea that wisdom’s defined traits correspond to distinct regions of the brain, and that greater wisdom translates into greater happiness and life satisfaction while being less wise results in opposite, negative consequences. Scientists have found in multiple studies that persons deemed to be wiser are less prone […]

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Climate-friendly microbes chomp dead plants without releasing heat-trapping methane

(University of Texas at Austin) Scientists have identified a new phylum of microbes found around the world that appear to be playing an important (and surprising) role in the global carbon cycle by helping break down decaying plants without producing the greenhouse gas methane. The phylum is named Brockarchaeota after Thomas Brock, a pioneer in the study of microbes that live in extreme environments who died on April 4.

Defense mechanisms in aphids can become a double-edged sword, sharpened by the seasons

(Drexel University) In a newly published study in Molecular Ecology a team of Drexel University scientists examined the biological variations in pea aphids, insects that reproduce frequently enough to evolve before our eyes, by tracing the prevalence of their protective endosymbiont, Hamiltonella defensa, which the insects use to ward off parasitoid wasps.

Humanity’s greatest ally against climate change is the Earth itself – The Washington Post

Advertisement Story continues below advertisement And when the fierce waves of winter come and kelp is ripped from its rocky anchors and washed out to the deep sea, that carbon gets buried on the ocean floor. It may stay there…