The number of wildfires and the amount of land they consume in the western US has substantially increased since the 1980s, a trend often attributed to ongoing climate change. Now, new research finds fires are not only becoming more common in the western US but the area burned at high severity is also increasing, a trend that may lead to long-term forest loss.
(Hong Kong University of Science and Technology) A research team co-led by a scientist at the Hong Kong University of Science and Technology has developed a method to study how HIV mutates to escape the immune system in multiple patients, which could inform HIV vaccine design.
Images of the extraordinary, but endangered, Dalmatian pelican and weaver ants caring for their young are among those awarded in this year’s British Ecological Society’s “Capturing Ecology” photography competition
Products derived from nanotechnology are efficient and highly sought-after, yet their effects on the environment are still poorly understood. A research team has investigated the effects of nanosilver, currently used in almost 450 products for its antibacterial properties, on the algae known as Poterioochromonas malhamensis. The results show that nanosilver disturb the alga’s entire metabolism. Its membrane becomes more permeable, the cellular ROS increases and photosynthesis is less effective.
(University of California – Riverside) On a near daily basis, the internet spews out numerous tips and tricks for exercise motivation. Now we can add smell to the long and growing list. A research team led by a scientist at the University of California, Riverside, has found olfaction–or smell–may play an important role in motivating mammals to engage in voluntary exercise. Performed in lab mice, the study may open up new areas of research and have relevance for humans.
Researchers have identified the first key biological switch that sounds an alarm in plants when plant-eating animals attack. The mechanism will help unlock a trove of new strategies for improved plant health, from countering crop pest damage to engineering more robust global food webs.
Researchers present a range of studies investigating the aerodynamics of infectious disease. Their results suggest strategies for lowering risk based on a rigorous understanding of how infectious particles mix with air in confined spaces.
Like humans who can instantly tell which friend or relative is calling by the timbre of the person’s voice, zebra finches have a near-human capacity for language mapping.
(Desert Research Institute) Climate change and a “thirsty atmosphere” will bring more extreme wildfire danger and multi-year droughts to Nevada and California by the end of this century, according to new research from the Desert Research Institute (DRI), the Scripps Institution of Oceanography at the University of California, San Diego, and the University of California, Merced.