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The extraordinary powers of bacteria visualized in real time

Bacterial cell culture (stock image). Credit: © sinhyu / Adobe Stock The global spread of antibiotic resistance is a major public health issue and a priority for international microbiology research. In his paper to be published in the journal Science, Christian Lesterlin, Inserm researcher at Lyon's "Molecular Microbiology and Structural Biochemistry" laboratory (CNRS/Université Claude Bernard…

Mites and ticks are close relatives, new research shows

Mite illustration. Credit: © peterschreiber.media / Adobe Stock Scientists from the University of Bristol and the Natural History Museum in London have reconstructed the evolutionary history of the chelicerates, the mega-diverse group of 110,000 arthropods that includes spiders, scorpions, mites and ticks. They found, for the first time, genomic evidence that mites and ticks do…

Mites and ticks are close relatives, new research shows

Mite illustration. Credit: © peterschreiber.media / Adobe Stock Scientists from the University of Bristol and the Natural History Museum in London have reconstructed the evolutionary history of the chelicerates, the mega-diverse group of 110,000 arthropods that includes spiders, scorpions, mites and ticks. They found, for the first time, genomic evidence that mites and ticks do…

Civil War plant medicines blast drug-resistant bacteria in lab tests

Flower of tulip tree (Liriodendron tulipifera). Credit: © kazakovmaksim / Adobe Stock During the height of the Civil War, the Confederate Surgeon General commissioned a guide to traditional plant remedies of the South, as battlefield physicians faced high rates of infections among the wounded and shortages of conventional medicines. A new study of three of…

Plant stem cells require low oxygen levels

Arabidopsis (stock image). Credit: © Vasiliy Koval / Adobe Stock Plants function as the green lungs of our planet. Rightfully so, due to the capacity of a large single tree releasing more than 120 kg of oxygen into the Earth's atmosphere every year through a series of sunlight-fuelled reactions in photosynthesis. However during flood events,…

Cocktails with Cleopatra?

Beer bubbles (stock image). Credit: © tonovavania / Adobe Stock What kind of beer did the Pharaohs drink? In ancient times, beer was an important ingredient in people's daily diet. Great powers were attributed to beer in the ancient world, particularly for religious worship and healing properties. The pottery used to produce beer in antiquity…

Penguins and their chicks’ responses to local fish numbers informs marine...

African penguins. Credit: © Nico Smit / Adobe Stock How adult penguins fish and the body condition of their chicks are directly linked to local fish abundance, and could potentially inform fishery management, a new study has found. The researchers studied an endangered African penguin colony during a rare three-year closure of commercial fisheries around…

Baby tiger sharks eat songbirds

Tiger shark. Credit: © frantisek hojdysz / Adobe Stock Tiger sharks have a reputation for being the "garbage cans of the sea" -- they'll eat just about anything, from dolphins and sea turtles to rubber tires. But before these top predators grow to their adult size of 15 feet, young tiger sharks have an even…

Synthetic biologists hack bacterial sensors

Bacteria illustrations (stock image). Credit: © pandawild / Adobe Stock Rice University synthetic biologists have hacked bacterial sensing with a plug-and-play system that could be used to mix-and-match tens of thousands of sensory inputs and genetic outputs. The technology has wide-ranging implications for medical diagnostics, the study of deadly pathogens, environmental monitoring and more. In…

Ammonium fertilized early life on Earth

Early Earth concept. Credit: © Pavel Parmenov / Adobe Stock A team of international scientists -- including researchers at the University of St. Andrews, Syracuse University and Royal Holloway, University of London -- has demonstrated a new source of food for early life on the planet. Life on Earth relies on the availability of critical…

Synthetic biologists hack bacterial sensors

Bacteria illustrations (stock image). Credit: © pandawild / Adobe Stock Rice University synthetic biologists have hacked bacterial sensing with a plug-and-play system that could be used to mix-and-match tens of thousands of sensory inputs and genetic outputs. The technology has wide-ranging implications for medical diagnostics, the study of deadly pathogens, environmental monitoring and more. In…

Anxiety might be alleviated by regulating gut bacteria

Gut microbes illustration. Credit: © nobeastsofierce / Adobe Stock People who experience anxiety symptoms might be helped by taking steps to regulate the microorganisms in their gut using probiotic and non-probiotic food and supplements, suggests a review of studies published today in the journal General Psychiatry. Anxiety symptoms are common in people with mental diseases…

How egg cells choose their best powerhouses to pass on

Mitochondria illustration. Credit: © Mopic / Adobe Stock Developing egg cells conduct tests to select the healthiest of their energy-making machines to be passed to the next generation. A new study in fruit flies, published online May 15 in Nature, shows how the testing is done. The work focuses on mitochondria, the cellular machines that…

Scientists find new type of cell that helps tadpoles’ tails regenerate

Tadpole. Credit: © Frank / Adobe Stock Researchers at the University of Cambridge have uncovered a specialised population of skin cells that coordinate tail regeneration in frogs. These 'Regeneration-Organizing Cells' help to explain one of the great mysteries of nature and may offer clues about how this ability might be achieved in mammalian tissues. It…

Researchers unravel mechanisms that control cell size

Dividing cells illustration. Credit: © Kateryna_Kon / Adobe Stock Working with bacteria, a multidisciplinary team at the University of California San Diego has provided new insight into a longstanding question in science: What are the underlying mechanisms that control the size of cells? Nearly five years ago a team led by Suckjoon Jun, a biophysicist…

Dangerous pathogens use this sophisticated machinery to infect hosts

Pathogens illustration (stock image). Credit: © beawolf / Adobe Stock Gastric cancer, Q fever, Legionnaires' disease, whooping cough -- though the infectious bacteria that cause these dangerous diseases are each different, they all utilize the same molecular machinery to infect human cells. Bacteria use this machinery, called a Type IV secretion system (T4SS), to inject…

Researchers unravel mechanisms that control cell size

Dividing cells illustration. Credit: © Kateryna_Kon / Adobe Stock Working with bacteria, a multidisciplinary team at the University of California San Diego has provided new insight into a longstanding question in science: What are the underlying mechanisms that control the size of cells? Nearly five years ago a team led by Suckjoon Jun, a biophysicist…

Neanderthals and modern humans diverged at least 800,000 years ago, research...

Neanderthal vs human skull (stock image). Credit: © Bruder / Adobe Stock Neanderthals and modern humans diverged at least 800,000 years ago, substantially earlier than indicated by most DNA-based estimates, according to new research by a UCL academic. The research, published in Science Advances, analysed dental evolutionary rates across different hominin species, focusing on early…

Dangerous pathogens use this sophisticated machinery to infect hosts

Pathogens illustration (stock image). Credit: © beawolf / Adobe Stock Gastric cancer, Q fever, Legionnaires' disease, whooping cough -- though the infectious bacteria that cause these dangerous diseases are each different, they all utilize the same molecular machinery to infect human cells. Bacteria use this machinery, called a Type IV secretion system (T4SS), to inject…

Neanderthals and modern humans diverged at least 800,000 years ago, research...

Neanderthal vs human skull (stock image). Credit: © Bruder / Adobe Stock Neanderthals and modern humans diverged at least 800,000 years ago, substantially earlier than indicated by most DNA-based estimates, according to new research by a UCL academic. The research, published in Science Advances, analysed dental evolutionary rates across different hominin species, focusing on early…

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