Education

The Root 100 2014 is seeking your nominations. DEADLINE IS MONDAY. They are …just about ready to celebrate the innovators, the trailblazers and the influencers in the African-American community who have caught our attention in the past year. [They] will announce The Root 100 of 2014 and celebrate these 25-45-year-olds who are paving the way…

Day 4 — All the rest of the world

Yesterday was policy day, as far as keynote speakers were concerned. Lidia Brito is the UNESCO director of science policy and capacity building. Among the usual points about the need to change, building capacity and recognizing stakeholders, here is what I believe is her take home message: Science is changing, and that’s a good thing.…

  It is not surprising that Biwa salmon (image above), a subspecies of Oncorhyncus masou, do not adapt to seawater very well after having been landlocked in Lake Biwa, Japan for the last 500,000 years or so.  Researchers from Hokkaido University and Shiga Prefecture Fishery Experiment Station in Japan wanted to know what caused the salmon to…

New research published in PLOS Genetics shows that starving C. elegans (Caenorhabditis elegans) during the late larval stage of development when the worms are undergoing tissue growth and formation halts cellular activity at previously unknown checkpoints in their development. These findings show that nutrition is an important cue to signal whether or not the worms should…

Smashing Stuff and Making Ice Cream

A few weeks back, a Union alumnus who works at Troy Prep contacted the college to arrange a visit for a bunch of second-graders, and asked if faculty would be willing to arrange talks and demos for the kids. I said something like “Sure, we could probably make liquid nitrogen ice cream for them,” and…

Day 1 — continued

I should start with the ESOF 2014 opening ceremony, but instead, I need to go back to the rest of the journalists conference. Specifically to the prize – yes there was a prize. It went to a guy with dreadlocks down past his waist who stages science events in Christiania — the still-existent hippie/anarchist community…

Today is the “First” European Science Journalists’ Conference. So far, we are in the midst of the usual: Is there a crisis in science journalism? Clearly the business is changing, and those who work for the print media feel the pinch, and yet people have access to more reporting on science than before. Kathryn O’Hara…

On My Way

In less than 24 hours I’ll be going through security checks, hoping my stopover in Warsaw will go smoothly. Nothing is packed yet, but the credit card that was eaten by a voracious ATM at the beginning of the  week has been replaced, gifts have been purchased for various people, included the couple who will…

Shivering is one mechanism by which heat is produced in the body. Heat production is called thermogenesis. Another mechanism is through nonshivering thermogenesis regulated by brown fat (i.e. adipose). This second type of heating mechanism kicks in when we need extra heat production such as a postnatal infant, someone developing a fever, an animal arousing…

The original tree hugger

New research sheds light why koalas (Phascolarctos cinereus) spend so much time hugging trees. As shown in the infrared image above, the trees stay cool on hot days. Since koalas do not sweat, hugging trees is another method to keep their cool in addition to panting and licking their fur. The research also shows that the…