Biologists at the University of California, San Diego have identified a key protein that links the morning and evening components of the daily biological clock of plants. Their discovery, detailed in the March 13 issue of Science, solves a longstanding puzzle about the underlying biochemical mechanisms that control plant clocks and could provide a new way to increase the growth and yield of agricultural crops.
The long tails sported by many male birds in the tropics look like they're a drag to carry around and a distinct disadvantage when fleeing predators, but experiments by University of California, Berkeley, biologists shows that they exact only a minimal cost in speed or energy - at least in hummingbirds.
Bacteria and humans tend to live in highly diverse and complex communities. Most interestingly, bacteria and humans appear to prefer to live in a democracy. This is the basic message of a new article in Nature. The article reports that initial high community evenness is a key factor in preserving functional stability of an ecosystem in the face of selective stress.
New software developed with help from the Wildlife Conservation Society will allow tiger researchers to rapidly identify individual animals by creating a three-dimensional model using photos taken by remote cameras. The software, described in an issue of the journal Biology Letters, may also help identify the origin of tigers from confiscated skins.
New finds of 95 million year old fossils reveal much earlier origins of modern octopuses. These are among the rarest and unlikeliest of fossils. The chances of an octopus corpse surviving long enough to be fossilized are so small that prior to this discovery only a single fossil species was known, and from fewer specimens than octopuses have legs.
If you kill more fish, the total population of the species declines. However, kill only small, young fish, the total number of small, young fish increases. This seemingly paradoxical conclusion has far reaching implications for the sustainable management of oceans, and is the result of a theoretical study conducted by a research team led by Prof. AndrÃ© de Roos of the Institute for Biodiversity and Ecosystem Dynamics (IBED), University of Amsterdam.
A team led by researchers from Boston University and the National Institutes of Health has developed a new method for uncovering functional areas of the human genome by studying DNA's three-dimensional structure -- a topographical approach that extends the more familiar analysis of the sequence of the four-letter alphabet of the DNA bases.
Using the natural glue that marine mussels use to stick to rocks, and a variation on the inkjet printer, a team of researchers led by North Carolina State University has devised a new way of making medical adhesives that could replace traditional sutures and result in less scarring, faster recovery times and increased precision for exacting operations such as eye surgery.