Understanding the ecology and distributions of species in Amazonia is hampered by lack of information about environmental conditions, such as soils. Plant occurrence data are typically more abundant than soil samples in poorly known areas, and researchers from Finland and Brazil have now developed a method that uses both plant and soil data to produce a map of soil properties.
Cannabidiol (CBD), a non-psychoactive compound in cannabis, is being touted as beneficial for many health conditions, ranging from anxiety to epilepsy. Although much more research is needed to verify these claims, scientists have now shown that CBD could have a different use as a 'Trojan horse': helping slip medications across the blood-brain barrier (BBB) and into mouse brains. The researchers report their results in the ACS journal Molecular Pharmaceutics.
Contamination of rice with arsenic is a major problem in some regions of the world with high rice consumption. Now, researchers reporting in the ACS journal Environmental Science & Technology have found a way to reduce inorganic arsenic in rice by modifying processing methods at traditional, small-scale parboiling plants in Bangladesh. The new method has the added benefit of increasing the calcium content of rice, the researchers say.
A group of scientists from Tokyo University of Science have discovered a new way to regenerate flowering plant tissues, opening possibilities of mitigating global food shortage problem.
In a paper recently published in the journal Biological Conservation, an international team of conservationists highlights the importance of tree dens as a choice for pandas raising infants in native habitats. The study, conducted in Fengtongzai Reserve in China, analyzed the difference in microhabitats of cave dens and tree dens used by female pandas. The result of the research suggests that conservation efforts need to take into account species use of microhabitats and habitat features as well as overall ecological systems.
Farmers can't predict their annual corn harvest with certainty, but with the help of new research from Michigan State University, they can now pinpoint specific parts of their fields that consistently produce either good or bad yields. Not only will this save them time and money; it will solve one of the most widespread environmental problems facing crop-producing regions -- nitrogen loss.
Pollen genes mutate naturally in only some strains of corn, according to Rutgers-led research that helps explain the genetic instability in certain strains and may lead to better breeding of corn and other crops.
When it comes to stem cell management, all flowering plants work to maintain the same status quo. Researchers have now identified the various strategies plants use to preserve a single, essential genetic circuit.
In the quest to separate the good traits from the bad, bioinformatics (computational biology) research at the Earlham Institute (EI), using a data driven strategy in wheat, find the first ever gene associated with gene conversion in plants -- marking an important step in global initiative Designing Future Wheat.
In contrast to mammals, where the body plan is final at birth, the formation of new root branches ensures that the root system keeps growing throughout a plant's life. Scientists from the VIB-UGent Center for Plant Systems Biology, together with researchers from UK, Germany and Denmark identified a novel component that controls the development of root branches supporting plants.