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The Lead

How Cannabis Causes Paranoia

July 17, 2014 10:45 am | News | Comments

The largest study of the effects of the main ingredient of cannabis has shown definitively that it can cause short-term paranoia. The research also, for the first time, identifies psychological factors that can lead to feelings of paranoia in people who take cannabis.

A-maize-ing Double Life of a Genome

July 15, 2014 12:06 pm | News | Comments

Early maize farmers selected for genes that improved the harvesting of sunlight, a new detailed...

Deep Within Spinach Leaves, Vibrations Enhance Efficiency of Photosynthesis

July 14, 2014 1:29 pm | News | Comments

Biophysics researchers at the University of Michigan have used short pulses of light to peer...

Aronia Berry Gaining Foothold in U.S.

July 14, 2014 8:20 am | by Margery A. Beck - Associated Press - Associated Press | News | Comments

A new fruit that research says packs more antioxidants than popular "superfoods" like...

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Engineers Turn LEGO Bricks into Scientific Tool to Study Plant Growth

June 27, 2014 1:44 pm | News | Comments

Ludovico Cademartiri was looking for a way to study plant and root growth that was simple, inexpensive and flexible, something that allowed experiments to be reproduced all over the world, even in labs without the latest technologies or the infrastructure required for plant science or agronomy research.

‘Tomato Pill’ Improves Blood Vessel Function

June 10, 2014 12:58 pm | News | Comments

A daily supplement of an extract found in tomatoes may improve the function of blood vessels in patients with cardiovascular disease, according to new research.                          

Sequencing of Citrus Genomes Points to Need for More Genetic Diversity to Fight Disease

June 9, 2014 2:37 pm | News | Comments

Sequencing the genomes of domesticated citrus revealed a very limited genetic diversity that could threaten the crop’s survival prospects, according to a research team that analyzed and compared the genome sequences of 10 diverse citrus varieties. The findings provide insight of how citrus has been cultivated and point to how genomics-guided development could help produce crops that better resist environmental stresses and pests.

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Phaseolus Genome Lends Insights into Nitrogen Fixation

June 9, 2014 2:25 pm | News | Comments

The U.S. Department of Energy Office of Science has targeted research into the common bean because of its importance in enhancing nitrogen use efficiency for sustainability of bioenergy crops, and for increasing plant resilience and productivity with fewer inputs, on marginal lands, and in the face of the changing climate and environment.

Scientists Discover Basis of Allergic Reactions

June 5, 2014 12:27 pm | News | Comments

While it was known that a specific birch pollen protein causes the immune system to overreact, the exact reason why many people are allergic to birch pollen had not yet been fully clarified. Now, scientists at the Vetmeduni Vienna have discovered what makes the protein an allergen.

Mixed Signals

May 27, 2014 1:42 pm | by Skip Derra | Articles | Comments

The intimate interaction between a plant and its environment has sent some puzzling cues to scientists trying to determine how, at the molecular level, a plant becomes infected by bacteria. At this level, researchers have found that plants sometimes beckon the bacteria in a seemingly counterintuitive action to its health.

Algae “See” a Wide Spectrum of Light

May 1, 2014 1:42 pm | Videos | Comments

Aquatic algae can sense an unexpectedly wide range of color, allowing them to sense and adapt to changing light conditions in lakes and oceans. Phytochromes are the eyes of a plant, allowing it to detect changes in the color, intensity, and quality of light so that the plant can react and adapt. Typically about 20 percent of a plant’s genes are regulated by phytochromes.

Secrets Behind Health Benefits of Wine Revealed

April 29, 2014 12:22 pm | News | Comments

Scientists have identified one of the molecular pathways that resveratrol, the component of grapes and red wine associated with health benefits, uses to achieve its beneficial action.                   

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Eat More Vegetables, Live a Longer Life

April 23, 2014 1:56 pm | by Cynthia Fox | Articles | Comments

We should eat even more vegetables than our governments— and moms— said. A recent study found that eating seven (or more) servings of veggies and fruits a day extends life by what the authors bill as a “staggering” 42 percent.       

Ginseng Can Treat, Prevent Influenza

April 21, 2014 12:17 pm | News | Comments

Ginseng can help treat and prevent influenza and respiratory syncytial virus (RSV), a respiratory virus that infects the lungs and breathing passages, according to new research findings.                   

New Technique Will Accelerate Genetic Characterization of Photosynthesis

April 16, 2014 1:26 pm | News | Comments

Photosynthesis provides fixed carbon and energy for nearly all life on Earth, yet many aspects of this fascinating process remain mysterious. For example, little is known about how it is regulated in response to changes in light intensity. More fundamentally, we do not know the full list of the parts of the molecular machines that perform photosynthesis in any organism.

Discovery Could Yield More Efficient Plants for Biofuels

March 18, 2014 2:55 pm | News | Comments

Genetically modifying a key protein complex in plants could lead to improved crops for the production of cellulosic biofuels, a Purdue University study says. Clint Chapple, distinguished professor of biochemistry, and fellow researchers generated a mutant Arabidopsis plant whose cell walls can be converted easily into fermentable sugars but does not display the stunted growth patterns of similar mutants.

Small-RNA Pathway Defends Genome Against the Enemy Within

March 17, 2014 1:50 pm | News | Comments

Reproductive cells, such as an egg and sperm, join to form stem cells that can mature into any tissue type. But how do reproductive cells arise? We humans are born with all of the reproductive cells that we will ever produce. But in plants things are very different. They first generate mature, adult cells and only later “reprogram” some of them to produce eggs and sperm.

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Genetic Discovery to Keep Crops Disease-free

February 10, 2014 1:45 pm | News | Comments

Curtin University researchers have found a way to breed disease-resistant wheat with no downside, potentially bringing multi-million dollar savings to Australia’s agricultural industry. According to John Curtin Distinguished Professor Richard Oliver, Director of the Australian Centre for Necrotrophic Fungal Pathogens at Curtin, farmers can lose more than 0.35 tonnes per hectare in wheat yields to Yellow Spot, even after applying fungicide.

RNA Sequencing of 750-year-old Barley Virus Sheds New Light on the Crusades

February 6, 2014 3:51 pm | News | Comments

Scientists have for the first time sequenced an ancient RNA genomeof a barley virus once believed to be only 150 years old— pushing its origin back at least 2,000 years and revealing how intense farming at the time of the Crusades contributed to its spread.

Nuts Were All Our Big Brains Needed Millions of Years Ago

January 22, 2014 9:35 am | by Cynthia Fox | Articles | Comments

Nuts are in the news: a recent study has offered evidence for a big reason our bodies are so nuts for nuts. They are apparently almost all our big brains needed to survive— thus almost all we ate— from 1.4 to 2.4 million years ago.    

Researchers Differentiate Between Microbial Good and Evil

January 9, 2014 11:48 am | News | Comments

To safely use bacteria in agriculture to help fertilize crops, it is vital to understand the difference between harmful and healthy strains. But can the microbial good and evil be told apart? Yes, life scientists and an international team of researchers report.

New Invasive Plant Parasitic Nematode in Europe

December 30, 2013 9:33 am | News | Comments

Following its recent synonymisation with Meloidogyne ulmi, a species known to parasitize elm trees in Europe, it has become clear that M. mali has been in the Netherlands for more than fifty years. Evidences given by the authors suggest that M. mali was probably introduced during the breeding program on Elms against the Dutch Elm Disease (DED).

Significant Step Forward in Biofuels Quest

December 23, 2013 11:53 am | News | Comments

Scientists at the University of York have made a significant step in the search to develop effective second generation biofuels. Researchers from the Department of Chemistry at York have discovered a family of enzymes that can degrade hard-to-digest biomass into its constituent sugars.

Some Plants May Not Adapt to Climate Change

December 23, 2013 10:56 am | News | Comments

Using the largest dated evolutionary tree of flowering plants ever assembled, a new study suggests how plants developed traits to withstand low temperatures, with implications that human-induced climate change may pose a bigger threat than initially thought to plants and global agriculture.

Marijuana Users Show Brain Changes Similar to Schizophrenia

December 17, 2013 10:49 am | News | Comments

Teens who were heavy marijuana users- smoking it daily for about three years- had abnormal changes in their brain structures related to working memory and performed poorly on memory tasks, according to a new study.           

Probing the Link Between Parkinson’s, Pesticides

December 4, 2013 11:37 am | News | Comments

In a seemingly simple experiment, a scientist exposes rats to a certain pesticide over several days, and the rodents start showing symptoms remarkably similar to those seen in Parkinson’s patients.               

Cannabinoids Can Limit Neurological Stroke Damage

December 3, 2013 11:58 am | News | Comments

Chemical compounds found in cannabis, some of which also occur naturally in the body, may help to reduce brain damage following a stroke, new research has revealed.                         

Scientists Capture 'Redox Moments' in Living Cells

November 26, 2013 11:11 am | News | Comments

Scientists have charted a significant signaling network in a tiny organism that's big in the world of biofuels research.                                     

Allergies Linked to Increased Blood Cancer Risk

November 25, 2013 2:45 pm | News | Comments

A team of scientists looking into the interplay of the immune system and cancer have found a link between a history of airborne allergies– in particular to plants, grass and trees– with risk of blood cancers in women.         

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