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Life Sciences - 29.05.2024
The hunger games
The hunger games
Why do primates have big brains? In the Panamanian rainforest, scientists pitted large-brained primates against smaller-brained mammals to find out who was the smartest forager Primates, including humans, have larger brains than most other mammals, but why? Scientists searching for the answer have long followed a trail pointing to diet-specifically fruit-as the reason for why primates evolved larger brains.

Life Sciences - Chemistry - 28.05.2024
Cancer Research: DNA Repair Mechanism Further Elucidated
Cancer Research: DNA Repair Mechanism Further Elucidated
Researchers at the University of Würzburg, led by Caroline Kisker in cooperation with Claudia Höbartner, discovered how the protein XPD detects a severe DNA damage and controls its repair. The XPD protein is a central component of our body's own 'DNA repair team', known as nucleotide excision repair (NER).

Health - Life Sciences - 27.05.2024
How bacteria can influence our behavior
How bacteria can influence our behavior
The gut microbiome influences our decisions in social contexts. This is the conclusion of a study led by Sorbonne Université and INSEAD with the participation of the University of Bonn and the University Hospital Bonn (UKB). The study has been published in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences Nexus .

Life Sciences - Chemistry - 23.05.2024
New Insights Into the Evolution of the Prion Protein
New Insights Into the Evolution of the Prion Protein
A study from Bochum describes a mammal-specific domain of the prion protein and offers new approaches for research into neurodegenerative diseases. At first, they cause memory deficits and difficulties in walking, finally they inhibit elementary motor skills and destroy basic brain functions: Prion diseases are progressive and invariably fatal neurodegenerative diseases.

Life Sciences - 22.05.2024
Finding the beat of collective animal motion
Finding the beat of collective animal motion
Virtual Reality experiments have illuminated the rhythmic glue that could keep animals moving in synchrony Across nature, animals from swarming insects to herding mammals can organize into seemingly choreographed motion. Over the last two decades, scientists have discovered that these coordinated movements arise from each animal following simple rules about where their neighbors are located.

Health - Life Sciences - 22.05.2024
Tracking down rare hereditary diseases
Tracking down rare hereditary diseases
Dynamic structure of FLVCR proteins and their function in nutrient transport in our cells revealed It is known that malfunctions of the proteins FLVCR1 and FLVCR2 lead to rare hereditary diseases in humans that cause motor, sensory and neurological disorders. However, the biochemical mechanisms behind this and the physiological functions of the FLVCR proteins have been unclear to date.

Environment - Life Sciences - 17.05.2024
Regional differences in bird diversity in agroforestry systems
Regional differences in bird diversity in agroforestry systems
International research team investigates benefits of forest proximity for cocoa cultivation   The diversity and ecological functionality of bird communities in tropical agroforestry systems are shaped by the surrounding landscape, in particular the extent and composition of the forest. An international research team led by the University of Göttingen has now investigated the composition and ecological traits of bird communities in 23 cocoa agroforestry systems in Peru.

Life Sciences - 17.05.2024
Restrict Use of 'Tipp-Ex Proteins'
Restrict Use of ’Tipp-Ex Proteins’
University of Bonn study shows that molecules that modify copies of genes are only permitted in certain cell organelles Plants have special corrective molecules at their disposal that can make retrospective modifications to copies of genes. However, it would appear that these "Tipp-Ex proteins" do not have permission to work in all'areas of the cell, only being used in chloroplasts and mitochondria.

Life Sciences - 16.05.2024
Termite Symbiosis in Transition
Termite Symbiosis in Transition
Genetic analyses show how the metabolic capacities of symbiotic bacteria in the gut of termites have changed over the course of evolution Researchers at the Max Planck Institute for Terrestrial Microbiology in Marburg, Germany, have analysed the evolutionary development of symbiotic bacteria in the intestines of termites with regard to their metabolic capabilities.

Pharmacology - Life Sciences - 16.05.2024
A Second Chance for New Antibiotic Agent
Twenty years ago, a drug candidate was rejected due to its side effects. Researchers have now figured out how to potentially make a successor molecule more selective. An increasing number of bacteria have become resistant to many commonly used antibiotics. Researchers from Bochum have discovered a fresh opportunity for a potential active molecule whose predecessor was rejected: By studying its interaction with the bacterial target protein very precisely in three dimensions, they identified a previously undetected point of attack that could be targeted by this compound.

Life Sciences - Earth Sciences - 15.05.2024
Iron-sulfur minerals bear witness to earliest life on earth
Iron-sulfur minerals bear witness to earliest life on earth
A team of researchers at the Universities of Tübingen and Göttingen has found that certain minerals with characteristic shapes could indicate the activity of bacteria in hydrothermal vents - or black smokers - in the deep ocean several billion years ago. This represents a major step in our understanding of the origin of life.

Life Sciences - Chemistry - 14.05.2024
How to Make Ubiquitous Plastics Biodegradable
Understanding the function of a specific bacterial enzyme has paved the way for the biotechnological degradation of styrene. Polystyrene is made from styrene building blocks and is the most widely used plastic in terms of volume, for example in packaging. Unlike PET, which can now be produced and recycled using biotechnological methods, the production of polystyrene has so far been a purely chemical process.

Life Sciences - Environment - 13.05.2024
Organic farming leads to adaptations in the genetic material in plants
Organic farming leads to adaptations in the genetic material in plants
A study carried out at the University of Bonn shows how organically and conventionally farmed plants develop differently Plants adapt genetically over time to the special conditions of organic farming. This has been demonstrated in a long-term study conducted at the University of Bonn. The researchers planted barley plants on two neighboring fields and used conventional farming methods on one and organic methods on the other.

Life Sciences - Agronomy / Food Science - 13.05.2024
Mitosis instead of Meiosis
Mitosis instead of Meiosis
Researchers breed tomato plants that contain the complete genetic material of both parent plants In a new study, led by Charles Underwood from the Max Planck Institute for Plant Breeding Research in Cologne, Germany, scientists established a system to generate clonal sex cells in tomato plants and used them to design the genomes of offspring.

Life Sciences - Earth Sciences - 09.05.2024
Rhizobial bacterium helps diatom to bind nitrogen
Rhizobial bacterium helps diatom to bind nitrogen
Newly discovered symbiosis probably plays a major role in marine nitrogen fixation Scientists from the Max Planck Institute for Marine Microbiology have discovered a new partnership between a marine diatom and a bacterium that can account for a large share of nitrogen fixation in vast regions of the ocean.

Life Sciences - Chemistry - 08.05.2024
New Function of Oncoproteins
New Function of Oncoproteins
Researchers at the University of Würzburg have discovered a new function of the oncoprotein MYCN: It not only helps cancer cells to grow stronger, but also makes them more resistant to drugs. Oncoproteins are actually vital to human survival: thousands of them in our bodies ensure that cells grow and divide.

Environment - Life Sciences - 08.05.2024
Where wildlife is welcome
Where wildlife is welcome
Study on the acceptance of animals in urban environments How do city residents feel about animals in their immediate surroundings' A recent study by the Technical University of Munich (TUM), the University of Jena and the Vienna University of Technology shows how different the acceptance of various wild animals in urban areas is.

Health - Life Sciences - 07.05.2024
When the cerebellum becomes active
When the cerebellum becomes active
A new study shows that the cerebellum is involved in processing emotions. This is important to know when caring for people with ataxia. For a long time, the fact that the cerebellum also plays an important role in regulating our emotions - such as when processing fear - has been ignored. Professor Melanie Mark from Ruhr-University Bochum and Professor Dagmar Timmann from the University of Duisburg-Essen are two of the first researchers to provide experimental evidence that the cerebellum contributes towards both the learning and the extinction of conditioned fear responses.

Life Sciences - Environment - 02.05.2024
Taking root on land
Taking root on land
Around 550 million years ago, the Earth's surface was a barren land mass surrounded by oceans. Almost all lifeforms that had evolved up to that point existed exclusively in the oceans. Then, however, the first plants made their way onto land-not only making the Earth greener but also fundamentally transforming the atmosphere, the climate and overall conditions of life on our planet.

Life Sciences - Environment - 02.05.2024
Genomes of 'star algae' shed light on origin of plants
Genomes of ’star algae’ shed light on origin of plants
International research team generates first genomes of complex closest relatives of land plants Land plants cover the surface of our planet and often tower over us. They form complex bodies with multiple organs that consist of a broad range of cell types. Developing this morphological complexity is underpinned by intricate networks of genes, whose coordinated action shapes plant bodies through various molecular mechanisms.
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