703,875 articles

Researchers have used a novel and first-of-its-kind newborn mouse model to study the effect of high oxygen concentrations, or hyperoxia, on lung development of newborn mice that are germ-free -- meaning no microbes colonizing their lungs. Their goal is to learn how differences in the types of microbes that already colonize human lungs at birth -- including extremely premature infants -- can protect or make an infant more susceptible to life-threatening bronchopulmonary dysplasia, or BPD.

A recent study demonstrates a new way to tune the properties of 2D materials simply by adjusting the twist angle between them. The researchers built devices consisting of monolayer graphene encapsulated between two crystals of boron nitride and, by adjusting the relative twist angle between the layers, they were able to create multiple moiré pattern--''the first time anyone has seen the full rotational dependence of coexisting moiré superlattices in one device.''

Researchers applied a new modeling approach for long-term planning of the U.S. power grid under future climate and water resource conditions. The new approach shows the grid may need an additional 5.3% to 12% of power-generating capacity to meet demand and reliability requirements. The changes would lower water use and carbon emissions, potentially helping mitigate future climate changes.

31.7% of tropical Africa's vascular plant species could be threatened with extinction, reveals an international study. Using a new approach based on the key elements of the assessment process used by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN), for the first time researchers have been able to assess the potential conservation status of tropical flora on the scale of a continent.

Getting to the doctor's office for a check-up can be challenging for someone with a neurological disorder that impairs their movement, such as a stroke. But what if the patient could just take a video clip of their movements with a smart phone and forward the results to their doctor? Work by Dr. Hardeep Ryait and colleagues at CCBN-University of Lethbridge in Alberta, Canada, publishing November 21 in the open-access journal PLOS Biology, shows how this might one day be possible.

When pathogens invade cells, our body combats them using various methods. Researchers at the University of Basel's Biozentrum have now been able to show how a cellular pump keeps such invading pathogens in check. As the researchers report in Science, this pump causes a magnesium shortage, which in turn restricts bacterial growth.

What individual differences in neural activity predict the future escalation of alcohol drinking from casual to compulsive? The neurobiological mechanisms that gate the transition from moderate to compulsive drinking remain poorly understood. We longitudinally tracked the development of compulsive drinking across a binge-drinking experience in male mice. Binge drinking unmasked individual differences, revealing latent traits in alcohol consumption and compulsive drinking despite equal prior exposure to alcohol. Distinct neural activity signatures of cortical neurons projecting to the brainstem before binge drinking predicted the ultimate emergence of compulsivity. Mimicry of activity patterns that predicted drinking phenotypes was sufficient to bidirectionally modulate drinking. Our results provide a mechanistic explanation for individual variance in vulnerability to compulsive alcohol drinking.

Legumes develop root nodules in symbiosis with nitrogen-fixing rhizobial bacteria. Rhizobia evoke cell division of differentiated cortical cells into root nodule primordia for accommodating bacterial symbionts. In this study, we show that NODULE INCEPTION (NIN), a transcription factor in Lotus japonicus that is essential for initiating cortical cell divisions during nodulation, regulates the gene ASYMMETRIC LEAVES 2-LIKE 18/LATERAL ORGAN BOUNDARIES DOMAIN 16a (ASL18/LBD16a). Orthologs of ASL18/LBD16a in nonlegume plants are required for lateral root development. Coexpression of ASL18a and the CCAAT box–binding protein Nuclear Factor-Y (NF-Y) subunits, which are also directly targeted by NIN, partially suppressed the nodulation-defective phenotype of L. japonicus daphne mutants, in which cortical expression of NIN was attenuated. Our results demonstrate that ASL18a and NF-Y together regulate nodule organogenesis. Thus, a lateral root developmental pathway is incorporated downstream of NIN to drive nodule symbiosis.

Understanding how novel complex traits originate is a foundational challenge in evolutionary biology. We investigated the origin of prothoracic horns in scarabaeine beetles, one of the most pronounced examples of secondary sexual traits in the animal kingdom. We show that prothoracic horns derive from bilateral source tissues; that diverse wing genes are functionally required for instructing this process; and that, in the absence of Hox input, prothoracic horn primordia transform to contribute to ectopic wings. Once induced, however, the transcriptional profile of prothoracic horns diverges markedly from that of wings and other wing serial homologs. Our results substantiate the serial homology between prothoracic horns and insects wings and suggest that other insect innovations may derive similarly from wing serial homologs and the concomitant establishment of structure-specific transcriptional landscapes.