Friday, October 16, 2020

science news 16.10.2020

Today's selection of science news. Links are normally to press releases on EurekAlert (at the bottom end I may also add a couple of newspaper stories). I include quotes from the summary in italics in cases where the title alone doesn't reveal what the story is about. My own thoughts appear without italics if I have any.

evolution

Monkey study suggests that they, like humans, may have 'self-domesticated'
Asif Ghazanfar led a team of scientists who determined that changing an infant monkey's verbal development also changed a physical marker of domesticity: a patch of white fur on its forehead. This is the first study linking the degree of a social trait with the size of a physical sign of domestication, in any species.

ecology

Bark beetle outbreaks benefit wild bee populations, habitat

Cows prefer "live" co-moo-nication, study reveals

light and life

Researchers deconstruct the "biological clock" that regulates birdsong < >

A team of researchers from Penn State and New York University has deconstructed an important "biological clock" in the zebra finch brain and found that the "wires" between neurons, called axons, play a critical role in the precise timing of the birds' courtship song.
Credit: Christopher Auger-Dominguez

biomedical

Bats save energy by reducing energetically costly immune functions during annual migration
relevant for zoonoses including covid, hence biomedical of sorts.

sustainability

Artificial cyanobacterial biofilm can sustain green ethylene production for over a month

dystopian futures

Researchers develop framework to identify health impacts of self-driving vehicles
Loving the use of the word "impacts" in that title.

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From the news media:

Have some blue fluorescent tardigrades

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