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Key: Meeting Journal Funder
Public Release: 20-Oct-2014
Behavioral Ecology
Built-in billboards: Male bluefin killifish signal different things with different fins
They help fish swim, but fins also advertise a fish's social standing and health. In a new study, researchers report that for the male bluefin killifish (Lucania goodei), each colorful fin presents its own messages to other fish.
National Science Foundation Division of Environmental Biology

Contact: Diana Yates
diya@illinois.edu
217-333-5802
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Public Release: 20-Oct-2014
Integrated Environmental Assessment and Management
Pharmaceuticals and the water-fish-osprey food web
Ospreys do not carry significant amounts of human pharmaceutical chemicals, despite widespread occurrence of these chemicals in water, a recent U.S. Geological Survey and Baylor University study finds. These research findings, published by Integrated Environmental Assessment and Management is the first published study that examines the bioaccumulation of pharmaceuticals in the water-fish-osprey food web.

Contact: Jen Lynch
jen.lynch@setac.org
850-469-150-0109
Society of Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry

Public Release: 20-Oct-2014
Fires in the Egypt River Delta
A NASA satellite has detected a fire in the Egyptian River Delta.
NASA

Contact: Rob Gutro
robert.j.gutro@nasa.gov
NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center

Public Release: 20-Oct-2014
Journal of Hazardous Materials
Fish tale: New study evaluates antibiotic content in farm-raised fish
In a new study, Hansa Done, Ph.D. candidate, and Rolf Halden, Ph.D., researchers at Arizona State University's Biodesign Institute, examine antibiotic use in the rapidly expanding world of global aquaculture.

Contact: Richard Harth
richard.harth@asu.edu
Arizona State University

Public Release: 20-Oct-2014
Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences
WSU researchers see how plants optimize their repair
Researchers led by a Washington State University biologist have found the optimal mechanism by which plants heal the botanical equivalent of a bad sunburn. Their work, published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, could lead to the development of crops that can repair the sun's damage more easily, improving yields and profitability.
Washington State Agricultural Research Center, National Science Foundation, United States-Israel Binational Agricultural Research and Development Fund, Israel Science Foundation, Human Frontier Science Program Organization

Contact: Helmut Kirchhoff
kirchhh@wsu.edu
509-335-3304
Washington State University

Public Release: 20-Oct-2014
Geophysical Research Letters
Massive debris pile reveals risk of huge tsunamis in Hawaii
A mass of marine debris discovered in a giant sinkhole in the Hawaiian islands provides evidence that at least one mammoth tsunami, larger than any in Hawaii's recorded history, has struck the islands, and that a similar disaster could happen again, new research finds. Scientists are reporting that a wall of water up to nine meters (30 feet) high surged onto Hawaiian shores about 500 years ago. A 9.0-magnitude earthquake off the coast of the Aleutian Islands triggered the mighty wave, which left behind up to nine shipping containers worth of ocean sediment in a sinkhole on the island of Kauai.

Contact: Nanci Bompey
nbompey@agu.org
202-777-7524
American Geophysical Union

Public Release: 20-Oct-2014
Nature Communications
Mediterranean, semi-arid ecosystems prove resistant to climate change
Climate change predictions for the Middle East, like other arid regions of the world, are alarming. But in testing these dire predictions, Tel Aviv University ecologists found that, contrary to expectations, no measurable changes in annual vegetation could be seen. None of the crucial vegetation characteristics -- neither species richness and composition, nor density and biomass -- had changed appreciably in the course of the rainfall manipulations.

Contact: George Hunka
ghunka@aftau.org
212-742-9070
American Friends of Tel Aviv University

Public Release: 20-Oct-2014
2014 Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics Food & Nutrition Conference & Expo
Frozen meal eaters have better intakes of key nutrients for fewer calories than QSR eaters
New data presented today at the 2014 Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics Food & Nutrition Conference & Expo indicate that consumers of frozen meals had higher daily intakes of dietary fiber, potassium, calcium and protein, and lower daily intakes of calories and saturated fat than consumers of quick service restaurant (QSR) meals.
Nestlé USA

Contact: Allison Szeliga
allison.szeliga@interfusecomms.com
646-935-4161
Ketchum New York

Public Release: 20-Oct-2014
When to count the damage?
An international team of academics and activists collaborated to find out what works where, based on the wide variety of experiences with economic valuation in the EJOLT project.

Contact: Maria Jesus Delgado
MariaJesus.Delgado@uab.cat
34-935-814-049
Universitat Autonoma de Barcelona

Public Release: 20-Oct-2014
PLOS ONE
In between red light and blue light
Diatoms play an important role in water quality and in the global climate. They generate about one fourth of the oxygen in the Earth's atmosphere and perform around one-quarter of the global CO2 assimilation, i.e. they convert carbon dioxide into organic substances. Their light receptors are a crucial factor in this process. Researchers at Leipzig University and UFZ have now discovered that blue and red light sensing photoreceptors control the carbon flow in these algae.
German Research Foundation

Contact: Tilo Arnhold
presse@ufz.de
49-341-235-1635
Helmholtz Centre for Environmental Research - UFZ

Public Release: 16-Oct-2014
Geophysical Research Letters
NASA study finds 1934 had worst drought of last thousand years
A new study using a reconstruction of North American drought history over the last 1,000 years found that the drought of 1934 was the driest and most widespread of the last millennium.
NASA

Contact: Ellen Gray
ellen.t.gray@nasa.gov
301-286-1950
NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center

Public Release: 16-Oct-2014
Remote Sensing
First detailed map of aboveground forest carbon stocks in Mexico unveiled
Available for download today, the Woods Hole Research Center and Allianza MREDD+ released the first detailed map of aboveground forest carbon stocks of Mexico. This carbon stock inventory is very valuable for Mexico, as one of the first tropical nations to voluntarily pledge to mitigation actions within the context of the United Nation's Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and forest Degradation program.
United States Agency for International Development, Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation, Google.org, David and Lucille Packard Foundation

Contact: Eunice Youmans
eyoumans@whrc.org
508-444-1509
Woods Hole Research Center

Public Release: 16-Oct-2014
Food Additives and Contaminants A
Some rice-based foods for people with celiac disease contain relevant amounts of arsenic
Rice is one of the few cereal grains consumed by people with celiac disease, as it does not contain gluten. However, it can have high concentrations of a toxic substance -- arsenic -- as revealed by the analyses of flour, cakes, bread, pasta and other foods made with rice, conducted by researchers from the Miguel Hernández University of Elche, Spain. The European Union is working to establish the maximum quantities of arsenic in these products.

Contact: SINC
info@agenciasinc.es
34-914-251-820
FECYT - Spanish Foundation for Science and Technology

Public Release: 16-Oct-2014
Nature
Plant communities produce greater yield than monocultures
Diverse plant communities are more successful and enable higher crop yields than pure monocultures, a European research team headed by ecologists from the University of Zurich has discovered. The scientists are convinced that the cultivation of crop mixtures in agriculture and forestry will play a key role in food safety in the future.

Contact: Bernhard Schmid
bernhard.schmid@ieu.uzh.ch
41-796-819-936
University of Zurich

Public Release: 16-Oct-2014
Science
Loss of big predators could leave herbivores in a thorny situation
Global declines in carnivore populations could embolden plant eaters to increasingly dine on succulent vegetation, driving losses in plant and tree biodiversity, according to UBC research published today in Science.

Contact: Heather Amos
heather.amos@ubc.ca
604-822-3213
University of British Columbia

Public Release: 16-Oct-2014
Aquatic Biosystems
Study recommends ongoing assessment of impact of offshore wind farms on marine species
Offshore wind power is a valuable source of renewable energy that can help reduce carbon emissions. Technological advances are allowing higher capacity turbines to be installed in deeper water, but there is still much unknown about the effects on the environment. In a recent paper, University of Maryland Center for Environmental Science researcher Helen Bailey reviews the potential impacts of offshore wind developments on marine species and make recommendations for future monitoring and assessment as interest in offshore wind energy grows around the world.

Contact: Amy Pelsinsky
apelsinsky@umces.edu
410-330-1389
University of Maryland Center for Environmental Science

Public Release: 16-Oct-2014
Current Biology
Cell architecture: Finding common ground
When it comes to cellular architecture, function follows form. Plant cells contain a dynamic cytoskeleton, which is responsible for directing cell growth, development, movement, and division. Over time, changes in the cytoskeleton form the shape and behavior of cells and, ultimately, the structure and function of the organism. New work hones in on how one particular organizational protein influences cytoskeletal and cellular structure in plants, findings that may also have implications for animal cytoskeletal organization.

Contact: David Ehrhardt
dehrhardt@carnegiescience.edu
650-325-1521 x261
Carnegie Institution

Public Release: 16-Oct-2014
PLOS Pathogens
To wilt or not to wilt: MicroRNAs determine tomato susceptibility to Fusarium fungus
Plant breeders have long identified and cultivated disease-resistant varieties. A study published on Oct. 16 in PLOS Pathogens reveals the molecular basis for resistance and susceptibility to a common fungus that causes wilt in susceptible tomato plants.

Contact: Katherine Borkovich
Katherine.Borkovich@ucr.edu
PLOS

Public Release: 16-Oct-2014
Current Biology
Amphibians being wiped out by emerging viruses
Scientists tracing the real-time impact of viruses in the wild have found that entire amphibian communities are being killed off by closely related viruses introduced to mountainous areas of northern Spain. Researchers from UCL, Zoological Society of London and Queen Mary University of London in the UK, and the National Museum of Natural Sciences in Madrid, Spain found the viruses are causing severe disease and mass deaths in many amphibian species sampled, including frogs and salamanders.

Contact: Rebecca Caygill
r.caygill@ucl.ac.uk
020-310-83846
University College London

Public Release: 16-Oct-2014
Current Biology
Amphibian communities collapse in wake of viral outbreak
Two closely related viruses that have been introduced to northern Spain in recent years have already led to the collapse of three different species of amphibian -- the common midwife toad, the common toad, and the alpine newt -- in the protected area of Picos de Europa National Park. In all, six amphibian species have suffered from severe disease and mass mortality and researchers say that the viruses appear to be on the move.

Contact: Mary Beth O'Leary
moleary@cell.com
617-397-2802
Cell Press

Public Release: 15-Oct-2014
Geophysical Research Letters
Rivers flow differently over gravel beds, study finds
River beds, where flowing water meets silt, sand and gravel, are critical ecological zones. Yet how water flows in a river with a gravel bed is very different from the traditional model of a sandy river bed, according to a new study that compares their fluid dynamics. The findings establish new parameters for river modeling that better represent reality, with implications for field researchers and water resource managers.

Contact: Liz Ahlberg
eahlberg@illinois.edu
217-244-1073
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Public Release: 15-Oct-2014
Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences
New study shows the importance of jellyfish falls to deep-sea ecosystem
This week, researchers from University of Hawai'i, Norway, and the UK have shown with innovative experiments that a rise in jellyfish blooms near the ocean's surface may lead to jellyfish falls that are rapidly consumed by voracious deep-sea scavengers. Previous anecdotal studies suggested that deep-sea animals might avoid dead jellyfish, causing dead jellyfish from blooms to accumulate and undergo slow degradation by microbes, depleting oxygen at the seafloor and depriving fish and invertebrate scavengers.
Norwegian Research Council

Contact: Marcie Grabowski
mworkman@hawaii.edu
808-956-3151
University of Hawaii ‑ SOEST

Public Release: 15-Oct-2014
Fishery Bulletin
Could sleeper sharks be preying on protected Steller sea lions?
Pacific sleeper sharks, a large, slow-moving species thought of as primarily a scavenger or predator of fish, may be preying on something a bit larger -- protected Steller sea lions in the Gulf of Alaska. A new study has found the first indirect evidence that this cold-blooded shark that can grow to a length of more than 20 feet -- longer than a great white shark -- and may be an opportunistic predator of juvenile Steller sea lions.
North Pacific Marine Research Program, US Department of Commerce

Contact: Markus Horning
markus.horning@oregonstate.edu
541-867-0270
Oregon State University

Public Release: 15-Oct-2014
Analytical Chemistry
Dolphin 'breathalyzer' could help diagnose animal and ocean health
Alcohol consumption isn't the only thing a breath analysis can reveal. Scientists have been studying its possible use for diagnosing a wide range of conditions in humans -- and now in the beloved bottlenose dolphin. In a report in the American Chemical Society journal Analytical Chemistry, one team describes a new instrument that can analyze the metabolites in breath from dolphins, which have been dying in alarming numbers along the Atlantic coast this year.
Office of Naval Research, Hartwell Foundation, NIH/National Center for Advancing Translational Sciences

Contact: Michael Bernstein
m_bernstein@acs.org
202-872-6042
American Chemical Society

Public Release: 15-Oct-2014
Global Change Biology
Climate change not responsible for altering forest tree composition
Change in disturbance regimes -- rather than a change in climate -- is largely responsible for altering the composition of Eastern forests, according to a researcher in Penn State's College of Agricultural Sciences.
US Department of Agriculture Forest Service

Contact: A'ndrea Elyse Messer
aem1@psu.edu
814-865-9481
Penn State