A study assessed the effects of two nutrient management strategies -- based on electrical conductivity or nitrate-nitrogen -- concentration control on plant growth, ornamental quality, plant-water relations, mineral composition, and water use efficiency for Hippeastrum grown in semiclosed soilless system. Water loss and total water use in the EC strategy were significantly higher compared with the N-NO3- strategy, which minimized nitrate, phosphate, and potassium emissions to the environment.
Although genetic variants are scattered throughout the human genome, scientists have largely ignored the stretches of repetitive genetic code known as 'junk' DNA in their search for differences that influence human health and disease. Now, Duke researchers have discovered that variation in these overlooked regions can affect the stability of the genome and the proper function of the chromosomes that package our genetic material, leading to an increased risk of birth defects, infertility, and cancer.
When human placenta-derived mesenchymal stem cells were transplanted into rats modeled with diabetes, researchers found the procedure could positively affect blood vessel growth, potentially improving blood flow and preventing critical limb ischemia, a condition that can result in 'diabetic foot' and frequently leads to amputation. The researchers used mesenchymal stem cells because they have both angiogenic and immunomodulatory properties and are capable of differentiating into three different lineages.
Household transmission of Clostridium difficile to pets and children may be a source of community-associated C. difficile infections according to findings from a new study published today in Infection Control & Hospital Epidemiology, the journal of the Society for Healthcare Epidemiology of America. The study found that patients with this bacteria can colonize or infect household contacts following or during treatment for an infection.
A study published in the journal Scientific Reports from Nature publishing group describes the mechanism by which caffeine counteracts age-related cognitive deficits in animals.
Biologists from Bochum and Bonn have detected a cannabinoid receptor in spermatozoa. Endogenous cannabinoids that occur in both the male and the female genital tract activate the spermatozoa: they trigger the so-called acrosome reaction, during which the spermatozoon releases digestive enzymes and loses the cap on the anterior half of its head. Without this reaction, spermatozoa cannot penetrate the ovum. The researchers published their findings in Scientific Reports.
Every year, millions of people are treated for cystitis, but despite its prevalence, the disease is still a scientific mystery. Now a research team has succeeded in identifying how the bacteria responsible for the disease cause the disease to develop. This is a cause for optimism that more effective treatment methods can be developed.
Healthy fat tissue is essential for extended survival in the event of tumor-induced wasting syndrome (cachexia). In Nature Medicine, researchers at Helmholtz Zentrum München show that selective manipulation of an enzyme can stop unwanted metabolic processes.
Researchers from UZH and Eawag have used 'environmental DNA' to determine the biodiversity of a river. Previously, this involved collecting and identifying all the organisms living in it. Using environmental DNA, however, not only is it possible to characterize the river's biodiversity, but also that of the surrounding landscape.
Dr. Jonathan Delafield-Butt, of the University of Strathclyde's Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences, and colleagues at start-up company Harimata, used fun iPad games to track players' hand movements -- gathering information that can help identify autism.