A high-fat diet changes fungi in the gut and may play a role in the development of obesity, according to a new study in mSphere, a journal of the American Society for Microbiology. While gut microbes have previously been implicated in the development of obesity, this study shows that fungi may also play a role.
Microbiologist Kristen DeAngelis at the University of Massachusetts Amherst, with colleagues elsewhere in New England, report results in the Oct. 6 issue of Science from their study of warming-related soil carbon cycling changes in a New England hardwood forest. Over two and a half decades, the team observed periods of substantial soil carbon loss, punctuated by periods of large changes in microbial communities - an episodic rather than steady pattern of warming-related change.
Scientists have determined that fungus may play a key role in chronic intestinal inflammation disorders. They found that patients with Crohn's disease tend to have much higher levels of the fungus Candida tropicalis compared to their healthy family members. A new review published in Digestive and Liver Disease looks at these findings and provides insights into potential new therapeutic approaches using antifungals and probiotics in the treatment of inflammatory bowel diseases (IBD) such as Crohn's disease (CD).
Research from Cornell University mycologist Kathie Hodge and doctoral candidate Megan Biango-Daniels reveals varying levels of mold contamination in commercial sea salts. Among those molds were important food spoilage molds like Aspergillus and Penicillium, and even some notorious producers of mycotoxins.
A team led by Smithsonian scientists in Panama exposed a key to understanding tropical tree diversity by studying how fungi interact with seeds that linger in the ground. Despite a smorgasbord of species available to choose from, tropical fungi and seeds are picky about associating with one another. Early pairings with a particular fungus may influence whether a seed survives and also may help explain how tropical forests remain so diverse.
Arbuscular mycorrhizal fungal systems play crucial roles in their environment, affecting the plants that can grow there and the nutrients in the soils. Researchers have developed a new DNA sequencing technique using barcoded primers that is capable of detecting rare fungal species in a community, paving the way for future insights into how they might vary in response to environmental changes.
Orchids are loved by gardeners around the world but are notoriously difficult to cultivate. Researchers have developed a new orchid cultivation kit and have succeeded in complete artificial cultivation of an autonomous orchid. Since this kit can be made cheaply, it can broaden the opportunities for orchid cultivation in general households. It is also expected to be useful in preserving the genetic diversity of orchidaceous plants, many of which are in danger of extinction.
An apple a day may keep the doctor away, but the mold on it could make you sick. Rhiannon Wallace, a PhD candidate at UBC Okanagan's campus, has developed a way to stop, or at least control, blue mold -- a pathogen that can rot an apple to its core. Wallace's research has determined that bacteria, originally isolated from cold Saskatchewan soils, may be the answer to preventing mold growth and apple rot while the fruit is in storage or transport.
Although Midwestern soybean growers have yet to experience the brunt of soybean rust, growers in the southern United States are very familiar with the disease. Every year, the fungus slowly moves northward from its winter home in southern Florida and the Gulf Coast states, and eventually reaches Illinois soybean fields -- often just before harvest.
Scientists have made a crucial new discovery into how a group of ancient microbes that can survive in some of the world's harshest environments, propel themselves forward.