Recent Posts by Pangaea Biosciences

Hurricanes: Stronger, slower, wetter in the future?

Scientists have developed a detailed analysis of how 22 recent hurricanes would be different if they formed under the conditions predicted for the late 21st century. While each storm's transformation would be unique, on balance, the hurricanes would become a little stronger, a little slower-moving, and a lot wetter. In one example, Hurricane Ike --…
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Genome structure of dinosaurs discovered by bird-turtle comparisons

A discovery by scientists at the University of Kent has provided significant insight into the overall genome structure of dinosaurs. By comparing the genomes of different species, chiefly birds and turtles, the Kent team were able to determine how the overall genome structure (i.e. the chromosomes) of many people's favourite dinosaur species -- like Velociraptor…
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Ancient skull shows early ‘baleen whale’ had teeth

Today's baleen whales (Mysticetes) support their massive bodies by filtering huge volumes of small prey from seawater using comb-like baleen in their mouths much like a sieve. But new evidence reported in the journal Current Biology on May 10 based on careful analysis of a 34-million-year-old whale skull from Antarctica -- the second-oldest "baleen" whale ever found…
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Cocoa CRISPR: Gene editing shows promise for improving the ‘chocolate tree’

Use of the powerful gene-editing tool CRISPR-Cas9 could help to breed cacao trees that exhibit desirable traits such as enhanced resistance to diseases, according to Penn State plant scientists. The cacao tree, which grows in tropical regions, produces the cocoa beans that are the raw material of chocolate. Reliable productivity from cacao plants is essential…
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Jurassic fossil tail tells of missing link in crocodile family tree

A 180-million-year-old fossil has shed light on how some ancient crocodiles evolved into dolphin-like animals. The specimen -- featuring a large portion of backbone -- represents a missing link in the family tree of crocodiles, and was one of the largest coastal predators of the Jurassic Period, researchers say. The newly discovered species was nearly…
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Forty-four genomic variants linked to major depression

A new meta-analysis of more than 135,000 people with major depression and more than 344,000 controls has identified 44 genomic variants, or loci, that have a statistically significant association with depression. Of these 44 loci, 30 are newly discovered while 14 had been identified in previous studies. In addition, the study identified 153 significant genes,…
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Advanced microscope shows cells at work in incredible 3D detail

For the first time, scientists have peered into living cells and created videos showing how they function with unprecedented 3D detail. Using a special microscope and new lighting techniques, a team from Harvard and the Howard Hughes Medical Institute captured zebrafish immune cell interactions with unheard-of 3D detail and resolution. The tech has already yielded new insights on cell function and…
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Breakthrough brings gene-editing medicine one step closer to patient applications

Imagine a future where a guided biomachine put into your body seeks out defective gene sequences in each cell and edits in the correct information with precision accuracy. It's called gene editing, and University of Alberta researchers have just published a game-changing study that promises to bring the technology much closer to therapeutic reality. "We've…
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