BioMed Central

Engineered bacteria mop up mercury spills

Thousands of tonnes of toxic mercury are released into the environment every year. Much of this collects in sediment where it is converted into toxic methyl mercury, and enters the food chain ending up in the fish we eat. ...

Aug 12, 2011
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Social networking elephants never forget

Asian elephants typically live in small, flexible, social groups centered around females and calves while adult males roam independently. However, new research published in BioMed Central's open access journal BMC Ecology sh ...

Jul 26, 2011
4.5 / 5 (4) 1 | with audio podcast

Salamanders spell out evolution in action

Lungless salamanders (Ensatina eschscholtzii) live in a horseshoe-shape region in California (a 'ring') which circles around the central valley. The species is an example of evolution in action because, while neighboring popula ...

Jul 06, 2011
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Synthetic collagen from maize has human properties

Synthetic collagen has a wide range of applications in reconstructive and cosmetic surgery and in the food industry. For proper function in animals a certain number of prolines within the protein need to be hydroxylated. ...

Jun 24, 2011
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Zombie ants have fungus on the brain

Tropical carpenter ants (Camponotus leonardi) live high up in the rainforest canopy. When infected by a parasitic fungus (Ophiocordyceps unilateralis) the behaviour of the ants is dramatically changed. They ...

May 09, 2011
5 / 5 (6) 4 | with audio podcast

Ancestors of land plants revealed

It was previously thought that land plants evolved from stonewort-like algae. However, new research published in BioMed Central's open access journal BMC Evolutionary Biology shows that the closest relatives to land plants ...

Apr 18, 2011
4.9 / 5 (10) 12 | with audio podcast

Climate change and evolution of Cross River gorillas

Two species of gorillas live in central equatorial Africa. Divergence between the Western gorillas (Gorilla gorilla) and Eastern Gorillas (G. beringei) began between 0.9 and 1.6 million years ago and now the two species l ...

Apr 01, 2011
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Regular breakfast helps reduce lead poisoning in children

It is known that fasting increases lead absorption in adults and consequently regular meals and snacks are recommended for children to prevent lead poisoning. New research published in BioMed Central's open access journal ...

Apr 01, 2011
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Viral replicase points to potential cancer therapy

Alpha viruses, such as Sindbis virus, carry their genetic information on a single strand of RNA. On infection they use a protein, replicase, to produce double stranded RNA (dsRNA) which is used as genetic material to make ...

Mar 28, 2011
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Can non-medical factors trigger sick leave?

According to UK government statistics over 8 million working days per year are lost due to illness and about a third of these are due to minor ailments such as coughs, colds, sickness and diarrhea. Yet two individuals who ...

Mar 23, 2011
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