Snake eyes: New insights into visual adaptations

Snakes have adapted their vision to hunt their prey day or night. For example, snakes that need good eyesight to hunt during the day have eye lenses that act as sunglasses, filtering out ultraviolet light and sharpening their ...

Novel smart materials inspired by sea creatures

A suite of new materials developed in the lab of UConn researcher Luyi Sun can change their appearance and quickly revert to their original state, just like the squid and jellyfish that inspired them.

Study finds that protein puts the brakes on melanin

A year and a half ago, researchers at Brown University found a molecular gas pedal for melanin production. Now they've found a brake. For scientists, the finding deepens not only the basic understanding of how eyes, skin ...

How birds turn red

In the bird world, the color red has special significance. Many species use red signals to attract mates or deter rivals, adding the color to their beaks, feathers, or bare skin. Generally speaking, as far as many birds are ...

The anatomy of flower color

Roses are red, violets are blue. Everybody knows that, but what makes them so? Although plant breeders were aware of some of the genes involved, there was as yet no quantitative study of how pigment turns a flower red, blue ...

Fungal spores could 'hijack' human immune cells to spread infection

Scientists have announced a major breakthrough in their understanding of how the fungus Aspergillus terreus - the cause of serious illness in humans - can move around the body, rather than remaining in the lungs as with similar ...

Viruses cause bacteria to produce pink pigments

Plants use certain colour pigments in order to convert light into energy by way of photosynthesis. They allow plants to gather light energy. This also works in a similar way for microbes, for instance cyanobacteria. The fact ...

A fossilized snake shows its true colors

Ten million years ago, a green and black snake lay coiled in the Spanish undergrowth. Once, paleontologists would have been limited to the knowledge they could glean from its colorless fossil remains, but now they know what ...

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