Synthetic rubber outperforms natural rubber

Natural rubber from rubber trees is a raw material with a limited supply. Synthetically produced rubber, on the other hand, has not yet been able to match the abrasion behavior of the natural product, rendering it unsuitable ...

Thermodynamic properties of hevein

Hevein is a small protein (4.7 kDa) consisting of forty-three amino acid residues. It is the main component of the bottom fraction of rubber tree (Hevea brasiliensis) latex that has a pronounced antimicrobial activity, thus ...

In Ivory Coast, global rubber glut erases profits

"We're not earning anything from it any more, we have nothing," says a rubber farmer in Ivory Coast, Africa's top producer, where revenues from natural rubber have been slashed by global oversupply.

Small-scale agriculture threatens the rainforest

An extensive study led by a researcher at Lund University in Sweden has mapped the effects of small farmers on the rain forests of Southeast Asia for the first time. The findings are discouraging, with regard to environmental ...

A window into fungal endophytism

Researchers sequenced a fungal endophyte of rubber trees and compared its genome to 36 other fungi, focusing on genes that are crucial to host-fungus interactions.

UCSB anthropologist studies cattle ranchers in Brazilian Amazon

For over a century, the rubber tappers of Acre, Brazil collected the valuable sap of the rubber trees from the forests of the western Amazon. As the demand for natural rubber declined, however, the Brazilian government sought ...

Liberian farmers take on Indonesian palm oil giant

Liberian farmers who survived a 15-year civil war are now fighting lucrative property deals with Indonesian and Malaysian palm oil companies that threaten the land they live on, if not their sacred burial sites.

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