Zoological Museum Amsterdam

July 13th, 2005 | Filed under: Biology, Internet, Photography, Science | No Comments »

Zoological Museum Amsterdam curates more than 13 million animal specimens, some of which can be viewed online. There’s a section with 3D images of 151 bird specimens and a great introduction to the phylum porifera (sponges).

Glass Sponge Skeleton Structure

July 13th, 2005 | Filed under: Biology, Design, Materials, Science | 4 Comments »

John D. Currey, a biologist at the University of York, in England, analyzed Euplectella (Class Hexactinellida), commonly known as glass sponge, and has found “a skeleton of extraordinary structural and mechanical refinement.” It is built in structural levels. Silica particles become filaments, which are formed into spicules, then gathered into larger spicules, which are arranged in a grid with struts and formed into a cylinder, with stiffening surface ridges.

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Microbial Evolutionary Net

July 5th, 2005 | Filed under: Biology, Mapping, News | No Comments »

Using Genetrace, Christos Ouzounis and colleagues at EBI (European Bioinformatics Institute) were able to construct a microbial evolutionary diagram that shows the exchange of genetic material across distant species.

Since the time of Darwin, the evolutionary relationships between organisms have been represented as a tree, with the common ancestors at the base of the trunk and the most recently evolved species at the tips of the branches. Microbiologists have argued for a long time that this representation doesn’t really hold true for microbes, which often exchange genes among different species. Their claim has been that the evolution of these organisms is better represented by a net.[Press Release] (pdf)

Biology News | EMBL

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Brain Cells on Demand

June 29th, 2005 | Filed under: Biology, Biotech, Health, News, Science | No Comments »

Regenerative medicine scientists at the University of Florida’s McKnight Brain Institute have discovered a cell culture method that may be able to produce a limitless supply of a person’s own brain cells. [article]

via Science Blog

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High-Resolution Brain Atlas

June 28th, 2005 | Filed under: Biology, Internet, Mapping | No Comments »

Brainmaps hosts a high-resolution digital atlas of monkey brain sections.

via CogNews

Stem Cells from Adult Human Skin

June 28th, 2005 | Filed under: Biology, Future, Health, News | 1 Comment »

Researchers at Wake Forest University School of Medicine have successfully isolated stem cells from human skin, expanded them in the laboratory and coaxed them into becoming fat, muscle and bone cells. [article]

via Biology News

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Analyzing a Hovering Hummingbird

June 22nd, 2005 | Filed under: Biology, Mapping, News, Technology | No Comments »

“We looked at hummingbird flight for 70 years with high speed cameras, but still could only make assumptions and educated guesses about what was happening,” said Douglas Warrick, an assistant professor of zoology at OSU. Scientists from Oregon State University, the University of Portland and George Fox University used digital particle imaging velocimetry (PIV) to capture the subtleties in the movement of air surrounding the hummingbird’s wings to discover exactly how they manage to hover. [article]

via Nature | Physorg

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Muscles + Vascular Network Grown In Vitro

June 21st, 2005 | Filed under: Biology, Future, Health | No Comments »

Imagine planting “seed” cells into a body for a simple muscle biopsy. Dr. Shulamit Levenberg of the Technion-Israel Institute of Technology along with researchers in Professor Robert Langer‘s lab at MIT have moved a step closer by managing to grow in vitro muscle tissue with its own vascular network from a mixture of different cells. These tissues continued to grow and develop among the host’s own tissues at a higher rate than similar implants without blood vessels.

via MIT News | Biology News

Urban Underground Farming

June 20th, 2005 | Filed under: Architecture, Biology, Future, Social, Sustainability, Technology, Urbanism | 21 Comments »

Using computer-controlled temperature and LEDs , an underground rice and vegetable farm called Pasona O2 in Tokyo hopes to have its first harvest this summer (2005).

via Pasta and Vinegar | Trends in Japan

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Drilling to the Earth's Core

June 18th, 2005 | Filed under: Biology, Mechanical Tech, News, Technology | 2 Comments »

The 57,500-tonne drill ship Chikyu (Japanese for Earth) will soon be penetrating the Earth’s crust to the mantle. The mission, administered by the Centre for Deep Earth Exploration in Yokohama, hopes to retrieve samples from the mantle to study earthquakes, the history of Earth’s climate, as well as the possibility of deep-Earth life.

via Guardian Unlimited