Tag Archives: nutrients

UCLA Scientists Develop New Therapeutics that Could Accelerate Wound Healing

In “before” and “after” photos from advertisements for wound-healing ointments, bandages and antibiotic creams, we see an injury transformed from an inflamed red gash to smooth and flawless skin.

What we don’t appreciate is the vital role that our own natural biomolecules play in the healing process, including their contribution to the growth of new cells and the development of new blood vessels that provide nutrients to those cells. (more…)

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Malawi’s Bountiful Harvests and Healthier Children

In Malawi, the fields are full ­– and so are the children.

Through research led by Michigan State University, crop yields have increased dramatically. The children of Ekwendi, Malawi, also have gained weight and are taller. These improvements bring smiles to Sieglinde Snapp, MSU ecologist, and other researchers who have worked in Malawi for many years.

Snapp, a crop and soil scientist at MSU’s Kellogg Biological Station, shared the secrets of the initiative’s success at the annual meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science Feb. 14-18 in Boston. (more…)

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Midwest Soil Could Take Up to Two Years to Recover from Long Drought, Says MU Researcher

The Midwest suffered the worst drought in years last summer, and Midwest soil has been suffering from a drought since early 2010. As a result, crops have wilted and farmers have fallen on hard times. Now, a University of Missouri researcher says that it may take at least two years for crops and soil to recover.

Randall Miles, associate professor of soil science at the MU School of Natural Resources, found that soil in the Midwest is dry down to as deep as 5 feet, where the roots of the crops absorb moisture and nutrients. (more…)

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Mining Waste Byproduct Capable of Helping Clean Water

LEETOWN, W.Va. – A byproduct resulting from the treatment of acid mine drainage may have a second life in helping clean waters coming from agricultural and wastewater discharges, according to a recent study by scientists from the U.S. Geological Survey Leetown Science Center.

The report, published in the Journal Water, Air, and Soil Pollution, shows that dried acid mine drainage sludge, or residuals, that result from treating acid mine drainage discharges can be used as a low-cost adsorbent elsewhere to efficiently remove phosphorus from agricultural and municipal wastewaters. The phosphorus that has been adsorbed by the mine drainage residuals can later be stripped from the residuals and recycled into fertilizer. The mine drainage residuals can be regenerated and reused for a number of additional treatment cycles. Application of this novel, patented technology has the potential to simultaneously help to decrease acid mine drainage treatment costs, prevent degradation of aquatic ecosystems, and recycle valuable nutrients. (more…)

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Fat Cells in Abdomen Fuel Spread of Ovarian Cancer

A large pad of fat cells that extends from the stomach and covers the intestines provides nutrients that promote the spread and growth of ovarian cancer, reports a University of Chicago-based research team in the journal Nature Medicine, published online Oct. 30.

Ovarian cancer, the fifth-leading cause of cancer deaths in women, tends to spread within the abdominal cavity as opposed to distant organs. In 80 percent of women, by the time ovarian cancer is diagnosed, it has spread to the pad of fat cells, called the omentum. Often, cancer growth in the omentum exceeds the growth of the original ovarian cancer. (more…)

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WHOI Study Reports Microbes Consumed Oil in Gulf Slick at Unexpected Rates

More than a year after the largest oil spill in history, perhaps the dominant lingering question about the Deepwater Horizon spill is, “What happened to the oil?” Now, in the first published study to explain the role of microbes in breaking down the oil slick on the surface of the Gulf of Mexico, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI) researchers have come up with answers that represent both surprisingly good news and a head-scratching mystery.

In research scheduled to be published in the Aug. 2 online edition of Environmental Research Letters, the WHOI team studied samples from the surface oil slick and surrounding Gulf waters. They found that bacterial microbes inside the slick degraded the oil at a rate five times faster than microbes outside the slick—accounting in large part for the disappearance of the slick some three weeks after Deepwater Horizon’s Macondo well was shut off. (more…)

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River Mystery Solved

*Scientists discover how “Didymo” algae bloom in pristine waters with few nutrients*

The pristine state of unpolluted waterways may be their downfall, according to research results published in a paper this week in the journal Geophysical Research Letters.

A species of freshwater algae that lives in streams and rivers, called Didymo for Didymosphenia geminata, is able to colonize and dominate the bottoms of some of the world’s cleanest waterways–precisely because they are so clear. (more…)

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Researchers Find That Pollution Forms an Invisible Barrier for Marine Life

Over 50 percent of the population in the United States and over 60 percent in the world live in coastal areas. Rapidly growing human populations near the ocean have massively altered coastal water ecosystems.  

One of the most extensive human stressors is the discharge of chemicals and pollutants into the ocean. In the Southern California Bight, more than 60 sewage and urban runoff sources discharge over 1 billion gallons of liquid on a dry day with the two largest sources of contaminants being sewage from municipal treatment plants and urban runoff from highly modified river basins.  (more…)

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