189 articles from TUESDAY 6.2.2024

Uncovering genetic metabolite markers associated with anthracnose resistance to blueberry fruit rot

Anthracnose fruit rot (AFR), caused by the fungal pathogen Colletotrichum fioriniae, is the most destructive and widespread fruit disease of blueberry, impacting fruit quality and yield. The reliance on fungicides prompts the need for sustainable solutions, highlighting the importance of breeding AFR-resistant cultivars. Research points to quercetin glycosides in blueberries with potential...

2023: A year of climate extremes

The year 2023 was full of climate extremes. The global average temperature this year was 1.48 degrees Celsius above the pre-industrial average. At the same time, there were exceptional heat waves and droughts, extreme storms and catastrophic rainfall.

Virologists and epidemiologists back natural origin for COVID-19, survey suggests

No scientific dispute has ever been resolved by an opinion poll, and plenty of famous researchers have been on the wrong side of scientific history. But a group of risk experts has found a new angle on one of the most hotly contested science issues of our time—where the SARS-CoV-2 virus behind the COVID-19 pandemic came from—by conducting what it calls the first systematic survey...

Archaeologists probe mysterious Canadian shipwreck

A shipwreck believed to date from the 19th century has washed up on the snow-covered shores of Canada's Atlantic island province of Newfoundland, attracting a bevy of looky-loos and archaeologists probing its mysterious past.

Household food waste reduced through whole-family food literacy intervention

Food waste is a global issue, with the estimated value of wasted food totaling $230 billion CAD in 2023. In Canada, estimates suggest half of the food wasted occurs at the household level, which roughly equals $1,000 CAD per family per year. A recent research brief in the Journal of Nutrition Education and Behavior has demonstrated the feasibility, acceptability, and effectiveness of a...

Do digital technologies offer a better way to loan people money?

A new paper in the Quarterly Journal of Economics finds that a new form of digital technology—essentially preventing people from using an asset for which they have a loan if they don't make payments, rather than repossessing the asset itself—may be a better way for lenders to secure loans, particularly for loan recipients in developing countries.

A new origin story for deadly Seattle fault

The Seattle fault zone is a network of shallow faults slicing through the lowlands of Puget Sound, threatening to create damaging earthquakes for the more than four million people who live there.

Complex tree canopies found to help forests recover from moderate disturbances

Extreme events wipe out entire forests, dramatically eliminating complex ecosystems as well as local communities. Researchers have become quite familiar with such attention-grabbing events over the years. They know less, however, about the more common moderate-severity disturbances, such as relatively small fires, ice storms, and outbreaks of pests or pathogens.

Many excess deaths attributed to natural causes are actually uncounted COVID-19 deaths, new analysis reveals

A new study provides the first concrete data showing that many of these excess deaths were indeed uncounted COVID-19 deaths. The study compared reported COVID-19 deaths to excess deaths due to non-COVID, natural causes, such as diseases and chronic illnesses, and found that increases in non-COVID excess deaths occurred at the same time or in the month prior to increases in reported COVID-19 deaths...

Researchers discover key to molecular mystery of how plants respond to changing conditions

A team of researchers recently published a pioneering study that answers a central question in biology: how do organisms rally a wide range of cellular processes when they encounter a change -- either internally or in the external environment -- to thrive in good times or survive the bad times? The research, focused on plants, identifies the interactions between four compounds: pectin, receptor...