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Spider Density Shows Weak Relationship with Vegetation Density

Ryon et al. | Jul 03, 2020

Spider Density Shows Weak Relationship with Vegetation Density

Evidence supports that spiders have many ecological benefits including insect control and predation in the food chain. In this study the authors investigate that whether the percent of vegetation coverage and spider density are correlated. They determine that despite the trend there is no statistically significant correlation.

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A Crossover Study Comparing the Effect of a Processed vs. Unprocessed Diet on the Spatial Learning Ability of Zebrafish

Banga et al. | Sep 18, 2022

A Crossover Study Comparing the Effect of a Processed vs. Unprocessed Diet on the Spatial Learning Ability of Zebrafish

The authors compared the short-term effects of processed versus unprocessed food on spatial learning and survival in zebrafish, given the large public concern regarding processed foods. By randomly assigning zebrafish to a diet of brine shrimp flakes (processed) or live brine shrimp (unprocessed), the authors show while there is no immediate effect on a fish's decision process between the two diets, there are significant correlations between improved learning and stress response with the unprocessed diet.

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The Effect of Ultraviolet Radiation and the Antioxidant Curcumin on the Longevity, Fertility, and Physical Structure of Drosophila melanogaster: Can We Defend Our DNA?

Lateef et al. | May 18, 2019

The Effect of Ultraviolet Radiation and the Antioxidant Curcumin on the Longevity, Fertility, and Physical Structure of <em>Drosophila melanogaster</em>: Can We Defend Our DNA?

Ultraviolet (UV) radiation is known to alter DNA structure and impair cellular function in all living organisms. In this study, Lateef et al examine the effects of UV radiation to determine whether antioxidant-enriched nutrition can combat the potential deleterious effects of UV radiation on Drosophila melanogaster. They found that UVB (320nm) radiation caused a 59% decrease in the Drosophila lifespan and mutagenic effects on flies' physical appearance, but did not significantly affect fertility. Curcumin significantly prolonged lifespan and enhanced fertility for both UV- and non-UV-exposed flies. The research demonstrates the positive potential of natural antioxidants as weapons against radiation-induced diseases including cancer.

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Cleaning up the world’s oceans with underwater laser imaging

Gurbuz et al. | Jul 07, 2023

Cleaning up the world’s oceans with underwater laser imaging
Image credit: Naja Bertolt Jensen

Here recognizing the growing amount of plastic waste in the oceans, the authors sought to develop and test laser imaging for the identification of waste in water. They found that while possible, limitations such as increasing depth and water turbidity result in increasing blurriness in laser images. While their image processing methods were somewhat insufficient they identified recent methods to use deep learning-based techniques as a potential avenue to viability for this method.

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Impact of hog farming on water quality of aquatic environments in North Carolina

Kancharla et al. | Aug 08, 2023

Impact of hog farming on water quality of aquatic environments in North Carolina

This study collected samples from water bodies near hog farms and an aquatic environment not near a hog farm. It was hypothesized that water bodies near the hog farms would have lower water quality with higher turbidity, total dissolved solids (TDS), and pH than the water body not in proximity to a hog farm because of water contamination with hog waste. Results showed that the turbidity was 4–6 times higher, TDS was 1.5–2 times higher, and pH was 3 units higher in the 2 experimental locations compared to the control location. This study and its findings are important for understanding the impact of hog farming on the proximal water bodies.

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A Scientific Investigation of Alternative Growing Methods to Cultivate Lactuca sativa

Fishback et al. | Apr 23, 2020

A Scientific Investigation of Alternative Growing Methods to Cultivate Lactuca sativa

In this article, the authors compare different resource-efficient farming methods for the vegetable Lactuca sativa. They compared hydroponics (solid growth medium with added nutrients) to aquaponics (water with fish waste to provide nutrients) and determined efficacy by measuring plant height over time. While both systems supported plant growth, the authors concluded that aquaponics was the superior method for supporting Lactuca sativa growth. These findings are of great relevance as we continue to find the most sustainable and efficient means for farming.

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