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Time-Efficient and Low-Cost Neural Network to detect plant disease on leaves and reduce food loss and waste

Singh et al. | Apr 24, 2023

Time-Efficient and Low-Cost Neural Network to detect plant disease on leaves and reduce food loss and waste

About 25% of the food grown never reaches consumers due to spoilage, and 11.5 billion pounds of produce from gardens are wasted every year. Current solutions involve farmers manually looking for and treating diseased crops. These methods of tending crops are neither time-efficient nor feasible. I used a convolutional neural network to identify signs of plant disease on leaves for garden owners and farmers.

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Floating aquatic plants form groups faster through current

May et al. | Oct 16, 2023

Floating aquatic plants form groups faster through current
Image credit: N Band

Here, the authors sought to investigate the effects of water current on the growth of colonies of duckweed, a floating plant that forms colonies in silent ponds, marshes, lakes , and streams in North America. They found that current flow mediates the formation of colonies, disrupting and recreating the colonies which provides the opportunity for reorganizations that were identified as beneficial.

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The external presence of running water influences the root growth of pea plants (Phaselous vulgaris)

Shu et al. | Nov 10, 2020

The external presence of running water influences the root growth of pea plants (Phaselous vulgaris)

Each year, invasive tree roots cause large amounts of damage to underground pipes. While this is usually due to leaks and cracks, tree roots can also invade pipes that are structurally sound. We are interested in investigating whether plant roots have an affinity towards flowing water, measured through mass, even when the running water is not in direct contact with soil. We tested this by creating a choice chamber with water running under one end and no stimulus on the other end. Overall, the masses of the roots growing towards flowing water were greater than the masses of the roots growing towards the end with no stimulus, showing that plant roots did have an affinity towards flowing water.

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Breast cancer mammographic screening by different guidelines among women of different races/ethnicities

Wang et al. | Aug 27, 2023

Breast cancer mammographic screening by different guidelines among women of different races/ethnicities

Mammographic screening is a common diagnostic tool for breast cancer among average-risk women. The authors hypothesized that adherence rates for mammographic screening may be lower among minorities (non-Hispanic black (NHB) and Hispanic/Latino) than among non-Hispanic whites (NHW) regardless of the guideline applied. The findings support other studies’ results that different racial/ethnic and socio-demographic factors can affect screening adherence. Therefore, healthcare providers should promote breast cancer screening especially among NHW/Hispanic women and women lacking insurance coverage.

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Application of gene therapy for reversing T-cell dysfunction in cancer

Hyun Lee et al. | Aug 25, 2022

Application of gene therapy for reversing T-cell dysfunction in cancer

Since cancer cells inhibit T-cell activity, the authors investigated a method to reverse T-cell disfunction with gene therapy, so that the T-cells would become effective once again in fighting cancer cells. They used the inhibition of proprotein convertases (PCSK1) in T cells and programmed death-ligand 1 (CD274) in cancer cells. They observed the recovery of IL-2 expression in Jurkat cells, with increased recovery noted in a co-culture sample. This study suggests a novel strategy to reactivate T cells.

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Mathematical modeling of plant community composition for urban greenery plans

Fang et al. | Jul 05, 2023

Mathematical modeling of plant community composition for urban greenery plans
Image credit: CHUTTERSNAP

Here recognizing the importance of urban green space for the health of humans and other organisms, the authors investigated if mathematical modeling can be used to develop an urban greenery management plan with high eco-sustainability by calculating the composition of a plant community. They optimized and tested their model against green fields in a Beijing city park. Although the compositions predicted by their models differed somewhat from the composition of testing fields, they conclude that by using a mathematical model such as this urban green space can be finely designed to be ecologically and economically sustainable.

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Phospholipase A2 increases the sensitivity of doxorubicin induced cell death in 3D breast cancer cell models

Lee et al. | Mar 30, 2022

Phospholipase A2 increases the sensitivity of doxorubicin induced cell death in 3D breast cancer cell models

Inefficient penetration of cancer drugs into the interior of the three-dimensional (3D) tumor tissue limits drugs' delivery. The authors hypothesized that the addition of phospholipase A2 (PLA2) would increase the permeability of the drug doxorubicin for efficient drug penetration. They found that 1 mM PLA2 had the highest permeability. Increased efficiency in drug delivery would allow lower concentrations of drugs to be used, minimizing damage to normal cells.

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Ladder Fuel Treatments Effect Burn Area of Forest Fires in Semi-Arid High Elevation Climates

Schwartz et al. | Oct 05, 2020

Ladder Fuel Treatments Effect Burn Area of Forest Fires in Semi-Arid High Elevation Climates

In this study, the authors investigate a timely and important topic: forest fires. More specifically, they use a wildfire simulator to test how ladder fuels effect the burn area of a forest fire. Ladder fuels are fuels that cause a forest fire to rise up from the forest floor to the canopy, which may affect the overall spread. They simulated fire spread with different levels of ladder fuel treatment and found that the spread of a burn area would indeed decrease with increased ladder fuel treatment. These findings have important implications for forest and forest fire management.

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siRNA-dependent KCNMB2 silencing inhibits lung cancer cell proliferation and promotes cell death

Jeong et al. | Nov 01, 2022

siRNA-dependent KCNMB2 silencing inhibits lung cancer cell proliferation and promotes cell death

Here, seeking to better understand the genetic associations underlying non-small cell lung cancer, the authors screened hundreds of genes, identifying that KCNMB2 upregulation was significantly correlated with poor prognoses in lung cancer patients. Based on this, they used small interfering RNA to decrease the expression of KCNMB2 in A549 lung cancer cells, finding decreased cell proliferation and increased lung cancer cell death. They suggest this could lead to a new potential target for lung cancer therapies.

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