MI weekly selection #485

Photo: Esther Horvath

Mutation found to affect circadian rhythm

Researchers have discovered genetic mutations in hamsters that speed up the animals’ internal clock and affect circadian rhythms. “We suspect this might be relevant in understanding the effects of jet lag and shift work,” said neurobiologist Eric Bittman, a co-author of the study.

Full Story: ScienceDaily

Viruses found active throughout the human genome

Ancient viruses found throughout the human genome are active throughout the body. These viruses were known to contribute to the growth of cancer cells, but scientists previously thought the viruses were inert in healthy cells.

Full Story: Live Science

Animal behaviour in burned forests

Research on mule deer suggests that wildfires in the US West can affect how some animal populations navigate their changing habitats, including where they find food and how they interact with predators.

Full Story: The Conversation

Satellites, AI to check sea ice in summer

Scientists say they’ve applied artificial intelligence to satellite data to measure the thickness of Arctic sea ice during the summer. The method, which recognizes the difference between the ocean and melted ice, may benefit the shipping industry and improve long-term climate predictions.

Full Story: Eos

Gills perform other roles besides breathing

Gills not only let fish breathe underwater but also regulate the salt and pH balance of their blood, a function performed by the kidneys in other animals. “Our work suggests that the early, simplified gills of our worm-like ancestors played an important role in ion regulation,” said Michael Sackville, a zoologist who led the study.

Full Story: ScienceDaily

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