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Published on 01 Dec 2023

By Mischa Dijkstra, Frontiers science writer Diseased sponges. Image credit: Fikret Öndes In 2021, divers off the Turkish Aegean coast first observed dark stinging sponges dying in great numbers. Researchers have now sampled three species of pathogenic Vibrio bacteria, previously known to infect unrelated marine animals, from diseased and dying sponges. Evidence suggests that vibriosis may be a secondary illness that affects already weakened sponges, but is not necessarily the primary agent of the novel disease. Vibrio bacteria, named for their vibrating swimming motion, span approximately 150 known species. Most Vibrio live in brackish or salt water, either swimming free or living as pathogens or symbionts in fish, crustaceans, molluscs, and corals. Because Vibrio thrive at relatively high temperatures, outbreaks in marine animals are expected to become ever more frequent under global warming. For example, over the past few decades, Vibrio have been implicated in the ‘bleaching’ of subtropical and tropical corals around the world. Now, researchers from Spain and Turkey have shown that Vibrio bacteria also play a role in outbreaks of mortality of an unrelated sessile marine organism, the dark stinging sponge (Sarcotragus foetidus). The results are published in Frontiers in Microbiology. “Here we show that pathogenic Vibrio […]

Featured news

Published on 30 Nov 2023

by Deborah Pirchner, Frontiers science writer Image: Shutterstock.com Building is an energy, plastic, and emissions intensive sector. Using environmentally friendly materials might pave the way towards reducing its carbon footprint. Now, researchers have tested the suitability of a mix of rice husks and cellulose– both materials that otherwise would end up in landfills or garbage incineration plants – as a building material. They found that the material had good thermal and mechanical properties, making it suitable to be used in a range of applications, including the insulation of eco-friendly buildings. The building sector is the second largest sector in plastic consumption and is responsible for more than a third of energy related greenhouse gas emissions worldwide. Manufacturing processes of construction materials pollute air, land, and water. Accordingly, construction materials made from agro-industrial waste become increasingly attractive due to their lower environmental impact. To contribute to a new generation of materials made from what is often considered waste, researchers in Panama have now developed a rice husk-based insulation material and evaluated its thermal and mechanical properties. They have published their results in Frontiers in Built Environment. “Here we show that is possible to create alternative insulating material from recycled newspaper and rice […]

Featured news

Published on 28 Nov 2023

by Angharad Brewer Gillham, Frontiers science writer Image/Shutterstock.com Newts of the genus Taricha produce tetrodotoxin, a powerful neurotoxin. Previously, scientists thought this was purely a chemical defense against predators, but they didn’t know how it was produced or how it might vary between males and females — important information for understanding the toxin’s functions. Researchers sampled wild newts to test for differences between the sexes and how these might vary over the breeding season. They found that females have consistently higher levels of toxins than males. Tetrodotoxin, the neurotoxin that makes a blue-ringed octopus deadly, also protects Taricha newts — but we don’t understand how they produce it, or what purposes it serves for them. A first step to answering these questions is understanding whether different levels appear in males and females. In sexually reproducing animals, dimorphic traits such as color or canine tooth size can be key for survival and reproductive fitness. Investigating whether toxin production is a sexually dimorphic trait in newts gets us closer to understanding it. “It had long been considered that newts’ toxin concentrations do not change in their lifetime and that males and females tend to have the same toxin concentrations. Now, we have […]

Featured news

Published on 22 Nov 2023

Open access publisher Frontiers and the Frontiers Research Foundation joined this year’s Falling Walls Science Summit held on 7-9 November in Berlin, Germany. The Falling Walls Science Summit is a prominent gathering that unites experts from various scientific disciplines to explore groundbreaking research and foster collaborative solutions for the challenges of our time. As a global platform for scientific exchange, this annual event serves as a catalyst for innovation, fostering interdisciplinary dialogue, and promoting breakthrough thinking.   The three-day event includes inspiring keynotes, thought-provoking discussions, and exciting pitches from some of the most innovative minds in science and technology, exploring how scientific breakthroughs can pave the way towards a more equitable and sustainable future. These breakthroughs cover a diverse range of topics, from physical sciences, life sciences, sciencepreneurship, art and science, and planetary health to discovering earth and space, emerging talents, engineering and technology, and social sciences and humanities.   The Falling Walls Foundation and Frontiers partnered to organize the Climate Action Future plenary table on 8 November, which addressed the slow and inadequate progress in climate action. Featuring a group of leaders in science, policy, and academic publishing, the plenary investigated the reasons behind the failure, emphasized the need to reinvigorate […]

Latest news

Young Minds

Published on 01 Dec 2023

The first articles in a new collection are written by two mathematicians who have won the equivalent of Nobel prizes in math   Photo credit: Frontiers Frontiers for Young Minds has published a new article collection for kids on the mathematical discoveries of prize-winning scientists. The first two articles feature and explain the ground-breaking math of the 2023 Wolf Prize winner, Ingrid Daubechies – who developed mathematical tools for processing images and signals called ‘wavelets’– and 2005 Gödel Prize and 2022 Shaw Prize winner, Noga Alon – who is renowned for his work on combinatorics, a branch of mathematics dealing with combinations of objects and data.   This is the beginning of a wider collection – Math That Changed The World – showcasing to kids the practical applications of math and the impact it has had on everyday life. From patterns in data and health scans, to creating animated movies and even within astronomy, the researchers show how their work has enabled major breakthroughs for humanity, and that mathematics is more applied than abstract formulas and calculations. And each article has been reviewed by kids aged 8-15 to ensure the concepts are understandable for young readers.  The published articles are […]

Featured news

Published on 01 Dec 2023

By Mischa Dijkstra, Frontiers science writer Diseased sponges. Image credit: Fikret Öndes In 2021, divers off the Turkish Aegean coast first observed dark stinging sponges dying in great numbers. Researchers have now sampled three species of pathogenic Vibrio bacteria, previously known to infect unrelated marine animals, from diseased and dying sponges. Evidence suggests that vibriosis may be a secondary illness that affects already weakened sponges, but is not necessarily the primary agent of the novel disease. Vibrio bacteria, named for their vibrating swimming motion, span approximately 150 known species. Most Vibrio live in brackish or salt water, either swimming free or living as pathogens or symbionts in fish, crustaceans, molluscs, and corals. Because Vibrio thrive at relatively high temperatures, outbreaks in marine animals are expected to become ever more frequent under global warming. For example, over the past few decades, Vibrio have been implicated in the ‘bleaching’ of subtropical and tropical corals around the world. Now, researchers from Spain and Turkey have shown that Vibrio bacteria also play a role in outbreaks of mortality of an unrelated sessile marine organism, the dark stinging sponge (Sarcotragus foetidus). The results are published in Frontiers in Microbiology. “Here we show that pathogenic Vibrio […]

eBooks

Published on 30 Nov 2023

Download the top ebook releases from this year, including: new perspectives on the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic examination of climate change and sustainable food systems insights on the role of social media in education and exploration of engineered immune cells in cancer immunotherapy. All ebooks are free to download, share and distribute. Shape the future of your field — and publish your own ebook — by editing a special collection around your research area. Learn more about Research Topics or submit your suggestion. Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19): Pathophysiology, Epidemiology, Clinical Management and Public Health Response Edited by Zisis Kozlakidis; Denise L. Doolan; Shen-Ying Zhang; Yasuko Tsunetsugu Yokota; Tatsuo Shioda; Rukhsana Ahmed; Mohan Jyoti Dutta; Ata Murat Kaynar; Michael Kogut; Hannah Bradby; Slobodan Paessler; Alex Rodriguez-Palacios; Alexis M Kalergis; Longxiang Su; Abdallah Samy; Zhongheng ZhangPDFCOVID-19 pandemics: ethical, legal and social issuesEdited by Dov Greenbaum; David Gurwitz; Yann JolyPDFCovid-19 and Beyond: From (Forced) Remote Teaching and Learning to ‘The New Normal’ in Higher EducationEdited by Rhoda Scherman; Gabriela Misca; David Ian Walker; Geneviève PagéPDFBioactive Compounds, Lifestyle Factors and Neurodegenerative DiseasesEdited by Binosha Fernando; Stephanie R Rainey-Smith; Tejal ShahPDFWhat do we know about COVID-19 implications for cardiovascular disease? Edited by Hendrik Tevaearai Stahel; Masanori […]

Research Topics

Published on 30 Nov 2023

This year, researchers explored a wide range of topics, including: cancer combinational immunotherapy COVID-19 research the physiology of breathing during exercise and the future of animal experimentation. With over 1.8 million views, the following Research Topics sought answers to your biggest research questions from 2023. A new era in experimental research 36 articles | 177,000 views Studying the 3Rs Principle to promote more humane animal experimentation practices Cancer combinational immunotherapy 84 articles | 176,000 views Exploring cancer immunity mechanisms, novel therapeutic targets, and effective combinational strategies Breathing in sport and exercise 37 articles | 180,000 views Understanding the physiology and pathophysiology of breathing during exercise Multidisciplinary COVID-19 research 91 articles | 148,000 views Bringing together researchers from diverse fields Career development in the internet age 40 articles | 115,000 views Investigating career sustainability in different social contexts and practices Frontiers for Young Minds 10 articles | 673,000 views Bringing you more articles by Nobel Prize winners Psychiatrization of society 17 articles | 104,000 views Identifying the causes, mechanisms, and effects of psychiatrization Alpine grassland ecosystems 76 articles | 102,000 views Investigating tourism consumption behavior in times of crisis Abiotic stress-induced responses in plants 59 articles | 99,000 views Findings new […]

eBooks

Published on 30 Nov 2023

Download the top ebook releases from this month, including: exploration of emotions and leadership in organizations and educational institutes new developments in aerospace health and safety innovations and new technology in spine surgery and discoveries on dietary and metabolic approaches for mental health conditions. All ebooks are free to download, share and distribute. Shape the future of your field — and publish your own ebook — by editing a special collection around your research area. Learn more about Research Topics or submit your suggestion. Emotions and Leadership in Organizations and Educational Institutes Edited by Osman Titrek; Anna Stavicka; Ana Campina; Gozde Sezen-Gultekin; Carlos Francisco De Sousa ReisPDFAerospace Health and Safety: Today and the Future Edited by Irina Mordukhovich; Mardi A. Crane-Godreau; Eileen Mcneely; Christopher ScheiblerPDFDietary and Metabolic Approaches for Mental Health Conditions Edited by Nicholas G Norwitz; Mark É. Czeisler; Dominic D’AgostinoPDFCOVID-19: Food System Frailties and Opportunities Edited by Claire Kremen; Elliot Berry; Rachel Bezner Kerr; Patrick Meyfroidt; Ivette Perfecto; Todd Rosenstock; José Antonio Teixeira; Hannah WittmanPDFThe Deadly Secrets of C. Difficile – Insights into Host-Pathogen Interaction Edited by Meina Neumann-Schaal; Dieter Jahn; Ingo Just; Uwe GroßPDFTowards an Understanding of Tinnitus Heterogeneity, Volume II Edited by Christopher R. Cederroth; Winfried Schlee; […]

Frontiers news

Published on 30 Nov 2023

Frontiers publishing partnerships guest post  As part of its commitment to patient engagement, the Journal of Abdominal Wall Surgery (JAWS), one of Frontiers community of publishing partners, published a patient-led study on the impact of hernias on patients’ quality of life. Credit: Frontiers Abdominal wall hernia is a common disorder that usually requires elective surgery. Within hernia research, generic tools are often used to assess patient’s quality of life, but these do not always capture the specific concerns faced by abdominal hernia patients. Authored by both patients and medical professionals, this paper covers new ground by addressing gaps in knowledge, assessing the full impact of the disorder, and exploring whether existing quality-of-life life tools are adequate.  Susannah Hill is the article’s lead author and a hernia patient herself. She was asked to present the patient’s perspective on living with a hernia at the European Hernia Society (EHS) conference in 2022. After positive feedback from the audience, Hill received suggestions to publish the data in the Journal of Abdominal Wall Surgery.  “I wanted to raise awareness that hernias can be much more than physical, they can also impact personal relationships and mental health. Because these topics are usually glossed over in […]

Frontiers news

Published on 30 Nov 2023

Frontiers publishing partnerships guest post Advances in Drug and Alcohol Research (ADAR) is a hub for new discoveries in preclinical and clinical research around drug and alcohol addiction. The journal, which joined Frontiers’ publishing partnerships community in 2021, brings together scientists and clinicians from across the globe to discuss current and new challenges in drug addiction research. Credit: Frontiers In this guest post, ADAR Editor in Chief Dr Emmanuel Onaivi highlights and counters some common myths about substance abuse disorder.  Substance abuse remains a global epidemic, worsening when COVID-19 lockdowns led to increased drug and alcohol consumption, and opioid overdoses. As with mental health care more widely, to address the challenges of managing and curing addiction, it is vital to translate innovative research into patient care. Misconceptions about substance abuse disorder have a detrimental effect on patients and their social networks. It is essential to recognize this as a serious health concern which requires appropriate intervention to address underlying factors and promote recovery. Preventing and curing drug and alcohol addiction requires a similar approach to the one used for other mental health and neurological disorders, and it is important to publicly address common myths.  Myth: prescription drugs are not addictive  […]

Top news

Published on 30 Nov 2023

The United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) parties meet every year at the Conference of the Parties (COP) to negotiate and agree action on how to tackle climate change, limit emissions, and halt global warming. These gatherings are the world’s highest decision-making body on climate issues and one of the largest international meetings in the world. COP28 will provide a milestone opportunity for the world to come together, course correct, and drive progress to keep 1.5C within reach – so we can meet the goals and ambitions of the Paris Agreement. It will be a pivotal moment for the world to unite around tangible climate action and deliver realistic solutions.   Photo credit: Kyle Anthony Photography  Addressing climate change, the paramount challenge of our era, hinges upon harmonizing fundamental human needs with sustainable climate remedies. Despite heightened awareness and global pledges, advancements in climate action have lagged and, at moments, fallen short. Confronting this hurdle, open science emerges as a pivotal force for innovation and a driver of groundbreaking solutions, playing a vital role in addressing climate change challenges.  As world leaders convene at COP28 in an effort to reach consensus on actions to prevent the planet from surpassing the 1.5-degree […]

Engineering

Published on 30 Nov 2023

by Deborah Pirchner, Frontiers science writer Image: Shutterstock.com Building is an energy, plastic, and emissions intensive sector. Using environmentally friendly materials might pave the way towards reducing its carbon footprint. Now, researchers have tested the suitability of a mix of rice husks and cellulose– both materials that otherwise would end up in landfills or garbage incineration plants – as a building material. They found that the material had good thermal and mechanical properties, making it suitable to be used in a range of applications, including the insulation of eco-friendly buildings. The building sector is the second largest sector in plastic consumption and is responsible for more than a third of energy related greenhouse gas emissions worldwide. Manufacturing processes of construction materials pollute air, land, and water. Accordingly, construction materials made from agro-industrial waste become increasingly attractive due to their lower environmental impact. To contribute to a new generation of materials made from what is often considered waste, researchers in Panama have now developed a rice husk-based insulation material and evaluated its thermal and mechanical properties. They have published their results in Frontiers in Built Environment. “Here we show that is possible to create alternative insulating material from recycled newspaper and rice […]

Featured news

Published on 28 Nov 2023

by Angharad Brewer Gillham, Frontiers science writer Image/Shutterstock.com Newts of the genus Taricha produce tetrodotoxin, a powerful neurotoxin. Previously, scientists thought this was purely a chemical defense against predators, but they didn’t know how it was produced or how it might vary between males and females — important information for understanding the toxin’s functions. Researchers sampled wild newts to test for differences between the sexes and how these might vary over the breeding season. They found that females have consistently higher levels of toxins than males. Tetrodotoxin, the neurotoxin that makes a blue-ringed octopus deadly, also protects Taricha newts — but we don’t understand how they produce it, or what purposes it serves for them. A first step to answering these questions is understanding whether different levels appear in males and females. In sexually reproducing animals, dimorphic traits such as color or canine tooth size can be key for survival and reproductive fitness. Investigating whether toxin production is a sexually dimorphic trait in newts gets us closer to understanding it. “It had long been considered that newts’ toxin concentrations do not change in their lifetime and that males and females tend to have the same toxin concentrations. Now, we have […]

Frontiers news

Published on 24 Nov 2023

The Frontiers Research Foundation launches the Open Science Charter calling upon governments, research institutions and funders, the scientific community, and citizens everywhere to support mandatory open access to all publicly funded scientific knowledge by 2030.   Photo credit: NASA The climate emergency poses an existential threat, demanding immediate and far-reaching actions. Our planet is edging closer to several irreversible tipping points, with dire consequences for all life. We need a wide spectrum of science solutions urgently and the greatest accelerator is simply to mandate open access to publicly funded articles and data.   The current system restricts access to most of the scientific research not only to many scientists, but virtually all practitioners, innovators, and entrepreneurs in the world. The restrictions to access major breakthroughs in sustainability and climate sciences are even more severe. No one can afford such a block to knowledge that we all need to reverse and mitigate the effects of climate change and address many other global challenges.  The shift toward net-zero clean economies not only depends on open access to scientific knowledge, but also on political willingness to take evidence-based action. Governments and universities hold significant responsibility in empowering innovators to deliver practical solutions by ensuring […]

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