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Allergies: Mugwort pollen as main source of airborne endotoxins

Wed, 18 Jul 2018 10:47:59 EDT ~ Different airborne substances can cause respiratory problems for asthma sufferers. These include bacteria and their components, which can trigger inflammations. How they become airborne has not been fully explained up to now. A team has now shown that pollen from the mugwort plant is the main vector for bacteria and that this combination renders the pollen more aggressive. This is not the case in certain Alpine regions. Find out more...

Bacteria engineered to create fertilizer out of thin air

Mon, 16 Jul 2018 14:59:00 EDT ~ Researchers have created a bacteria that uses photosynthesis to create oxygen during the day, and at night, uses nitrogen to create chlorophyll for photosynthesis. This development could lead to plants that do the same, eliminating the use of some -- or possibly all -- human-made fertilizer, which has a high environmental cost. Find out more...

Using 'shade balls' in reservoirs may use up more water than they save

Mon, 16 Jul 2018 11:46:05 EDT ~ Preventing reservoir evaporation during droughts with floating balls may not help conserve water overall, due to the water needed to make the balls. Find out more...

Particulate matter increases drought vulnerability of trees

Mon, 16 Jul 2018 10:35:38 EDT ~ Particulate matter deposits on leaves increase plant transpiration and the risk of plants suffering from drought. Particulate matter could thus be contributing more strongly to tree mortality and forest decline than previously assumed. This is suggested by results from a greenhouse study, in which tree seedlings grown in almost particulate matter free air or in unfiltered air were compared. Find out more...

New tool to calculate 'nitrogen footprint' offers guide to pollution reduction

Mon, 16 Jul 2018 10:31:58 EDT ~ Researchers have helped create the first tool to calculate the 'nitrogen footprint' of an organization. The tool will provide a guide to sustainability and pollution reduction for daily activities such as food consumption, travel and energy use. Find out more...

Better methods improve measurements of recreational water quality

Fri, 13 Jul 2018 13:51:14 EDT ~ The concentration of enterococci, bacteria that thrive in feces, has long been the federal standard for determining water quality. Researchers have now shown that the greatest influences on that concentration are the quantity of mammalian feces in the water, and the numbers of enterococci that glom onto floating particulate matter. Find out more...

New study reveals Ulsan, South Korea, is exposed to yearlong toxic fine dust

Fri, 13 Jul 2018 09:51:38 EDT ~ A new study offers decisive proof that South Korea's Ulsan city is affected by toxic substances contained in fine dust particles, regardless of the season. Find out more...

South Korea's polluted river basin

Thu, 12 Jul 2018 10:05:19 EDT ~ A new study shows that even though water quality has improved in South Korea's Han River basin since the 1990s, there are still higher-than-acceptable levels of pollutants in some of the more urbanized regions in and around the capital Seoul. Find out more...

Living in greener neighborhoods is associated with slower cognitive decline in elderly

Wed, 11 Jul 2018 18:27:41 EDT ~ Contact with greenspace is known to have beneficial effects for mental health. A new study suggests that it may also play a positive role against cognitive decline in elderly. In particular, this research shows that the loss in cognitive functions expected as part of the aging process is slightly slower in people who live in greener neighborhoods. Find out more...

Different strategy of cycling teams in escape attempts

Wed, 11 Jul 2018 10:55:39 EDT ~ A new study based on wind tunnel research on a peloton of 121 cyclists may explain why so few 'breakaways' in professional cycling races, like this year's Tour de France, are successful. Find out more...