oak wood

Oak Wood Cross Section

Cross section of oak wood, showing every reason that made an oak tall and strong. The large pores are vessels that are responsible for transporting (more accurately, pumping/pushing) water from the root system to the tip of the tree. The densely packed purple dots are stained lignin in the cells walls. During early wood development, once lignin is deposited in the cell wall, these cells … Continue reading Oak Wood Cross Section

holly wood

Holly Wood Tangential Section

Tangential section of wood of Chinese holly. This is how it looks like when you do a cut that’s perpendicular to the radius of the stem. The vertical lines are vessels transporting water from roots to leaves, while the circles are clustered ray cells that function to transport fluids and nutrients radially and laterally (perpendicular to the long axis) within a woody stem. Contributed by … Continue reading Holly Wood Tangential Section

communication-1991850_1920

Why Scientists Need to be Better Communicators

by Marina Watanabe I once attended a lecture by a famed physicist, and left convinced that physics was the biggest sham in the universe (or multiverse, if you believe him). At one point, the professor answered an audience member’s question by “clarifying” that if you were on the inside (of what?!) looking out (to where?!), time was time. However, if you were on the outside … Continue reading Why Scientists Need to be Better Communicators

squarelarger

The Cancer Treatment Playbook: Why we still don’t have a cure

Will we be the first generation that cures cancer? The answer is complicated. Curing cancer remains a steep task despite the hopeful rhetoric and heavy investment put forward by new initiatives like the Cancer Moonshot. Treating cancer is not possible with a ‘one size fits all’ approach as each tumor requires a precise strategy to be defeated. These game plans must combat key offensive plays … Continue reading The Cancer Treatment Playbook: Why we still don’t have a cure

cover

Mixed Emotions on the March for Science and the Consequences of Getting it Wrong

by Dana Boebinger figures by Tito Adhikary I’ve had many conversations over the past several weeks – with scientists and non-scientists alike – about the possible outcomes of this weekend’s March for Science. Some people are excited about this opportunity to make a strong show of support for scientific research and evidence-based policymaking. Others don’t think a march is necessary. But in the days leading … Continue reading Mixed Emotions on the March for Science and the Consequences of Getting it Wrong

monocot leaf epidermis

Monocot Leaf Epidermis

Microscope image of the epidermis of a spiderwort leaf with well-organized stomata in high density. Stomata (singular stoma) are like little mouths on the leaf surface, specialized in gas-exchange – CO2 enters a plant through them. The opening and closure of stomata are tightly controlled, because when stomata are open, water is escaping from the plant too. Therefore, each plant needs to find a delicate … Continue reading Monocot Leaf Epidermis

crown-of-thorns-starfish-phuket-big

Using your own DNA against you: Bio-control of coral reef pest might be possible

Crown-of-thorns starfish (COTS) are decimating coral populations along the Great Barrier Reef. Scientists have sequenced COTS genomes in the hopes of turning their own biology against them. Researchers think they have found the peptides the COTS use to communicate with each other. These peptides are released into the water to help the starfish aggregate before spawning events. If true, it’s possible to use these peptides to build several mechanisms for controlling the COTS pests. Continue reading Using your own DNA against you: Bio-control of coral reef pest might be possible