Earth

A vast new study of changes in global wildlife over almost three decades has found that low levels of effective national governance are the strongest predictor of declining species numbers - more so than economic growth, climate change or even surges in human population.

The findings, published in the journal Nature, also show that protected conservation areas do maintain wildlife diversity, but only when situated in countries that are reasonably stable politically with sturdy legal and social structures.

HOUSTON - (Dec. 20, 2017) - Gene editing could someday help people at risk of hearing loss from genetic mutations, according to research by a new Rice University faculty member.

Xue (Sherry) Gao, who joined Rice in the fall as the Ted N. Law Assistant Professor of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering, is co-lead author of a new Nature paper that reports on the promise of gene editing to treat autosomal dominant hearing diseases.

Some secrets to repair our skeletons might be found in the silky webs of spiders, according to recent experiments guided by supercomputers. Scientists involved say their results will help understand the details of osteoregeneration, or how bones regenerate.

KNOXVILLE--In the drive to survive changing climates, larger herbivores may fare slightly better than their smaller competitors, according to new research from the National Institute for Mathematical and Biological Synthesis and the Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies.

The combined effects of pesticides and a lack of nutrition form a deadly one-two punch, new research from biologists at the University of California San Diego has shown for the first time.

Winter is coming.....as anyone who watches the hit TV series, Game of Thrones, knows.

Some even have their own theories for what causes the strange extended seasons in that world of dragons, kings, queens, and magic.

But scientists from the Universities of Bristol, Cardiff, and Southampton have gone one stage further, by using a Climate Model to simulate and explore the climate of the world of Game of Thrones.

DURHAM, N.H. - From 2005 to 2015 the number of infants diagnosed with neonatal abstinence syndrome (NAS) in the Granite State increased fivefold, from 52 to 269, according to new research by the Carsey School of Public Policy at the University of New Hampshire. In 2015, newborns diagnosed with NAS remained in the hospital 12 days on average, compared to three days for newborns not born exposed.

AMHERST, Mass. - Materials chemists have been trying for years to make a new type of battery that can store solar or other light-sourced energy in chemical bonds rather than electrons, one that will release the energy on demand as heat instead of electricity - addressing the need for long-term, stable, efficient storage of solar power.

As the global population rises, estimated to hit nearly 10 billion by 2050, so does the need to boost crop yields and produce enough plant material for both food and sustainable alternative fuels. To help improve crop breeding strategies and overcome challenges such as making plants more tolerant of marginal lands, and stresses such as drought and low nutrient availability, researchers are focusing on understanding and promoting beneficial plant-microbe relationships.

Tropical Storm Kai-Tak moved through the central and southern Philippines over several days and weakened to a remnant low pressure area in the South China Sea. As it moved over the country, NASA found that the storm generated heavy amounts of rainfall.

Tropical storm Kai-Tak was nearly stationary at times as it drenched the Philippines from Dec. 14 through 18. The storm caused major flooding and landslides. Many homes, roads and bridges were reported destroyed by landslides.