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Male Frogs Form Music Bands to Woo Females For Mating, Find American Researchers

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Researchers at Dartmouth College, New Hampshire , United States, have discovered a frog species ( Rana sylvatica or Wood frog) that form singing bands or boy bands that sing to attract females for mating. Studies have shown that females are allured to low-frequency sounds because they indicate their mates' good physical health and bigger bodies. Therefore, males find their band members that have low sound frequencies to increase their chances of mating. A frog chorus includes individual sounds of different frogs that make a bizarre gobbling and quacking noise.  “A chorus of wood frogs can sound a lot like the chaotic gobbling from a group of rowdy turkeys,” said Ryan Calsbeek , study author. “No one has figured out a way to extract the voice of one individual from a chorus to understand how membership in a group influences that individual’s chance at getting a mate.” Image credits: Pexels Wood frogs have a broad range over North America and reproduce in temporary water bodies, unli

Science in the Society : Saving Wildlife

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Conserving wildlife while human society expands into the far corners of the Earth has been a tough act to balance and one that we are constantly failing at.  For all the technological advancements that we have made for ourselves, our biggest interventions to safeguard animal life have been fences that run into miles or overhead bridges that animals do not know how to use.  Vedant Srinivas , a sophomore at Eastlake High School in Sammamish, Washington in the U.S. who has been using advances in science and technology to prevent road kills. Just a teenager, Vedant has dived deep into animal learning and behavior as well as physics and economics to design and deploy interventions that are cost-effective and do their job.  Vedant working on an ORA protoype For our second interview in the Science in the Society series, we spoke to Vedant over email. The interview has been edited for clarity.  CTS:  What got you interested in wildlife conservation? Why are your innovations focused in this sp

Severe Asthma Patients Respond Poorly To Common Treatment, Say The US Scientists

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Researchers at the Rutgers University and Genentech , US, have found that severe asthma patients do not respond to common medication treatment and have pointed to a solution to fix this problem. Image Credits: Pixabay Asthma patients are often prescribed corticosteroid inhalers. These drugs are a common treatment as they reduce swelling and inflammation of the airways to prevent asthma attacks and reduce their severity. These inhalers are effective in patients with mild to moderate asthma but people having severe asthma do not respond well to them. The research team investigated this problem and found the mechanism that seems to block the action of the drugs. For the study, they collected the samples of bronchial airway epithelial cells (BAECs) exposed to inhaled corticosteroids from three different groups: patients with severe asthma, patients with moderate asthma and healthy people. Then, they performed a genetic analysis to find which genes get activated in the cells in response t

Japanese Researchers Make Edible Cement From Food Waste

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Researchers at Tokyo University, Japan , have developed a technology that can convert waste food into cement for construction. The cement formed is edible and has tensile or bending strength four times the conventional concrete. With this innovation, researchers expect to reduce global warming by dealing with problems related to food waste decomposition. Methane is one of the greenhouse gases produced when food materials rot and is a significant contributor to global warming.    Image Credits: Pexels The Formation Of Food Cement According to the Chatham House , a London-based organization providing solutions to climate change, 8 percent of the world's carbon dioxide is emitted by cement production processes. Considering this, researchers developed a technology that could decrease dependency on concrete-based cement. They first developed a method to make concrete with fine wood particles subjected to heat compression. It involved three steps; drying, pulverization (crushing) and com

Pet Goldfishes Are A Threat To Biodiversity Say UK Researchers

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Researchers at the Queen's University Belfast, Northern Ireland , have reported that goldfish species might harm the surrounding ecosystems if they enter the wild. Invasive species are one of the major causes of biodiversity loss, and the pet trade is responsible for the aquatic invasive species. Many pet owners consider setting their pets free to be the more humane option. But, this approach is not meant for goldfish. Recently, they have been found in Atlantic Forest brook , breaking their confinement, and are flourishing. The release of such pets into the wild could lead to destructive outcomes for biodiversity.   Image Credits: Pixabay To better understand the ecological risks produced by various species within the pet trade, researchers decided to study the most common aquatic pets in Northern Ireland: goldfish and white cloud mountain minnow. Goldfish are the absolute starter pet as they are cute, tiny and easy to take care of. These fishes first domesticated over a thousand y

Driverless Vehicles Can Be Tricked into Disastrous Driving Behaviour, Finds US Study

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Driverless or autonomous cars are becoming popular these days. They were designed keeping in mind the safety of drivers and people on the road. However, researchers at the University of California, Irvine (UCI) have identified a possible risk that could trick the collision-avoidance system of driverless cars leading to an inevitable accident. Collision avoidance is installed to prevent or decrease the chances of a collision. It monitors the vehicle's speed, the speed of the counter vehicle and the distance between the two to avoid a crash. The system contains various sensors and technologies, including radars, cameras and lasers, to spot an imminent collision.  According to the researchers, the system could be deceived causing an undesirable driving behaviour or abrupt halt by the objects placed on the roadside. “A box, bicycle or traffic cone may be all that is necessary to scare a driverless vehicle into coming to a dangerous stop in the middle of the street or on a freeway off-

Cancer Patients Are More Likely To Suffer From Severe Health Issues Due to Polypharmacy, Say Oncologists

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Researchers at the University of Rochester Medical Center (URMC), USA, have found that 92 percent of older adults with cancer face an issue called "polypharmacy". In a typical scenario, a patient coming for cancer treatment reports taking medications that might include medicines for diabetes, heart disease or high blood pressure, or an antidepressant. But, they may not report these medications as often to the medical team. Image Credits: Pixabay This concurrent use of multiple medications is known as Polypharmacy, which can make people more prone to harmful drug interaction. It is dangerous, especially for cancer patients who are about to undergo treatment. "Even for individuals who do not have cancer, multiple medication use is fraught with risks and tricky to navigate because of the emotions involved," said Erika Ramsdale, M.D. , an Oncologist, Geriatrics Specialist at Wilmot Cancer Institute , URMC. Further, she added that the risk of inappropriate use and serio

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