Announcing Virtual Press Conference for Experimental Biology 2021 Meeting

Reporters are invited to join a live Q&A discussion of exciting research announcements at the forefront of the life sciences during a virtual press conference for the Experimental Biology (EB) 2021 meeting. The press conference will be held online from 1–1:45 p.m. EDT on Monday, April 26, 2021 (RSVP by Friday, April 23).

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Discovery: How Colorado Potato Beetles Beat Pesticides

New research shows that pesticide alter how Colorado potato beetles manage their DNA. These changes were passed down two generations suggesting that rapid resistance to pesticides may not require beetles to evolve their genetic code. Instead they may simply use existing genes to tolerate toxins already found in potatoes. The scientists were surprised that these epigenetic changes, triggered by a single tiny dose of pesticide, were maintained through multiple rounds of sexual reproduction.

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Imitation Mosquito Ears Help Identify Mosquito Species and Sex

Using an imitation “ear” modeled on the organs that mosquitos use to hear, researchers have identified a mosquito’s species and sex using sound — just like mosquitos do themselves. The researchers hope this bioinspired detector could someday be used in the field to save lives by aiding in more selective pesticide use and possibly preventing mosquitos from mating. A presentation of the new research will be given as part of the 179th ASA Meeting.

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As Evidence of “Hormone Disruptor” Chemical Threats Grows, Experts Call for Stricter Regulation

A growing number of chemicals in pesticides, flame retardants, and certain plastics have been linked to widespread health problems including infertility, diabetes, and impaired brain development, a set of reviews of hundreds of studies concludes.

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Study gauges insecticide effects on monarch butterflies

A newly published study sheds light on how insecticides commonly applied to crops affect monarch caterpillars. Conservation efforts to protect monarch butterfly populations depend on planting milkweed on agricultural land, but doing so may put caterpillars in close proximity to harmful insecticides.

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