Harvesting wild mushrooms requires an expert eye, making products containing wild fungi expensive. Due to minimal food regulations, it’s nearly impossible to know what species are actually contained within. Sequencing revealed food products labeled with wild mushrooms mostly contained cultivated fungi and some mushrooms poisonous to humans.
The secret social lives of giant poisonous rats
A new study confirmed that the rabbit-sized rodent sequesters poison from the bark of Acokanthera schimperi, known as the poison arrow tree, into specialized fur for defense. The researchers also discovered an unexpected social life—the rats appear to be monogamous and may even form small family units with their offspring.
Poison control: Chasing the antidote
A fast-acting antidote to mitigate the effects of organophosphate poisoning requires a reactivator that can effectively and efficiently cross the blood-brain barrier, bind loosely to the enzyme, chemically snatch the poison and then leave quickly. Oak Ridge National Laboratory is using neutron diffraction data towards improving a novel reactivator design.
Story Tips: Antidote chasing, traffic control and automatic modeling
ORNL’s Story Tips: Antidote chasing, traffic control and automatic modeling, for March 2020