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Latest Max Planck Institute Stories

759c8c9646458daef3fe2adcc4af54b5
2010-07-01 07:10:31

Sex pheromone production in European corn borer races explored -- tracking the origin of new species The coming of summer brings promise for humans and insects alike. The farmer planted maize for a bountiful harvest, but the European Corn Borer (ECB) is looking for a good meal right away. The caterpillars of this pest bore deep into the maize stems, where they eat the inner pith causing the weakened stalks to fall over before the ears can ripen. As if one pest were not bad enough, there are...

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2010-06-27 13:20:32

Journeys across several time zones make our internal body clocks go haywire. We feel exhausted and tense, and our sleep pattern is out of synch. As scientists at the Max Planck Institute for Biophysical Chemistry have now succeeded in demonstrating for mice, the clocks associated with individual organs in the body adapt to the new time at different speeds. As a result, the body's physiological processes are no longer coordinated. The adrenal gland plays a key role in this process. When the...

bf850b78d3950ecf73c032c66fe44f451
2010-06-22 14:26:00

EU citizens should be able to determine for themselves under which national law they want to bequeath their estate The holiday home on the Costa del Sol, the bank account in London, the local assets of foreign citizens resident in Germany - which rules apply to the bequeathing of such assets? Not an easy question, because the freedom to stipulate how one's assets are to be disposed of in one's last will and testament is subject to different limitations in each country of the EU. There is not...

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2010-06-22 12:10:21

Until recently, the disastrous scale of the threat posed by salmon farms to the fauna and National Park of the Ays©n region of southern Chile was entirely unknown. The unexpected discovery was made by researchers from the Max Planck Institute for Dynamics and Self-Organization and the University of Göttingen, who were studying acoustic communication among the native whales in the region. The researchers not only discovered that the salmon industry is rapidly spreading to the...

246066fc453300697868abb8c59183241
2010-06-16 10:05:02

How postpartum depression arises and how it could be prevented Within the first week after giving birth, up to 70 percent of all women experience symptoms of the baby blues. While most women recover quickly, up to 13 percent of all new mothers suffer from symptoms of a clinical-level postpartum depression. Postpartum depression is defined as a major depressive episode starting within 4 weeks after delivery and is a significant public health problem. Postpartum blues represents a major risk...

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2010-06-06 07:08:01

High testosterone in house sparrows darkens their bill. The size of the black breast bib - the badge - and bill color of male House Sparrows change over the course of the year. Such ornaments usually signal quality and dominance of a male to his conspecifics and are correlated with his testosterone levels. These levels are generally higher before and during breeding season than for example during moult in autumn. A team of scientists at the Max Planck Institute for Ornithology in Seewiesen,...

5bf41861c0ca01091d9b463c13cce0441
2010-06-03 07:38:06

Scientists from Tbingen reveal an evolutionary dilemma: plants that are more resistant to disease grow more slowly and are less competitive than susceptible relatives when enemies are rare Individuals of one and the same plant species often differ greatly in their ability to resist pathogens: While one rose succumbs to bacterial infection, its neighbor blissfully thrives. Scientists from the Max Planck Institute of Developmental Biology in Germany have tracked down an explanation for this...

96e5711b5e1596e0c4b3d2ae8dfcc04a1
2010-05-19 13:20:54

Communication across species boundaries by echolocation calls in bats Bats can distinguish between the calls of their own and different species with their echolocation calls, report scientists of the Max Planck Institute for Ornithology in Seewiesen. This applies even for species closely related and ecologically similar with overlap of call frequency bands (The American Naturalist online, May 11th 2010). As opposed to bird song or the human voice, echolocation calls are primarily used for...

804c95d504b129054f603f341ddfb5dc1
2010-05-12 13:35:00

The downside of marriage for women: the greater a wife's age gap from her husband, the lower her life expectancy Marriage is more beneficial for men than for women - at least for those who want a long life. Previous studies have shown that men with younger wives live longer. While it had long been assumed that women with younger husbands also live longer, in a new study Sven Drefahl from the Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research (MPIDR) in Rostock, Germany, has shown that this is not...

9699d9480972f837f3db19a931a0eed41
2010-05-11 10:00:00

Supermassive black holes with the mass of many millions of stars have been detected at the center of many large galaxies. A super-massive black hole acts like a lurking "monster" at the center of the galaxy which swallows the surrounding material through the intensity of its gravitational pull. X-ray observations indicate that a large amount of energy is produced by the in-fall of matter into a black hole, and ejected in powerful jets. Astronomers from the Max Planck Institute for...


Word of the Day
cruet
  • A vial or small glass bottle, especially one for holding vinegar, oil, etc.; a caster for liquids.
This word is Middle English in origin, and ultimately comes from the Old French, diminutive of 'crue,' flask.
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