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Latest Max Planck Institute Stories

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2010-03-11 13:49:38

The human brain processes predictable sensory input in a particularly efficient manner It turns out that there is a striking similarity between how the human brain determines what is going on in the outside world and the job of scientists. Good science involves formulating a hypothesis and testing whether this hypothesis is compatible with the scientist's observations. Researchers in the Max Planck Institute for Brain Research in Frankfurt together with the University of Glasgow have shown...

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2010-03-09 11:05:56

Desert ants perceive odor maps in stereo and use this information for navigation Scientists of the Max Planck Institute for Chemical Ecology in Jena have investigated another navigational skill of desert ants. These ants are already well-known for their remarkable visual orientation: they use a sun compass along with a step counter and visible landmarks to locate their nest after foraging for food. After the research team from Jena recently discovered that these ants also use olfactory cues...

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2010-03-08 10:50:00

New study calls research factors into question They are considered to be the most important model organism for research into human biology: mice may look totally different, but they are in many ways similar to Homo sapiens on a fundamental level. For instance, an impressive 99 percent of the mouse genes are matched by a corresponding sequence in the human genome. That is also why the law in this part of the world only permits scientists to conduct research on human embryo stem cells when they...

2010-03-04 16:50:12

Iron atoms convey mussel fibers with a robust but stretchy covering We may like to eat mussels steamed in white wine, but we also like to find mussels at the beach. Mostly they are burrowed into the ground or tethered to rocks. But if you look closer you will find a mollusc which has adapted to life and nutrition in a special and fascinating way. Mussels thrive in rocky seashore habitats, in spite of the enormous physical demands present there. This is in no small part due to the evolution of...

2010-02-25 07:05:00

WASHINGTON, Feb. 25 /PRNewswire/ -- Complementary approaches to Alzheimer's research were recognized as four scientists received the prestigious MetLife Foundation Awards for Medical Research in Alzheimer's Disease in Washington, D.C. during a scientific briefing and luncheon. Todd E. Golde, M.D., Ph.D., professor of neuroscience at the University of Florida and director of its Center for Translational Research in Neurodegenerative Diseases, and Edward H. Koo, M.D., professor of...

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2010-02-23 14:15:00

Max Planck scientists succeed with a novel technique in the fight against the cause of peptic ulcer disease and gastric cancer A breakthrough in decoding gene regulation of Helicobacter pylori has been made by an international research team led by Jörg Vogel of the Max Planck Institute for Infection Biology in Berlin. Using a newly developed sequencing technique, the re-searchers discovered 60 small ribonucleic acids (sRNAs) - tiny RNA-particles which can regulate genes - in the genome...

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2010-02-20 14:56:03

An international team of scientists, including two from Arizona State University, have taken a significant step closer to unlocking the secrets of photosynthesis, and possibly to cleaner fuels. Plants and algae, as well as cyanobacteria, use photosynthesis to produce oxygen and "fuels," the latter being oxidizable substances like carbohydrates and hydrogen. There are two pigment-protein complexes that orchestrate the primary reactions of light in oxygenic photosynthesis: photosystem I (PSI)...

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2010-02-17 10:18:17

Heavy migratory birds take shorter breaks and reach their breeding grounds faster Small migratory birds, like the garden warbler, must make stopovers on their journeys to their breeding grounds. When they have crossed extensive ecological barriers, such as deserts or oceans, they must land to replenish their fat reserves. A researcher from the Max Planck Institute for Ornithology in Seewiesen and a team of Italian colleagues measured the duration of the stopovers made by garden warblers on an...

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2010-02-16 14:10:59

Max Planck physicists develop an experiment to investigate the random motion of quantum particles Life would sometimes be so much easier if we were quantum particles. For example, if we were trying to find our way out of a strange town allowing chance telling us which way to go at every intersection. As objects of classical physics, this would mean becoming more and more lost in the center of the road network. If we were particles that obeyed the laws of quantum mechanics, we would sooner or...

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2010-01-21 15:14:31

Messenger molecule in oral secretions of herbivorous insects changes flower opening time of their host plants: Hummingbirds take over role as pollinators from moths Butterflies and moths are welcome visitors to many plant species. Plants attract insect pollinators with the colors, forms, nectars and scents of their flowers to ensure fertilization and reproduction. However, female moths are also threatening to the plant: Once attracted by the flower's scent, they lay their eggs on the green...


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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