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17-Apr-2014 05:51
Beijing Time

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Interviews

Dr. Wangpeng Shi

"Gut parasites may prevent locust swarms"

Locusts are infamous for their ability to aggregate into gregarious migratory swarms that pose a major threat to food security. Aggregation is elicited by an interplay of visual, tactile, and chemical stimuli, but the aggregation pheromone in feces is particularly important. Infection by the microsporidian parasite Paranosema (Nosema) locustae is known to inhibit aggregation of solitary Locusta migratoria manilensis and to induce gregarious locusts to shift back to solitary behavior. Here we suggest that P. locustae achieves this effect by acidifying the hindgut and modulating the locust immune response, which suppresses the growth of the hindgut bacteria that produce aggregation pheromones. This in turn reduces production of the neurotransmitter serotonin that initiates gregarious behavior. Healthy L. migratoria manilensis exposed to olfactory stimuli from parasite-infected locusts also produced significantly less serotonin, reducing gregarization. P. locustae also suppresses biosynthesis of the neurotransmitter dopamine that maintains gregarization. Our findings reveal the mechanisms by which P. locustae reduces production of aggregation pheromone and blocks the initiation and maintainence of gregarious behavior.

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Dr. Jun Yao

"Nanocomputing using nanowire tiles"

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Dr. Beili Wu

"Ready for its close-up: One of HIV’s entrance points"

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Professor Guifan Sun

"New risk model highlights arsenic risk in China’s groundwater"

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Professor Zhexi Luo

"Fossil evokes an old mammal with new tricks"

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Dr. Xing Xu

"Before settling on two wings, birds had four"

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Dr. Siqi Zheng

"Bullet trains may improve quality of urban life in China"

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Dr. Min Yu

"Circulating tumor cells get wanderlust"

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Dr. I-Kuan Wang

"Hypertension in pregnancy increases risk of end-stage renal disease"

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Shiyou Ding

"For biofuel production, fungi trumps bacteria"

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PhD Candidate Yazhuo Gong

"The latest progress of black-based iris recognition of East Asians"

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PhD Candidate Yadong Sun

"Too hot to live in the Triassic"

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Dr. Shuijin Hu

"Fungus ousts carbon from the soil"

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Dr. Tianle Yuan

"Air in North America full of foreign dust"

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Dr. Pei-Hui Lin

"Protein repairs cell damage in muscle dystrophy"

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Xia Zhou, M.D.

"Rethinking a 'healthy' vagina"

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Dr. Ping Wu

"For ex-addicts, a drug-free way to prevent relapse?"

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PhD Candidate Zhengzheng (Sophia) Liang

"Honeybee genes linked to bold behaviors"

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Dr. Wei Peng

"Skip the hamburger before surgery"

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Dr. Yifeng Liao

"Carbon layer holds clues to improving metal hip replacements"

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Dr. Deng Tao

"Tibetan Plateau a cold cradle for Ice-Age giants"

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Dr. Charles Xie

"Computational experiments for science education"

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Dr. Xiaohong Wan

"Expert or amateur? Brain scans can tell"

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Xinyao Liu

"Microbes reprogrammed to ooze oil for renewable biofuel"

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Dr. Xiao-Jing Yan and Dr. Xiao-Wei Zhang

"Arsenic Trioxide Controls the Fate of the PML-RARalpha Oncoprotein by Directly Binding PML"

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Dr. NJ Tao

"New imaging technology brings trace chemicals into focus"

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Dr. Chao Li

"New picture of ancient ocean chemistry argues for chemically layered water"

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Dr. Zhang Fusuo

"Chinese soils acidifying due to fertilizer"

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Dr. Jiwen Fan

" Pollution alters isolated thunderstorms "

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Dr. Fenglin Niu

"San Andreas affected by 2004 Sumatran quake"

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Zhou-Feng Chen

"Researchers identify itch-specific neurons in mice, hope for better treatments"

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He Feng

"'Motion picture' of past warming paves way for snapshots of future climate change"

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Dr. Yi-Yuan Tang

"Of body and mind, and deep meditation"

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