Connect with us

Scientific News

Freshwater megafauna in sharp decline according to study

Published

on

Freshwater animals represent about one-third of all vertebrate species in the world, presenting a highly respected variety. However, it is unfortunate that life itself in the rivers, lakes and all the bodies of freshwater in the world is in sharp decline, as confirmed by new research published in Global Change Biology.

The research, in particular, has focused on freshwater megafauna, which is all those animals of a certain size that weigh at least 50 pounds. We speak, therefore, of crocodiles, large fish such as sturgeons, giant tortoises, and so on.

By gathering data on 126 species of freshwater megafauna from various parts of the world, researchers have concluded that from 1970 to 2012 these populations even decreased by 88%.
This is a double decrease compared to the heavy defections affecting terrestrial or marine vertebrate populations.

Sonja Jähnig, a researcher at the Leibniz-Institut für Gewässerökologie und Binnenfischerei (IGB), lead author of the study, talks about alarming results that confirm the already very strong concerns before this study regarding freshwater biodiversity.

The most important decreases occurred in the Indo-Malaysian ecozone (India and neighboring countries plus south-east Asia), with a 99% decrease, and in the Palearctic eco-zone (almost all of Asia, Europe and North Africa), which saw a 97% decrease.

Among the most affected species are those related to large fish such as sturgeons, salmonids and giant catfish that show an average drop of 94%. These species are followed by reptiles that show an average decrease of 72%.

The main reasons behind the decrease in the populations of these animals are due to the excessive exploitation by human beings and the loss of the flow of the rivers, a phenomenon that occurs especially when the flow of water is blocked by the dams, as recalls Fengzhi He, first author of the study and expert in freshwater megafauna.

Mark Romando

I am an amateur astronomer, computer science student and chess Fide Master. I originally joined Jubobarta News in mid-2019 as a volunteer contributor in the interest of writing about different scientific research that I felt would be interesting to a wide range of people. Since joining I have published numerous stories and intend to stay publishing for a long time to come.

4846 Charmaine Lane, Levelland Texas, 79336
806-598-6726
[email protected]
Mark Romando
Continue Reading

Scientific News

Efficient hybrid tandem solar cells created by Korean scientists

Published

on

High-efficiency tandem photovoltaic devices with quantum colloidal solar cells and photoactive materials of organic mass heterogjunction have been developed by a team of UNIST researchers led by Professor Sung-Yeon Jang.
The colloidal quantum solar cells (CQD) have soon attracted considerable attention in the field of photovoltaic energy because they are flexible and lightweight, easier to manufacture than conventional silicon solar cells and without loss of efficiency.

Quantum dots are nanoscopic-sized semiconductor particles. They have various useful and interesting characteristics, primarily an emission wavelength that depends on the size.
Basically, quantum points can absorb light in the near infrared, something that other cells and active photo layers cannot do.

Jang’s research team has developed a new photoactive quantum point technology that compensates for the loss of external quantum efficiency in the near infrared region. They also used an intermediate layer to achieve power conversion efficiency. These new tandem hybrid solar cells are made at room temperature and therefore their manufacture is cheaper than silicon solar cells.
“The hybrid tandem device has shown almost negligible degradation after storing air for three months,” says Jang himself.

Mark Romando

I am an amateur astronomer, computer science student and chess Fide Master. I originally joined Jubobarta News in mid-2019 as a volunteer contributor in the interest of writing about different scientific research that I felt would be interesting to a wide range of people. Since joining I have published numerous stories and intend to stay publishing for a long time to come.

4846 Charmaine Lane, Levelland Texas, 79336
806-598-6726
[email protected]
Mark Romando
Continue Reading

Scientific News

A new species of turtle in Texas that lived almost 100 million years ago has been classified

Published

on

Analyzing the remains found at the Arlington Archosaur Site, a site with various fossil remains from the late Cretaceous period in Texas, a team of researchers described four species of extinct turtles, one of which is named after paleontologist Derek Main.

This site was discovered in 2003 and proved to be a prolific location for late Cretaceous remains, remnants of life forms that lived more than 90 million years ago. It is a wetland located near the shore of a peninsula and already in the past has provided several fossils of ancient crocodiles, dinosaurs, mammals, amphibians, fish, invertebrates and even plants.

However, the turtle fossils discovered at this site had proved quite rare, at least until this study that was published in Palaeontology Electronica. The new species was named Trinitichelys maini. It is a Baenidae turtle, an extinct group of North American aquatic turtles that lived from the Cretaceous to the Eocene era.

Of medium size, these turtles showed strongly fused bones and upper shell and lived near rivers. The Trinitichelys maini is the oldest turtle of this group found in the North American subcontinent of Appalachia, a region that during the Cretaceous period was separated from Laramidia, the western subcontinent of North America.

In addition to the new classification, researchers described three other turtles, one of which is the oldest side-necked turtle (Pleurodira order) ever found in North America. These turtles are characterized by the particular way they withdraw their heads inside their shells: they do so by bending their necks on the horizontal plane.

The other two turtles described are one belonging to the group of trionichids (Trionychidae), or soft-shelled turtles, and another belonging to the genus Naomichelys (family Helochelydridae ).

Mark Romando

I am an amateur astronomer, computer science student and chess Fide Master. I originally joined Jubobarta News in mid-2019 as a volunteer contributor in the interest of writing about different scientific research that I felt would be interesting to a wide range of people. Since joining I have published numerous stories and intend to stay publishing for a long time to come.

4846 Charmaine Lane, Levelland Texas, 79336
806-598-6726
[email protected]
Mark Romando
Continue Reading

Scientific News

Key mechanism of epilepsy in Angelman syndrome discovered by researchers

Published

on

In the course of research defined as “innovative,” a team of researchers from the Duke-NUS Medical School and the National Neuroscience Institute (NNI), Singapore, discovered a mechanism considered to be basic with regard to epilepsy in Angelman syndrome. This discovery, according to the researchers themselves, could lead to new therapies in the future.

Angelman’s syndrome (AS) is a rare genetic disease due to a defect in the process of chromosome duplication, often accompanied by delays in psychological and motor development, cognitive disabilities and other symptoms including epilepsy. In the course of the study, researchers at the Singapore Institutes used a new experimental methodology with human neural cells and brain organelles to understand the mechanism of epileptic seizures in this syndrome.

The researchers discovered the role of the ion channel in the hyperactivity of the brain network that triggers convulsions. The latter would be linked to gene deficiency of the ubiquitin ligase protein E3A (UBE3A) within neurons. As this is a syndrome that cannot be treated at present, this discovery could, therefore, be very important.

“Our study used 2D human neuronal cultures that allowed the accelerated discovery of functional differences at the single-cell level in the brain of normal individuals compared to those with AS,” explains Hyunsoo Shawn Je, the senior author of the study. “The use of mini 3D human brains allowed us to monitor spontaneous network activities, linking the results of abnormal firing from individual neurons and convulsive-like activities, just like those observed in the brains of AS patients.”

Mark Romando

I am an amateur astronomer, computer science student and chess Fide Master. I originally joined Jubobarta News in mid-2019 as a volunteer contributor in the interest of writing about different scientific research that I felt would be interesting to a wide range of people. Since joining I have published numerous stories and intend to stay publishing for a long time to come.

4846 Charmaine Lane, Levelland Texas, 79336
806-598-6726
[email protected]
Mark Romando
Continue Reading

Trending

Copyright © 2019 Jubobarta News