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Monthly Archives: February 2013

Lung-on-a-chip

In the news this week has been an interesting approach to replicating human disease in a ‘lung-on-a-chip’ device. The lung-on-a-chip, which is about the size of a USB stick, contains hollow channels lined with living human cells. Applying a vacuum to two channels along the side of the chip allows it to recreate the way … Continue reading »

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A dolphin’s smile – are aquariums ethical?

by Natasha Neill, Executive Officer at the Society of Biology. The latest issue of The Biologist included an article on William Alford Lloyd, the man who brought aquariums to Britain. Aquariums and zoos can be amazing environments where lifelong passions are born, but their popularity in some regions has spawned institutions with animals obtained through … Continue reading »

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Testing for horse D-N-eigh

by Zoë Martin, Society of Biology In light of the horsemeat scandal I was interested in understanding a bit more about how we determine what species are actually populating the products on supermarket shelves. Testing facility websites reveal that the food industry mainly relies on two techniques to detect horse meat in beef: the protein-based … Continue reading »

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NHS Choices website becomes ‘neutral’ on homeopathy

by Rebecca Nesbit, Society of Biology * since I wrote this post, the NHS Choices website has been modified again with the introduction of a sentence stating that a Government report said  homeopathic remedies perform no better than placebos  The ongoing debate about whether homeopathy should be provided on the NHS has again stirred up … Continue reading »

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It’s Darwin Day – a celebration for everyone

by Rebecca Nesbit, Society of Biology I arrived in the office this morning to the excellent news that three of our Fellows, including our President Dame Nancy Rothwell, made the top 20 of the Women’s Hour Power List. This was fantastic recognition of the contribution scientists make to our society, and appropriate on a day … Continue reading »

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Species of the week: Bottlenose dolphin

by Pippy Downs, a Year 11 work experience pupil from The Folkestone School for Girls Bottlenose dolphins are well known for being able to perform complex tricks. They have a friendly, permanent smile from their curved bottle like noses. Most people call them ‘dolphins’ however the scientific family name for dolphins is Delphinidae. They are … Continue reading »

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The peculiarities of the jellyfish nervous system

Guest post from Joseph Jebelli, a PhD student at UCL What is it like to be a jellyfish? These beautifully mesmerising creatures are so bizarre, so alien to us in so many respects that one can easily be forgiven for struggling to come up with a good answer. Biologically, jellyfish have long been thought of … Continue reading »

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Bad news for pollination – a decline in Britain’s larger moths

by Rebecca Nesbit ‘Moths are declining rapidly in the UK’ was, unsurprisingly, the message from the State of Britain’s Larger Moths report launched last Friday by Butterfly Conservation. In a week when the controversial topic of bees and neonicotinoids was headline news, it was interesting to hear about the fates of a different group of … Continue reading »

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