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BioScience tip sheet, September 2008

Research articles that will be published in the September 2008 issue of BioScience are as follows:

The Molecular Biology Toolbox and Its Use in Basic and Applied Insect Science. Michel Cusson.
The sequencing and annotation of insect genomes and comparative genomics are providing new insights into the molecular underpinnings of insect-specific processes. These have led to a variety of biotechnological applications to pest management, some with large economic potential.

Vulnerability of Permafrost Carbon to Climate Change: Implications for the Global Carbon Cycle. Edward A. G. Schuur and colleagues.
A new assessment indicates that the thawing of permafrost in northern latitudes, which greatly increases microbial decomposition of carbon compounds in soil, will dominate other effects of warming in the region and could become a major force promoting the release of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere and thus further warming. Note: this article is the subject of a separate press release posted today, under embargo until Sep. 1, titled "Thawing Permafrost Likely to Boost Global Warming."

Unintended Consequences of Urbanization for Aquatic Ecosystems: A Case Study from the Arizona Desert. W. John Roach, James B. Heffernan, Nancy B. Grimm, J. Ramn Arrowsmith, Chris Eisinger, and Tyler Rychener.
Indian Bend Wash, an urbanizing watershed in Arizona, provides a case study of how human alteration of land cover, stream channels, and hydrology can dramatically affect ecosystem processes, including nutrient cycling, both intentionally and otherwise.

Warfare Ecology. Gary E. Machlis and Thor Hanson.
War has extensive ecological consequences. The authors outline warfare ecology as a new field of study, provide a taxonomy of warfare for organizing the field, review research conducted to date, and propose research directions and policy implications arising from the study of all stages of war.

Causes and Consequences of Sociality in Bats. Gerald Kerth.
Modern field techniques and new molecular methods are providing opportunities to study aspects of bat biology that were until recently inaccessible, in particular social systems. These are emerging as far more complex than had been imagined and hold promise for shedding light on the evolution of sociality.

Walking the Line between Lab and Computation: The "Moist" Zone. Bart Penders, Klasien Horstman, and Rein Vos.
Philosophically-based differences between styles of research in different scientific communities result in practical problems in daily cooperation. A case study of nutrigenomic research shows how specific technologies can facilitate cooperation by helping to identify common ground.

Deforestation, Mosquitoes, and Ancient Rome: Lessons for Today. Lara O'Sullivan, Andrew Jardine, Angus Cook, and Philip Weinstein.
Deforestation and associated ecological changes such as increased standing water probably exacerbated pestilence, believed to have been malaria, in and near Rome around the first century BCE. Modern parallels reinforce the importance of considering the complex interactions between deforestation, agriculture, and vectorborne disease.


Contact: Jennifer Williams
202-628-1500 x209
American Institute of Biological Sciences

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