How eating seaweed can lower cow methane

How eating seaweed can lower cow methane

Judith Lewis Mernit writes in e360.yale.edu that an experiment being conducted by animal science professor Ermias Kebreab at the University of California, Davis, is testing 12 Holstein cows in an experiment to reduce methane emissions from livestock by supplementing their diets with a specific type of seaweed…

Study: astaxanthin protects skin from sun damage

Study: astaxanthin protects skin from sun damage

A new randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled clinical trial provides stronger evidence for the protective role of algal-derived astaxanthin against skin deterioration caused by ultraviolet (UV) light. The new study, published June 25, 2018, in the journal Nutrients, was conducted at the Pharmaceutical and Healthcare Research…

UF/IFAS researcher to experiment with algae in space

UF/IFAS researcher to experiment with algae in space

Brad Buck at Southeast AG NET Radio Network reports that a University of Florida scientist will use the International Space Station to see if algae can help recycle carbon dioxide and eventually be used to help make plastics, resins and even food. Initially, researchers want to improve algae’s ability to use light to capture…

A new type of photosynthesis is discovered

A new type of photosynthesis is discovered

Hayley Dunning writes from the Imperial College of London that a new discovery has changed our understanding of the basic mechanism of photosynthesis and should rewrite the textbooks. It will also tailor the way we hunt for alien life and provide insights into how we could engineer more efficient crops that take advantage…

New algae techno-economic analysis model from NREL

New algae techno-economic analysis model from NREL

At the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL), we have used techno-economic analysis (TEA) to build a model for the production of algal biomass in large open ponds. This model allows us to determine the economies of scale that can reduce cost as the size of cultivation facilities (basically microalgae…

New Zealand funds leading-edge macroalgal research

New Zealand funds leading-edge macroalgal research

The New Zealand Government and the University of Waikato are investing $13 million in a new research program in Tauranga aimed at helping tackle some of the biggest issues facing New Zealand’s primary sector. The project, part of the Entrepreneurial Universities program administered by the Tertiary Education…

Making a clean, green sunscreen

Making a clean, green sunscreen

Yousong Ding, Assistant Professor of Medicinal Chemistry, University of Florida, writes in The Conversation that, in his laboratory in the College of Pharmacy at the University of Florida, they are interested in combing the world for naturally occurring chemicals that have applications in health, agriculture and environment…

A new DNA editing toolkit for the alga Nannochloropsis

A new DNA editing toolkit for the alga Nannochloropsis

Over the past decade, the science of engineering genes has become much more precise. That goes especially for CRISPR, a set of tools to delete or edit genes in an organism’s DNA. Scientists are using CRISPR to understand how plants and animals work. They are also exploiting it to create new applications…

Algae-based fertilizer turns vegetable farming green

Algae-based fertilizer turns vegetable farming green

European regulations and consumer needs have expanded the market for food products labelled green. However, affordable technological tools to produce vegetables sustainably are not readily available. To compound the challenge, European vegetable suppliers have neither the knowledge…

Arctic phytoplankton are more resistant to climate change

Arctic phytoplankton are more resistant to climate change

Ocean acidification triggered by climate change seems to cause less harm to the Arctic phytoplankton, which is resistant to the changes in climate that affect the Arctic Ocean’s coastal waters, as reported in a study released by Canadian researchers and the German Alfred Wegener Institute in the journal…

Improving the production of biohydrogen and biochemicals

Improving the production of biohydrogen and biochemicals

Phys.Org reports that a joint study by the University of Turku and VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland has shown that the ability of photosynthesizing microbial cells to produce biohydrogen from solar energy can be markedly improved by attaching the cells to a transparent nanocellulose film. The method is…

Iridescent algae glow with their own “opals”

Iridescent algae glow with their own “opals”

Rainbow wrack (Cystoseira tamariscifolia) is a type of brown alga found in the Mediterranean Sea and off the Atlantic coast of Europe. In the water, these algae glow. And although there are many glimmering organisms that live in the water, such as bioluminescent jellyfish and lantern fish, most produce their own light…

Fossilized algae hold promise for improved food safety

Fossilized algae hold promise for improved food safety

Researchers have used fossilized algae to take a key step toward being able to more sensitively detect harmful contaminants in food. The findings are important because each year 48 million people get sick from tainted food, 128,000 end up in the hospital, and 3,000 die, according to the Centers for Disease Control…

Using algae to cut antibiotics in feed

Using algae to cut antibiotics in feed

French researchers have been exploring the potential of algae for boosting the immune systems of animals and reducing the use of antibiotics in livestock farming. Past studies have shown that the cell wall of macroalgae contains large quantities of sulphated polysaccharides. These have a range of biological properties, including…

Algae with Bioenergy with Carbon Capture and Storage

Algae with Bioenergy with Carbon Capture and Storage

The University of Hawaii at Hilo announced that in affiliation with Duke and Cornell Universities, researchers have authored a study that suggests making croplands more efficient through algae production could unlock an important negative emission technology to combat climate change. Their research, “Integrating Algae…

Synthesizing benzene from microalgal oils

Synthesizing benzene from microalgal oils

Green Car Congress reports that researchers at the University of Konstanz in Germany have now developed a two-step, one-pot process for the synthesis of benzene from the five-fold unsaturated fatty acid eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA), a component of microalgae oils. Their paper is published in the RSC journal…

Streptophyte algae triggered first land plants

Streptophyte algae triggered first land plants

About 510 million years ago, life thrived in Earth’s oceans and freshwater lakes, writes John McPhee in the (Nova Scotia) Chronicle Herald. The ancient ancestors of sea urchins, starfish and jellyfish abounded, as did plants such as red and green algae. There was life on land as well but in much more subtle forms…

Studying year-round cyanotoxins in North Carolina

Studying year-round cyanotoxins in North Carolina

Using two different measurement methods, researchers from North Carolina State University conducted a two-year study of North Carolina’s Jordan Lake in which they monitored toxic algal blooms. The researchers found that multiple cyanotoxins from toxic algal blooms are present year-round, albeit in very low concentrations…

Will shorter winters increase toxic algae?

Will shorter winters increase toxic algae?

Cody Nelson writes for MPRNews.org that a team of University of Minnesota-Duluth researchers wanted to know how shortening winters — and less ice cover on lakes — might increase the presence of harmful algae blooms and impact fisheries. “Aside from people who ice fish, the general assumption is that not much…

The surprisingly rapid evolution of Emiliania huxleyi

The surprisingly rapid evolution of Emiliania huxleyi

As the concentration of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere increases, an increasing amount of CO2 dissolves in the ocean, where it reacts to carbonic acid and acidifies the seawater. As ocean acidification progresses steadily, scientists aim to assess the implications of this process for marine ecosystems…

Stress testing algae’s internal solar panels

Stress testing algae’s internal solar panels

A collaboration between the Benning and Kramer labs at Michigan State University (MSU) is revealing how algae’s internal solar panels constantly grow and shrink in size to adjust to changes in their environments, a crucial system that ensures their hosts stay healthy and alive. The scientists want to use this knowledge…

How single cell life forms evolved into multicellular organisms

How single cell life forms evolved into multicellular organisms

PhD student, Jonathan Featherston, of the Evolution of Complexity Laboratory at the University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg, has answered at least part of this question, by decoding the genomic sequence of one of the simplest of all multicellular organisms — the four-celled alga Tetrabaena socialis. His research…

Algal research grant for WesTech, USU and CVWRF

Algal research grant for WesTech, USU and CVWRF

The Utah Science Technology and Research (USTAR) initiative, a technology-based economic development program funded by the state of Utah, has awarded a $175,320 grant for development of a commercial algal application in the removal of nitrogen and phosphorus from municipal wastewater…

Reducing the number of annual algal blooms

Reducing the number of annual algal blooms

The massive annual algal blooms around the world, caused by excess fertilizer from farms and cities running off into water supplies, are having severe human health and economic consequences, with economic damages from the issue costing up to $2.3 trillion annually. New research led by Brigham Young University ecosystem…

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