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13th November 2019
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News

£12m boost for sodium batteries

Anthony King, 13/11/2019

The University of St Andrews has received a £12m boost from the UK’s Faraday Institution to create a safe Na-ion battery with high performance, low cost and a long cycling life.

A ‘game changer’ for agchems

Cath O’Driscoll, 13/11/2019

Crop protection chemicals play an important role in protecting plants from pests and diseases. However, they are also blamed for widespread environmental problems and for harming beneficial insects and wildlife.

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Açaí malaria hope

Anna Jagger, 13/11/2019

Aҫaí berries in Brazil have been found to reduce the levels of parasites that cause malaria in malaria-infected mice and prolong their survival.

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China focus on VOCs

XiaoZhi Lim, 13/11/2019

In pursuit of ‘blue skies,’ China’s Ministry of Ecology and Environment (MEE) in 2018 vowed to cut VOCs emissions by 10% by 2020.

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Climate friendlier diets

Cath O’Driscoll, 13/11/2019

Keeping below the inter-nationally agreed 2°C climate change target will not only require a transform-ation in global food systems, but also in consumer diets, according to Dhanush Dinesh, Global Policy Engagement Manager at the CGIAR Research Program on Climate Change, Agriculture and Food Security (CCAFS).

Double Thai disasters

XiaoZhi Lim, 13/11/2019

Tropical storm Podul and tropical depression Kajiki hit Thailand in late August 2019, inundating northeastern provinces including Ubon Ratchathani, Khon Kaen and Roi Et for much of September.

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Edited livestock

Anthony King, 13/11/2019

African swine fever emerged in China in August 2018. By September 2019, the country’s 400m pig herd was down 40%. The fatal and highly contagious disease is caused by a virus that does not impact pig relatives.

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EU refineries go natural

Eric Johnson, 13/11/2019

By 2050, the bulk of European refinery feedstock could be vegetable oils, biomass and precursors to so-called ‘e-fuels’, according to a study from Europe’s oil companies’ environmental association CONCAWE (Refinery 2050: Conceptual Assessment, September 2019).

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Food for thought

Cath O’Driscoll, 13/11/2019

Growing food efficiently spares millions of acres of land from being harnessed for agriculture. It reduces deforestation and protects valuable ecosystems, said Liam Condon, president of Bayer’s Crop Science division, adding that this is the biggest contribution ag companies can make to safeguarding our environment.

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India cancer challenge

A Nair, 13/11/2019

The India Cancer Research Consortium has announced a Grand Challenge for cancer research to develop cost effective and affordable approaches for screening, early diagnosis as well as treatment and palliative care.

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Liquid metal catalysts

Anthony King, 13/11/2019

Liquid metal alloys can be used to remove pollutants as well as capture carbon from CO2 emissions. The alloys can be cheaply produced in a low-tech environment, while consuming little energy, researchers in Australia report.

Mexichem to Orbia

Anna Jagger, 13/11/2019

Mexico’s Mexichem has changed its name to Orbia as part of plans to increase its focus on water, agriculture and infrastructure and decrease the focus on chemicals.

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RNA flu drug

Anthony King, 13/11/2019

An anti-viral drug effective against influenza has been developed by researchers in the US.

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Science Briefs

13/11/2019

Scientists at Aalto University, Finland, and the University of Vienna, Austria, have combined graphene and single-walled nanotubes into a transparent material with conductivity higher than either component.

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Shorter corn, bigger yields

Cath O’Driscoll, 13/11/2019

Farmers could soon benefit from a big boost in corn yields thanks to the development of new shorter and more resilient varieties of its corn.

Untangling tau protein

Anthony King, 13/11/2019

Along with beta amyloid, another protein called tau is a further hallmark of Alzheimer’s disease.

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Zombie-killing heart drugs

Anthony King, 13/11/2019

Heart drugs can kill so-called zombie or senescent cells associated with a number of age-related diseases, researchers have found.

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