environment

Adapting to the Heat

In classic experiments on frogs, scientists found that the amphibians’ urge to escape from dangerously hot water decreased significantly when the water temperature rose very gradually. In fact, sensitivity of many animals to temperature — including humans — is similarly affected by the rate of increase. Exactly why, however, has not been understood. “We know a lot about how animals…

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Where You Are is Who You Are: How Enclosed and Open Spaces Affect Cognition

A recent study suggests that who we are might be more integrated with where we are than previously thought. “The built environment can restrict or promote spatial cognition, which can influence one’s self-hood,” the researchers explain. “Our spatial coordinates and our ‘selves’ are intertwined.” The fact that experience can shape individual differences, which in turn can affect the quality of…

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Why are some wild animals more tolerant to human interaction than others?

When most wild animals first encounter humans, they respond as they would to any predator — by running, swimming or flying away. Over time, some species become more tolerant of humans’ presence, but the extent to which they do is largely driven by the type of environment in which the animals live and by the animal’s body size, according to…

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Genetic Differences Among Monkeys in Tanzania Show Troubling Pattern

An endangered monkey species in Tanzania is living in geographical pockets that are becoming isolated from one another. The situation, researchers say, is mostly driven by the monkeys’ proximity to villages and the deliberate burning of forests to make way for crops and pastures. An international team, led by Maria Jose Ruiz-Lopez, a postdoctoral researcher at the University of Oregon,…

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International Ob-Gyn Group Urges Greater Efforts to Prevent Toxic Chemical Exposure

Dramatic increases in exposure to toxic chemicals in the last four decades are threatening human reproduction and health, according to the International Federation of Gynecology and Obstetrics (FIGO), the first global reproductive health organization to take a stand on human exposure to toxic chemicals. The opinion was written by obstetrician-gynecologists and scientists from the major global, US, UK and Canadian…

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