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Deep-dive

Bengaluru | Mar 9, 2020

Among all the calamities caused by climate change, an increase in the salinity of the soil is one. It is projected that, by 2050, about half of today’s arable land across the world will be affected by salinity. This increase would also hit India’s rice bowl, the Indo-Gangetic plains, which is projected to lose about 45% of the crop yield. When salinity increases, plants respond by absorbing less water, which affects their growth. How then do we help agriculturally vital crops cope with high salinity?

General, Science, Technology, Engineering, Deep-dive
Bengaluru | Feb 28, 2020
Nurturing a support system for India’s women scientists

Today is National Science Day—a day to celebrate the spirit of science and scientific temper across the county. It is a day to commemorate Sir C V Raman’s discovery of the Raman effect. This year, the theme of National Science Day is ‘Women in Science’, celebrating the contributions of women scientists to the field of science in India.

General, Science, Technology, Engineering, Society, Policy, Deep-dive, Friday Features, Featured
Bengaluru | Feb 27, 2020
In climate-sensitive South Asia, migration could be the answer to survival

Researchers investigate what factors drive migration in South Asia and its benefits in adapting to climate change.

General, Science, Society, Policy, Deep-dive
Bengaluru | Feb 21, 2020
Study shows an increase in hypertension and obesity among school children

Obesity has become a global concern over the last four decades as the number of obese and overweight individuals has tripled since 1975. In 2016, about one in five children across the world, aged 5-19 years, were overweight or obese and half of them lived in Asia. The obesity epidemic, which was once prevalent in high-income, developed countries, has today soared in low- and middle-income economies, particularly in cities. A similar trend is observed in the case of hypertension—a major risk of obesity. In India, many studies have assessed the prevalence of obesity and hypertension and the correlation between them. However, recent data on this, particularly regarding children and adolescents from urban and rural areas, is scarcely available. Now, a recent study by researchers from India and the UK, published in the journal BMJ Open, provides some insights into the current prevalence rates for obesity and hypertension among adolescents in Northern India.

General, Science, Health, Society, Deep-dive
Bengaluru | Feb 20, 2020
An accurate count of Asiatic lions could help design better conservation practices

A new study proposes an improved approach to determine lion densities and identify factors that affect their abundance, but there may be flaws say some.

General, Science, Ecology, Deep-dive
Bengaluru | Feb 17, 2020
Among dwindling numbers, some bright spots for India’s birds

Powered by citizen science, the State of India’s Birds report calls for conservation efforts to save India’s aves.

General, Science, Ecology, Society, Policy, Deep-dive
Bengaluru | Feb 14, 2020

In January 2006, NASA launched the New Horizons space probe to explore the horizons of the Solar System and know what’s beyond all the planets. The space probe sailed about 5.9 billion kilometres for almost a decade, with state-of-the-art instruments on board, before it met Pluto, a now downgraded ‘dwarf planet’. Three and a half years later and still gliding, it encountered ‘2014 MU69’—the farthest object in the Solar System ever to be visited by a spacecraft. Today, this oddly named object has a fancy moniker—Arrokoth—and we now know a whole lot about this distant Kuiper Belt Object than ever before, thanks to three new studies.

General, Science, Deep-dive
Bengaluru | Feb 12, 2020
How accurate are India’s tiger numbers?

According to the National Tiger Estimation survey, the number of tigers has surged to 2967, indicating a doubling of tiger numbers since the first survey conducted in 2006 under a revised monitoring methodology. Although this change may sound exciting to the layperson, some scientists have flagged concerns about accepting these claimed changes in tiger numbers. In a recent study, published in the journal Conservation Science and Practice, researchers from India and Norway refer to important mathematical, statistical and ecological principles and highlight how India’s tiger survey results deviate from these principles.

General, Science, Ecology, Policy, Deep-dive
Bengaluru | Feb 11, 2020
Toxic elements, released since the Industrial Revolution, find their way to the Himalayas

In the 18th and 19th century, Britain was abuzz with cranking steam engines, rattling power looms, and clattering machines. Amidst this daily ding, the world was witnessing a defining movement in human history—the Industrial Revolution—that soon spread to the rest of Western Europe. Powered by coal, the production of most things transitioned from hand to machine, spurring a rise in population and air pollution. For the next two centuries, London became infamous for its soot and smog, which turned fatal for about 12,000 people. Now, a new study has shown that this mal air has left its trace in the lofty Himalayan glaciers, thousands of kilometres away from Europe.

General, Science, Ecology, Deep-dive
Bengaluru | Feb 5, 2020
Playing “spot the difference” with two bacterial proteins

Researchers find familial dissimilarities in proteins from two species of Mycobacterium.

General, Science, Health, Society, Deep-dive
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