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Archive for the ‘food’ category: Page 7

Aug 30, 2022

Optical detection of multiple bacterial species using nanometer-scaled metal-organic hybrids

Posted by in categories: chemistry, food, nanotechnology, particle physics

Osaka Metropolitan University scientists have developed a simple, rapid method to simultaneously identify multiple food poisoning bacteria, based on color differences in the scattered light by nanometer-scaled organic metal nanohybrid structures (NHs) that bind via antibodies to those bacteria. This method is a promising tool for rapidly detecting bacteria at food manufacturing sites and thereby improving food safety. The findings were published in Analytical Chemistry.

According to the World Health Organization (WHO), every year food poisoning affects 600 million people worldwide—almost 1 in every 10 people—of which 420,000 die. Bacterial tests are conducted to detect food poisoning bacteria at food manufacturing factories, but it takes more than 48 hours to obtain results due to the time required for a bacteria incubation process called culturing. Therefore, there remains a demand for rapid testing methods to eliminate food poisoning accidents.

Responding to this need, the research team led by Professor Hiroshi Shiigi at the Graduate School of Engineering, Osaka Metropolitan University, utilized the optical properties of organic metal NHs—composites consisting of polyaniline particles that encapsulate a large number of metal nanoparticles—to rapidly and simultaneously identify food poisoning-inducing bacteria called enterohemorrhagic Escherichia coli (E. coli O26 and E. coli O157) and Staphylococcus aureus.

Aug 29, 2022

Drones are reshaping how rice is farmed in Vietnam

Posted by in categories: drones, food, sustainability

Vietnam is the world’s second-largest rice exporter, and XAG says its agricultural drones have become the “new favorite” of farmers that grow the crop.

Lê Thành Nguyên, at 62 years old, is one of the early adopters of agricultural drones in Vietnam. This year, he used drones on his seven-hectare rice farm for crop spraying, fertilization, and direct seeding by ordering the service from a local pilot team.

Aug 29, 2022

Software may be eating the world, but low code could eat software

Posted by in category: food

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Marc Andreesen famously claimed in 2011 that “software is eating the world” in an op-ed article in the Wall Street Journal.

His point was that software was the new engine of value creation.

Continue reading “Software may be eating the world, but low code could eat software” »

Aug 28, 2022

Structure of the plastic-degrading Ideonella sakaiensis MHETase bound to a substrate

Posted by in categories: food, sustainability

Basically this special bacterium Ideonella sakaiensis could solve the plastic crisis in the oceans by eating the plastic.


Plastic polymer PET degrading enzymes are of great interest for achieving sustainable plastics recycling. Here, the authors present the crystal structures of the plastic degrading bacterial enzymes PETase, MHETase in its apo-form and MHETase bound to a non-hydrolyzable substrate analog.

Aug 28, 2022

‘Nuclear winter’ from a US-Russia conflict would wipe out 63% of the world’s population

Posted by in category: food

Even a small-scale nuclear conflict would have a giant impact.

Aug 27, 2022

Corneas made from pig collagen return sight to 20 people

Posted by in categories: bioengineering, biotech/medical, economics, food

Corneal blindness occurs when the transparent membrane that covers the front of the eye and acts as a lens becomes opaque and prevents the light from reaching the back of the eye, inhibiting vision. It can be solved with a transplant, but experts estimate that 12.7 million people are currently waiting for a cornea donation. These membranes are in short supply: for every 70 that are needed, only one is available. In view of this problem, especially in countries where there are fewer donations of human corneas due to limited infrastructure, a group of Swedish researchers tested corneas made from pig skin collagen in 20 people who needed transplants (all of them Iranian or Indian citizens; 14 of them were blind). After two years, they all showed improvement, and those who were blind could see again. Although more complex clinical trials are still necessary to validate the measure, the first test of this bioengineered corneal tissue has proven to be safe. The results of this pilot study were published in the Nature Biotechnology journal.

There is also a socioeconomic aspect to corneal blindness: one million new cases are diagnosed every year, but according to researchers, most are concentrated in low-and middle-income countries in Asia, Africa and the Middle East – precisely where it is most difficult to obtain a donated human cornea, due to endless “economic, cultural, technological, political and ethical barriers.” Finding an alternative to the human cornea transplant is key, the authors point out, to fighting keratoconus, a disease that weakens and thins the cornea, and which is the reason for most transplants.

In order to find an alternative to donated human cornea, the researchers bioengineered collagen, the main protein in the human cornea, as a raw material. “For an abundant yet sustainable and cost-effective supply of collagen, we used medical-grade collagen sourced from porcine skin, a purified byproduct from the food industry already used in FDA-approved medical devices for glaucoma surgery and as a wound dressing,” they explain in the article. Unlike the human corneas, which must be used in less than two weeks, bioengineered corneas can be stored for up to two years.

Continue reading “Corneas made from pig collagen return sight to 20 people” »

Aug 23, 2022

Pawpaws are America’s hidden edible treasure. Here’s how to pick them

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, food

Pawpaw varieties are assessed on their flavor, yield, fruit size, texture, and disease resistance, Crabtree says. She adds that the “best varieties” would be high yield trees that produce a pawpaw with “firmness and/or creaminess that’s not watery, mushy, or gritty” as well as a lower percentage of seeds.

Hunting for pawpaw

Native to 26 states, pawpaw can be found along the East Coast between Ontario, Canada, and northern Florida west to Kentucky, Ohio, Michigan, Nebraska, Kansas, and even Texas.

Continue reading “Pawpaws are America’s hidden edible treasure. Here’s how to pick them” »

Aug 22, 2022

Using new technique, researchers make surprising discoveries about how flies’ brains respond to tastes

Posted by in categories: food, neuroscience

Taste matters to fruit flies, just as it does to humans: like people, the flies tend to seek out and consume sweet-tasting foods and reject foods that taste bitter. However, little is known about how sweet and bitter tastes are represented by the brain circuits that link sensation to behavior.

In a new study published in Current Biology, researchers at Brown University described how they developed a new imaging technique and used it to map the neural activity of fruit flies in response to sweet and bitter tastes.

“These results show that the way fly brains encode the taste of food is more complex than we had anticipated,” said study author Nathaniel Snell, who earned his Ph.D. in neuroscience from Brown in 2021 and conducted the research as part of his thesis.

Aug 22, 2022

Fleets of futuristic homes that float above the sea are ‘revolutionizing’ aquatic living

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, drones, food

Floating homes with state-of-the-art technology and drones to deliver essentials like food, medicine and medical attention are under construction.

Aug 22, 2022

This should be the first plant to be grown on Mars, scientists say

Posted by in categories: food, space

Findings suggest it is possible to treat soil and water on Mars for farming.

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