life sciences

May 16, 2013

Cretaceous Cold Cases No. 3: Duck(bill) Amuck

This is the third post in a series called “Cretaceous Cold Cases” in which the science of taphonomy, or prehistoric forensics, is explained by fascinating cases from the files of Terry “Bucky” Gates, a research scientist with a joint appointment […]

May 15, 2013

Study Shines Light on Mules, Their Blood Chemistry

Offspring of female horses and male donkeys, mules are often associated with caution and hard work. While they’ll never be mistaken for thoroughbreds, mules play important roles in modern society – performing grunt work in areas from developing countries to […]

Feb 28, 2013

New Species of Plant-Eating Dino Was Lunch for Prehistoric Crocs

Sometimes, the fossil record gives us some really exciting insights into prehistoric life – including grisly details of prehistoric death. Paleontologists have found evidence not only of a new species of herbivorous, or plant-eating, dinosaur, but also that these dinosaurs […]

Jan 7, 2013

Drawing on Real Life

Editor’s Note: This is a guest post by Jennifer Landin, a teaching assistant professor of biology at NC State who teaches a course on biological illustration. Check out why she thinks biological illustration is valuable – and some of the […]

Dec 19, 2012

Visualize This: Inside a Dinosaur’s Brain

Want to know how well a dinosaur could see, hear and smell? Get inside its head! That’s what a group of researchers from the U.K. and U.S. did when they recreated the brain of a therizinosaur called Erlikosaurus andrewsi – […]

Dec 11, 2012

5 Questions With Canopy Meg

Meg Lowman is the director of the Nature Research Center at the NC Museum of Natural Sciences and a research professor at NC State. She has conquered the canopy of the rainforest, and opened up an entirely new world to […]

Nov 8, 2012

Stick It to Cankerworms

Editor’s Note: This is a guest post by Steve Frank, an assistant professor of entomology at NC State. You can learn more about the Cankerworm Project here, and keep up with Steve’s entomological pest alerts and updates by following @OrnaPests […]

Nov 7, 2012

Navel-Gazing Researchers ID Which Species Live in Our Belly Buttons (But Don’t Know Why)

Researchers have discovered which bacteria species are most commonly found in our bellybuttons, but have still not discovered what governs which species will be found on which people. These are the first published findings of the Belly Button Biodiversity project […]

Sep 17, 2012

Estimating ‘Regions of Attraction’ Should Improve Computer Models of Biological Systems

Researchers have found an effective means of estimating the “regions of attraction” (ROA) when developing computer models of biological systems – improving the ability of these models to predict how a system will respond to changing conditions. But to talk […]

Aug 14, 2012

Green Is Good

Editor’s note: The following guest post was written by Leah Chester-Davis, coordinator of communications and outreach for the Plants for Human Health Institute in Kannapolis, N.C. Bad news, Bluto: Mustard greens and cabbage could rival Popeye’s spinach when it comes […]