from the ‘letters to the editor’ – vaccines & ear infections

A couple of days ago our local paper carried a letter that included the bald statement: "vaccines cause ear infections." My first response to that one was: citations, please! That sort of statement is incredibly dangerous, because it’s essentially saying, don’t vaccinate if you don’t want your kids to get ear infections. (The letter writer […]

Continue reading

anhydrobiosis in antarctic organisms

 I was vaguely contemplating writing about a question in last year’s Schol paper, to do with antifreeze proteins in polar fishes, when a journal alert popped up in my in-box. It was for a paper entitled How do terrestrial Antarctic organisms survive in their harsh environment? (Wharton & Marshall, 2009). The uni has an extensive Antarctic […]

Continue reading

that’s not what the textbooks say should happen!

 Islands can be home to rare and unusual species, which have often evolved in isolation for extremely long periods of time. On many – particularly oceanic islands – there may be no native land mammals, except, perhaps for bats. So when mammalian predators do make it to these islands the effects can be devastating. (Incidentally, […]

Continue reading