4,088 Matching Annotations
  1. Apr 2019
    1. 500-mb height of the atmosphere

      This 500-mb height (mb stands for millibar, which is a unit for measuring air pressure) is the typical height presented in weather maps. Since most weather occurs roughly around this height in the atmosphere, looking at 500-mb maps of the sky makes it possible to more accurately predict weather events.

    2. El Ñino

      What causes El Niño, how can it affect you, and why is it so hard to predict? Find out in this video from National Geographic:


    3. altimetric

      Altimetry is a technique for measuring the height of the surface below the altimeter. Satellites do this by sending a radar pulse to the surface of Earth. The time it takes for the pulse to bounce off the surface and return to the satellite is used to measure height, or altitude. Combined with precise satellite location data, such satellite measurements yield sea-surface heights.

    4. TOPEX/Poseidon

      Launched in 1992 as a joint mission of the U.S. and French space agencies, TOPEX/Poseidon was the first major oceanographic research satellite in space. It's goal was to map the topography of the ocean surface.

    5. sea-level pressure

      The sea-level pressure is the atmospheric pressure at a given location in the ocean. Because pressure and temperature are correlated, changes in temperature that result from climate change can, in turn, change sea-level pressure. 

    6. convection and/or subduction

      Convection is the movement of a fluid due to changes in density, where more dense waters sink and less dense waters rise. Subduction is the term for the downwards movement of a substance, in this case when one water mass moves below another.

    7. coupled air-sea general circulation model

      To accurately predict conditions on Earth, models of ocean currents and circulation are connected, or coupled, with models of atmospheric, ocean, and sea ice dynamics.

    8. anthropogenic

      Caused or influenced by human activities.

    9. basin-scale forcings

      The mechanisms causing ocean temperatures to increase are likely the same for every ocean.

      Examples include the radiative forcings from volcanic aerosols, stratospheric ozone depletion, greenhouse gases, and solar variability.

    10. statistically significant,

      The likelihood that a relationship between two or more variables is caused by something other than random chance. The data suggest there is a real difference in the temperature values between 1955-59 and 1970-74, as well as between 1970-74 and 1988-92.

    11. Student's t test

      A statistical test to compare the means of two groups.

      For more information visit: http://www.biostathandbook.com/twosamplettest.html

    12. subarctic

      Ocean regions between latitudes 50°N and 70°N are subarctic.

      In subarctic oceans, there is a large range of temperature variation through the year, with cold winters and moderately warm summers. These latitudes also experience deep ocean mixing due to strong winter storms.

    13. pentads

      A series of 5 years. The later two pentads refers to the periods 1988-1992 and 1970-1974.

    14. Mediterranean Outflow

      The North Atlantic has different water masses with distinctive temperature, salinity, and densities.

      The Mediterranean Outflowoccurs at the region where the Mediterranean Sea meets the Atlantic, and has a different enough density to be distinct as it's own water mass.

      This figure shows some of the water masses in the Atlantic Ocean from Antarctica (60°S) to the Northern Arctic Ocean (70°N). Image Source: http://www.atmosedu.com/Geol390/Life/OceanCirculation.html

    15. Pacific Decadal Oscillation

      The Pacific Decadal Oscillation (PDO) is typically thought of as a long-lived El Niño-like pattern of Pacific climate variability. Areas of the Pacific Ocean go through alternating patterns of warming and cooling every 10 to 30 years. 

      For more information and to see a time series of PDO variability, visit: https://www.ncdc.noaa.gov/teleconnections/pdo/

    16. oscillation

      The repetitive variation of a measurement over time, such as how temperature varies around a central value over time. 

    17. quasi-bidecadal changes

      Occurring roughly every two decades.

    18. positive correlation

      A relationship between two variables such that their values increase or decrease together. As time increases, the heat content of these basins also increases, suggesting these variables are positively correlated.

    19. standard error

      The measure of the statistical accuracy of an estimate. One of the most common measures is standard deviation, which can be presented as error bars (showing a margin of error) on a graph.

    20. standard depth levels

      Oceanographers typically measure distinct depth levels in the ocean, with more measurements taken in the surface ocean than in the deep ocean.

      For the upper 100m, measurements are taken every 5m in depth (i.e., 0m, 5m, 10m, 15m, 20m, etc.). Between 100m and 500m, measurements are taken every 25m (100m, 125m, 150m, 175m, etc.). From 500m to 2000m those measurements are every 50m (500m, 550m, 600m, 650m, etc.). For depths greater than 2000m, then data is collected in increments of 100m (2000m, 2100m, 2200m, 2300m, etc.).

    21. anomaly

      An anomaly is something that deviates from what is standard, normal, or expected. Here, the authors examine how temperature varies from expected values.

    22. radiative balance

      Radiative balance is when solar energy coming to the Earth is balanced by an equal flow of heat from the Earth into space. If the Earth is in radiative balance, then global temperatures will remain relatively stable.

    1. founder effects

      The long-lasting and persistent effects of reduced genetic diversity due to the small number of individuals that initially colonized a certain environment.

    2. enterotypes

      A classification of living organisms, similar to ecosystems, based on their bacteriological ecosystem. They are identifiable constellations of intestinal bacteria, biological communities of microorganisms in the gut. Dr. Peer Bork discovered three human gut types in April 2011: Bacteroides, Prevotella and Ruminococcus.

    3. biclustering

      A technique that identifies and clusters groups, specifically for two separate clusters.

    4. ulcerative colitis

      Chronic intestinal disease characterized by flares of inflammation of the innermost lining of the large intestine and rectum. Symptoms such as diarrhea, abdominal cramps, and bloody stools may occur alternating with quiescent (inactive/dormant) periods. Patients with ulcerative colitis are at an increased risk of developing colon cancer.

    5. Bristol stool scale

      A diagnostic tool used to classify human faeces into seven categories based on its shape, texture, and consistency. The chart allows patients with gastrointestinal symptoms to describe their bowel movements without needed to provide a sample.

      Learn more about BSS from this article in The Conversation: https://theconversation.com/what-the-consistency-of-your-poo-says-about-your-health-65106

    6. generalized linear model analysis

      A statistical model used to describe associations between multiple independent and dependent variables. The goal is the optimal linear combination of parameters to explain an observation.

    7. alpha-diversity

      Alpha-diversity is a measurement of the diversity within a single community/ecosystem. In this study, the researchers found that all of the 69 factors correlated with both the average species diversity and abundance in all samples.

      Check out this video to learn more about alpha-diversity in the context of the microbiome.

    8. microbiome

      The combined genetic information of microorganisms, such as bacteria and viruses, that are found in a specific environment.

    1. polynucleotide

      Poly means many, and a nucleotide is the building block of genetic material. Therefore, a polynucleotide is a chain of many nucleotides—or one strand of genetic material.

    2. polyphenylalanine

      Poly means many and phenylalanine is a specific amino acid. Therefore, polyphenylalanine is a chain of many phenylalanine residues.

    3. carboxyl end

      The carboxyl end refers to the carboxylic acid group exposed on the protein chain. (Remember the analogy of kids lined up holding hands? This is in the Glossary annotation of "amino end.")

    4. codon

      A set of nucleotide bases which codes for one amino acid.

    5. mutagens

      An agent that changes one base into another either by chemical methods or radiation. Acridine is not a mutagen since it does not modify existing bases in DNA, but rather adds or deletes bases.

    6. hemoglobins

      The iron-rich proteins in our red blood cells that transport oxygen from our lungs to the rest of our body.

    1. Type VI CRISPR-Cas systems

      CRISPR is a family of DNA sequences that are part of the immune system of bacteria. CRISPR enzymes detect specific viral DNA or RNA sequences, and can cleave the invading sequences and destroy them. Recently, researchers have begun to use CRISPR as a highly accurate tool for detecting specific DNA sequences in their research.

      Type VI CRISPR-Cas systems are those that involve the protein Cas13, which can cut RNA molecules.

    2. ortholog

      Genes in different species that can be traced to a common ancestral DNA sequence.

      There are many different Cas9 and Cas13 orthologs from different bacterial organisms. As engineers, the researchers test many of them as they will have different levels of activity in mammalian cells (as compared to bacterial) and some might not work at all.

    3. nonhomologous end joining (NHEJ)

      When both strands of DNA are cut, a cell can repair the DNA by rejoining the two strands. Nonhomologous end joining is one way this repair can happen, and it does not require homologous (similar) sequences.

      Because the sequences do not have to be homologous, this process is imprecise and can result in deletions or insertions.

    4. homology-directed repair (HDR)

      A process of precise DNA editing in which a cell uses homologous (similar) sequences as a template to repair DNA.

      This method is more precise than nonhomologous end joining (NHEJ), but takes more time. It's also generally less efficient and does not operate on non-dividing cell types like neurons.

    5. catalytically inactive

      The job of enzymes is to make chemical reactions happen faster. An enzyme that is catalytically inactive does not accelerate chemical reactions.

      Cas13 catalyzes the cleavage (cutting) of RNA molecules. This is an important function of the bacterial immune system, where Cas13 helps protect the organism from invading RNA.

      To use Cas13 for RNA editing, the researchers created a catalytically inactive enzyme (dCas13) that can be used to target RNA without cutting it and allowing for recruitment of other enzymes to the RNA.

    6. endogenous editing of transcripts

      RNA editing happens in the cell after DNA has been transcribed (RNA molecules have been synthesized from a using a DNA sequence as a template). This editing is usually insertion, deletion, or substitution of bases. The most common type of RNA editing is the substitution of adenosine to inosine, which functionally reads as guanosine (facilitated by the ADAR family of enzymes). Essentially, this reads as an A to G base change.

    7. Endogenous

      Native to a system (i.e. not the result of changes by external factors). Endogenous targeting here means the normal target sites for the ADAR protein in the cell.

    8. cloned

      Cloning means to insert a gene, a gene fragment, or an accessory sequence into a vector. Vectors are vehicles that carry DNA into a cell and exist as a plasmid in the nucleus,

      When the vector is multiplied in a cell or in a cell-free system, many copies of this fragment (clones) are generated.

    1. energy homeostasis

      Refers to energy balance, in which an organism's energy intake (food) and outflow (energy expenditure) is coordinated to achieve no overall energy surplus or deficit.

    2. ablation

      A technique in which a neuron population of interest is killed. It allows the researchers to understand the function of a cell population.

    1. sympathoadrenal

      Relates to both sympathetic nervous system and the adrenal medulla.

    2. lability

      Ability to change.

    3. neonatal

      Newborn or shortly after birth.

    4. cardiorespiration

      Relates to both cardiac (heart) and respiration (lungs) functions. Helps in the maintenance of oxygen and breathing.

    5. in vivo

      Experiments that are performed in animals or humans.

    6. neurotransmitter plasticity.

      Plasticity can be defined as the ability of the brain to mould and shape in response to experience. The change can be due to either change in the receptors present in the brain or the chemicals itself or the mechanism by which receptors respond to chemicals. 

      Neurotransmitter plasticity refers to changes in neurotransmitters in response to plasticity.

  2. Mar 2019
    1. incipient

      Something that is in the initial, or beginning, stages.

    2. interspecific mating

      Breeding between members of two different species.

    3. imprinting

      A learning process that young animals go through soon after birth. The nearby adults serve as models for their identification of members of their own species.

    4. reproductive isolation

      Means that the species cannot breed to produce fertile offspring because of some barrier. That barrier could be geographic, behavioral, or some other type.  A well-known animal who is reproductively isolated is the mule.

    5. sympatric

      Living within the same geographical area.

    6. ecological segregation

      Because of their unique beak shape, the Big Birds can occupy an ecological niche that is not already occupied by any of the species already living on the island.

    7. allelic series

      A list of the alleles for a certain locus listed according to their dominance, that is, their effect on the phenotype they effect.

    8. segregating

      The separation of two alleles during meiosis when sex cells (sperm and eggs) are formed.

    9. loci

      Plural of locus. A locus is a particular location in the genome where a certain gene is found. All alleles for one gene are found at the same locus. Each gene has its own, unchanging locus.

    10. alleles

      Different versions of a particular gene. When we refer to homozygous, we are describing alleles for a particular gene that are the same as each other.

    11. epistasis

      Describes a situation where two different genes interact to affect a single phenotype. It often refers to a case where one set of genes might be modified or suppressed by a different set of genes.

    12. phenotypes

      The physical appearance and traits of an organism.

    13. static allometries

      Allometries are relationships between measurable traits, such as bill length and body size.

      Static allometries are measured in several individuals within one population who are all at the same developmental stage.

    14. polygenic inheritance

      Occurs when one trait (such as height in humans) is influenced by many genes.

    15. genetic drift

      Occurs when the frequency of alleles in an organism change due to chance. Genetic drift (sometimes referred to as drift) is strongest in small populations such as the one studied here, because chance (random sampling) strongly affects the alleles present in the population.

    16. phylogenetic tree

      A diagram that represents the evolutionary relationships between organisms. Each group is descended from a common ancestor and so are related genetically. Phylogenetic trees can be based on morphology and on genetic information.

    17. inbreeding

      When families or closely related groups breed together to produce offspring.

    18. bill

      As in, a bird's beak.

    19. morphology

      The study of the form of an organism: Its size, shape, structure, and the relationships between those parts.

    20. transgressive segregation

      When hybrid offspring show traits that are more extreme than the parent traits. For example, when a hybrid plant offspring is much taller than, or much shorter than, the either of the parent plants.

    21. endogamously

      Means breeding that is confined to a specific group; in this case, the newly established species.

    22. lineage

      Here, a genetic group that are all descended from one initial ancestor.

    23. hybrid speciation

      Referring to the formation of a new species when two different species mate together to produce a new species.

    24. Homoploid

      Meaning maintaining the same chromosome number: For example, staying diploid (two copies of each chromosome) rather than going from diploid to tetraploid (four copies of each chromosome).

    25. allometric

      Allometry is the study of how body structures or processes scale compared to body size. In this case, the authors are comparing bill size to body size. An allometric shift means that the bill size compared to body size has a different numerical value in the hybrid species than in either of the parental species.

    26. average nucleotide diversity

      This measure of genetic diversity is based on DNA sequence. It tells us the average proportion of nucleotides that are different between any two randomly selected sequences in an organism's DNA. Lower values indicate lower diversity.

    1. ameliorated


    2. afferent fibers

      Nerve fibers arriving in the STN. In the peripheral nervous system, afferent fibers are those that carry signals from the target back to the spinal cord.

    3. efferents

      Nerve fibers exiting the STN. Directionality in the central nervous system is dependent upon the brain region in question. In the peripheral nervous system, efferents are in relation to the spinal cord—neurons that carry signals out of the spinal cord and to a target.

    4. nigral

      Referring to the substantia nigra, a part of the brain rich in dopamine neurons.

    5. bona fide

      Real or true.

    6. halorhodopsins

      Halorhodopsins, and bacteriorhodopsins, typically inactivate neurons by driving chloride ions into the cell or hydrogen ions out of the cell and causing the membrane potential to become more negative leading to hyperpolarization.

    7. channelrhodopsins

      Channelrhodopsins are employed to activate neurons by driving cations (including sodium, calcium, hydrogen, and potassium) into the cell and causing the membrane potential to become more positive leading to depolarization.

    8. heterogeneity

      Here, referring to tissues made up of many different cell types with specific functions.

    1. meteorological

      The study of the atmosphere and weather patterns. Meteorological data is often used to predict the weather.

    2. ship-of-opportunity programs

      Because chartered research vessels are expensive and time-consuming to organize, ship-of-opportunity programs use a combination of volunteer commercial and research vessels to collect oceanographic measurements. For example, a shipping vessel can be equipped with sampling instruments that will acquire data while it moves along a normal shipping route.  

    3. ocean subsurface

      The surface ocean is generally thought of as the top 1,000 meters (3,300 feet) of the ocean, which includes the region of rapidly changing temperatures called the 'thermocline'.

      As you can see in this NOAA figure, everything below the thermocline is the deep ocean.

    4. specific heat of seawater

      Specific heat is the amount of heat per unit mass required to raise the temperature by one degree Celsius.

      Thus, specific heat is a thermodynamic property of seawater expressing how heat content changes with temperature. A substance's specific heat also depends on temperature, pressure, and salinity.

    5. CLIVAR

      CLIVAR stands for "Climate and Ocean: Variability, Predictability and Change." The goal of CLIVAR is to further our understanding of the oceans and climate.

      For more information visit: http://www.clivar.org/about

    6. monotonic

      Monotonic means to neither increase nor decrease.

      As the warming is not monotonic, this means there are periods where temperature has increased and other periods where temperatures have decreased.

    7. ∼2 × 1023

      Scientists use the "~" symbol to mean "approximately." This means the world ocean's heat content increased by approximately 2x10<sup>23</sup> joules.

      2x10<sup>23</sup> joules is the same as 200,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 joules, or a 2 with 23 zeros following it.

    8. mean

      The average.

    1. excitatory

      Neurotransmitters that have increased effects on the neuron.

    2. opiate peptides

      Peptides that bind to opioid receptors in the brain.

    3. carotid body

      Consists of receptors and cells and are located near the carotid artery. There are two carotid arteries that run on either side of the neck, carrying blood to the neck, face, and brain.

    4. neuritic process

      Refers to any branches/projections from the cell body of a neuron.

    5. ontogenetic

      During the beginning and development of an organism.

    6. de novo

      Meaning "from the new;" in this case, the first appearance of the enzyme.

    7. adrenal

      A gland situated above the body organ, kidney. Adrenal glands produce a variety of hormones.

    8. introspects

      Observation and examination of one's own thoughts.

    9. prodigious

      In this context, meaning huge.

    10. nervous system

      You can think of the nervous system as electrical wiring, transmitting signals to and from different parts of the body. The system is made up of the brain, spinal cord, and nerves. Neurons are cells found in brain.

    11. brain nucleus locus ceruleus

      A mid-brain region, involved with the physiological responses to stress. The locus ceruleus is now believed to be the primary site of norepinephrine production.

    12. peripheral nervous system

      The human nervous system is made up of two components, the Central Nervous System (CNS) and the Peripheral Nervous System (PNS). The PNS consists of nerves and fibers outside of the brain and spinal cord (which make up the CNS).

    13. sensory neurons

      Neurons that perceive stimulation or sensation.

    14. sodium ion influx

      When depolarization occurs, there is an inward flow of sodium ions through the ion channels into the cell. Ion channels are present across the membrane.

    15. membrane depolarization

      Refers to a process during which a cell undergoes a shift in electric charge distribution. At rest, the membrane of a neuron has a potential of -60 to -70 millivolts (mV). This means the inside of the cell is negatively charged relative to the outside. Depolarization is when the potential becomes less negative than the resting potential.

    16. putative

      Generally considered or reputed to be.

    17. cholinergic

      Refers to the cells that release neurotransmitter, acetylcholine.

      Learn more in this video about neurotransmitter release: https://www.khanacademy.org/science/health-and-medicine/nervous-system-and-sensory-infor/neural-cells-and-neurotransmitters/v/neurotransmitter-release

    18. noradrenergic

      Refers to cells that release the neurotransmitter, norepinephrine. Alternative names for norepinephrine is noradrenalin.

    19. intraneuronal

      Occurs within a neuron.

    1. dynamic

      Constantly changing.

    2. standard ambient temperature

      Usually means 25 degrees Celsius, or 77 degrees Fahrenheit (think room temperature).

    3. recycling

      In the case of MOF, recycling describes the ability to release the water from the pores multiple times.

    4. stability

      The capacity of the MOF to go through multiple cycles of adsorption-desorption of water without losing water uptake capacity.

    1. false discovery rate

      Describes the frequency of false positives, which can be reduced by more robust experimental design, higher quality samples, or improved analytical techniques.

    2. covariates

      Parameters that vary with the variation in what is being studied; here, the microbiome covariates are variables taken from clinical and questionnaire data that are strongly correlated with the abundance and diversity of various genera.

    3. Bray-Curtis dissimilarity

      A statistical method used to quantify the compositional difference in species populations between samples. The value is always a number between 0 and 1, where 0 indicates that the samples share all the same species and 1 indicates that the samples don't have any species in common.

    4. confounding factors

      Parameters that blur results by having an effect on what is studied. These factors may mask or falsely show associations between the independent and dependent variables, resulting in biased conclusions.

    1. covalent intralayer bonding

      A covalent bond is formed by sharing of electrons between atoms. In case of graphene, each carbon atom form covalent bonds with three neighboring atoms of hexagons in plane, with atoms placed in corners of hexagon. This type of in plane bonding is called intralayer covalent bonding.

    2. anisotropic

      An anisotropic crystal is one which has different properties in different orientations.

    1. Non-duality is rather the opposite of this. It is the experiential understanding that there is no centre to the universe. Love is another name for this understanding in which all seeming things are known to be one seamless garment, made out of Consciousness alone,  each apparent part intimately connected to all other apparent parts.
    1. antagonize

      Serve an opposite function to.

    2. In vivo

      In the living animal.

    3. ad libitum high-fat food intake

      The amount of food eaten when the mice are allowed to eat as much or as often as they like.

    4. deep brain stimulation

      A procedure in which electrodes are implanted into specific parts of the brain, allowing electrical stimulation of a target region.

      It is most commonly used as a treatment for Parkinson's disease and other movement disorders as well as obsessive-compulsive disorder and depression.

    5. orexigenic

      Promotes appetite and food intake.

    6. paraventricular thalamus (PVT)

      A subregion of a part of the brain called the thalamus.

      The PVT has been shown to have a broad range of function including in fear, learning, arousal and feeding behavior.

    7. axonal projections

      The axon is a long-thin part of the neuron that facilitates communication between neurons. Axons extend from the cell body of a neuron to other parts of the brain, allowing communication between different brain regions.

    8. neuronal substrate

      Indicates the part of the brain that underlies a specific behavior or cognitive or physiological process.

  3. Feb 2019
    1. self-sacrifice

      The drivers (either human or algorithm) sacrifice themselves to save one or 10 pedestrians.

      The researchers only considered cars with at least one passenger.

    2. the parental decision-makers choose to minimize the perceived risk of harm to their child while increasing the risk to others

      In the case of immunizations, sometimes parents choose not to immunize their children because they (falsely) perceive a high risk to their own child, even though this choice may make it more likely that other children will be harmed.

    3. Indeed, there are many similar societal examples involving trade-off of harm by people and governments

      There are many examples in society in which governments and people must make a decision based on how much harm will be done to one person/group versus another.

    4. social dilemma

      A scenario in which people will get larger benefits if they act in their own interest rather than the group's interest, even though the entire group will benefit the most if everyone cooperates.

    5. algorithms

      An algorithm is a set of rules, like a procedure or a formula, that is followed to achieve a goal.

      For example, if you are baking bread, you might follow a recipe. In the same way, a computer can follow a series of steps to solve a problem. Just as there are different recipes for making bread, there are many different algorithms to achieve a single goal.

    6. expected value

      The value you expect for a given scenario.

      For example, if you joined the lottery, how much should you expect to win given the amount of money you put into it? Combined with the expected risk, this tells you if something is worthwhile.

    7. expected risk

      The probability that the value you get for a given scenario is very different from the one you expect.

      For example, if you joined the lottery and expected to win $5, what is the probability that you wouldn't actually get $5?

    8. global outcome

      Outcome on the whole community, not just individuals.

    9. free-ride

      Get a benefit at the expense of someone else.

    10. self-sacrificing

      Sacrificing yourself for the greater good.

    11. robust

      Strong and reliable.

    12. saliency

      When something is very noticeable.

    13. being consistent

      Self-driving cars should ideally make the same types of decisions consistently.

    14. Distributing harm is a decision that is universally considered to fall within the moral domain (8, 9). Accordingly, the algorithms that control AVs will need to embed moral principles guiding their decisions in situations of unavoidable harm

      If the only way for a self-driving car to avoid hitting a pedestrian is to hit a group of pedestrians, the car has to decide who to harm.

      Thus, there should be moral principles coded into self-driving cars, to help them make decisions when they cannot avoid colliding with something. These moral decisions are difficult to turn into algorithms.

    15. commodity

      A marketable good that is bought and sold. If AVs become popular and spread globally, having effective decision rules will be even more important.

    16. decision rules

      Decision rules are algorithms that tell the autonomous vehicle how to decide on what to do in a given scenario.

    17. low-probability

      Even thought these events are unlikely, if there are many AVs on the road then some will inevitably crash.

    18. make difficult ethical decisions in cases that involve unavoidable harm

      If a crash is unavoidable, AVs are sometimes faced with choices where someone will be hurt no matter what. In these cases, the AV must make a decision about who will be hurt.

    19. increasing traffic efficiency

      Making it so that traffic moves more smoothly.

    20. benchmark test

      Benchmark tests are standards or points of reference that are used to evaluate something's performance. Once a benchmark is established, later performance (under experimental conditions) can be compared to the benchmark.

    21. utilitarian

      In a utilitarian viewpoint, the most moral action is the one that has the best overall consequences for everyone, even if the choices are difficult.

      For example, if you are driving a car and have to choose between killing several people and saving yourself, or sacrificing yourself to save that group of several people, the utilitarian choice would be you sacrificing yourself (because fewer people will die, even if it means that you will die).

    1. RNA interference (RNAi)

      RNAi describes the process in which RNA molecules target and degrade messenger RNA molecules to block protein expression.

      shRNAs are one type of RNA that is used for RNAi.

    2. in ovo

      In ovo refers to the delivery of molecules directly to the embryo.

      In this experiment, the authors have found a way to inject the shRNAs directly into the embryos through the egg.

    3. short hairpin RNAs

      Short hairpin RNAs are small RNA molecules that form a tight looping "hairpin" structure.

      These RNAs target complementary messenger RNA molecules for degradation, effectively silencing protein expression of its target RNA.

    4. master regulator

      A master regulator often refers to a protein initiates expression of all genes involved in a specific pathway, such as cell fate pathways like testes development.

    5. gonad-mesonephros complexes

      These complexes are the earliest sites of gonad development.

    6. seminiferous cords

      Seminiferous cords are one of the earliest male-specific tissues formed in the gonad development. These cords ultimately develop into tubules which hold sperm.

    7. germ cells

      Germ cells are an organism's reproductive cells, or the cells that go on to make gametes, like sperm and eggs.

    8. phenotypic plasticity

      A phenotype describes the observable physical properties of an organism. Likewise, a genotype defines the genetic composition of an organism.

      Phenotypic plasticity is the ability of a single genotype to produce multiple phenotypes.

    9. somatic cells

      All cells in an organism other than the reproductive cells.

    10. DNA methylation

      Methyl groups can be added to cytosine nucleotides of DNA. Often, genomic regions with high DNA methylation are associated with the silencing of gene expression.

    11. epigenetic

      Epigenetic indicates a heritable change in gene expression that does not change DNA sequence.

    12. promoter

      A promoter is a region of DNA associated with transcription initiation.

    1. unit-cells

      The smallest building block of a crystal is called unit cell. The repetition of these identical structural units in space constitute the crystal lattice.

    2. topological defects (such as double vacancies or Stone-Wales)

      A vacancy defect wherein two of the atoms are missing from the lattice structure is termed as double vacancy. Sometimes, dangling bonds arising from the missing of atoms in the hexagonal structure of graphene leads to its straining and formation of pentagons and heptagons. These types of defects are called Stone-Wales defects.

    3. Electron energy-loss spectra (EELS)

      EELS is a characterization technique used to study the structural and chemical properties of a material.

    4. optical images

      Optical microscopes are instruments which uses visible light and a system of lenses to produce magnified images of small objects.

    5. fullerenelike

      Fullerene is the zero dimensional form of graphitic carbon. The carbon atoms in fullerenes are arranged in closed shells.

    6. periodicity

      In a crystal, the atoms are arranged in a regular order and this property of the crystal is called its periodicity.

    7. lattice planes

      In a crystal, the atoms are arranged in a regular repeated pattern in three dimensional lattice. Lattice is defined as the set of points representing these atomic positions.

    8. multiwalled carbon nanotubes (MWCNTs)

      Carbon nanotubes (CNTs) are rolled up cylinders of graphene sheets with diameter in the nanoscale. Based on geometry, they are termed as either single walled (formed by rolling of single sheet of graphene) or multiwalled (multiple sheets of graphene) carbon nanotubes.

    9. crystalline materials

      A crystal is a three dimensional periodic array of atoms. Materials with regular ordered arrays of components are termed as crystalline materials.

    10. nanodiamond particles

      Diamond particles in the nanoscale dimensions are called nanodiamonds.

    1. linkage disequilibrium

      This term means that the association of certain alleles at different loci are not random. Essentially, certain alleles of certain genes are often linked together and found in these combinations in the Big Birds.

    1. growing-season

      The growing season is the time of year when crops are grown because the temperature and rainfall during that time are most ideal for plant growth. The growing season will vary depending on where you are in the world.

    2. metabolic rates

      metabolic rate is the amount of energy an organism uses up in a span of time. An organism with a higher metabolic rate will use up more energy than an organism with a low metabolic rate. Metabolic rate may change over time as well. This paper discusses how insects have greater metabolic needs in warmer temperatures and so they need to eat more to sustain their greater energy needs.

    3. TBD


  4. Jan 2019
    1. spectroscopy

      The study of how electromagnetic radiation (such as light) interacts with matter.

    2. two-plasmon spontaneous emission
    3. multipolar transitions
    4. singlet-triplet phosphorescence
    5. quantum electrodynamics (QED)
    6. plasmons

      A unit of rapid oscillations of electron density.

    7. atom

      The smallest unit of matter. Everything is made of atoms.

    8. fine-structure constant

      A physical constant that characterizes the strength of interaction between elementary charged particles (protons and electrons).

    1. progeny

      Another word for progeny is offspring.

    2. homozygosity

      An organism that is homozygous for a particular allele has two identical alleles at that locus. High homozygosity means the organism is homozygous for many genes. It is likely to be found in inbred organisms.

    1. short interfering RNA

      An interfering RNA, also known as RNAi, is a molecule that can be tailored to specifically block the expression of a gene. Here, the authors used an NPFR-specific RNAi to prevent the cells from making NPF receptors.Without the receptors, NPF has no effect on the fly's brain.

    2. NPF–NPF receptor (NPFR)

      All neuropeptides in the brain work by attaching to specific receptors found on the surface of cells. Think of the cell surface as a wall, the receptor as an electrical outlet, and the neuropeptide as a plug. In order for the neuropeptide (plug) to have any effect, it has to successfully attach to the correct receptor (socket). Furthermore, a particular neuropeptide (say, a three-pronged plug) cannot attach to just any receptor (for example, a two-pronged socket). The receptor and the neuropeptide have to match in order for the system to have any effect.

    3. mediator

      Something that can have an altering effect on a particular phenomenon or behavior. For example, sleep might be considered a mediator of attentiveness in class, because the more soundly you sleep, the more likely you are to stay alert in school (and vice versa). Here, the researchers discuss the fact that the concentration of neuropeptide F in the brain has been known to change how organisms respond to sex.

    4. unpalatable

      Not enjoyable to eat, most often due to a bitter taste.

      Fruit flies have taste receptors just like humans, but they aren't just limited to the tongue! Taste receptors in fruit flies are mounted all over the body, including leg bristles and wings.

      Read more from University of California, Berkeley: https://www.berkeley.edu/news/media/releases/2004/06/25_flies.shtml

    5. NPF

      Neuropeptide F (NPF) is a specific type of neuropeptide found in flies. Human beings produce a similar type of neuropeptide called neuropeptide Y. NPF is believed to play an important role in regulating reward-seeking behaviors.

    6. neuropeptide

      Neurons in the brain can communicate with one another in one of two ways—electrically or chemically. Neuropeptides are proteinlike chemical substances that a neuron is capable of secreting in order to initiate a somewhat long-lasting chemical communication with its neighboring neurons.

    1. sympathetic neurons

      The sympathetic nervous system is a part of the nervous system that controls the essential functions of life; for example, blood pressure and heart rate. The neurons present in this system are called sympathetic neurons.

    1. AVPR2

      AVPR2 is a gene that codes for a protein called vasopressin V2 receptor. AVPR2 binds the hormone vasopressin and contributes to the regulation of water in the body.