Cotton plantations are highly important in Egypt, covering between 400 000 and 500 000 ha, 1/6 of all cultivated land. These crops are a vital source of foreign currency revenue through exports, and their state of health is therefore permanently under close surveillance. Cotton plants are indeed the target of a leaf-eating insect, the noctuid Spodoptera littoralis (Lepidoptera), or Egyptian Cotton Leafworm.
Known to be the main pest of cotton, it also attacks the leaves of cereal crops and lucerne which is the principal fodder crop used in Egypt. This noctuid is one of the most intensively studied insects in that country. The problem that arises concerns how to eradicate populations of this pest without massive use of chemical pesticides and thus minimize damage to the environment, and in such a way that crop yields are not jeopardized.
The solution put forward by researchers from the IRD, the University of Cairo and their French and Canadian partners (1) lies in the domestication of an insect-infecting virus isolated in Egypt in 1995, Densovirus MlDNV (2). This organism could be used locally as an element of biocontrol programmes.
Marie Guillaume | alfa
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The world's highest gain high power laser amplifier - by many orders of magnitude - has been developed in research led at the University of Strathclyde.
The researchers demonstrated the feasibility of using plasma to amplify short laser pulses of picojoule-level energy up to 100 millijoules, which is a 'gain'...
Staphylococcus aureus is a feared pathogen (MRSA, multi-resistant S. aureus) due to frequent resistances against many antibiotics, especially in hospital infections. Researchers at the Paul-Ehrlich-Institut have identified immunological processes that prevent a successful immune response directed against the pathogenic agent. The delivery of bacterial proteins with RNA adjuvant or messenger RNA (mRNA) into immune cells allows the re-direction of the immune response towards an active defense against S. aureus. This could be of significant importance for the development of an effective vaccine. PLOS Pathogens has published these research results online on 25 May 2017.
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Physicists from the University of Würzburg are capable of generating identical looking single light particles at the push of a button. Two new studies now demonstrate the potential this method holds.
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An international team of physicists has monitored the scattering behaviour of electrons in a non-conducting material in real-time. Their insights could be beneficial for radiotherapy.
We can refer to electrons in non-conducting materials as ‘sluggish’. Typically, they remain fixed in a location, deep inside an atomic composite. It is hence...
Two-dimensional magnetic structures are regarded as a promising material for new types of data storage, since the magnetic properties of individual molecular building blocks can be investigated and modified. For the first time, researchers have now produced a wafer-thin ferrimagnet, in which molecules with different magnetic centers arrange themselves on a gold surface to form a checkerboard pattern. Scientists at the Swiss Nanoscience Institute at the University of Basel and the Paul Scherrer Institute published their findings in the journal Nature Communications.
Ferrimagnets are composed of two centers which are magnetized at different strengths and point in opposing directions. Two-dimensional, quasi-flat ferrimagnets...
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