mSphere — New OA journal, American Society for Microbiology

American Society for Microbiology announces 2016 launch of new OA journal – mSphere – 10 Jun 2015

The American Society for Microbiology (ASM) has announced plans to launch mSphereTM, a new pan-microbiology open-access journal, in early 2016. mSphere will create new opportunities for researchers in microbial sciences to share findings that are transforming our understanding of human health and disease, ecosystems, neuroscience, agriculture, energy production, climate change, evolution, biogeochemical cycling, and food and drug production.

mSphere will build on the success of mBio®, ASM’s first open access journal. Its scope will reflect the immense range of fields within the microbial sciences. An emphasis will be placed on bringing together these diverse fields to feature their common threads through the data, methods, and conceptual frameworks of original peer-reviewed research.

Dr. Michael Imperiale, Founding Editor in Chief of mSphere is the Arthur F. Thurnau Professor and Associate Chair of the Department of Microbiology and Immunology at the University of Michigan Medical School and a member of the University of Michigan Comprehensive Cancer Center.

Author of more than 135 peer-reviewed journal articles and book chapters, Dr. Imperiale has served as an editor of ASM’s Journal of Virology® and mBio® and associate editor of Virology and PLoS Pathogens.

ASM journals have long been recognized as important venues for dissemination of significant, high-quality microbiological research. The launch of mSphere will complement the excellence of ASM’s 10 specialised primary research journals. mSphere™ will welcome submissions from authors around the world and will provide rapid decisions on publication, while carrying on ASM’s tradition for rigorous peer review. Like the rest of the ASM journals program, the new journals will be hosted on the HighWire platform at journals.asm.org.

A formal ‘Call for Papers’ will be issued in September 2015, and the journal launch is planned for early 2016.”

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Source:  Knowledgespeak News, June 10, 2015

Addressing our Greatest Engineering Challenges

From today’s WhatsNew@National-Academies.org:

Engineering Schools throughout the U.S. are committing to educate certain numbers of engineers with special interests and talents in helping to solve our greatest challenges.

“In a letter of commitment presented to President Obama today, more than 120 U.S. engineering schools announced plans to educate a new generation of engineers expressly equipped to tackle some of the most pressing issues facing society in the 21st century. Read More

Princeton University’s Prof. Robert Socolow is a member of this Committee on Grand Challenges.

There is also a 6-min video at http://engineeringchallenges.org/

Climate change myths — addressed by John Cook, Climate Communication Fellow, Australia

Skeptical Science: Getting skeptical about global warming skepticism

  • http://www.skepticalscience.com

    “This website gets serious about addressing climate change skepticism. Using only peer-reviewed research, John Cook, the Climate Communication Fellow at the University of Queensland, Australia, takes the time to seriously consider the doubts that people might have about the state of the earth’s climate. Readers might like to start with the sidebar that addresses the ten most common climate myths, including the idea that the climate has changed before, that warming is due to the sun, that climate change isn’t bad, that there is no scientific consensus, that the earth is actually cooling, and five others. The site also offers a variety of interesting tabs to explore, including an excellent Resources page. [CNH]

  • Source:  The Scout Report, University of Wisconsin, Vol. 21(7), Feb. 20th

Gendered Innovations in Science, Health & Medicine, Engineering and Environment

From Genetic Engineering &  Biotechnology News, Best of the Web, Feb. 15, 2015

http://www.genengnews.com/best-of-the-web/gendered-innovations/2935/

URL:genderedinnovations.stanford.edu  The purpose is to get away from using the male as the default, to help us be more mindful of the significant differences in male and female in research.

Virus Evolution — New OA journal from OUP

The Virus Evolution      http://ve.oxfordjournals.org/

“Virus Evolution is a new Open Access journal focusing on the long-term evolution of viruses, viruses as a model system for studying evolutionary processes, viral molecular epidemiology and environmental virology.

The aim of the journal is to provide a forum for original research papers, reviews, commentaries and a venue for in-depth discussion on the topics relevant to virus evolution.”

“Editors-in Chief, Professor Oliver Pybus, University of Oxford, and Professor Santiago Elena, Instituto de Biología Molecular y Celular de Plantas (CSIC-UPV) welcome submissions at:https://mc.manuscriptcentral.com/vevolu.
Source of information:  Knowledgespeak Newsletter, Feb. 9, 2015

History of Vaccines website from College of Physicians, Philadelphia

Status

“Vaccinations have had a profound impact on human health, and yet there remains a lot of misinformation floating around out there regarding vaccines. (No, no, no, they do not cause autism.) The History of Vaccines website by the College of Physicians of Philadelphia is an excellent educational resource that covers many different aspects of vaccines and their history, including information about the science of vaccines, vaccine-preventable diseases, misconceptions about vaccines, and answers to the question, “why vaccinate?” Beyond articles addressing each of these (and many other) topics, the website includes a number of interactive features such as timelines, animations, and activities for students. Activities include, among others, a game in which players try to develop vaccines to protect a population of a society fighting disease, as well as a game that has players apply the scientific method to epidemiological scenarios.”


4-star website according to “Genetic Engineering & Biotechnology News”

Jan 15, 2015 (Vol. 35, No. 2)

http://www.genengnews.com/best-of-the-web/the-history-of-vaccines/2926/

Planet Earth’s Stability is significantly affected

Summary:
“Almost half of the processes that are crucial to maintaining the stability of the planet have become dangerously compromised by human activity. That is the view of an international team of 18 researchers who provide new evidence of significant changes in four of the nine systems which regulate the resilience of the Earth.”

Nine planetary boundaries  (the crucial processes)

  1. Climate change
  2. Change in biosphere integrity (biodiversity loss and species extinction)
  3. Stratospheric ozone depletion
  4. Ocean acidification
  5. Biogeochemical flows (phosphorus and nitrogen cycles)
  6. Land-system change (for example deforestation)
  7. Freshwater use
  8. Atmospheric aerosol loading (microscopic particles in the atmosphere that affect climate and living organisms)
  9. Introduction of novel entities (e.g. organic pollutants, radioactive materials, nanomaterials, and micro-plastics).                                                                   Journal Reference:
    1. Will Steffen, Katherine Richardson, Johan Rockström, Sarah E. Cornell, Ingo Fetzer, Elena M. Bennett, R. Biggs, Stephen R. Carpenter, Wim de Vries, Cynthia A. de Wit, Carl Folke, Dieter Gerten, Jens Heinke, Georgina M. Mace, Linn M. Persson, Veerabhadran Ramanathan, B. Reyers, and Sverker Sörlin. Planetary boundaries: Guiding human development on a changing planet. Science, 15 January 2015 DOI: 10.1126/science.1259855

Source: McGill University. “Nearly half the systems crucial to stability of planet compromised.” ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 15 January 2015. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2015/01/150115163533.htm>.

eLIFE — a respected OA journal

eLIFE

  • http://elifesciences.org“This highly thought of open access journal promises a speed and ease of publishing unheard of in most traditional life science journals. Initial decisions on a manuscript are usually made within days. Post-review decisions are made within weeks. Most articles only go through a single round of revisions. For the reader, this means that the results you’re reading are hot off the lab bench. Best of all, unlike most scientific journals, which can cost upwards of $20 for a single article, the 842 (and counting) articles on this site are completely free. The eLIFE podcast is also available for easy download, online listening, or subscription. [CNH]
  • Source:  The Scout Report — Volume 20, Number 40 (HTML)  Univ. of Wisconsin, 10/17/2014

World Food Day

8 Great Scientific Solutions to Feeding the World

Released: 14-Oct-2014 11:00 AM EDT 
Source Newsroom: Institute of Food Technologists (IFT)

Newswise — CHICAGO—In honor of World Food Day on October 16, the Institute of Food Technologists (IFT) is highlighting eight solutions for feeding the world from itsFutureFood 2050 website. They include articles featuring Kofi Annan, M.S. Swaminathan, Sylvia Earle and more. Feel free to re-publish or share these links as part of your World Food Day coverage.

1. Watch an interactive video infographic on food waste
2. Learn about food security in Africa 
3. Read this article on M.S. Swaminathan on sustainable agriculture
4. Listen to National Geographic Oceanographer Sylvia Earle share aquaculture solutions 
5. Learn how reinvestment in Africa creates a sustainable business model for the future 
6. Gain insights on the latest insights on meat alternatives 
7. Read an interview on creating greater abundance of crops to feed a booming population 
8. Learn about the important role of women in combating world hunger