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Legal Cannabis hemp oil effectively treats chronic neuropathic pain
Researchers examine the effectiveness of consuming hemp oil extracted from the whole Cannabis plant using a chronic neuropathic pain animal model. Researchers at The University of New Mexico (UNM) showed that legal Cannabis hemp oil reduced mechanical pain sensitivity 10-fold for several hours in mice with chronic post-operative neuropathic pain. (2020-05-20)

The genome of jojoba: The only plant to store wax in its seeds
Interest on Jojoba crop was, and still is, jojoba oil, which is not a glyceride fat, but a liquid wax with unique chemical configuration and features. 'Therefore, it raises the need to generate an overview on the oil deposit in relation to structural arrangement of seed,' says Dr. Ljudmilla Borisjuk, head of the research group Assimilate Allocation and NMR (AAN) at IPK. (2020-05-20)

Sustainable palm oil? How environmental protection and poverty reduction can be reconciled
Palm oil is often associated with tropical deforestation above all else. However, this is only one side of the story, as agricultural scientists from the University of Göttingen and the IPB University Bogor (Indonesia) show in a new study. The rapid expansion of oil palm has also contributed considerably to economic growth and poverty reduction in local communities, particularly in Asia. The study was published in the Annual Review of Resource Economics. (2020-05-19)

FSU researcher detects unknown submarine landslides in Gulf of Mexico
A Florida State University researcher has used new detection methods to identify 85 previously unknown submarine landslides that occurred in the Gulf of Mexico between 2008 and 2015, leading to questions about the stability of oil rigs and other structures, such as pipelines built in the region. (2020-05-18)

McMaster chemists develop foolproof new test to track the fats we eat
A team of researchers at McMaster University has developed a reliable and accurate blood test to track individual fat intake, a tool that could guide public health policy on healthy eating. (2020-05-15)

Our ability to focus may falter after eating one meal high in saturated fat
Fatty food may feel like a friend during these troubled times, but new research suggests that eating just one meal high in saturated fat can hinder our ability to concentrate - not great news for people whose diets have gone south while they're working at home during the COVID-19 pandemic. (2020-05-12)

A century of misunderstanding of a key tool in the economics of natural resources
In the past few weeks, oil prices have fallen to record lows. This development was not predicted by the Hotelling rule, an equation proposed in 1931 that remains central to the economics of natural resources today. In an article published in the Canadian Journal of Economics, economists present the results of a groundbreaking historical survey of documents from Harold Hotelling's archives. They show that in fact this 'rule' was not designed to investigate energy markets. (2020-05-11)

Solve invasive seaweed problem by turning it into biofuels and fertilisers
UK researchers have developed a cheap and simple way of creating biofuel and fertiliser from seaweed, whilst removing plastic from the oceans and cleaning up tourist beaches in the Caribbean and Central America. (2020-05-11)

Researchers turn algae leftovers into renewable products with flare
Researchers take waste products from algae-based omega-3 oil production and convert them into valuable and renewable polyurethane foams with a range of of commercial applications -- from flip-flops and running shoe soles to mattresses and yoga mats. (2020-05-11)

FSU researchers study Gulf of Mexico in international collaboration
Florida State University and partner universities investigated current baseline conditions in the southern Gulf to create a series of maps and guides that detail the distribution of carbon, nitrogen and the carbon-14 isotope. (2020-05-06)

Aromatherapy may reduce nurses' stress, WVU researcher suggests
New research led by Marian Reven, a Ph.D. student in the West Virginia University School of Nursing, suggests that aromatherapy may reduce nurses' on-the-job feelings of stress, anxiety, exhaustion and being overwhelmed. (2020-05-01)

Window to another world: Life is bubbling up to seafloor with petroleum from deep below
Microbial life is bubbling up to the ocean floor along with fluids from deeply buried petroleum reservoirs, reports a team of scientists from the University of Calgary and the Marine Biological Laboratory, Woods Hole. (2020-05-01)

Long-term consequences of coastal development as bad as an oil spill on coral reefs
Oil pollution is known to cause lethal and sublethal responses on coral communities in the short-term, but its long-term effects have not been widely studied. The Bahia Las Minas oil spill, which contaminated about 40 square kilometers (about 15 square miles) near the Smithsonian's Galeta Point Marine Laboratory in Colon and became the largest recorded near coastal habitats in Panama, served as an opportunity to understand how coral reefs in tropical ecosystems recover from acute contamination over time. (2020-04-29)

Orujo olive oil reduces obesity
To carry out this research, a comparative study was made over the course of 10 weeks in mice with two types of diets; a diet high in saturated fats, called 'prejudicial' fat, and another, with the same calorie content, but with orujo olive oil. After this time was over, a significant reduction in weight was observed (around 30%) in the mice fed with POCTA in comparison with the group fed with the high-fat diet. (2020-04-22)

European satellite data shows extreme methane emissions from Permian oil & gas operations
Study shows twice the average emissions rate of 11 other major US production regions; paper demonstrates potential for space-based data to drive down methane loss rates. (2020-04-22)

What did scientists learn from Deepwater Horizon?
In a review paper published in the journal Nature Reviews Earth & Environment, WHOI scientists review what they-- and their science colleagues from around the world--have learned from studying the spill over the past decade. (2020-04-20)

Valorizing wastewater can improve commercial viability of biomass oil production
Oil produced from biomass can provide a sustainable alternative to fossil fuels. But technological challenges make it difficult to scale up production. A new study from the University of Illinois discusses methods to manage wastewater from biocrude oil production, providing a possible path to commercially viable production. (2020-04-17)

First Gulf-wide survey of oil pollution completed 10 years after Deepwater Horizon
Since the 2010 BP oil spill, marine scientists at the University of South Florida (USF) have sampled more than 2,500 individual fish representing 91 species from 359 locations across the Gulf of Mexico and found evidence of oil exposure in all of them, including some of the most popular types of seafood. The highest levels were detected in yellowfin tuna, golden tilefish and red drum. (2020-04-15)

UofL researchers describe possible mechanism for link between obesity and breast cancer
It is widely accepted that higher levels of body fat increase the risk of developing breast cancer, as well as other cancers. Based on his ongoing research, Bing Li, Ph.D., has published an article which proposes a unique theory that a protein secreted by fat cells drives the development of breast cancer. (2020-04-13)

Tight spaces tip presence of petrochemicals
Rice University engineers put to rest a long-held theory about the use of nuclear magnetic resonance to detect oil and gas deposits in the nanoscale pores of shale formations. (2020-04-13)

Offshore oil and gas platforms release more methane than previously estimated
Offshore energy-producing platforms in US waters of the Gulf of Mexico are emitting twice as much methane, a greenhouse gas, than previously thought, according to a new study from the University of Michigan. (2020-04-13)

Oil spill: where and when will it reach the beach? Answers to prevent environmental impacts
When an accident involving oil spills occurs, forecasting the behaviour of the oil slick and understanding in advance where and when it will reach the coastline is crucial to organize an efficient emergency response that is able to limit environmental and economic repercussions. A study led by CMCC Foundation's researchers, based on the concrete case study of the 2018 oil spill accident off Corsica, demonstrates the effectiveness of the MEDSLIK-II oil spill model, which they developed for predicting an oil-beaching event. (2020-04-06)

Coconut oil reduces features of metabolic syndrome in obese females, animal study finds
Obese females that ate a small amount of coconut oil daily, even as part of a high-fat diet, had decreased features of metabolic syndrome, a cluster of risk factors that raise the chances of developing diabetes, heart disease and stroke, an animal study finds. The study results were accepted for presentation at ENDO 2020, the Endocrine Society's annual meeting, and will be published in a special supplemental section of the Journal of the Endocrine Society. (2020-03-31)

New maps of Malaysian Borneo reveal worsening carbon losses along forest edges
Tropical forests are heavily fragmented as they are cleared for agricultural expansion and logging. Forest fragmentation leads to declines in carbon storage beyond just those trees that are cleared -- the remaining forest at the edge of each clearing experiences environmental alterations such as increased sunlight and decreased soil moisture that can impact growing conditions for trees. These 'edge effects' describe habitat disturbances that can lead to decreased tree growth and increased mortality, which change forest structure over time. (2020-03-30)

Bubbles go with the flow
Scientists at The University of Tokyo developed a new computer simulation model that includes microbubble nucleation to explain the flow slippage of fluids inside pipes. This work may help improve the flow rate of viscous fluids in commercial applications, as in the energy industry. (2020-03-27)

Waterborne polyurea/urethanes significantly reduce hydrate growth rate in pipelines
A series of inhibitors has appeared with new reagents based on water-soluble polyurethanes. (2020-03-20)

Increasingly mobile sea ice risks polluting Arctic neighbors
The movement of sea ice between Arctic countries is expected to significantly increase this century, raising the risk of more widely transporting pollutants like microplastics and oil, according to new research from CU Boulder. (2020-03-18)

Doctors urged to reconsider controversial acne drug
Acne treatment including the highly effective acne medication isotretinoin should be made more readily available despite reports of its association with depression and teen suicide, a study recommends. (2020-03-16)

How skin cells embark on a swift yet elaborate death
Scientists have identified the mechanism that allows skin cells to sense changes in their environment, and very quickly respond to reinforce the skin's outermost layer. The findings provide insight into how errors in this process might lead to skin conditions like psoriasis. (2020-03-13)

Piracy takes greater toll on small Persian gulf energy exporters
Tanker traffic through the Strait of Hormuz declines for up to two years after a piracy attack, a new Duke University study finds, but the adverse effects of the slowdown affects some Persian Gulf countries more than others. Large exporters of crude oil, like Saudi Arabia, see little long-term impact, while smaller exporters, like Bahrain and Kuwait, can suffer disproportionate losses. (2020-03-11)

Palm oil must be made more sustainable while replacements are made scalable, Bath engineers warn
Efforts to create synthetic replacements for palm oil are still likely to take several years, so immediate attention should be focused on making the existing production process more sustainable, researchers at the University of Bath's Centre for Integrated Bioprocessing Research (CIBR) and Centre for Sustainable Circular Technologies (CSCT) have found. (2020-03-10)

The impact of energy development on bird populations
The greater sage-grouse is an iconic bird that lives in the western United States, and its populations are in decline. A new study published in the Journal of Wildlife Management reveals that energy development has negative impacts on sage-grouse reproduction. (2020-03-06)

Superhydrophobic magnetic sponge to help purify water from oil products
TPU jointly with the University of Lille developed a new material capable of purifying water effectively from oil products. It is based on an ordinary household polyurethane sponge. It repels water, while effectively sorbing oil product molecules. (2020-03-05)

Unexpected discovery: Blue-green algae produce oil
Cyanobacteria -- colloquially also called blue-green algae - can produce oil from water and carbon dioxide with the help of light. This is shown by a recent study by the University of Bonn. The result is unexpected: Until now, it was believed that this ability was reserved for plants. It is possible that blue-green algae will now also become interesting as suppliers of feed or fuel, especially since they do not require arable land. (2020-03-05)

Soil life thrives between oil palm fronds
The threat to insects and soil-life from rainforest clearance is recognised. What has not been studied is whether oil palm plantations are able to sustain the populations of tiny below-ground animals that work to keep the soil healthy. In a new study led by the University of Göttingen, scientists discovered high levels of biological activity in regions above ground level that may serve as oases for soil organisms. This was published in Frontiers in Ecology and the Environment. (2020-03-02)

Whether horseradish flea beetles deter predators depends on their food plant and their life stage
Horseradish flea beetles use glucosinolates from their host plants for their own defense. They have an enzyme which converts glucosinolates into toxic mustard oils. Researchers at the Max Planck Institute for Chemical Ecology in Jena, Germany, found that while glucosinolates are present in all life stages of the beetle, the enzyme required to convert these into toxic substances is not always active. Although larvae fend off attackers, pupae are predated because they lack enzyme activity. (2020-03-02)

'Smart water' may aid oil recovery
Rice engineers study the mechanism that would allow 'smart water' to aid oil recovery from reservoirs. (2020-03-02)

Omega-3 fats do not protect against cancer
Omega-3 fats do not protect against cancer -- according to new University of East Anglia research. Increased consumption of omega-3 fats is widely promoted globally because of a common belief that it will protect against, or even reverse, diseases such as cancer, heart attacks and stroke. But two systematic reviews find that omega-3 supplements may slightly reduce coronary heart disease mortality and events, but slightly increase risk of prostate cancer. Both beneficial and harmful effects are small. (2020-02-28)

Sensor cube helps keep fish farming afloat
A self-powered water quality sensor could help fish farmers to monitor pollution in their ponds remotely. (2020-02-27)

Eco-friendly biodiesel from palm oil?
Vegetable oil biofuels are increasingly used as an alternative to fossil fuels despite the growing controversy regarding their sustainability. In a study led by the University of Göttingen, researchers investigated the effect of palm-oil biodiesel on greenhouse gases for the entire life cycle. They found that using palm oil from first rotation plantations where forests were cleared for palms leads to an increase in greenhouse gas emissions compared to fossil fuels. The results were published in Nature Communications. (2020-02-27)

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