PLOS Research News

By PLOS Research News | PLOS Research News shares the latest news about published PLOS journal research. 

Research Roundup: Traveling trapdoor spiders; Cell fate decision may not be a programmed event

Traveling trapdoor spider may have dispersed across the ocean from Africa to Australia<p>Darwin proposed that long-distance dispersal explained the …

Less invasive autopsy can identify cause of death in stillborn infants, newborns and children

According to global mortality estimates, more than 11 million deaths, including stillbirths, occur in low- and middle-income countries annually. But …

Light It Up: Splitfin flashlight fish use bioluminescent light to detect and feed on planktonic prey

The splitfin flashlight fish, <i>Anomalops katoptron</i>, is one of many ocean-dwelling animals that produce their own bioluminescent light using symbiotic …

Predator or prey? Paleolithic people may have hunted Eurasian cave lions for their pelts

New evidence suggests that Upper Paleolithic humans hunted massive cave lions in order to obtain their pelts.<p>If you have a healthy respect for the …

From the Frontline: How unsafe burials impact Ebola transmission

Amanda McClelland works in dangerous places. A pediatric nurse by training, her work caring for children with infectious diseases led her to study …

Invisible Ebola: Some people may survive viral infection without showing symptoms

Ebola virus is thought to be one of the most deadly known to man, and the most recent estimates suggest that the 2013-2016 West African outbreak has …

Mother Knows Best: Giving HIV self-tests to pregnant women promotes male partner testing

If you want to get more men tested for HIV, your best bet may be to give self-tests to their female partners, according to a new study published in …

SciBites: Week of Oct. 31st

Addressing challenges in neglected tropical disease research<p>Recently published by PLOS, the Good Clinical Practice article collection provides tools …

Let’s Get Together: Collaboration patterns vary between male and female scientists

Collaboration is increasingly important in science, but few studies have investigated how female and male researchers in various scientific, …

No Longer Seeing Stars: Disease decimates sunflower sea star population in the Salish Sea

Sea star wasting disease broke out in 2013, causing large-scale population decline in several species of sea stars along the west coast of North …

Spacy Behavior: Lack of gravity in space may affect how bacteria behave

Bacteria in space may pose risks for astronauts on long spaceflights, and research has shown that bacteria behave differently in the microgravity …

SciBites: Week of Oct 21st

Hospital infections place big burden on Europe<p>More than 2.5 million cases of healthcare-associated infections are estimated to occur in the European …

Worming Our Way into the Genome: Genetic manipulation of parasite could help improve schistosomiasis treatment

Schistosomiasis, a disease caused by the infestation of parasitic flatworms, afflicts more than 200 million people worldwide, mostly in developing …

An 8 Million-Year Journey: Coastal spider ancestors may have crossed Southern Hemisphere oceans

<i>Amaurobioides</i> is a genus of coastal spiders found on three Southern Hemisphere continents: Australasia, Africa and South America. It was previously …

Starling colonies create wildlife hot spots in Australia

During the wet season, metallic starlings – which have bright red eyes and a blue-green sheen – migrate from New Guinea to breed in Australian …

Tsetse flies show highly selective feeding preferences in Serengeti National Park

The tsetse fly, which serves as the vector for human African trypanosomiasis (HAT), may have very selective feeding preferences when choosing its …

Even tiny bumblebee brains can solve complex problems

Lars Chittka didn’t expect much when he decided to see if bumblebees could learn to pull a string for a reward. While animals from birds to apes can …

Pre-exposure Prophylaxis (PrEP) antiretroviral therapy in breast milk poses low risk to infants

Research shows exposure to antiretroviral therapy (ARV) among HIV negative persons, also known as Pre-exposure Prophylaxis (PrEP), significantly …

Fossil bee nest from South Africa sheds light on human ancestor’s living environment

In 1925, researchers discovered the first <i>Australopithecus africanus</i> fossil in South Africa – the skull of an early human ancestor thereafter referred …

New evidence shifts the timeline back for human arrival in the Americas

Ancient artifacts found at an archeological site in Argentina suggest that humans occupied South America earlier than previously …

Old Drugs, New Tricks: Computational method IDs existing drugs that could fight viruses

Drug development is a long, complex process. A new medication can spend more than a decade in testing before it hits the market. To save time and …

Malaria-transmitting mosquitoes with genetic anomalies may prefer cattle to humans

Malaria is a life-threatening disease transmitted to humans by the bites of infected female <i>Anopheles</i> mosquitoes, and about half of the world’s …

What’s on the Menu: Social and reproductive factors may influence bonobo diets

Diets of bonobos in the Congo Basin may be different depending on social factors and reproductive status within their communities. Researchers …

A new metric measures the influence of scientific research

Researchers and funders now have a new way to quantify the influence of a scientific research article. The new metric, called the Relative Citation …

Tiny sacs of toxins produced by bacteria increase risk of preterm birth in mice

Globally, preterm birth is the leading cause of death for newborns and children under 5 years of age, yet little is known about the cause of this …

Monkey Hear, Monkey Do: Female rhesus macaque calls reflect familiarity but not relatedness

Around 1,000 rhesus macaques inhabit the aptly named ‘Monkey Island’ off Puerto Rico. Their ancestors were originally imported from India in 1938 for …

Face It: Genes control much of facial variation

“Look, she’s got her daddy’s nose!”<p>While you might roll your eyes at this typical pronouncement from relatives cooing over a newborn’s crib, research …

New model of golden eagle counts could enhance conservation efforts

Researchers are using a new method to model the distribution and abundance of golden eagles across the western U.S. The new estimates could help …

Shared risk factors link chronic pain with major depressive disorder

Chronic pain, often defined as pain lasting longer than three months, may affect between one-third and one-half of U.K. adults. It can result from a …

Chronic Pain