Monthly Archives: September 2016

Cuticle Biomaterials

The arthropod cuticle has been in existence for well over 500 million years. The cuticle is mostly composed of two types of polymers, proteins and chitin. Chitin is a polysaccharide that provides structural support for the cuticle. Chitin is the … Continue reading

Posted in Biomaterials, by jjneal | 1 Comment

Zika Appropriation Update

Congress can not agree on a budget but they did agree on a continuing resolution that contains funds for Zika. 8 months after the Obama administration requested $1.9 billion in emergency funds, Congress delivered $1.1 billion. During the interim, there … Continue reading

Posted in by jjneal, News, Policy, Zika | 1 Comment

Paint It Black

In butterflies, color and color patterns are essential for mate recognition and are used in defenses such as crypsis, warning coloration, disruption of visual tracking and mimicry. In the Eastern Tiger Swallowtail, Papilio glaucus, males and females exhibit drastically different color … Continue reading

Posted in Biomaterials, by jjneal, Environment | 1 Comment

Painting With Melanin

In insects, RNAi (RNA interference) is a useful technique to suppress genes and a powerful tool for understanding the function and interaction of genes. Liu & Colleagues* used RNAi to dissect genes important in creating color patterns in the large milkweed … Continue reading

Posted in by jjneal, Development, Environment | 1 Comment

Living With Invasives

The Zika Virus is an example of an invasive species. Originally from Africa, it has now spread around the globe to every continent but Antarctica and hundreds of remote islands. The Zika Virus depends on a mosquito, Aedes aegypti, for … Continue reading

Posted in by jjneal, Health, Invasive Species, Mosquito diseases, Zika | 1 Comment

Redi For Insect Biology

Francesco Redi was a poet and a physician, a learned man in 17th century Florence, Italy. He is considered by some to be the author of the “experimental control” and the author of parasitology. He had a particular interest in … Continue reading

Posted in by jjneal, Environment, History | 1 Comment

Friday Cat-erpillar Blogging: Silk Filters

The silk produced by larvae of the silkworm, Bombyx mori, is a long thread composed of shorter interlocking strands of silk protein. Silk thread can be disassociated into its protein units, silk nanofibrils. These nanofibrils can be dissolved in solution … Continue reading

Posted in Biomaterials, by jjneal, Caterpillar Blogging | 1 Comment