The science news of July 6, 2021 is:
Healthy: The famous geneticist Axel Kahn has passed away.
- Axel Kahn died at the age of 76 from devastating cancer.
- A researcher specializing in molecular genetics applied to hereditary diseases, he became Research Director of Inserm at the age of only 34, where he contributed to nearly 500 scientific publications.
- Authors of 30 books on genetics, ethics and biotechnologies, since 2008 he was elevated to the rank of Commander of the National Order of Merit.
In paleontology: Shark populations have been collapsing because of man since prehistoric times.
- Reef sharks have lost much of their workforce since humans first colonized the planet.
- It is the fast-swimming pelagic sharks that seem to have suffered the most from human activities.
- Sharks of all types declined during this period, due to habitat loss or decreased prey numbers.
In health: Covid-19: why is it important for those around the elderly to be vaccinated?
- The immune response generated by vaccines declines with age, especially in those over 80, increasing their risk of infection despite vaccination.
- Half of people over 80 do not have enough neutralizing antibodies to prevent infection.
- The best protection for the elderly is that those around them cannot infect them.
In paleontology: How did dinosaurs breathe?
- Not all dinosaurs breathe the same.
- “Tucky”, a small herbivorous dinosaur, was scanned at the synchrotron revealing the presence of abdominal vertebrae, gastralia participating in respiration.
- Paddle-shaped thoracic vertebrae are also present and allow ample movement of the rib cage, so Tucky could breathe by contracting his stomach and chest.
In biodiversity: Fukushima: wild boars have reproduced with abandoned pigs.
- Following the evacuation of homes in the city of Fukushima over 1,150 square kilometers, 30,000 domestic pigs were left behind by local farmers.
- By probing the genome of several wild boars, researchers have found that hybridizations between these animals and domestic pigs have occurred.
- The genes provided by pigs will be lost from generation to generation, in particular because hybrid specimens reproduce with wild boars, moreover, most pigs have not adapted in nature.