Wednesday, 23 September 2015

Happy Autumn Day!!

Today, Wednesday 23rd September marks the official start of the marvellous orange and brown tinged season of Autumn. It is my favourite time of year, the nights get longer, the temperature starts to drop and the fallen leaves get oh so crisp and crunchy under foot. I basically LOVE Autumn. Anyway here's a quick recap of some of my favourite bits of science from this year (Jan-Sept).

January
The desert tawny owl became a new owl species on 25th January.The owl is of a medium size, which tends to be found around The Middle East, namely Syria, Israel and Egypt. The desert tawny owl feasts upon large insects and rodents.

February
The British Government voted in favour of 3-person babies in a bid to try and combat inherited mitochondrial disorders. This ruling is yet to be passed by the House of Lords, but if it is, then the UK will become the first country in the world to offer this form of prevention of mitochondrial disorders

March
On the 20th March a total solar eclipse occurred over most of Europe. A solar eclipse is when the moon moves infront of the sun, blocking the light of the sun; creating temporary darkness. This particular eclipse lasted for just over 1 minute when it began at 8.30 am GMT. (I actually missed this because I was in the lab!)

April
The Large Hadron Collidor returns to action after a stint of maintenance and an upgrading.

May
Nivolumab, a drug which is a monoclonal antibody (mAb) was approved for treatment of lung cancer and was shown to double life expectancy in some patients.

June
A 3D printed titanium jaw was implanted successfully into a male patient in Melbourne, Australia. Who knows what will be next? This is marvellous news, for patients who require uniquely designed implants to help rebuild body parts. A step forward in the right direction!

July
Stephen Hawking launches Breakthrough Initiatives, a program founded with the main intention to look for extraterrestrial intelligent life.

August
2 new venomous frog species were discovered in Brazil: Greening's frog and Bruno's casque-headed frog. Both species of frog have spines on their heads. By headbutting their victim they are able to inject poison.

September
WWF and ZSL found that populations of marine creatures, such as birds, fish, reptiles and mammals have declined around 47% since 1970.


Hopefully the next 3 months of 2015 will be just as spectacular in the world of science!

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