The NSDL Scout Report for Life Sciences -- Volume 4, Number 2

January 21, 2005

A Publication of the Internet Scout Project
Computer Sciences Department, University of Wisconsin-Madison




Topic In Depth


Human Ageing Genomic Resources

The Human Ageing Genomic Resources (HAGR)currently led by Dr. Joo Pedro de Magalhes at the Harvard Medical Schoolis "a collection of databases and tools designed to help researchers understand the genetics of human ageing. Two major searchable resources offered in HAGR are AnAge, a curated animal ageing database with more than 2,000 species; and GenAge, a curated database of genes related to human ageing. Site visitors are encouraged to download the HAGR software, Ageing Resources Computational Tools, which is a toolkit of Perl modules based on the Bioperl package aimed a comparative genomics. Site users will also appreciate the solid list of related links organized into the following categories: Major Databases, Gerontology Databases, Computer Science, Comparative Biology, and Computational Biology. [NL]

Zoological Society of London: Institute of Zoology [pdf]

As the research division of the Zoological Society of London, the Institute of Zoology (IoZ) conducts basic biological research which benefits the conservation of animal species and their habitats. The IoZ website provides summaries of the Institutes seven Research Themes including Wild Animal Health and Welfare; Behavioral and Evolutionary Ecology; Biodiversity and Macroecology, and Reproductive Biology, to name a few. In addition, the site provides information about IoZ researchers, specific research projects, services, publications, postgraduate research opportunities, and job opportunities when available. Site visitors will also find downloadable IoZ Annual Reports from the past few years, and information about upcoming scientific meetings. [NL]

Fish and Wildlife Research Institute: Seagrasses

From the Florida-based Fish and Wildlife Research Institute (FWRI), this website presents seagrass-related research projects and publications. The site contains several brief articles describing FWRI research projects including Mortality of Seagrasses on Florida Bay Mudbanks; Pools and Fluxes of Nutrients in Florida Bay Sediments; Seagrass Restoration; and Florida Bay Fisheries Habitat Assessment Program. A collection of downloadable publications are available through the site including Seagrass Communities of the Gulf Coast of Florida: Status and Ecology (2004), which provides an up-to-date synthesis of research involving the ecology, biology, and management of gulf coast seagrasses. The site also features the updatable Florida Seagrass Conservation Information System which is intended to enable researchers to access information from sources who have conducted similar projects. Site visitors can link from the Seagrasses site to information about many other FWRI research activities in the areas of Freshwater and Saltwater Fisheries, Red Tide, Marine Biology, and Manatees. [NL]

Archie Carr Center for Sea Turtle Research: Sea Turtle Online Bibliography

The Sea Turtle Online Bibliography was developed by the Archie Carr Center for Sea Turtle Research (ACCSTR) at the University of Florida. The Bibliography includes over 12,000 references on all aspects of sea turtle biology, conservation and management. Searches can be conducted using Keyword(s), Authors Name, and/or Title. The Bibliography also connects to information about other ACCSTR research activities, and to CTURTLE, a sea turtle biology and conservation Listserv discussion network with over 750 subscribers from more than 25 countries. [NL]

The Association for Tropical Biology and Conservation

The Association for Tropical Biology and Conservation (ATBC) was originally established in 1963 as the Association of Tropical Biology (ATB) with the central goal of promoting research and fostering the exchange of ideas among biologists working in tropical environments. In 2002, ATB members voted to revise the organization's name to include the Conservation component and to set forth an expanded mission for the ATBC as an international body to promote research, education, conservation, and communication in tropical biology. The ATBC website contains information about Biotropica (the quarterly research journal of the ATBC) including contents and abstracts from past issues; instructions for authors, and the names, and fields of expertise of editorial board members. In addition, the site contains downloadable copies of Tropinet, a quarterly newsletter that offers tropical biologists a forum as well as a source for information about grants, employment opportunities, new publications, and meetings. ATBC also provides information about membership, past and upcoming Annual Meetings, and contacts for Officers and Staff. [NL]

Society for Cryobiology [pdf]

The Society for Cryobiology is an international, research-oriented organization that was founded in 1964 to bring together those from the biological, medical and physical sciences who have a common interest in the effect of low temperatures on biological systems. The Society for Cryobiology website features information about Cryobiology, an international bi-monthly journal published by Elsevier; as well as a downloadable copy of the most recent issue of newsnotes, a quarterly newsletter from the Society. The Society also offers an online discussion forum and information about annual meetings and membership. Notably, the Society provides free memberships for full-time graduate students. [NL]

Thrive/Loughborough University-Centre for Child and Family Research: Growing Together [pdf, Microsoft Access]

Supported by Thrive (a horticultural charity) and Loughborough Universitys Centre for Child and Family Research, Growing Together is the first major study of the use of social and therapeutic horticulture in promoting health, well-being and social inclusion in the UK. The study is specifically aimed at determining physical and social benefits for Vulnerable Adults. The Growing Together website includes a concise description of the three-year research project; related articles; a downloadable bibliographic database, and a listing of garden projects that are participating in the study. The site also provides information for ordering a 60-page literature review (analyzing 131 texts) titled Social and Therapeutic Horticulture: Evidences and Messages from Research. The website hosts an information network for researchers interested in therapeutic and/or social aspects of horticulture as well. [NL]

The Academy of Natural Sciences-Research: Center for Systematic Biology and Evolution

The Center for Systematic Biology and Evolution at the Academy of Natural Sciences engages in biodiversity research that involves the discovery of species and the working out of the relationships among those species, why they are distributed as they are in the world, and their interactions with other species. This website provides information about the collections and research activities of the Centers many departments including Botany, Diatoms, Herpetology, Ichthyology, Mammalogy, Ornithology, Vertebrate Paleontology, and more. A link is provided to the Collections Database, which allows visitors to search a portion of the Academys extensive biological collections containing over 17 million specimens. The site also links to other sections of the Academy of Natural Sciences website including a Staff Directory; the Scientific Publications Department; available employment opportunities and internships, and information about research opportunities for undergraduate, graduate, and postdoctoral students. [NL]


Singapore Science Centre- ScienceNet: Life Sciences

Students, teachers, and parents will find great value in ScienceNet, an interactive information service from the Singapore Science Centre. Supported by Nanyang Technological University and National University of Singapore, ScienceNet is a place for people to get answers to their questions in a wide range of scientific fields. In addition to allowing visitors to pose questions, the website offers access to a database of previous answers to questions such as: What do water fleas feed on? Why is there a limit to the maximum size a cell can grow? How do dolphins and killer whales sleepand how do they obtain fresh water for drinking? What is the largest dragonfly in the world? When do the facial bones complete ossification? and many more. The Life Sciences section of ScienceNet offers expertise in such fields as Botany, Human Anatomy, Microbiology, Zoology, Neuroscience, Marine Biology, and more. Queries are invited for many other scientific areas as well including Earth Science, Computer Science, Physical Sciences, Astronomy, and Engineering. [NL]

American Cetacean Society: Education [pdf]

This educational website about cetaceans is offered by the American Cetacean Society (ACS), a California-based, nonprofit organization that protects whales, dolphins, porpoises, and their habitats through public education, research grants, and conservation actions. The ACS Education site features a Cetacean Curriculum section with downloadable classroom activities and background information about cetaceans (free, confidential registration required). The Curriculum section also includes helpful Internet links, recommended reference books, and National Science Education Standards Correlations for grades K-12. In addition, the ACS Education site contains fact sheets that describe many types of cetaceans including the Beluga Whale, Narwhal, Orca, Bottlenose Dolphin, Fin Whale, Sperm Whale, and more. Through the Quick Links section, site visitors can connect to a well-organized bibliography, charts that compare size and maximum dive depths for different whales, and basic diagrams depicting anatomical features of whales. ACS is currently developing Interactive and Library sections for the website as well. [NL]

Oracle Education Foundation-ThinkQuest: Patent Wars on AIDS Drugs [Macromedia Flash Player]

With the title of Patent Wars on AIDS Drugs: Public Health or Corporate Wealth?, this provocative and informative website won second place in the April 2004 international ThinkQuest contest for websites created by students ages 19 and under. The site was created by a team of students and teacher-coaches from schools in the United States, India, Australia, the Netherlands, and the United Kingdom. The website provides information about: HIV/AIDS; aspects of the pharmaceutical patent wars; characteristics of AIDS drugs; impacts of AIDS and drug availability in different regions of the world; and more. The site also contains a good collection of news stories; quotes; references, and several interactive features including an annotated photo gallery and quizzes for different world regions. The website is available in both English and Spanish. [NL]

GateWay Community College: Anatomy & Physiology Tutorials [Java]

These great anatomy and physiology tutorials were developed by Dr. James Crimando, Chair of the Math and Science Division at GateWay Community College. The interactive tutorials utilize excellent images and illustrations to educate students and others about various regions of the body including the skull, muscles, vertebrae, hand, thyroid gland, and more. Site users are able to explore different views of these corporeal regions such as a lateral view of the lumbar vertebra; interior view of the skull; the posterior view of the heart, and parasaggital views of a sheep brain. Many of the tutorials also allow users to test their anatomical knowledge with interactive quizzes. Note: To reach the tutorials simply select the Anatomy & Physiology Tutorials hyperlink listed in the menu on the left side of the Biological Sciences HomePage. [NL]

MIT OpenCourseWare: Principles of Radiation Interactions, Fall 2004

This website contains educational materials from a Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) Principles of Radiation Interactions course offered in the fall semester of 2004. This site is part of the MIT OpenCourseWare project, which was developed to share MIT undergraduate and graduate course resources with the Internet community. This course is intended to provide a broad understanding of how different types of radiation deposit energy, including the creation and behavior of secondary radiations; of how radiation affects cells and why the different types of radiation have very different biological effects. The course addresses the effects of radiation on biological systems, in vivo mammalian systems, in vitro cell survival models, radiation therapy, and more. The course website contains downloadable lecture notes, six problem sets, and two exams. The site also lists reading assignments, and includes a 30-page downloadable Overview of Cell Biology document. [NL]

University of Illinois Extension-Schools Online: Lets Talk About Insects [Macromedia Flash Player, pdf]

Lets Talk About Insects is a fun educational program designed for nine to 11-year-old students by Schools Online at the University of Illinois Extension. The program utilizes numerous slides with cartoon-like illustrations, photographs, text, and audio narration to explore the world of insects. The program was developed to help students gain an appreciation of insects; learn how insects grow and develop (metamorphosis), and learn the importance of insects in our environment. A Teachers Guide is included with Statewide Learning Standards, preparation suggestions, and companion activities. The program is available in Spanish and English. [NL]

Monterey Bay Aquarium: Activities and Games

From the Monterey Bay Aquarium, this website presents an assortment of fun, educational activities featuring different marine animals and plants. Some of the choices on the website are online activities, others are Print & Do activities, and the remaining activities provide both options. Examples of the Print & Do activities are coloring pages of different marine animals like penguins and jellies; instructions for an otter lunch bag puppet; a kelp forest-themed crossword puzzle, and instructions for making a penguin headband. Examples of online activities include: an interactive Make a Tidepool Game; a Shark Spotting Guide; a Deep Sea Memory Game, and an Explore the Kelp Forest interactive feature. Several of the activities are available in both Spanish and English. [NL]

Minnesota Zoo: Animals

This Minnesota Zoo website provides students and others with basic information about a large variety of animals from Minnesota and around the world. Examples of the numerous animals featured include the: Clouded Leopard, Red Panda, Bactrian Camel, Fishing Cat, Komodo Monitor, and Great Horned Owl. Animal profiles contain a small, clear photograph of each species; a concise description, and brief information about diet, habitat, breeding, range, and more. The profile provides the class, order, family, genus, and species names for each animal as well. In addition, the site features information about farm animals including the American Cream Draft Horse, Dutch Belted Dairy Cow, Jersey Diary Cow, and Holstein Dairy Cow. Site visitors can also link to information about the conservation efforts of the Minnesota Zoo, and to a Kids Corner which features a few simple educational games for younger children. [NL]


The American Phytopathological Society: Careers & Placement [pdf]

From the American Phytopathological Society (APS), this Careers & Placement website is open to both members and non-members. The site allows job seekers and employers to view available job openings and candidates; post a resume or vita for free; and post a job opening (fee required). Job seekers can also sign up for free, bi-monthly email notifications regarding recent job openings. In addition, the APS Careers website connects to a list of hyperlinked plant pathology programs at universities across the country, and to a downloadable brochure about careers in plant pathology. [NL]

Ornithology: the Science of Birds

This extensive ornithology website was created by Dr. Roger Lederer, a veteran ornithologist and professor of Biological Sciences at California State University, Chico. Dr. Lederers site is a well-organized portal to a plethora of bird information websites in such areas as Migration; Birds in the Backyard; Raptors; Feeding Birds; Teacher Resources; Songs and Calls, and more. The website also links to information, images, and checklists for birds in many regions of the world including Central America, Indonesia, Antarctica, the United States, and Africa. In addition, site visitors will find brief lectures from Dr. Lederer regarding Feathers, Flight, Reproduction, and Metabolism, to name a few. The site also contains a brief section about ornithology careers, and links to bird news, beautiful bird photos, and birding forums. [NL]

Canadian Broadcasting Corporation: Canadas Adverse Drug Reaction Database

From the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation (CBC), the Canadas Adverse Drug Reaction Database utilizes data collected from 1965 to Sept. 30, 2003, and contains information from all adverse drug reaction (ADR) reports currently held in Health Canadas CADRIS database. An adverse drug reaction is defined as any unintended response to a drug, which includes prescription, non-prescription, biological, and herbal drug products. Search fields include Drug Name, Age, Gender, Outcome, and more. The site also provides a hyperlink to a Medical Dictionary from MedLine Plus. [NL]

Australian Institute of Marine Science-Status of Coral Reefs of the World: 2004 [pdf]

From the Australian Institute of Marine Science, this website contains a downloadable copy of the Status of Coral Reefs of the World: 2004. This 2004 report documents how human activities continue to be the primary cause of the global coral reef crisis. The report may be viewed or downloaded in two complete volume segments or by chapters within the volumes. The publication begins with the following three chapters: Global Threats to Coral Reefs; New Initiatives in Coral Reef Monitoring, Research Management and Conservation, and The Status of The Cold-Water Reefs of The World. The remaining chapters in volume one, and the chapters of volume two, address the status of coral reefs in many regions of the world including East Africa, South Asia, Southeast Asia, the Hawaiian Archipelago, the Caribbean, the South West Pacific, the Red Sea, and more. The report contains a sizeable suggested reading list as well. [NL]


This award-winning website from Dr. Wellington S. Tichenor explores the symptoms and treatment of sinusitis, and other sinus diseases, as well as the interrelated problems of allergy and asthma. Dr. Tichenors site contains information about the definition of sinusitis; a sinusitis treatment regimen; fungal sinusitis; surgery; sinusitis in children, and more. The site also includes a sinusitis section designed specifically for physicians, with information about Image Guided Surgery, and selected updates from recent meetings of the American College of Allergy, Asthma, and Immunology, and the American Rhinologic Society. Site visitors will also find information about allergies and asthma; brief emails from sinusitis sufferers (with responses from Dr. Tichenor); several informative sinus CT scan images; and a list of related websites. [NL]

Pesticide Action Network UK [pdf]

The Pesticide Action Network UK (PAN UK) is a nonprofit organization that promotes healthy food, agriculture and an environment which will provide food and meet public health needs without dependence on toxic chemicals, and without harm to food producers and agricultural workers. Through its website, PAN UK offers a number of downloadable publications including briefings; fact sheets for active ingredients like aldicarb, cypermethrin, methyl parathion, and paraquat; monthly gardening tips, and annual reviews. Site visitors can also search for pesticide-related images and numerous publication listings through the websites Photographic Database and Research Database. The site also contains pesticide-related news, press releases, and information about PAN UK activities in the United Kingdom, Europe, and around the world. Many related links are included as well in such categories as Conferences, Consumer Links, Databases & Resources, Integrated Pest Management, and more. [NL]

Ivanhoe Broadcast News: Medical Breakthroughs [Windows Media Player]

From Ivanhoe Broadcast News, this website links to an abundance of medical news stories. Articles can be found under many health categories including Alternative Health, Cardiovascular Health, Sports Medicine, Nutrition, Cancer, Vision, Dental Health, and more. Articles are listed under health categories for women, men, seniors, and children as well. The site also features a News Flash section with daily updates; Medical Headlines; Special Reports; and Discussion Groups. Site visitors looking for additional information will find links to other online resources for a variety of health topics as well. [NL]

Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History-Department of Paleobiology: Paleo Art

From the Department of Paleobiology at the Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History, this website offers information about, and images from, the Departments Paleo Art collection. The sites Historical Art Gallery contains 15 marvelous images depicting such subjects as the scull of Meniscotherium; the flight of Pteranodon; an assortment of mollusks, and what is believed to be the original drawing of the first skeletal restoration of the dinosaur Stegosaurus ungulatus. The site also includes concise and fascinating descriptions of illustration care and illustration techniques (which are enriched by some great explanatory images). In addition, the site contains a Bibliography that lists publications relating to Historical Art, Illustration Care, and Illustration Techniques. [NL]

Topic In Depth

Tree Troubles

USDA Forest Service-St. Paul Field Office: How to Publications
Forest & Shade Tree Pathology
Michigan State University Extension: Oak Wilt
California Oak Mortality Task Force
USDA Forest Service: Emerald Ash Borer
USDA Forest Service: Gypsy Moth Digest
USDA Forest Service: Asian Longhorned Beetle

This Topic in Depth explores some of the diseases and other threats that certain trees must contend with to remain healthy and vital. The first website (1), from the USDA Forest Service-St. Paul Field Office, contains a collection of archived publications designed to help people diagnose, control, and identify various threats to different types of trees. Examples of these publications include: How to Control Sapstreak Disease of Sugar Maple; How to Differentiate Dutch Elm Disease From Elm Phloem Necrosis; How to Identify and Manage Needlecast Diseases on Balsam Fir; and How to Manage Eastern White Pine to Minimize Damage from Blister Rust and White Pine Weevil, to name few. The second (2) site, Forest & Shade Tree Pathology, is an online textbook that was developed by Dr. James J. Worrall, a plant pathologist for the USDA Forest Service, and former professor at the College of Environmental Science and Forestry, State University of New York. Dr. Worralls site contains information about rusts, foliage and root diseases, parasitic plants, cankers, abiotic diseases, and wilts as well as disease profiles for Swiss Needle Cast; Oak Wilt, Chestnut Blight, Armillaria Root Disease, and more. The third (3) site, Oak Wilt: A Threat to Red Oaks & White Oaks Species, was created by Dr. David L. Roberts at Michigan State University Extension. Dr. Roberts concise site contains brief sections addressing oak wilt distribution, field diagnosis, management, disease cycle, and more. The fourth (4) site, from the California Oak Mortality Task Force, contains images, publications, maps, and information about Sudden Oak Death-related research, management recommendations, nursery issues, and regulations. The final three websites come from the USDA Forest Service and contain information about different insect threats. The fifth (5) site offers information about the emerald ash borer. The sixth (6) site provides information about the gypsy moth, and the final (7) site contains information about the Asian longhorned beetle. [NL]

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