Nothing Personal: Ants Execute Their Own To Prevent Damaging Population BoomsAround many ant colonies, laying eggs is a one-woman-show, the duty of the queen ant. It's a facet so ingrained in ants that a number of species have been known to drag females who start laying eggs out of the colony, biting and stinging them to death, a behavior that has been seen in the past as a move to eliminate competition to the queen. According to new research published this week in the journal Current Biology, though, the executions have nothing to do with competition among ants and everything to do with the health of the colony as a whole, suggesting the execution may be analogous to a cellular immune response in other animals.Read on...
Artificial Eggs and Artificial Sperm Produce Real, Adorable Baby MiceThe oft-asked question "How is babby formed?" just got a little more complicated to answer. A team of Japanese researchers have reared baby mice who are the product of joining an artificial sperm cell and an artificial egg. Both of the reproductive cells in question were made by transforming adult cells into induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs), the lab created stem cell strains that have shown both promise and peril in recent studies. Those iPSCs were then turned into sperm and egg cells, respectively, and finally turned into adorable mouse pups.Read on...