December 1, 2015

How Does a Highly Efficient Swimmer Move? Jellyfish, Lamprey Study Reveals Surprising Forces At Play

Snapshot of a lamprey (black outline) swimming in a water tank at the MBL. Colors indicate low-pressure suction forces (blue) and high-pressure pushing forces (red) generated by the animal as it swims. Black lines and arrows indicate water flow directions around the animal. Credit: John O. Dabiri

Contacts: Tom Abate, Stanford Engineering; 650-736-2245 Diana Kenney, Marine Biological Laboratory; 508-289-7139 STANFORD, Calif. and WOODS HOLE, Mass. − Millions of years ago, even before plate tectonics had nudged the continents into their current locations, jellyfish were already moving through the oceans using the same pulsing motions we observe today. Now through clever […]

How the Lancelet Sees: MBL Study Suggests Visual Systems of Vertebrates and Invertebrates Aren’t So Divergent After All

Symposium to Honor NIH’s Tom Reese: Discoverer, Collaborator, and MBL Neurobiology Course Mentor


By Diana Kenney “What’s that?” a student in the MBL Neurobiology course asked Tom Reese of the National Institutes of Health last week, as they looked at a black-and-white image of brain structure with an electron microscope. “It’s a blood vessel,” Reese said, and then guided him to see the junctions between its specialized endothelial […]

Can’t Believe Their Eyes: Grass Fellow Explores Puzzling Discovery of Light-Sensitive Cells in Zebrafish Tails

MBL Whitman Scientists Identify a Calcium Channel Essential for Deep Sleep

Dr. Llinás in his MBL lab. Photo credit: Tom Kleindinst

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Contact: Diana Kenney, Marine Biological Laboratory; 508-289-7139 Written by Kelsey Calhoun WOODS HOLE, Mass.—Sleep seems simple enough, a state of rest and restoration that almost every vertebrate creature must enter regularly in order to survive. But the brain responds differently to stimuli when asleep than when awake, and it is not […]

MBL Neurobiology Course Faculty And Students Help Identify Gene That Promotes Chronic Itch

Can Photosynthesis be Measured Over Large Areas? MBL, Brown University Scientists Find a Way

Cameras and sensors installed in a tower at Harvard Forest in central Massachusetts continuously collect environmental data, including of photosynthetically active radiation. Credit: Jim Tang

Contact: Diana Kenney, Marine Biological Laboratory; 508-389-7139 WOODS HOLE, Mass., and PROVIDENCE, R.I.—By mounting cameras and spectral sensors over a forest canopy in central Massachusetts, scientists have developed an innovative system to measure plant photosynthesis over large areas, such as acres of crops or trees, using information on solar-induced fluorescence in the leaves. The […]

MBL Announces Recipients of the 2015 Whitman Center Investigators at the MBL Research Awards


WOODS HOLE, MA—The Marine Biological Laboratory (MBL) has announced the recipients of its 2015 Whitman Center Investigators at the MBL Research Awards. Each year, this program supports approximately 20 scientists from U.S. and international institutions who come to the MBL for six or more weeks in the summer to conduct independent research. Funds for the […]

MBL Study Details Impact of Genetic Defect on Nerve Cells in Parkinson’s Disease

Reconstruction of a lamprey reticulospinal synapse overlaid onto an electron micrograph of the same synapse. This image appeared on the cover of the February 1, 2015 issue of Molecular Biology of the Cell. Credit: David J. Busch and Paul A. Oliphint, University of Texas at Austin; Jennifer R. Morgan, MBL.

Contact: Diana Kenney, Marine Biological Laboratory 508-289-7139; Parkinson’s disease is a slow-progressing neurodegenerative disorder that afflicts about 4 to 6 million people worldwide, most of them over the age of 50. Its major symptoms are problems with movement: shakiness, slowness, rigidity, imbalance, and difficulty walking. There is no known cure. The causes of Parkinson’s […]

Fiddler on the Roof? Northern Extension of Fiddler Crabs’ Range May be Sign of Climate Change

An egg-bearing female fiddler crab, Uca pugnax, at Plum Island, Massachusetts. Credit: A. Buselco-McKim.

  WOODS HOLE, Mass.—David Johnson was standing in a salt marsh on the northern Massachusetts coast when he saw a fiddler crab, Uca pugnax, nearly 50 miles north of its supposed natural range. The migration north of this charismatic crab with the big, waving claw may be yet another sign of climate change. Johnson, then […]