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Natural Sciences

Researchers discover a new group of viral genes that protect some insects against parasites

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Salvador Herrero, a researcher at the Department of Genetics of the University of Valencia (UV), and Laila Gasmi, a doctorate at the institution, in collaboration with research groups from Japan, Canada and South Korea, have discovered a new family of genes present in most insect-infecting DNA viruses, which have integrated multiple times into the genomes of their host and have given them protection against certain groups of parasitoid wasps. The work was published recently in journal Science.

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Study determines the best way to use drip irrigation on persimmon and lemon trees

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Scientists from the Desertification Research Institute (CIDE, CSIC-UV-GVA) and the Segura Centre for Soil Science and Applied Biology (CEBAS, CSIC) verify that using a single dropper-holder line would optimise the use of water in persimmon and lemon trees. The study contributes to establish guidelines to improve the agronomic design of irrigation, facilitate cultivation work and even achieve increases in production.

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Physical pain is a key factor in alcohol consumption relapse after a period of abstinence

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Research by the Department of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Technology and Parasitology of the University of Valencia (UV) has shown in a preclinical experiment with rats that physical pain induces relapsing with alcohol consumption. The study, published in journal PAIN, has also shown changes in an area of the brain related to motivation for drug intake, and in a second experiment they have shown that the kappa-type opioid receptor (a protein) is key to causing these animals to relapse.

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Researchers capture the image of the heart of the closest radio galaxy

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An international astronomy team that the University of Valencia is part of, has just published in Nature Astronomy the image of the heart of the Centaurus A galaxy in the finest detail ever. The work specifies the exact point where the supermassive black hole of this galaxy is located and allows us to observe how a gigantic jet of matter escaping from the black hole at speeds very close to that of light is originated. The image challenges current models of the origin of jets in black holes.

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The geographer shows that, despite raining less, the torrentiality of the Mediterranean watercourses has increased

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Ana Camarasa, Professor of Physical Geography at the University of Valencia, has compared the rainfall registered in the Júcar Hydrographic Confederation between 1989 and 2018. By analysing more than 800 rainfalls and more than 140 floods in four Valencian boulevards (including the ravines of Poyo and Carraixet, at the south and north of València) the expert concludes that in the final part of the studied period there have been more situations with risk, and also the avenues have intensified due to human action by reducing infiltration and increasing surface overflow and erosion.

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Researchers develop a guide to measure the evolution of plants that benefit from others

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Plants that facilitate the survival and reproduction of other species can also make them evolve, something that has been ignored in most studies on the subject. Researchers from the Desertification Research Centre (CIDE, CSIC-UV-GVA), together with scientists from Mexico and Switzerland, have established a guide to study the evolutionary changes of plants that benefit from other plants.

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The effects of stress in mice can help assess whether people are more prone to drug use in adulthood

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The Psychobiology of Drug Addiction Research Unit of the University of Valencia, in collaboration with the Pompeu Fabra University of Barcelona, has analysed the neuroinflammatory and behavioural susceptibility profile of mice exposed to social stress, and how they have reacted to the effects of cocaine. The study presents an innovative classification technique based on whether mice are susceptible or resilient to stress, called SWR. In addition, the results could be evaluated in people in subsequent clinical research. Read More