Form follows function

first_imgBy Cat HolmesUniversity of GeorgiaAnyone who’s ever watched an ant farm or beehive knows that some insects are social creatures.In fact, “a lot of insects are social,” said University of Georgia entomologist Michael Strand. “They’ve evolved societies in which different individuals have different functions. They’ve also evolved completely different body shapes and behaviors.”That means that, despite the fact that they begin with essentially the same genetic material, some individuals develop into queens that reproduce while others develop into soldiers or workers that defend and maintain the colony.This ability for something with the same genetic material to look and behave differently is called phenotypic plasticity. Examples of phenotypic plasticity are also known to occur in many other animals, yet scientists do not understand very well how this occurs at a cellular or molecular level.However, recent UGA studies have shed new light on this question by finding that caste formation in a unique type of wasp is strongly influenced by whether individuals possess a specialized type of cells called germ cells. The study, published in the July 6 issue of the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, also reveals a previously unknown role for germ cells in development according to Strand, one of the authors of the study.Doubl[ing] agentsThe wasp used in the study is “a particularly elegant model [for this research] because its eggs develop clonally to produce genetically identical offspring,” Strand said.So, in much the same way human identical twins are formed from one egg, each egg laid by this wasp produces roughly 2,000 identical sibling wasps.Yet despite each wasp in a colony being genetically identical, individuals develop into two distinctly different castes: soldiers and queens.The question addressed in the UGA study was what determines at a cellular and molecular level whether a given offspring develops into a queen or soldier. The answer is germ cells.Germ cellsGerms cells are determined very early in the development of mammals as well as insects.“Germs cells are formed very early in the embryogenesis of wasps, long before any individuals develop into a soldier or queen,” Strand said. In humans as well as insects, the main function of germ cells is to give rise to reproductive cells (sperm and eggs) that will produce offspring in the next generation. Germ cells usually remain dormant in humans and other animals until they reach maturity and are able to reproduce.In the wasps used in this study, however, germ cells were parceled out to some embryos and not others. The embryos that inherited germ cells went on to develop into queens, while embryos without germ cells developed into soldiers.“These results indicate that germ cells are not only important for gamete formation but also influence how individuals look and behave,” Strand said. The next step for the UGA research team will be to uncover how germ cells modulate the activity of other cells and genes that regulate growth, development and behavior.The full text of this study can be found at the PNAS Web site: (Cat Holmes is a news editor with the University of Georgia College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences.)last_img read more

Biker Loving/Loathing

first_imgRiders and drivers seem to have too much of a “them against us” attitude, and that makes it difficult for anyone to like each other. If we aren’t liking and respecting each other, there will be no productive end-result.I was driving my truck downtown today and after pulling through an intersection, I noticed a commuter in my left side view mirror. I thought it was smart of him to position himself into my direct line of view. This is also the proper place to be when following a line of traffic since every one of us has to wait our turn. This is especially important when traffic is moving slowly.Immediately after clearing the intersection, he moved over to the far right of the lane – where a bike lane would be should there actually be one. This too is fine. I don’t think there’s a problem for cyclists to pass traffic when they can get through faster.However, he was trying to pass me as we both approached a stop sign. I had been ahead of him, and I knew that I would be accelerating faster, and we both seemed to be going straight, so I pulled out first to make it 20 yards down to the next stop sign.Here comes the part that irks me…he shouts out, “Hey, share the road, huh?” He then turns left from the right side of the lane, allowing me to share a few thoughts within earshot of my open window.The first thing that came to my mind, was “Are you kidding me?! I RIDE A BIKE TOO!!” I’m watching him this whole time, making sure that he’s got space, staying off of the brakes, and ready for him to do something squirrelly, and then I get to watch him get self-righteous because I didn’t let him pull out in front of me.I’ve probably met the guy before, or drank beer with him at the same Bike Love party. I support SORBA, do trail maintenance, support the school mountain biking club, commute when I can, and teach my children how to ride safely through traffic. I quiz my kids in the car about traffic rules and road safety.“You need to ride your bike as if you are driving a car,” I said to him, which I thought was accurate, forthright and non-emotional. “I ride a bike, too!”I realize this blog is probably a lame excuse for me to rant over something that happened today, so I want to offer all of you a safe space to expel a little road rage. Please comment, and I really hope the guy I met today gets his peace too, because I’m really curious. 1 2last_img read more

…You might be a manager

first_img 60SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr,Anthony Demangone Anthony Demangone is executive vice president and chief operating officer at the National Association of Federal Credit Unions (NAFCU). Demangone oversees day-to-day operations and manages the association’s education, membership, … Web: Details Growing up in rural Pennsylvania, I always enjoyed Jeff Foxworthy’s comedy routines. Especially the “you might be a redneck” bits. Sure, they sometimes hit a bit close to home, but I always thought it was healthy to laugh at yourself every so often.I’m a firm believer that every segment of society should be able to poke fun at itself. I was trained as a lawyer. There’s a ton of low hanging fruit there if you ever need a laugh. Believe me. But this blog is about management. So with a hat tip to Mr. Foxworthy, here goes.If someone asks you how your train ride was, and you respond, “Fantastic! I knocked out about 200 emails,”….you might be a manager.If you have four business books sitting on your nightstand…you might be a manager.If the fact that you haven’t picked up a one of those four business books in a week bothers you…you might be a manager.If you have more “productivity” apps on your phone than games…you might be a manager.If someone asks you who your favorite author is, and Jim Collins comes to mind…You might be a manager. If you compare notes with friends to see how they handle their email in-box…you might be a manager.If you consider bragging about a spreadsheet you developed…you might be a manager.If you have a folder filled with articles on how to improve meetings…you might be a manager. If you ever created a checklist to improve your checklists…you might be a manager.If you ever made a New Year’s resolution to read more business books…you might be a manager.If you’ve ever done research on how to improve your checklists…you might be a manager.If a slow spell at work makes you nervous…you might be a manager.If you rate airports by the number of free outlets they make available…you might be a manager.If you find it hard not to rate people solely by how well they do their job…you might be a manager. If a blog post by John Spence or Dan Rockwell nearly brings you to tears…you might be a manager.If you watched a TED video and thought to yourself…man, this could change my life…you might be a manager.And if the length of this blog post is starting to bother you because of all that’s on your plate…you might be a manager.Feel free to add to the list, folks. Have a great weekend!last_img read more

Charles William Hazelwood

first_imgCharles William Hazelwood, 79, of Batesville passed away in his home on Sunday, December 2, 2018. The son of William and Goldie (nee: Gadd) Hazelwood was born on February 2, 1939 in Big Hill, KY. He moved to Batesville, IN when he was 12 year old.He is survived by his wife, Jo Anne (nee: Bohman-Meyer) Hazelwood; children, Charles Jr. (Katie) Hazelwood, Charlotte (Jacques) Lussier, Margie (Rod) Richardson, Keith (Ann) Hazelwood, Christine Hazelwood (Dennis Murphy Jr.); step-children, the late Theresa (Ken) Gole, Pamela (Phil) Ryan, Thomas Meyer, Sandra (James) Dickey, Lori (Mike) Siefert, Scott (Bev) Meyer and Kristina (Mark) Litzinger; 11 grandchildren and 2 great granchildren (with 2 on the way); plus 19 step grandchildren, 5 great step grandchildren (with 1 on the way); in addition to his brother Carl (Bertha) Hazelwood, sister Janet (Winston) Holt and half-sister Willa.Charles retired after driving for Batesville Casket Company for 37 years. He was a member of the Batesville FOE Aerie #1130 and a longtime member of Tri-County Coon Hunters Assoc. Charles was an outdoorsman, who enjoyed spending time fishing and camping. The avid shooter, held various state awards in IN, MO, KY and OH for his competitive shooting. Charles could be found many mornings at the Hobo Hut “Table of Knowledge” chatting with friends and neighbors. Most of all he loved being around his family, who will dearly miss him along with his trusty dog, Rudy.Memorial service will be set at a later date. Meyers Funeral Home is assisting the family. Online condolences read more

Syracuse football primer: What to know for Clemson week

first_imgSyracuse (3-6, 1-4 Atlantic Coast) is coming off a 41-17 loss at Louisville on Saturday and is riding a six-game losing streak, its longest since 2005. The Orange has allowed more than 40 points in four of its last five games and will host No. 1 Clemson (9-0, 6-0) in the Carrier Dome on Saturday at 3:30 p.m. in a game that will be broadcast on ABC or ESPN2.For more SU football coverage throughout the week, click here, and/or follow @DOSports on Twitter.The Challenge AheadSyracuse is 0-9 against ranked teams in Scott Shafer’s nearly three seasons as head coach. Clemson, meanwhile, is the nation’s top team and most recently defeated Florida State 23-13, a team that beat the Orange the prior week 45-21. In two seasons in the ACC, SU has lost twice to the Tigers by a combined score of 65-20.Clemson quarterback Deshaun Watson leads the conference in total offense with 2,322 yards. Running back Wayne Gallman is fifth in the ACC in all-purpose yards with 115.1 yards per game while wide receiver Artavis Scott is eighth with 102.9. The Tigers also have the fifth best defense in the country allowing just 287.3 yards per game.AdvertisementThis is placeholder textStandstillSyracuse’s two-deep depth chart had no changes for the second consecutive week. After being a starter for the first seven games of the season, senior cornerback Julian Whigham remains listed as a backup. He did not play against Louisville on Saturday and was not listed on the team’s injury report.Injury reportFreshman quarterback Eric Dungey suffered a head injury with 4:21 left in the fourth quarter against Louisville and left the game. It’s unknown whether or not he’ll play against Clemson and Shafer said on Monday, “We’ll take it one day at a time,” in his weekly video.Four players — cornerback Corey Winfield (lower body), linebacker Parris Bennett (upper body), defensive end Luke Arciniega (upper body) and wide receiver Sean Avant (lower body) — missed the Louisville game due to injury. Their statuses going forward is unknown Comments Published on November 9, 2015 at 5:51 pm Contact Paul: | @pschweds Facebook Twitter Google+center_img Related Stories Syracuse to play No. 3 Clemson at 3:30 p.m. on SaturdayBlum: Eric Dungey should have been taken out before 4th-quarter injurylast_img read more