|A Novel Method of Weed Control
Farmers can dramatically reduce their dependence on herbicides by
applying a new method to reduce the germination of photosensitive weed
seeds. (Cover article in Biology Digest, January 1996).
|A Burning Issue
Recent research has shown that long wavelength ultraviolet radiation
(UV-A), formerly considered rather benign, can cause skin cancer and
other health problems in humans. (Cover article in Biology Digest,
|Light and Beer
Light chemically excites certain chemicals derived from hops which can destroy
the flavor of beer in the well known sun-struck reaction. (Cover
article in Zymurgy, Autumn 1996).
|Phycomyces - The Fungus that Sees
Physiological processes in the fungus Phycomyces and in the
visual systems of humans allows adaptation to a 10 billion fold or
more change in ambient light intensity.
|The Five Percent Solution to Vision
The Eyeless Shrimp (Rimicaris exoculata) lives near hydrothermal
vents, two miles deep in the Atlantic ocean, and has very rudimentary eyes
which may allow it to actually see these deep sea geysers.
|Turning on a Butterfly
The Japanese yellow swallowtail and many other butterflies have
photoreceptors on their genitalia and light-excitation of these
photoreceptors is necessary for copulation.
|A More Delightful Vision
The mantis shrimp, which lives in tropical coral reefs, has eyes with
more than a dozen different types of photoreceptors, many more
than humans or any other species.
|Vision at the Threshold
A rod cell in the retina of our eyes can sense the absorption of a
single photon and absorption of photons by only about six different
rod cells allows us to perceive a flash of light.