Scientists Urge Further Study Of Alarming Coral Reef Decline

Scientists are becoming increasingly concerned about the mysterious decline of coral reefs throughout the world and are recommending more extensive research into the potentially serious problem.

The corals are at the center of a complex food web. When they die, thousands of other species are in jeopardy. People in some developing nations are dependant on the coral reef communities for their food or livelihoods. Corals also contain toxins that offer promise for cancer research and chemical compounds that could be used to make new medicines. "But we are just in the infancy of doing those kinds of studies," said Johns Hopkins University biologist Gary K. Ostrander. Ostrander co-authored a scientific paper about the worldwide threat with biologist William J. Meehan, a doctoral student in his laboratory.

The paper, essentially an overview of declining coral reef health, will be published on April 25 in the Journal of Toxicology and Environmental Health.

"We are pointing out that these corals are dying all over the world," Ostrander said. Scientists do not know what is causing the coral reef deterioration, which has accelerated dramatically since the early 1980s. But their deaths may signal serious, as-yet unidentified environmental ills, said Ostrander, who noted in the paper that there have been few studies to detail the phenomenon at the molecular and cellular levels. Also lacking are studies aimed at uncovering possible environmental causes.

"We believe our ability to understand and possibly remedy this complex global problem will be accelerated as toxicologists begin to address these issues," the two biologists concluded in their paper.

Corals, like jellyfish and sea anemones, belong to the phylum Cnidaria. They are tiny animals that use their tentacles to catch food particles floating in the water. Certain types of corals produce calcium carbonate skeletons -- the coral reefs. Once attached to the chalky white skeleto

Contact: Emil Venere
Johns Hopkins University

Page: 1 2 3

Related biology news :

1. Scientists to prototype cyberinfrastructure for research and education access to ocean observatories
2. Scientists sequence genome of kind of organism central to biospheres carbon cycle
3. Scientists find nanowires capable of detecting individual viruses
4. Scientists discover potential new way to control drug-resistant bacteria
5. Scientists explore genome of methane-breathing microbe
6. Scientists decipher genetic code of biothreat pathogen
7. Stuck on you: Scientists lay bare secrets of bacterial attachment proteins
8. Scientists discover proteins involved in spread of HIV-1 infection
9. Scientists fear new Ebola outbreak may explain sudden gorilla disappearance
10. Scientists reinvent DNA as template to produce organic molecules
11. Scientists visualise cellular handmaiden that restores shape to proteins

Post Your Comments:

(Date:11/26/2015)... Research and Markets ( http://www.researchandmarkets.com/research/jwkl9t/capacitive ) has announced the ... and Patent Infringement Risk Analysis" report to their ... Fingerprint sensors using capacitive technology represent a fast ... Idex forecasts an increase of 360% of the number ... the fingerprint sensor market between 2014 and 2017 (source ...
(Date:11/20/2015)... 2015 NXTD ) ("NXT-ID" or ... growing mobile commerce market and creator of the Wocket® ... was recently interviewed on The RedChip Money Report ... weekend on Bloomberg Europe , Bloomberg Asia, Bloomberg ... NXTD ) ("NXT-ID" or the "Company"), a biometric ...
(Date:11/19/2015)... Calif. , Nov. 19, 2015  Based on ... Frost & Sullivan recognizes BIO-key with the 2015 Global ... Each year, Frost & Sullivan presents this award to ... line catering to the needs of the market it ... product line meets and expands on customer base demands, ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:11/27/2015)... 2015 --> ... companion diagnostics is one of the major ... pharmaceutical companies and diagnostic manufacturers working together ... http://www.rnrmarketresearch.com/global-cancer-biomarkers-market-2015-2019-market-report.html . --> http://www.rnrmarketresearch.com/global-cancer-biomarkers-market-2015-2019-market-report.html ... global cancer biomarkers market spread across 89 ...
(Date:11/26/2015)... November 26, 2015 ... Accutest Research Laboratories, a leading ... Organization (CRO), has formed a strategic ... - Temple Health for joint work ... (Photo:  http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20151126/10135429 ) , --> ...
(Date:11/26/2015)... 26, 2015 --> ... in imaging technologies, announced today that it has received a ... the Horizon 2020 European Union Framework Programme for Research and ... trial in breast cancer. , --> ... --> --> The study aims to ...
(Date:11/25/2015)... , November 26, 2015 ... Global Biobanking Market 2016 - 2020 report analyzes ... maintaining integrity and quality in long-term samples, minimizing ... long-term cost-effectiveness. Automation minimizes manual errors such as ... technical efficiency. Further, it plays a vital role ...
Breaking Biology Technology:
Cached News: