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The Artful Amoeba

The Artful Amoeba

A Blog About the Weird Wonderfulness of Life on Earth

Deadly and Delicious Amanitas Can No Longer Decompose

The iconic Amanita muscaria. You may have seen some smurfs living in one of these. Public domain; click image for link. Amanita mushrooms -- like all creatures -- rot, but most of them can't rot other things.The fact that they don't rot other things is not news to biologists, who have long known that many, if not most, fungi have become professional partners with trees, plants, or algae.The fact that they can't rot other things -- as reported in July in PLoS ONE -- is news, and provides a clue to how symbiotic partnerships can withstand the temptations of leaving and the sometimes dissonant interests of their symbiotic partners...

September 21, 2012 — Jennifer Frazer

The Brain-Eating Amoeba in Minnesota -- Live

Last Thursday I received an email from the media coordinator for Scientific American about a brain-eating microbe. It's not every day you get to answer the call of duty on one of those.Minnesota Public Radio had asked to interview me about a microorganism suspected in the death of a young boy in the state this year -- only the second time in the state's history and the second in two years...

August 12, 2012 — Jennifer Frazer

What Does a Marmot Sound Like?

What happens when squirrels invade the tundra? Well, in one case, they got chubby, fluffy, flappy-tailed, and occasionally kinda cranky, sorta like a hydrophobic alpine beaver.

August 7, 2012 — Jennifer Frazer
The Amoeba Collective

The Amoeba Collective

Dear Readers — As you are probably well aware by now, today is the Sci Am Blog network’s One Year Anniversary! So, in honor of that fact, we are asking our readers to come forward and identify themselves...

July 5, 2012 — Jennifer Frazer

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Science or SciFi?

Science or SciFi?

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