by Félix Moronta Tropical diseases are just some of the multitude of problems that beset us the people of Latin America and the Caribbean. The hot and humid climate throughout the year is conducive to insects that carry parasites, bacteria or viruses. Diseases such as malaria, Chagas, leishmaniasis, schistosomiasis, onchocerciasis, dengue and many more are endemic to these … Continue reading With close to a quarter million cases, chikungunya disease is surging through the Caribbean. Is South America next?
Puerto Rico A study conducted at the University of Puerto Rico that looks at producing water and energy from urine was chosen by NASA to be tested in their zero gravity flights. Latin America A 15-year-old Argentine was the winner of the Google Science Fair in his country for inventing a system that allows blind … Continue reading Turning urine into water in space, Latin Americans place in the Google Science Fair, and Argentina displays the “world’s largest dinosaur.”
by Juan Fernando Villa Romero Continue reading Brazil’s bioeconomy: from petroleum-based to biology-based products
Central America The chikungunya virus is quickly spreading through Central America and has alerted health authorities in several countries. The disease is transmitted by mosquitoes and can cause profound fatigue, nausea and rashes. It has no cure and can cause death in the elderly. Chile A group of Chilean, Norwegian and Canadian scientists have cracked … Continue reading Chikungunya spreading through Central America, Chileans help decipher the Atlantic salmon genome, and Cretaceous fossils found in Cuba.
Last month we had the opportunity to interview Dr. Manuel Elkin Patarroyo, recognized as the creator of the first synthetic vaccine against malaria. He was interviewed by Roberto Sánchez Torre, Martha Cecilia García and Ana Victoria Rodriguez Jaime. Continue reading An interview with Colombian malaria researcher Manuel E. Patarroyo
Costa Rica Despite being an area that emits less than 0.5% of the world’s greenhouse gases, Central America is one of the planet’s regions most vulnerable to climate change, according to a study involving four Costa Rican universities. Latin America According to the latest issue of the journal Nature, investment in science and scientific studies … Continue reading Central America’s vulnerability to climate change, Nature magazine highlights South American science, and recreating Alzheimer’s in fruit flies.
Mexico Scientists at the University of Sonora are studying desert plants in order to find active ingredients that could be used for cancer treatments. They have found promising alkaloids and fatty acids in the species Argemone gracilenta and the substance is now being assessed against tumor cells. Chile An ultra-precise atomic clock was built for … Continue reading Studying desert plants in Mexico for cancer treatments, an atomic clock on Chile’s ALMA telescope, and an artificial heart in Argentina.
Chile Paleontologists in southern Chile have discovered an ichthyosaur cemetery with at least 46 complete ichthyosaurs. Ichthyosaurs are marine reptiles that disappeared 99 million years ago. One of the fossils contained two embryos. Brazil Studies suggest that the World Cup ‘Brazuca’ ball’s aerodynamics will allow players to pass faster and kick the ball more accurately. … Continue reading An ichthyosaur cementery found in Chile, the aerodynamic ‘Brazuca’ World Cup ball, and Mexico’s huge new aquarium
Argentina Argentine researchers studied the brains of 80 tango dancers and determined that some could predict–or better anticipate–actions. Using sample videos of tango steps executed with different correction levels and correlating these with high density EEG, they determined that the anticipatory activity depends on the degree of experience of the subject. Rosario scientists designed a … Continue reading This is your brain on tango, combating coffee rust in Central America, and developing vaccines in Cuba.
Argentina The fossilized remains of a long-necked sauropod have been found in Patagonia. The paleontologists estimate that the animal inhabited the area 140 million years ago. Seven other dinosaurs have been found in the same area; scientists believe it is a place they chose to die. Mexico In a cenote (water hole) in the Yucatan … Continue reading A long-necked dinosaur found in Patagonia, one of America’s first settlers found in Mexico, and how to protect the World Cup mascot the giant armadillo
How the lack of Internet access creates a new form of discrimination Continue reading Latin America’s digital divide
Colombia Scientists have installed Colombia’s largest computer for genomic studies. Chile An international team of scientists has found communities of cyanobacteria in the Atacama desert. Argentina Argentine scientists have found some antimalarial properties in a plant. Continue reading A Colombian supercomputer to work on biology, new bacteria found in the Atacama and fighting malaria in Argentina
A Chilean city famous for mining in the Atacama Desert is running out of water. Fast. Continue reading Chile’s Thirst for Water
Chile A new species of bivalve was discovered in Quisco, Chile. Austrogena nerudai was named in honor of the Chilean Pablo Neruda since the first specimens were found near the residence once occupied by the poet. Latin America Argentina researchers participated in the development of a report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change and … Continue reading New bivalve named after Pablo Neruda, climate change and agriculture in Latin America and Argentine paleofauna after a great extinction.
From conserving biodiversity in Central American rainforests to exploring the cosmos from Chile, the Latin American continent harbors a wealth of scientific talent. Qué Pasa magazine and LatinAmericanScience.org have compiled a list of 30 scientists under 40 that are doing promising work in areas as diverse as particle physics and neuroscience. By Juan … Continue reading
Costa Rica A study of sloths in Costa Rica has determined that their organs are kept in place with adhesions to support their weight and make breathing easier. Sloths spend 90% of their time upside down. Puerto Rico A new astronomical phenomenon was confirmed by the Arecibo Observatory in Puerto Rico. Distant radio pulses of … Continue reading A sloth’s upside down life in Costa Rica, cosmic bursts seen from Puerto Rico, and thinking about a much warmer Antarctica.
Brazil The combined effects of climate change and fires could accelerate tree mortality in the Amazon, says a field study started in 2004 that evaluated plots burned annually, plots burned every three years and unburned plots. The researchers noted that one of the most important effects was the invasion of grasses in places where there … Continue reading Goat cloned in Brazil, tracking cougars with cellular networks, and Chile is home to the world’s oldest mummies.