Score
Title
75
AskScience Panel of Scientists XVIII
252
AskScience AMA Series: "I am Rhett Allain, physicist and technical consultant on Mythbusters and MacGyver. Ask me about the physics of pretty much anything!
3548
Does a Mayfly, which only lives a day, evolve fast than a human?
4799
Is body chemistry affected by sound, in the same way that melatonin production is affected by light?
96
What is the reason for Ethiopia demographic boom in recent years?
40
How do earthquakes happen that are far from tectonic plates fault lines?
146
How does a flu vaccine lessen symptoms when you catch a flu variant that isn’t one of the variants in that seasons vaccination?
17
Are there any successful attempts to create a substance that is made up entirely with antimatter particles?
2
Have we ever seen a stellar ignition?
3
Why are green aurora borealis more common than the red/ purple ones?
74
How do astronomers know the "red shift" is coming from the Doppler effect and not from static stars producing light at a red wavelength?
3
How do they catch interplanetary dust particles?
4097
Is there any organism that has more than one brain?
76
Do NSAIDs, such as ibuprofen, reduce specific areas of inflammation or do they reduce inflammation overall?
3
What are all the swirly patterns on Jupiter?
1
How do bonding and anti bonding orbitals form?
1
Does sunlight lose any energy or specific rays (UV-A, UV-B, etc.) when it's reflected by a mirror?
6
Why do some plants need full strong direct sunlight but others need partial shade and indirect sunlight? What is the physiological/chemical reason behind this?
3421
How much radiation does a luggage scanner deliver vs say medical x-ray?
0
Do other moons in our solar system have a 'near side' and 'far side' relative to the body they orbit?
35
Would Koko, the sign-language speaking gorilla, have been able to translate what a different, non-signing gorilla was saying?
14
[chemistry][nuclear physics] if the island of stability does exist, do we have any way of estimating what the behavior/properties of those elements will be like?
48
How do we know the temperature of the centre of the sun?
15
Most antibacterial sprays kill 99.9% of germs. What's the 0.1% of bacteria consist of?
31
How do they reproduce seedless fruits/vegetables ?
3
When sound waves interfere in air, they create beat frequencies. Does this also happen when electromagnetic waves interfere in space?
12
Is it possible for an object to be travelling so fast it would bounce off the atmosphere?
16
Is Crystallized Bismuth the Only Instance of Naturally Occurring Right Angles?
3
Will more electric cars on the road have any positive effect on the environment if electricity to power these cars is still generated by fossil fuels?
4
How do we know what the internal structure of planets and moons is?
620
Can someone explain the environmental impact of electric car batteries?
11
How is the CMB used to calculate the Hubble constant?
5
If we reversed all charges would the world be the same?
9
Would it be possible for a planet's day to be longer than its year?
28175
Do heavily forested regions of the world like the eastern United States experience a noticeable difference in oxygen levels/air quality during the winter months when the trees lose all of their leaves?
3
When a banana ripens, does it gain calories?
3
Are people who are addicted to prescription pain meds addicted to the chemical, or the effect? Could an addict use one to substitute the other, or would their body go into withdrawal?
2
How does the sky look like on Mars? How bright is the Sun comparing it to the view from Earth?
9
How would quantum computing break modern cryptography?
0
How do compilers adapt to different hardware?
18
Does breast size affect risk of breast cancer?
5
Do snakes have saliva glands?
39 tea_and_biology **1)** [*Rhizopus stolonifer*](https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Black_bread_mold), also known as the black bread mould, is one species amongst a small group of mould fungi that can parasitise both plants and animals. You've almost certainly seen it growing on old bits of bread and other foodstuffs you've forgotten about at the back of the refrigerator n' cupboard. Alongside growing on decaying food, it can also infect the tissues of living plants, and occasionally animals such as ourselves, causing [zygomycosis](https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Zygomycosis). This can be fatal. **2)** Cancer is also a disease universal to all multicellular life, though cancer in plants acts in a *totally different* way to that in animals and it doesn't *particularly* harm them. For background; cancer is basically a population of cells that's mutated in such a way that they've overcome the natural control on cell division and multiply uncontrollably. In animals, they divide, within fairly malleable tissue compared to plants, to such an extent the tumour eventually breaks through into the vascular system, at which point the cancer cells hitch a lift around the body in your blood, forming daughter tumours pretty much everywhere (known as metastasis) and, well, things aren't so peachy. Plants lack an equivalent vascular system - the xylem and phloem they use to transport water and nutrients through their stems cannot pass large cells (plus, plant cells are rigid in structure, so couldn't get into them anyway). So cancer cells in plants - which crop up at a lower rate anyway compared to animals due to their low metabolic rates amongst other things - are stuck where they began, and only grow locally. It's actually exceedingly common. If you look at any old tree, you'll notice a whole loada' lumpy galls n' burls - [these are tumours](https://uconnladybug.files.wordpress.com/2011/04/dsc02076.jpg). Indeed, some animals even take advantage of how tumours develop in plants to induce them on purpose for various reasons, such as gall wasps who induce 'em to provide shelter for their growing larvae. So yup, cancer in plants, particularly long-lived trees, is common but by no means much of a burden on their system and so they can proverbially shrug it off to a large extent. Erm, but anyway, aside from cancer and the odd opportunistic fungus, I can't think of anything else! ______________________ ^**Sources:** [^(Sablowski, R. & Doonan, J.H. (2010)^) ^(Walls around tumours — why plants do not develop cancer. *Nature Reviews Cancer*. 10, 794–802)](https://www.nature.com/articles/nrc2942) [^(Gaspar, T. (1998)^) ^(Plants can get cancer. *Plant Physiology and Biochemistry*. 36 (3)^) ^203-204](http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0981942897868763)
8 Alwayssunnyinarizona One controversial idea in my field: whether prions (infectious proteins) are taken up by plants, where they may be harbored and concentrated before later being consumed by the mammalian host, transmitting the agent. The plants aren't specifically *affected* though they could still be considered *infected* with the prion.
6 cake4lies [There are quite a few pathogens](http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/j.1574-6976.2007.00065.x/full), scroll to Table 1. The short answer is yes, but a typical plant pathogen infecting humans is not that common, because pathogens usually establish a niche in a host where they like to live. Unless there is a good reason, like loss of its habitat/environment, pressure from a toxin/chemical, opportunity in a human host, plant pathogens usually like to stay with their niche host. edit: grammar and typos
2 austinCR *Burkholderia pseudomallei*, *Pseudomonas aeruginosa* several other of the Burkholderiales and Pseudomonads and a lot of other opportunistic pathogens that make their home in environmental niches that mimic a niche in a mammalian or animal host. Interestingly, there is a theory that these pathogens are pathogenic to humans and other higher order organisms because some of their natural predators are ameobae which share some innate immune mechanisms with higher order organisms - i.e. they "train" in free living amoebae and can then infect animals.
40 0 tea_and_biology **1)** [*Rhizopus stolonifer*](https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Black_bread_mold), also known as the black bread mould, is one species amongst a small group of mould fungi that can parasitise both plants and animals. You've almost certainly seen it growing on old bits of bread and other foodstuffs you've forgotten about at the back of the refrigerator n' cupboard. Alongside growing on decaying food, it can also infect the tissues of living plants, and occasionally animals such as ourselves, causing [zygomycosis](https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Zygomycosis). This can be fatal. **2)** Cancer is also a disease universal to all multicellular life, though cancer in plants acts in a *totally different* way to that in animals and it doesn't *particularly* harm them. For background; cancer is basically a population of cells that's mutated in such a way that they've overcome the natural control on cell division and multiply uncontrollably. In animals, they divide, within fairly malleable tissue compared to plants, to such an extent the tumour eventually breaks through into the vascular system, at which point the cancer cells hitch a lift around the body in your blood, forming daughter tumours pretty much everywhere (known as metastasis) and, well, things aren't so peachy. Plants lack an equivalent vascular system - the xylem and phloem they use to transport water and nutrients through their stems cannot pass large cells (plus, plant cells are rigid in structure, so couldn't get into them anyway). So cancer cells in plants - which crop up at a lower rate anyway compared to animals due to their low metabolic rates amongst other things - are stuck where they began, and only grow locally. It's actually exceedingly common. If you look at any old tree, you'll notice a whole loada' lumpy galls n' burls - [these are tumours](https://uconnladybug.files.wordpress.com/2011/04/dsc02076.jpg). Indeed, some animals even take advantage of how tumours develop in plants to induce them on purpose for various reasons, such as gall wasps who induce 'em to provide shelter for their growing larvae. So yup, cancer in plants, particularly long-lived trees, is common but by no means much of a burden on their system and so they can proverbially shrug it off to a large extent. Erm, but anyway, aside from cancer and the odd opportunistic fungus, I can't think of anything else! ______________________ ^**Sources:** [^(Sablowski, R. & Doonan, J.H. (2010)^) ^(Walls around tumours — why plants do not develop cancer. *Nature Reviews Cancer*. 10, 794–802)](https://www.nature.com/articles/nrc2942) [^(Gaspar, T. (1998)^) ^(Plants can get cancer. *Plant Physiology and Biochemistry*. 36 (3)^) ^203-204](http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0981942897868763)
8 0 Alwayssunnyinarizona One controversial idea in my field: whether prions (infectious proteins) are taken up by plants, where they may be harbored and concentrated before later being consumed by the mammalian host, transmitting the agent. The plants aren't specifically *affected* though they could still be considered *infected* with the prion.
6 0 cake4lies [There are quite a few pathogens](http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/j.1574-6976.2007.00065.x/full), scroll to Table 1. The short answer is yes, but a typical plant pathogen infecting humans is not that common, because pathogens usually establish a niche in a host where they like to live. Unless there is a good reason, like loss of its habitat/environment, pressure from a toxin/chemical, opportunity in a human host, plant pathogens usually like to stay with their niche host. edit: grammar and typos
2 0 austinCR *Burkholderia pseudomallei*, *Pseudomonas aeruginosa* several other of the Burkholderiales and Pseudomonads and a lot of other opportunistic pathogens that make their home in environmental niches that mimic a niche in a mammalian or animal host. Interestingly, there is a theory that these pathogens are pathogenic to humans and other higher order organisms because some of their natural predators are ameobae which share some innate immune mechanisms with higher order organisms - i.e. they "train" in free living amoebae and can then infect animals.