Researchers from Universidad Politécnica de Madrid (UPM) and National Institute for Agricultural Research and Experimentation (INIA) have studied the effects of using zinc oxide nanoparticles on agriculture. A research carried out at School of Agricultural, Food and Biosystems Engineering (ETSIAAB) from UPM in collaboration with researchers from Ecotoxicology group of INIA, has studied how zinc oxide nanoparticles affect tomato and bean plants. The effects found depended on the type of crop, exposure time, and especially soil pH. The results, which have been published in Science of the Total Environment journal, suggest that the use of these nanoparticles does not pose a toxicity risk for these crops and this would allow us to use their good fertilizing properties as a source of zinc micronutrient. The deliberate application of nanoparticles in agriculture, although incipient, is promising. Due to their small size, the nanoparticles have different properties from the same material in their regular size. Essentially, they have a high specific area and a high surface energy that produce changes in its physicochemical, optical and electrical properties, as well as a high reactivity.
The emergence of antibiotic-resistant microbial strains risks severely limiting yields in animal production chains in the coming decades, exacerbating the existing poverty in numerous countries. Experts from CIRAD and their partners analysed the policies implemented in Southeast Asia and identified a series of actions required to fight effectively against antimicrobial resistance, in line with the One Health approach. Their conclusions have been published in the prestigious journal BMJ.
Antimicrobial resistance is a threat to health and to the economy
Antibiotics are regularly used in livestock or fish production, to fight disease, boost productivity or prevent contamination of the food chain. This almost blanket use has led to the development, in both humans and animals, of resistant microbial strains against which conventional antibiotics no longer have any effect. In September 2016, the United Nations recognized that the emergence of antimicrobial resistance on a global scale was a threat to health and human development. In particular, recent projections estimated that by 2050 global livestock production would fall by 3% to 8% each year, resulting in substantial economic losses, particularly in the world's poorest countries.
Girls who skipped breakfast as part of a study into energy intake and physical activity were found to consume 350 fewer calories *(kcals) a day. Most adults need around 2,000 kcal a day Researchers looked at the eating and physical activity habits of 40 teenage girls over three days and how the omission of breakfast affected their daily energy intake. They found that the girls ate, on average, an extra 115 calories, when they missed breakfast compared with days when they ate a **standard breakfast provided by the researchers. However, they also calculated that the breakfast provided to the girls contained 468 calories, so the net intake for total calories consumed in one day was -353 calories when they skipped breakfast. Dr Keith Tolfrey, of Loughborough University, who co-authored the paper, Effect of breakfast omission and consumption on energy intake and physical activity in adolescent girls, said that people who eat breakfast are less likely to be overweight or obese, but our research showed that eating breakfast increased total energy intake in girls over the short term.