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'Shy' male birds flock together – and have fewer friends

Male birds that exhibit 'shy' social behaviour are much more likely to join flocks of birds with a similar personality than their 'bold' male counterparts, a new study has found. But shy birds also have fewer social partners than bold birds.

Hens may select sperm for healthier offspring

Tom Pizzari collaborated with an international team in a study to be published in the Proceedings of the Royal Society of London B, which shows that hens may select sperm after mating in order to maximise the genetic ability of their offspring to recognise and combat pathogens.

Novel tick-derived dendritic cell modulators

Stephen Preston, Jon Austyn, Pat Nuttall and colleagues have found a novel family of proteins produced in the saliva of blood-feeding ticks that control host dendritic cells, key initiators and regulators of the immune response, enabling the ticks to avoid rejection.

Global Burden of Sickle Cell Anaemia in Children under Five, 2010–2050

Fred Piel, Sunetra Gupta, Simon Hay and colleagues have published in PLOS Medicine a study quantifying the increase in the global burden of sickle cell anaemia by 2050 and estimating the impact of various health interventions.

The biogeography of the yeti crabs

A study by Alex Rogers and colleagues on yeti crabs suggests they originated in the North Pacific and provides further evidence of evolution of the vent fauna over the last 50MY, post ocean anoxic events, and of jumps between seep and vent ecosystems of species reliant on chemosymbiosis.