FAO – News Article: Pollinators vital to our food supply under threat

A growing number of pollinator species worldwide are being driven toward extinction by diverse pressures, many of them human-made, threatening millions of livelihoods and hundreds of billions of dollars worth of food supplies, according to the first global assessment of pollinators. However, the assessment, a two-year study conducted and released today by the Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES), also highlights a number of ways to effectively safeguard pollinator populations. The assessment, titled Thematic Assessment of Pollinators, Pollination and Food Production and the first ever issued by IPBES, is a groundbreaking effort to better understand and manage a critical element of the global ecosystem.  It is also the first assessment of its kind that is based on the available knowledge from science and indigenous and local knowledge systems.

Source: FAO – News Article: Pollinators vital to our food supply under threat

Northern Italy’s trees overrun by toxic caterpillar cobwebs – The Local

“Here the plague has reached biblical proportions and has been getting steadily worse for two years,” a resident in the small town of Conclonaz told La Stampa. “We are all full of painful rashes and it hurts to swallow because we’re constantly breathing in the hairs.”

Source: Northern Italy’s trees overrun by toxic caterpillar cobwebs – The Local

Did You Know that Uterus Transplants are for Realz? – The Ladies FingerThe Ladies Finger

in Sweden 9 transplants have already been undertaken successfully. According to the New York Times, the lead surgeon in the American team, Dr. Andreas G. Tzakis travelled to Sweden to learn more about the procedure. In Sweden, 4 of the 9 recipients have since given birth to healthy babies since. Uterus transplants are possible options for women born without uteruses or with uterine damage and who would like to experience childbirth. It could potentially be an option for transwomen. In fact,  one of the world’s first attempts at uterus transplants happened in 1931 with a Danish transwoman, Lili Elbe. That particular surgery ended tragically when Elbe died of organ rejection. Organ rejection remains a major danger even today which leads to a rather mind-boggling aspect of the current technology. These current transplants are meant to be temporary. Again according to the New York Times, “any children will be born by cesarean section and the mother will have the transplanted uterus removed after having one or two babies.” Other medical factoids which might interest you. One, the age of the donor doesn’t matter. Two, in the recent Swedish transplants the uteruses came from live donors (usually relatives) through a surgery that takes as many as 11 hours. Three, pregnancy will take place through IVF in advance of the transplant.

Source: Did You Know that Uterus Transplants are for Realz? – The Ladies FingerThe Ladies Finger