BMC Series Highlights Blog – January 2022

Can we remove common over-the-counter drugs from wastewater? How can circadian clocks adapt to different tasks in ants? Can antimalarial medication reduce mortality for Ebola virus patients? Why does good data research management hold the keys for successful research? How does exercise boost our immune system?

BMC ChemistryKinetic control concept for the diffusion processes of paracetamol active molecules across affinity polymer membranes from acidic solutions

Pollution of wastewater with over-the-counter drugs, such as the commonly used analgesic and antipyretic compound Paracetamol, can create serious issues for aquatic environments. Thus, the elimination of these compounds is an important process. The authors of this study tested tow polymer membranes as an extractive membrane to not only remove, but also recover paracetamol from aquatic solution. They conclude that their process is a clean, sustainable and environmentally friendly method to remove the compound from aquatic environments and recover this high-value substance.


BMC Genomics Time-course RNASeq of Camponotus floridanus forager and nurse ant brains indicate links between plasticity in the biological clock and behavioral division of labor

Circadian clocks are important driving rhythms in physiology and behavior. This study investigates how chronotypes, intra-organismal differences in these daily rhythms, are linked to age and cast-associated behavior. Brood-tending nurse ants show a constant activity, whereas forager ants show daily rhythms in activity. These tasks can shift depending on the absence of a brood or other requirements. Investigations into how daily gene expression differences could underlie behavioral plasticity were conducted using time-course behavioral assays and RNA-sequencing of carpenter ants. This study showed that such chronobiological plasticity has evolved to allow for distinct regulatory networks for distinct behavioral roles, while allowing transitions in response to colony demands.


BMC Infectious DiseasesAssociation between oral antimalarial medication administration and mortality among patients with Ebola virus disease: a multisite cohort study

Ebola virus disease can be difficult to differentiate at the onset from other endemic diseases, for instance Malaria can present similar symptoms. Antimalarial drugs are frequently administered at Ebola Treatment Units and there is some evidence that these are beneficial for patients. This retrospective cohort study evaluated the association between antimalarial treatment and reduced mortality in patients where Ebola virus disease has been confirmed during the 2014-16 Malaria epidemic in West Africa. The study could demonstrate that early oral administration of antimalarial treatment could reduce the mortality of Ebola virus patients significantly.


BMC Research Notes Behind every great research project is great data management

Good research requires good research data management. Although often overlooked as a dull necessity, it is a key requirement for efficient research. Several factors should be considered related to ensuring reproducibility; sharing and publishing, organisation, storage of your data as well as possible ethical implications of the data collected. The authors of this short article discuss and highlight key elements of data management and share their top 10 tips for good research data management. This article highlights research data management and raises awareness of the importance of good data practices, aligning with the overall BMC Series values of integrity and openness.


BMC Sports Science, Medicine and RehabilitationThe effect of exercise on cytokines: implications for musculoskeletal health: a narrative review

The physiological benefits of exercise are widely known and have been published in the scientific literature. Furthermore, exercise is widely promoted by medical professionals to aid both physical and emotional well-being. However, the exact mechanisms on how this works are less well understood. This literature review focuses on the positive relationship between exercise and immune activation. Cytokines have been identified to play a crucial role and their activation through exercise could regulate musculoskeletal health.

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