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Bats not a threat to public health, but important for ecosystems

Bats have received a lot of negative attention, but the chances are slim that the virus that causes COVID-19 was transmitted from bats to humans. The world needs bats – in ecosystems, for pollination and for seed dispersal. On top of that, they keep harmful insects in check around our homes, on farms and in cities.

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Interrupted breathing during sleep – a widespread disease with no cure

Every fifth Norwegian suffers from the widespread disease obstructive sleep apnea. Several treatment options exist, among them surgery, however results are unpredictable and of variable quality and differ from individual to individual. What determines if the treatment is successful or not? Our scientific research using mathematical airflow models may help the medical doctors to find the answer.

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A tiny arctic shrub reveals secrets of plant growth on Svalbard

It’s not easy being a tiny willow on the wind-and snow-blasted islands of the Norwegian territory of Svalbard. It turns out that Salix polaris, the polar willow, handles these tough conditions by growing as best it can in response to July temperatures — a response that researchers recorded all over the archipelago.

Researchers find commonalities in all crises

In the aftermath of a crisis, it is always easy to see how the crisis could have been better handled, and then we put new measures into place. But do these measures set us up to solve the next crisis – the one we don’t yet know about?

Getting the body to make its own cancer drugs

Imagine that we could instruct our bodies to make the drugs they need themselves. The gene technology that makes this possible is called mRNA therapy, which may become a major tool in the treatment of multiple diseases. Norwegian researchers are currently helping to develop a drug of this kind to treat the most aggressive form of breast cancer.

Ten tips for productive online meetings

We are meeting as never before – online. Particularly in connection with our jobs this may present challenges, but it can also be very productive. Here is some advice from researchers for smart meetings in the virtual environment.

Mystery of the blunt-tipped beetle penis

It took seven years, countless beetle penis field investigations, and hours upon hours on hands and knees in coastal wetlands. This is the story of all the research that has to happen before a new species can finally get its official name.

“Seaweeds may become a profitable piece in the green transition jigsaw”

A unanimous group of research scientists are convinced that kelp may share many of the applications of soya and oil, and that they can also be used to capture CO2. Seaweeds can contribute towards climate-friendly solutions in all sorts of contexts. New know-how about seaweed farming is currently accelerating industrialisation of the sector.

NTNU establishes a factory to produce coronavirus tests

NTNU researchers recently figured out a whole new method for testing people for the coronavirus. The university is now producing tests on a continuous basis, under the auspices of the Norwegian Directorate of Health. Currently 100 000 tests a day are being manufactured, with production soon likely to be scaled up dramatically.

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Mathilde spent four hours in a chamber breathing dust

Road dust can be a big problem in the winter, especially in northern climes where the use of studded tyres is allowed. Researchers are now studying how the type of stone used in asphalt affects the amount and harmfulness of dusty particulate matter that gets kicked up as studded tyres chew into the asphalt.

App for migraines

A daily 10-minute training session using an app could reduce migraine attacks for many sufferers, according to researchers.

Cement factories can put the brakes on global plastic pollution

Researchers believe that plastic refuse can be used as fuel in cement factories in Asia. If this works, it may provide a solution to two of the planet’s biggest environmental problems – plastic in the oceans and high levels of coal consumption.

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Teaching robots to see and feel

Newly developed technology has given robots the ability to learn new skills, enabling them to perform complex tasks and work alongside humans. This innovation can benefit many crucial societal functions, such as food production

Cleaner fish being sacrificed in the fight against salmon lice

Research shows that even fish farmers have doubts as to whether using cleaner fish is an effective delousing method. “Fish farmers tell us that they want a ban on the use of certain species. They’re also very critical of wild-caught cleaner fish being transported,” says researcher Kristine Størkersen. She is one of the scientists who have been helping the Norwegian Food Safety Authority gain an overview of the situation.