Dept. of Biology

Many species might be left vulnerable in the face of climate change, unable to adapt their physiologies to respond to rapid global warming. According to a team of international researchers, species evolve heat tolerance more slowly than cold tolerance, and the level of heat they can adapt to has limits.

Classified as: climate change, heat, cold, tolerance, species, adaptation, jennifer sunday, Sustainability
Published on: 4 Mar 2021

The Faculty of Science is celebrating McGill’s 200th anniversary with a student art exhibition on the theme of “Science!”. McGill students at all levels and all faculties are invited to submit works in any medium, expressing what science means to them.

Faculty of Science bicentennial committee member, Torsten Bernhard, says the aim of the exhibition is to celebrate science in all its forms.

Published on: 12 Jan 2021

Henry Reiswig, the former Biology professor and curator of Invertebrate Zoology at the Redpath Museum, died on July 4, 2020. You can read his obituary here:

His daughter Amy says: "He died in his lab in the garage, with microscope slides on the warmer, doing what he loved: science." 

Classified as: Public Outreach
Published on: 7 Jul 2020

The glyphosate-based herbicide Roundup has been found to trigger the loss of biodiversity among phytoplankton communities in freshwater ponds. In their experiments, scientists found that while some populations developed resistance to the herbicide and were able to survive exposure at high levels, this came at a cost, with a 40 percent loss in biodiversity.


"The ubiquitous presence of glyphosate in the environment has sparked concerns over its potential health and ecotoxicological effects," Andrew Gonzalez, from Canada's McGill University, said. 

Classified as: Andrew Gonzalez, biodiversity, agriculture
Published on: 4 Mar 2020

Using a new microscopic "fishing" technique, scientists from the Montreal Clinical Research Institute (IRCM), Université de Montréal and McGill University have successfully snagged thousands of proteins that play a key role in the formation of the cell skeletons or cytoskeletons. Cell skeletons, whose primary function is to give the cells their shapes, are also involved in things like muscle contraction. They are made up of an interlocking network of protein filaments that connect the cell nucleus to the cell membrane.

Classified as: Research, cell biology, molecular medicine, proteins
Published on: 9 Jan 2020

Crowdmark – an online grading tool developed especially to handle large classes – has been attracting a growing following across North America, with members of McGill’s own Faculty of Science among its most ardent enthusiasts. Kira Smith, reporter-at-large for the OSE, went undercover to find out more.

Published on: 6 Sep 2019

The greater vulnerability of sea creatures may significantly impact human communities that rely on fish and shellfish for food and economic activity, according to the study published in the journal Nature. 

Classified as: sea creatures, global warming, jennifer sunday, rutgers university, climate change
Published on: 24 Apr 2019

McGill University marine ecologist Jennifer Sunday is bringing cutting-edge DNA analysis to the formidable task of tracking ocean species along Canada’s Pacific coast.

Published on: 24 Oct 2018

Are human disturbances to the environment driving evolutionary changes in animals and plants? A new study conducted by McGill researchers finds that, on average, human disturbances don’t appear to accelerate the process of natural selection. While the finding may seem reassuring, this unexpected pattern could reflect the limited number of species for which data were available.

Classified as: evolution, natural selection, Vincent Fugère, Andrew Hendry
Published on: 12 Oct 2018

New work from the Alanna Watt lab identifying pathophysiological cellular changes that may contribute to ataxia of the Charlevoix-Saguenay region, or ARSACS. This work arises from a very fruitful collaboration between labs at McGill including the Brais lab (Neurology and Neurosurgery) and the McKinney lab (Pharmacology and Therapeutics).

Read article

Published on: 26 Sep 2018

New work from the Gregor Fussmann Lab in Proceedings of the Royal Society B: One of the basic tenets of ecological theory is that connectivity among small populations over a larger landscape (metapopulations) promote species persistence. In this experiment we investigate to what degree and under what conditions this theory holds true when parasites are added to the equation, using lab-based populations of guppies and their ectoparasite Gyrodactylus turnbulli.

Published on: 26 Sep 2018

Ecosystems are a complex web of interactions. These ecological networks are being reorganized by extinctions and colonization events caused by human impacts, such as climate change and habitat destruction. In a paper published this week in Nature Ecology & Evolution, researchers from McGill University and University of British Columbia have developed a new theory to understand how complex ecological networks will reorganize in the future.

Classified as: conservation, climate change, landscape, environmental, biodiversity, Andrew Gonzalez, habitat, ecosystem, migration, Nature Ecology and Evolution, species, corridor
Published on: 9 May 2017

McGill Newsroom

The research has implications for understanding human developmental disorders such as autism

Adult songbirds modify their vocalizations when singing to juveniles in the same way that humans alter their speech when talking to babies. The resulting brain activity in young birds could shed light on speech learning and certain developmental disorders in humans, according to a study by McGill University researchers.

Classified as: autism, songbirds, birds, science and technology, developmental disorders, neurobiology, jon sakata
Published on: 31 May 2016

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