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HEALTH
October 11, 2013 | By Karen Ravn
Fall is in the air and so, alas, are zillions of grains of weed pollen, sailing hither and yon, high and low, far and wide. These guarantee an abundance of new little weeds next year - and an abundance of sniffy, sneezy, wheezy people right now, namely those unfortunate souls who have an allergy to pollen. Pollen allergy is often called "hay fever," although it doesn't cause fever and its only connection with hay is that it inflicts its woes at hay-harvesting time. The name "seasonal allergic rhinitis" - where "rhinitis" refers to an inflamed nose - is more accurate if less evocative.
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HEALTH
October 11, 2013 | By Karen Ravn
If your pollen allergies are acting up and getting you down, don't despair. There are steps you can take that can make a real difference. Avoiding pollen altogether is probably impossible (unless you live under a dome, in which case you have plenty of other problems). But there are ways to limit your exposure. Keep your doors and windows closed and run a high-efficiency particulate air (HEPA) filter. Keep your car windows closed and run the air conditioner. Check the pollen count (one good site is http://www.pollen.com/allergy-forecast.asp )
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NATIONAL
March 19, 2012 | By Tina Susman
It took a few years, but the rare titan arum -- a.k.a. corpse plant -- housed at Cornell University opened into full bloom overnight, sending its famously vile odor wafting through a greenhouse and marking one of the few times that people outside Sumatra have witnessed such an event. Thanks to modern technology, people who could not see the plant in person in the Cornell greenhouse, in Ithaca, N.Y., could view the plant's opening on a live webcam . Early Monday, a steady stream of camera-toting visitors slowly circled the giant plant, which resembles an upside-down maroon-colored flared skirt, with a long, green column -- known as the spadix -- protruding from the center toward the sky. Cornell acquired the plant about 10 years ago, and this marks the first time it has bloomed.
HEALTH
October 11, 2013 | By Karen Ravn
Fall is in the air and so, alas, are zillions of grains of weed pollen, sailing hither and yon, high and low, far and wide. These guarantee an abundance of new little weeds next year - and an abundance of sniffy, sneezy, wheezy people right now, namely those unfortunate souls who have an allergy to pollen. Pollen allergy is often called "hay fever," although it doesn't cause fever and its only connection with hay is that it inflicts its woes at hay-harvesting time. The name "seasonal allergic rhinitis" - where "rhinitis" refers to an inflamed nose - is more accurate if less evocative.
SCIENCE
April 17, 2010 | By Amina Khan
Though allergy sufferers in some pockets of the country are having a miserable April, experts dispute the notion that trees across the nation are producing record-high amounts of pollen this year. Pollen counts in some regions are certainly nothing to sneeze at -- in Raleigh, N.C., for instance, the state Division of Air Quality counted 3,524 particles per cubic meter of air on April 7, up to three times the volume that's typically seen in the spring. But it's not that trees are producing record amounts of pollen.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
October 29, 1990 | From Times Wire and Staff Reports
In an effort to keep certain crops pure, UCLA researchers have genetically engineered plants so that they destroy their own pollen--the male sex cells. The advance should enable scientists to tailor a variety of important crops that are easier and cheaper to grow because they cannot pollinate on their own, as well as aid in the development of hybrid crops never before possible, experts said.
HEALTH
October 11, 2013 | By Karen Ravn
If your pollen allergies are acting up and getting you down, don't despair. There are steps you can take that can make a real difference. Avoiding pollen altogether is probably impossible (unless you live under a dome, in which case you have plenty of other problems). But there are ways to limit your exposure. Keep your doors and windows closed and run a high-efficiency particulate air (HEPA) filter. Keep your car windows closed and run the air conditioner. Check the pollen count (one good site is http://www.pollen.com/allergy-forecast.asp )
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
June 22, 1990 | KRISTINA LINDGREN, TIMES STAFF WRITER
A mysterious compound found in tap water and some bottled water blocks the germination of plant pollen, and UC Irvine researchers want to know if the unknown agent could have a harmful effect on other organisms. Prof. Franz Hoffmann said Thursday that the effect was produced by treated and untreated tap water from several Orange County wells and repeated with water samples from West Germany.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
April 11, 1996 | EALENA CALLENDER, TIMES STAFF WRITER
Spring is in the air. And, sadly for the allergic, so is pollen. So, in a spring rite as certain as tax day, allergist Sheldon Spector's Los Angeles office fills with the sounds of patients sneezing and coughing. "We did have enough rain that I think this is going to be a relatively bad year for a lot of allergy sufferers," said Dr. Spector. "I'm seeing a lot of first-timers." Some allergists say this year's pollen invasion is what they've come to expect.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
March 31, 1995 | MARTHA L. WILLMAN, TIMES STAFF WRITER
Just when you thought the aftershocks had subsided, doctors are warning of yet another repercussion of the Northridge earthquake: runny noses, sneezing and coughing. With pollen and mold spore counts running five to eight times higher than normal, the symptoms of hay fever have kept many children and working people at home, school and county health officials reported Thursday.
SCIENCE
October 3, 2013 | By Monte Morin
It's been a point of heated debate among scientists for years: Just when in Earth's history did flowering plants first appear? In a paper published recently in the journal Frontiers in Plant Science , researchers say they have discovered fossilized pollen grains that date back 243 million years -- more than 100 million years earlier than previously thought. If true, that would suggest that flowering plants, or angiosperms, appeared at roughly the same time as dinosaurs, in the Middle Triassic period.
SCIENCE
August 15, 2013 | By Melissa Pandika, This post has been corrected, as indicated below.
Archaeologists have debated for decades over what caused the once-flourishing civilizations along the eastern Mediterranean coast to collapse about 1200 BC. Many scholars have cited warfare, political unrest and natural disaster as factors. But a new study supports the theory that climate change was largely responsible. Analyzing ancient pollen grains from Cyprus, researchers concluded that a massive drought hit the region about 3,200 years ago . Ancient writings have described crop failures, famines and invasions about the same time, suggesting that the drying trend triggered a chain of events that led to widespread societal collapse of these Late Bronze Age civilizations.
NEWS
August 13, 2013 | By Jeff Spurrier
Unlike many plants considered invasive, fennel does everything it can to ingratiate itself into the garden. Its leaves are attractive -- feathery and delicate -- and the umbrella-shaped blooms of bright yellow flowers that come in summer serve as miniature landing pads for pollinators. Every part of fennel, root to leaf to pollen to fruit, is infused with the varying levels of its iconic licorice flavor. Unlike other aromatic crops -- dill, cumin, anise, caraway -- only fennel ( Foeniculum vulgare )
SCIENCE
July 24, 2013 | By Geoffrey Mohan
Pesticides sprayed on crops could be making honey bees susceptible to a fatal parasite and contributing to recent declines in bee populations, according to a study. Researchers found 35 pesticides, some at lethal levels, in the pollen collected from bees servicing major food crops in five states, including California, according to the study published online Wednesday in the journal PLOS One. Levels for two chemicals were above the dose that would kill half a population within two days, according to the report.
SCIENCE
April 29, 2013 | By Geoffrey Mohan, This post has been corrected, as noted below
Honeybees that live off the same sweetener found in soft drinks could be more vulnerable to the microbial enemies and pesticides believed to be linked to catastrophic collapse of honeybee colonies worldwide, a new study suggests. Researchers identified a compound found in the wall of plant pollen that appears to activate the genes that help metabolize toxins, including pesticides, according to the study published Monday in the Proceedings of the National Academies of Science. Although pollen winds up in the honey produced by Apis mellifera , these bees used to pollinate crops spend more time sipping on the same sugar substitute that is ubiquitous in processed foods - high-fructose corn syrup.
SCIENCE
March 19, 2013 | By Monte Morin
Gesundheit! If it seems to you allergy sufferers that you're reaching for Kleenex and hay fever pills earlier and earlier each spring to ward off sneezing fits, you may be right. A panel of climate scientists and plant physiologists said Tuesday that higher temperatures and carbon dioxide levels are linked to longer and more intense pollen production. "What we're seeing with additional warming and earlier springs is that the trees are flowering earlier and producing more pollen," said Lewis Ziska, a research plant physiologist with the U.S. Department of Agriculture.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
February 28, 1997 | KEN WOO, TIMES STAFF WRITER
Sitting in a waiting room full of sniffling and sneezing people, Keith Varga can tell this allergy season is different from most. It's worse. "I've had allergies since I was a child, but they usually don't flare up until mid-March or early April, never this early," said Varga, of Santa Ana. What's producing so many red eyes and itchy noses? A season of sustained rainfall. While the hills may be green and lush, for allergy sufferers, the hills are also alive with pollen and mold spores.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
March 22, 1992 | DAVID HALDANE, TIMES STAFF WRITER
For Susan Evans, the misery started with a stuffed nose, which then developed into a swollen throat and major sinus headache. "I feel terrible," the housewife said recently between sniffs in the waiting room of her doctor's office in Orange. "It's harder to breathe, I don't sleep well and I don't have my usual energy. My whole lifestyle has slowed down." For Burma Doretti, a retired school bus driver from Anaheim, it began about a week ago with her eyes watering.
SCIENCE
March 1, 2013 | By Eryn Brown
Using a variety of techniques, scientists in France have analyzed the "highly fragmented mummified heart" of England's King Richard I, also known as Richard the Lionheart, and discovered that the people who embalmed it, mostly likely cooks, used a combination of earthen and botanical elements -- from mercury to myrtle to frankincense -- to preserve the organ and give it a good smell. Their measurements enhance anthropologists' understanding of medieval burial procedures, the researchers wrote in a report published online Thursday in the journal Scientific Reports . King Richard earned his nickname on the battlefield, as a great warrior in campaigns across Europe and in the Holy Land (famously, he launched the Third Crusade to try to take Jerusalem back from the conqueror Saladin)
SCIENCE
October 24, 2012 | By Rosie Mestel, Los Angeles Times
Though the balance of evidence supports the idea that genetically modified foods are safe to eat and don't harm the environment, a few reports have suggested otherwise. Here are three of them. •French scientists reported in September that rats fed a lifelong diet of Roundup-resistant corn developed more tumors and died earlier than rats fed conventional corn. The widely publicized study, published in the journal Food and Chemical Toxicology, was conducted by Gilles-Eric Seralini, the scientific head of an independent institute opposed to genetically modified foods.
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