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How Climate Change Leads to Violence

18 minutes
First broadcast:
Thursday 01 August 2013

Conflict and Climate Change
Research looking at both historical and contemporary climate change has shown strong links between major climatic events, such as prolonged drought, and violent conflict. The range of events demonstrating this link ranges from interpersonal conflicts, such as domestic violence, rape and robbery through to large scale war and civilisation collapse. Researchers say the reasons behind the link are unclear, but suggest the studies may have warnings for future development of society.

A New Antibiotic Effective Against Bioweapons and Superbugs
A completely new antibacterial agent has been discovered. Found in sea living bacteria the new chemical has been shown by scientists in California to be effective against Anthrax - a bacteria used in bioweapons and also the hospital superbug MRSA, which is resistant to the vast majority of antibiotics in commercial use.

We also look at virus survival - why these organisms are in a constant evolutionary race with the organisms they infect. And, how a 40-year-old theory to explain this takes inspiration from a 19th Century children’s story.

Social RNA is the phrase coined by researchers to describe a new found property of RNA – the protein molecule which acts as the instructions for much cell development. They say RNA also acts as a communication tool, potentially able to operate outside cells and even communicate information between organisms.

(Photo: An orange sky glows above an industrial plant. Credit: Getty Images)


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