What role does lecithin play in the production of chocolate? Molecular models come to the aid of chocolatiers

Scientists at the Technical University of Munich have explained for the first time how the ingredients in chocolate interact at the molecular level. (Photo: Joanna Wnuk/ Fotolia)

For many it’s simply irresistible and their favorite candy: chocolate. Its success is presumably due not only to its taste but also to its smooth texture, which is achieved by a process known as conching and the addition of...[more]


Stagnating crop yields pose a threat to soil: Humus depletion induced by climate change?

If the input of organic matter stagnates, soil will lose some of its humus in the long term. (Image: Fotolia)

The yields of many important crops in Europe have been stagnating since the 1990s. As a result, the input of organic matter into the soil – the crucial source for humus formation – is decreasing. Scientists from the Technical...[more]


Genetic mechanism driving obesity identified: Variation in DNA sequence increases fat storage

Fat cells in the human body. (Image: Shutterstock)

A specific gene region has long been suspected of contributing to obesity in humans but the precise mechanisms behind this were previously unclear. Now, researchers at the Technical University of Munich (TUM), Massachusetts...[more]


Plant growth requires teamwork between two hormones

Two growth-promoting groups of substances, or phytohormones, the gibberellins and the brassinosteroids, are used independently of each other for the breeding and production of crop plants. A team of scientists at Technical...[more]


DNA analysis for disease prevention in breeding populations: Scientists identify cause of growth disorder in cattle

Young cattle that barely grow or gain weight despite normal feed intake: while relatively rare, this growth disorder occasionally affects the Fleckvieh breed. Thanks to comprehensive DNA analysis, researchers have succeeded in...[more]


Build or burn? Competition for wood on the rise

Wood pellets: As oil prices rise, more and more wood is used for fuel (Photo: R. Rosin / TUM).

Wood is becoming an increasingly popular raw material – and not just in the construction sector. More and more private households and municipal authorities are also using wood for heating. All of which is driving competition for...[more]

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