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Environmental and Biochemical Sciences

September 9, 2021
An all-female team of scientists from the James Hutton Institute travelled to Shetland to install the most northerly micrometeorological station in the UK to monitor greenhouse gas emissions from eroded peatland. The station, set up on a site...
September 9, 2021
David Beattie, a Knowledge Transfer Partnership (KTP) researcher exploring how seaweed-based feeds can help achieve benefits in Scotland’s premium animal feeds sector, has been shortlisted for a Knowledge Transfer Network “Best of the...
September 9, 2021
The partnership in charge of looking after the river Dee catchment in north east Scotland is a finalist in the Nature of Scotland Awards. Shortlisted for the Climate Action Award, the Hutton-supported Dee Catchment Partnership has been recognised...
May 5, 2021
The critical role soil can play in forensic investigations has again been highlighted by the involvement of the James Hutton Institute's soil forensics team in a high-profile case, this time the inquiry by Police Scotland into the...
February 2, 2021
To mark the International Day of Women and Girls in Science, the James Hutton Institute is highlighting its ‘Women in Science’ booklet, which spotlights the roles of 21 of its 204 female scientists. The collection illustrates some of...
November 11, 2020
New opportunities for PhD projects at the James Hutton Institute are now being advertised on FindAPhD.com. PhD projects are being offered by all five of our science departments covering many aspects of our work. All projects are funded jointly...
September 9, 2020
As part of wide-ranging efforts to provide Scotland’s land managers, agencies and the public with open access resources, the James Hutton Institute has progressively been digitising the published one inch to the mile (1:63,360) and 1:50,000...
July 7, 2020
Professor Lorna Dawson of the James Hutton Institute has been recognised as Soil Forensic Expert Witness of the Year at Global Law Experts (GLE) Awards. Professor Dawson has more than 30 years’ experience in managing and conducting research...
June 6, 2020
Natural extracts from brown seaweeds native to the UK have been shown to have antiviral properties that could help stop the spread of viral diseases. Researchers at the James Hutton Institute and AIM-listed partners Byotrol plc have been awarded...
January 1, 2020
2020 is the International Year of Plant Health and Scotland’s Year of Coasts and Waters, bringing public attention to two huge global challenges and for good reason, say scientists at the James Hutton Institute.
December 12, 2019
Our soils are under threat from ever more intensive agriculture and climate changes. Extreme rainfall events such as Storm Frank in 2016 are predicted to become more common: a recent report from the Met Office suggested that there is a 34% chance...
September 9, 2019
A new Knowledge Transfer Partnership (KTP) involving the James Hutton Institute and Davidsons Animal Feeds is exploring the possibilities of protein-rich UK seaweeds to replace some currently used ingredients in the production of ruminant animal...
September 9, 2019
The James Hutton Institute is reinforcing its extensive analytical capabilities for research and commercial work through a collaboration with global science and healthcare technology company PerkinElmer, to establish a QSight 420 liquid...
May 5, 2019
Professor Lorna Dawson, Head of Soil Forensics at the James Hutton Institute and SEFARI Advisor on the Scottish Government‘s Strategic Research Programme 2016-2021, has been recognised with an Expert Witness Award 2019 by specialist...
March 3, 2019
Researchers at the James Hutton Institute and partner organisations are working to understand the mechanisms behind senescent sweetening, a problem responsible for considerable losses of potato crops during storage, particularly in the processing...
March 3, 2019
Professor Lorna Dawson, head of Forensic Soil Science at the James Hutton Institute and advisor to the SEFARI Strategic Research Programme, has been made a Fellow of the Royal Society of Edinburgh. The Royal Society of Edinburgh (RSE),...
January 1, 2019
Researchers based at the James Hutton Institute in Aberdeen have contributed to a study which has found that pollutants cause ‘worrying’ changes in sheep livers.
December 12, 2018
NASA’s InSight lander has been headline news in recent weeks, as it continues to send back clear images of the rocky and unforgiving surface of Mars. However, the previous exploration robot sent to roam the red planet, the Curiosity rover,...
November 11, 2018
A new report by James Hutton Institute scientists has found that climate change, along with variations in machinery and farming practices, is likely to increase the susceptibility of Scottish soils to erosion or damage by compaction. The...
November 11, 2018
New opportunities for PhD projects at the James Hutton Institute are now being advertised on FindAPhD.com. PhD projects are being offered by all five of our Science Groups covering many aspects of our work. All projects are funded jointly between...
November 11, 2018
A new research study aims to demonstrate how the combination of digital X-ray signatures with data-driven approaches can replace the time-consuming elements of expert led mineral identification and allow for new insights into the role of soil...
September 9, 2018
Scientists from the James Hutton Institute have found that waters in Scottish rivers are reaching record-breaking warm temperatures, which may have implications for rural economies across the country. By comparing historical records kept by the...
August 8, 2018
Researchers from the James Hutton Institute were named winners in a contest which is considered by some as the world championship in mineralogy. The results and the winners of the 2018 Reynolds Cup edition were presented at the Annual Clay...
May 5, 2018
The science of the James Hutton Institute continues to attract the interest of the media. This time, Professor Derek Stewart and Dr Andrew Copus were featured in recent BBC programmes, in which they discussed research on the nutritional qualities...
April 4, 2018
The James Hutton Institute has partnered with Syngenta and the Scottish Environment Protection Agency (SEPA) to develop and test a run-off tool app. The tool will advise land managers on the best management practices to reduce run-off and trap...
February 2, 2018
As the world’s population tries to adapt to climate change, many industries are still heavily reliant on fossil fuel resources to make components in the pharmaceutical, food, cosmetics and other sectors – but the plant kingdom, and...
December 12, 2017
Tis’ the season of potato intake, but did you know the humble tattie is a great source of vitamins C, B6, B9 and a whole host of macro and microminerals? Together, these biocompounds are responsible for maintaining a good health balance and...
November 11, 2017
New opportunities for PhD projects at the James Hutton Institute are now being advertised on FindAPhD.com. PhD projects are being offered by all five of our Science Groups covering many aspects of our work. All projects are funded jointly between...
November 11, 2017
Researchers from the James Hutton Institute and partners have produced an evidence review on river and floodplain management, as part of an Evidence Directory recently launched by the Environment Agency. The Directory aims to provide better...
November 11, 2017
The James Hutton Institute is pleased to announce that Dr Andy Kindness has taken over the leadership of the Environmental and Biochemical Sciences group from 1st November. The Institute’s Environmental and Biochemical Sciences group...
October 10, 2017
Following a recruitment exercise, the James Hutton Institute is pleased to confirm the appointment of Professor Lesley Torrance and Professor Deborah Roberts to the posts of Directors of Science on a permanent basis with immediate effect.
September 9, 2017
The James Hutton Institute is reinforcing its extensive analytical chemistry capabilities for research and commercial work through an £500K investment on a new Thermal Ionisation Mass Spectrometer, which will allow the Institute and its...
September 9, 2017
Soil scientists at the James Hutton Institute are working to create the first unified digital map of soil properties within Great Britain, a development which will contribute to worldwide Global Soil Map projects and improve the data available to...
July 7, 2017
The important role soil can play in forensic investigations has again been highlighted by the involvement of the James Hutton Institute’s soil forensics team in a high-profile case, this time the enquiry by South Yorkshire Police into the...
April 4, 2017
According to recent media reports the European Commission seems poised to ban some of Europe’s most widely used pesticides to protect bees and other pollinators, but is the move likely to have an impact on food production and security?...
March 3, 2017
Scientists from the James Hutton Institute have been involved in a three-year community research project to deliver a new online service to help better manage the quality of water and ecosystems in the UK. The service, recently launched at an...
March 3, 2017
Specimens of Mutilla europaea, a rare species of parasitoid wasp commonly known as ‘velvet ants’ because of their distinctive appearance and similarity of females to ants, have been sighted in Scotland for the first time in 32 years...
March 3, 2017
Professor Lorna Dawson, a forensic soil scientist based at the James Hutton Institute, has joined a team of Police Scotland detectives as they commence a full scientific examination of a site in Coatbridge, North Lanarkshire as part of the...
February 2, 2017
Samples from Scotland’s National Soil Archive hosted at the James Hutton Institute in Aberdeen have been used for the art/science project Geologic Intimacy (Yu no Hana) by artist Ilana Halperin, which highlights the historical connections...
February 2, 2017
Consumption of berries may have beneficial effects on health related to type-2 diabetes, cardiovascular diseases, obesity, neurodegenerative diseases and cancers. The beneficial effects may be due to the presence of protective polyphenol...
February 2, 2017
A research collaboration featuring scientists from the James Hutton Institute, Newcastle University and the University of Aberdeen has uncovered evidence that man-made pollutants have now reached the most remote habitats of our planet.
January 1, 2017
Certain Scottish honeys have shown antimicrobial activities equal to that of commercial ‘super-honeys’ and may be useful in the ongoing fight against antibiotic-resistant bacteria, scientists at the James Hutton Institute and Queen...
September 9, 2016
Changes in temperature can greatly affect the rate at which aquatic organisms such as algae process inorganic carbon present in streams and waterways, an international team of researchers has found. The study, which saw researchers explore...
July 7, 2016
Four new projects addressing challenges in soil and water management across whole rotations have been awarded £1.2m in funding from the Agriculture and Horticulture Development Board (AHDB). The interrelated projects will form a five-year...
April 4, 2016
An upcoming book co-edited by a James Hutton Institute entomologist and environmental researcher will provide an in-depth look into the contribution of wood ants to woodland ecosystem functions and processes.
September 9, 2015
As part of activities planned to mark the International Year of Soils, the James Hutton Institute and the National Library of Scotland have teamed up to offer access to the Institute’s historical one inch to 1 mile (1:63,360) Soil Survey of...
September 9, 2015
In a collaboration with the Scottish Association of Marine Science (SAMS), scientists at the James Hutton Institute are investigating the basis of the peppery flavour of the seaweed pepper dulse (Osmundea pinnatifida). The unique flavour of this...
September 9, 2015
On Monday 7th September, the Food and Drink Federation Awards 2015 will celebrate the best and the most innovative and inspiring food and drink businesses across the UK supply chain, with the James Hutton Institute sponsoring the Environmental...
September 9, 2015
Scientists at the James Hutton Institute are working with Orkney-based winemakers and the Agronomy Institute of the University of the Highlands and Islands in Orkney to identify fruit that can be used to make unique wines in the northern islands...
August 8, 2015
Reflections of James Hutton Institute scientists on the concept of soil, tools for digital soil monitoring and the implications of soil for policymaking, forensic science, engineering, health and nutrition, have been featured in the latest issue...
June 6, 2015
Members of the public are being asked to help researchers pinpoint just how far a species that wound up in the UK unintentionally has travelled across the country. The New Zealand Flatworm arrived on British soil over half a century ago but...
September 9, 2014
A young scientist has got his career off to a flying start by having his work from a summer project published in renowned journal LWT - Food Science and Technology. Connor Powell, from Breadalbane Academy in Perth, was supervised by Dr Gordon...
June 6, 2014
On the whole, Scotland’s environment is of good quality and there have been many significant improvements in recent years. However, the 2014 State of the Environment Report clearly shows that some habitats and species are under threat, and...
May 5, 2014
A young scientist whose research focusses on pathogens in the environment has been awarded the prestigious Peter Massalski Prize for meritorious research. Dr Fiona Brennan, research scientist with the Ecological Sciences group at the James Hutton...
December 12, 2012
James Hutton Institute scientists Professor Derek Stewart and Dr Eleanor Gilroy have joined an expert Plant Science Panel designed to be a one-stop-shop for plant science questions.
June 6, 2011
The foundation of the James Hutton Institute has taken a major step forward with the announcement of the senior science leadership team.

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The James Hutton Research Institute is the result of the merger in April 2011 of MLURI and SCRI. This merger formed a new powerhouse for research into food, land use, and climate change.