Medical research

Soil in wounds can help stem deadly bleeding

New UBC research shows for the first time that soil silicates—the most abundant material on the Earth's crust—play a key role in blood clotting.

Medical research

Healthy, stress-busting fat found hidden in dirt

Thirty years after scientists coined the term "hygiene hypothesis" to suggest that increased exposure to microorganisms could benefit health, CU Boulder researchers have identified an anti-inflammatory fat in a soil-dwelling ...

Health

Essentials for growing tasty herbs on your windowsill

(HealthDay)—Whether you have a dedicated space in an outdoor garden or just a few buckets on a small patio, there's nothing quite like having your own herb garden for giving your cooking fresh flavor boosts.

Immunology

Mice with access to soil have greater resistance to allergies

When mice live in cages with an added earthen floor, it increases their resistance towards allergic inflammations. Close contact with micro-organisms in the soil triggers anti-inflammatory genes in the mice and stimulates ...

Health

Moon dust a health hazard?

(HealthDay)—Dust could pose a health hazard if astronauts start spending extended periods of time on the Moon, Mars or other airless planets, researchers say.

Oncology & Cancer

A study links soil metals with cancer mortality

Spanish epidemiologists and geologists have found associations between esophageal cancer and soils where lead is abundant. Lung cancer has been associated with high copper content in soil; brain tumors are linked with areas ...

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Soil

Soil is a natural body consisting of layers (soil horizons) of mineral constituents of variable thicknesses, which differ from the parent materials in their morphological, physical, chemical, and mineralogical characteristics. It is composed of particles of broken rock that have been altered by chemical and environmental processes that include weathering and erosion. Soil differs from its parent rock due to interactions between the lithosphere, hydrosphere, atmosphere, and the biosphere. It is a mixture of mineral and organic constituents that are in solid, gaseous and aqueous states. Soil particles pack loosely, forming a soil structure filled with pore spaces. These pores contain sol solution (liquid) and air (gas). Accordingly, soils are often treated as a three state system. Most soils have a density between 1 and 2 g/cm³. Soil is also known as earth: it is the substance from which our planet takes its name. Little of the soil composition of planet Earth is older than Tertiary and most no older than Pleistocene. In engineering, soil is referred to as regolith, or loose rock material.

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