'Tough shrubs' voted coolest Ohio State science story of 2018

Readers gave shrub story a narrow win

The trick to boosting crops in drought-prone, food-insecure areas of West Africa could be a ubiquitous native shrub that persists in the toughest of growing conditions. Growing these shrubs side...

It was a hopeful story about research that could help fight hunger in drought-prone areas of Africa.  And you chose it as the coolest Ohio State science story of 2018.

Richard Dick, a soil scientist at The Ohio State University, worked with an international team of collaborators fo find that growing one type of shrub side-by-side with the food crop millet increased millet production by more than 900 percent. The study was published in the journal Frontiers in Environmental Science and Ohio State News featured it in a Nov. 2 story by Misti Crane.

The shrub story received 420 votes from our readers, edging out a story about 'molecular baskets' that are designed to capture toxic compounds, which received 391 votes.

The other three contenders were stories about research on marital spats, why popcorn tastes better when you eat it with chopsticks, and how blushing shows your emotions. (Links to all the studies are below.)

Thanks to all who voted.  We at Ohio State News look forward to presenting you with stories about new cool research all through 2019!