At the Biological Sciences journal we have the Discussion Meeting Issue ‘Darwin and the evolution of flowers’, while at the Mathematical, Physical and Engineering Sciences is the Theme Issue ‘Multi-scale biothermal and biomechanical behaviours of biological materials’:
The origin of flowering plant (angiosperm) diversity, which is intimately connected to the diversification of floral form and floral biology, is also of great interest because as the dominant autotrophs of terrestrial environments, angiosperms provide the energy on which most of the rest of biological diversity depends. The evolution of flowers and flowering plants is therefore both of fundamental significance and of contemporary relevance.
The aim was to examine Darwin’s key contributions to understanding the biology of flowers in light of current knowledge, but also to feature emerging areas of research and the advances now possible with new ideas and approaches.
Biological systems function cooperatively across different spatial and temporal scales, from nanoscale biomolecules to microscale cells, and to macroscale tissues and organs. To understand the mechanisms of various biological functions, it is important to study biological systems at different scales. This Theme Issue of the Royal Society’s Philosophical Transactions A, entitled ‘Multi-scale biothermal and biomechanical behaviours of biological materials’, aims to provide some insight into the biothermal–mechanical–neural behaviour at different scales. In this issue, biological behaviours at different scales are re-cast in engineering systems parlance. It focuses on the frontiers of this fast-growing field with emphasis on the thermal behaviour, mechanical behaviour, the coupled thermomechanical behaviour and corresponding neural response/signalling of biological materials at subcellular, cellular and tissue levels.