last updated: Thu, 09 May 2013 00:33:55 GMT
An international team of physicists has found the first direct evidence of pear shaped nuclei in exotic atoms.
During the late Pleistocene, a diverse assemblage of large-bodied mammals inhabited the "mammoth steppe" of northern Eurasia and Beringia. Of the large predators -- wolves, bears, and big cats -- only the wolves and bears were able to maintain their ranges well after the end of the last ice age. A new study suggests that dietary flexibility may have been an important factor giving wolves and bears an edge over saber-toothed cats and cave lions.
In many neurodegenerative diseases the neurons of the brain are over-stimulated and this leads to their destruction. After many failed attempts and much scepticism this process was finally shown last year to be a possible basis for treatment in some patients with stroke. But very few targets for drugs to block this process are known.
Steelmaking, a major emitter of climate-altering gases, could be transformed by a new process.
Studies of human mobility usually focus on either the small scale -- determining the origins, destinations and travel modes of individuals' daily commutes -- or the very large scale, such as using air-travel patterns to track the spread of epidemics over time. The large-scale studies, most of which are made possible by the vast data generated and collected by new technologies like sensors and cellphones, are very good at describing the big picture, but don't provide much detail at the individual level. Smaller-scale studies have the opposite characteristic: Their findings generally can't be scaled up from the individual to be applied broadly to populations. But a new study bridges that gap.
Chemical engineers may be able to improve humidity and pressure sensors, particularly those used in outer space.
A carnivorous, cannibalistic tadpole may play a role in understanding the evolution and development of digestive organs, according to new research.
Using MRI, neuroscientists have found significant differences in brain anatomy when comparing men and women with dyslexia to their non-dyslexic control groups. Their study is the first to directly compare brain anatomy of females with and without dyslexia.
Children with autism see simple movement twice as quickly as other children their age, and this hypersensitivity to motion may provide clues to a fundamental cause of the developmental disorder, according to a new study.
A common nutritional supplement may be part of the magic in improving the survival rates of babies born with heart defects, researchers report.
Children on dialysis for severe kidney disease have a dramatically reduced risk of death compared to 20 years ago, a new study shows. The findings are very encouraging for children with end-stage kidney disease. These children face a significantly shortened life expectancy, with dialysis as the only life-saving therapy while they await transplant.
Like pioneers in search of a better life, bacteria on a surface wander around and often organize into highly resilient communities, known as biofilms. It turns out that a lucky few bacteria become the elite cells that start the colonies, and they organize in a rich-get-richer pattern similar to the distribution of wealth in the US economy, according to a new study.
Researchers have shown that although insects are made from one of the toughest natural materials, their legs and wings can wear out over time.
Transplant surgeons have performed a liver transplant on a patient with hilar cholangiocarcinoma -- a rare, often-lethal bile duct cancer. This marks the first time a patient with this type of cancer has been treated with this protocol in the state of Maryland.
Scientists have identified a class of immune cells that reside long-term in the genital skin and mucosa and are believed to be responsible for suppressing recurring outbreaks of genital herpes. These immune cells also play a role in suppressing symptoms of genital herpes, which is why most sufferers of the disease are asymptomatic when viral reactivations occur. The discovery of this subtype of immune cells, called CD8αα+ T cells, opens a new avenue of research to develop a vaccine to prevent and treat herpes simplex virus type 2, or HSV-2. Identifying these T cells’ specific molecular targets, called epitopes, is the next step in developing a vaccine.
In a dark, starless patch of intergalactic space, astronomers have discovered a never-before-seen cluster of hydrogen clouds strewn between two nearby galaxies, Andromeda (M31) and Triangulum (M33). The researchers speculate that these rarefied blobs of gas -- each about as massive as a dwarf galaxy -- condensed out of a vast and as-yet undetected reservoir of hot, ionized gas, which could have accompanied an otherwise invisible band of dark matter.
Math and reading ability at age 7 may be linked with socioeconomic status several decades later, according to new research. The childhood abilities predict socioeconomic status in adulthood over and above associations with intelligence, education, and socioeconomic status in childhood.
In fossil remnants of bacteria, researchers have found a radioactive iron isotope that they trace back to a supernova in our cosmic neighborhood. This is the first proven biological signature of a starburst. An age determination showed that the supernova must have occurred about 2.2 million years ago, roughly around the time when the modern human developed.
Consumption of whole walnuts or their extracted oil can reduce cardiovascular risk through a mechanism other than simply lowering cholesterol, according to researchers.
How does San Francisco Giants slugger Pablo Sandoval swat a 95 mph fastball, or tennis icon Venus Williams see the oncoming ball, let alone return her sister Serena's 120 mph serves? For the first time, vision scientists have pinpointed how the brain tracks fast-moving objects.
Researchers have discovered a technique for controlling the sensitivity of graphene chemical sensors.
A quantum computer system is “thousands of times faster” than conventional computing in solving an important problem type, a computer science professor finds.
Tomatoes and soy foods may be more effective in preventing prostate cancer when they are eaten together than when either is eaten alone, said a new study.
An estimated 4,837,000 asthmatics with allergic bronchopulmonary aspergillosis (ABPA) could benefit substantially from antifungal treatment, say researchers.
Using "marathon" and "couch potato" mouse models, researchers have discovered that microRNAs link the defining characteristics of fit muscles: The abilities to burn fuel and switch between muscle fiber types. They also found that active people have higher levels of one microRNA than sedentary people.
New research demonstrates how a biosensor can detect antibiotic resistance in bacteria. This new technology is a preliminary step in identifying and fighting superbugs, a major public health concern that has led to more deaths than AIDS in the United States in recent years.
Although nanosilver has effective antimicrobial properties against certain pathogens, it can cause other potentially harmful organisms to rapidly adapt and flourish, a new study reveals.
A new mathematical modeling technique reveals HIV virus may be replicating in body even when undetectable in the blood.
Using a DNA sequencing technique capable of deciphering all human genes at the same time, researchers have discovered genetic mutations underlying seizure disorders in previously undiagnosed children.
A gene associated with both protection against bacterial infection and excessive blood clotting could offer new insights into treatment strategies for deep-vein thrombosis -- the formation of a harmful clot in a deep vein. The gene produces an enzyme that, if inhibited via a specific drug therapy, could offer hope to patients prone to deep-vein clots, such as those that sometimes form in the legs during lengthy airplane flights or during recuperation after major surgery.
Scientists have discovered that fat cells in the knee secrete a protein linked to arthritis, a finding that paves the way for new gene therapies that could offer relief and mobility to millions of people worldwide.
Physicists have demonstrated one of the quintessential effects of quantum optics -- known as the Hong-Ou-Mandel effect -- with microwaves, whose frequency is 100,000 times lower than that of visible light. The experiment takes quantum optics into a new frequency regime and could eventually lead to new technological applications.
By means of special metamaterials, light and sound can be passed around objects. Researchers have now succeeded in demonstrating that the same materials can also be used to specifically influence the propagation of heat. A structured plate of copper and silicon conducts heat around a central area without the edge being affected.
Physicists are providing an all-in-one guide to help calculate the effect the use of optical tweezers has on the energy levels of atoms under study. A small piece of paper sticks to an electrically charged plastic ruler. The principle of this simple classroom physics experiment is applied at the microscopic scale by so-called optical tweezers to get the likes of polystyrene micro-beads and even living cells to "stick" to a laser beam, or to trap atoms at ultra-low temperatures.
Scientists have devised a method to reduce the time used to simulate how proteins take on their signature three-dimensional shape. Such important information to comprehend their function is usually obtained using often very costly experimental techniques.
New research reveals why some children are badly affected by negative family conflicts while other children survive without significant problems. Researchers found that the way in which children understood the conflicts between their parents had different effects on their emotional and behavioral problems. Where children blamed themselves for the conflicts between their parents, they were more likely to have behavioral problems, such as anti-social behavior. But if their parents' fighting or arguing led to a child feeling threatened, or fearful that the family would split up, the child was more likely to experience emotional problems, such as depression.
Researchers have discovered that the greater wax moth is capable of sensing sound frequencies of up to 300 kHz -- the highest recorded frequency sensitivity of any animal in the natural world.
Engineers have created a system of sensors that detects fruit odors more effectively than the human sense of smell. For now, the device can distinguish between the odors compounds emitted by pears and apples. Scientists have created an electronic nose with 32 sensors that can identify the odors given off by chopped pears and apples.
Faced with a choice between higher insurance prices or exercising, people who were obese enrolled in and stuck with Internet-tracked walking program for a year.
The Herschel space observatory has made detailed observations of surprisingly hot gas that may be orbiting or falling towards the supermassive black hole lurking at the center of our Milky Way galaxy.
Researchers have quantified the significant value that concentrating solar power plants can add to an electric grid.
Enzymes could break down cell walls faster -- leading to less expensive biofuels for transportation -- if two enzyme systems are brought together in an industrial setting, new research suggests.
America's urban forests store an estimated 708 million tons of carbon, an environmental service with an estimated value of $50 billion, according to a recent study.
The first successful cornea transplant with donor endothelial tissue preloaded by an eye bank has been performed.
Women with unintended pregnancy are four times more likely to suffer from postpartum depression at twelve months postpartum, suggests a new study.
Exposing skin to sunlight may help to reduce blood pressure, cut the risk of heart attack and stroke -- and even prolong life, a study suggests.
New research from the laboratory shows that rats create high-speed "snapshots" of the environment by synchronized use of the senses of smell (sniffing) and touch (through their whiskers). Furthermore sniffing and "whisking" movements are synchronized at the same phase even when they are running at different frequencies, facilitating integration of multisensory information. The research sheds new light on biological rhythms that may evolutionarily underpin much animal behavior.
Many animals, including humans, harbor ingrained biases to actively obtain rewards and to remain inactive to avoid punishment. Sometimes, however those biases can steer us wrong. A new study finds that theta brainwave activity in the prefrontal cortex predicts how well people can overcome these biases when they are unwanted.
Not only are women who have experienced violence from their partner (intimate partner violence) at higher risk of becoming depressed, but women who are depressed may also be at increased risk of experiencing intimate partner violence, according to a new study.
From Ireland to the Balkans, Europeans are basically one big family, closely related to one another for the past thousand years, according to a new study of the DNA of people from across the continent.
Scientists have discovered that cholinesterase inhibitors allow signals to enter the brain with less background noise. And the drugs work in the sensory cortices, not the more sophisticated processing regions.
A new study suggests that your level of sleepiness or alertness during the day may be related to the type of food that you eat.
Excessive weight gain during pregnancy significantly increases the risk of lacerations during vaginal childbirth, according to a new study. Among more than 1,000 women who participated in the study, 126 experienced a significant increase in their body mass index (BMI), both +1 and +2 category changes, according to the criteria established by the World Health Organization (WHO). Of those women, 85.5 percent experienced lacerations compared to 69 percent with no change in BMI category.
Scientists at the Salk Institute for Biological Studies have identified a protein that drives the formation of pituitary tumors in Cushing's disease, a development that may give clinicians a therapeutic target to treat this potentially life-threatening disorder.
Two genome-wide association studies and a subsequent meta-analysis have found that certain genetic variations are associated with susceptibility to Helicobacter pylori, a bacteria that is a major cause of gastritis and stomach ulcers and is linked to stomach cancer, findings that may help explain some of the observed variation in individual risk for H pylori infection.
A new robotic sensor deployed coastal waters may transform the way red tides or harmful algal blooms are monitored and managed in New England. The instrument was launched at the end of last month, and a second such system will be deployed later this spring.
Through the serendipity of science, researchers have discovered a potential treatment for deadly, drug-resistant bacterial infections that uses the same approach that HIV uses to infect cells. New research is especially promising in the development of a potential treatment for lung infections in people with cystic fibrosis.
Nanopharmaceuticals are beginning to demonstrate their capacity to place the drugs directly in the tumor, where they will do the most good, rather than let them roam freely in the body.
A seven-year quest to understand how breast cancer cells resist treatment with the targeted therapy lapatinib has revealed a previously unknown molecular network that regulates cell death. The discovery provides new avenues to overcome drug resistance, according to new research.
Fact or fiction? Stained glass found in medieval cathedrals becomes thicker at the bottom because glass moves over time. For years researchers have had their doubts, now scientists have further evidence that glass is not going anywhere.