Sunday, March 3, 2013

ScienceDaily: Top Science News

ScienceDaily: Top Science News Top science news, featured on ScienceDaily's home page.en-usSun, 03 Mar 2013 02:32:36 ESTSun, 03 Mar 2013 02:32:36 EST60ScienceDaily: Top Science News For more science articles, visit ScienceDaily.3-D printing using old milk jugs 3-D printing lets anyone make almost anything with a simple machine and a roll of plastic filament. Now researchers have found a way to drive costs down even further by recycling empty milk jugs into filament. The process reduces landfill waste, saves on energy compared with traditional recycling, and makes 3-D printing and even better deal.Fri, 01 Mar 2013 15:36:36 EST fisheries globally unsustainable: 100 million sharks die every year The world?s shark populations are experiencing significant declines with perhaps 100 million ? or more - sharks being lost every year, according to a new study.Fri, 01 Mar 2013 15:32:32 EST and Asian dust, biological particles end global journey in California A new study is the first to show that dust and other aerosols from one side of the world influence rainfall in the Sierra Nevada.Fri, 01 Mar 2013 12:33:33 EST aerosols, not pollutants, tamped down recent Earth warming Scientists looking for clues about why Earth did not warm as much as scientists expected between 2000 and 2010 now thinks the culprits are hiding in plain sight -- dozens of volcanoes spewing sulfur dioxide.Fri, 01 Mar 2013 12:30:30 EST study reveals how sensitive US East Coast regions may be to ocean acidification A continental-scale chemical survey in the waters of the eastern US and Gulf of Mexico is helping researchers determine how distinct bodies of water will resist changes in acidity.Fri, 01 Mar 2013 12:30:30 EST during pregnancy and stress in puberty play key role in development of schizophrenia The interplay between an infection during pregnancy and stress in puberty plays a key role in the development of schizophrenia, as behaviorists demonstrate in a mouse model. However, there is no need to panic.Fri, 01 Mar 2013 12:25:25 EST dinosaur species: First fossil evidence shows small crocs fed on baby dinosaurs A paleontologist and his team have discovered a new species of herbivorous dinosaur and published the first fossil evidence of prehistoric crocodyliforms feeding on small dinosaurs.Thu, 28 Feb 2013 17:15:15 EST datasets reveal effects of climate change and habitat loss on plant-pollinator networks Two biologists at Washington University in St. Louis were delighted to discover a meticulous dataset on a plant-pollinator network recorded by Illinois naturalist Charles Robertson between 1884 and 1916. Re-collecting part of Robertson's network, they learned that although the network has compensated for some losses, battered by climate change and habitat loss it is now weaker and less resilient than in Robertson's time.Thu, 28 Feb 2013 15:56:56 EST of wild insects hurts crops around the world Researchers studying data from 600 fields in 20 countries have found that managed honey bees are not as successful at pollinating crops as wild insects, primarily wild bees, suggesting the continuing loss of wild insects in many agricultural landscapes has negative consequences for crop harvests.Thu, 28 Feb 2013 15:56:56 EST's Van Allen Probes reveal a new radiation belt around Earth NASA's Van Allen Probes mission has discovered a previously unknown third radiation belt around Earth, revealing the existence of unexpected structures and processes within these hazardous regions of space.Thu, 28 Feb 2013 15:54:54 EST did early primordial cells evolve? New research on bacteria examines how primordial cells could have evolved without protein machinery or cell walls. While the vast majority of bacteria have cell walls, many bacteria can switch to a wall-free existence called the L-form state, which could mirror the structure of primordial cells. A new study reveals how bacteria in this L-form state divide and proliferate, shedding light on how the earliest forms of cellular life may have replicated.Thu, 28 Feb 2013 12:41:41 EST video games boost reading skills, study of children with dyslexia suggests Much to the chagrin of parents who think their kids should spend less time playing video games and more time studying, time spent playing action video games can actually make dyslexic children read better, new research suggests. In fact, 12 hours of video game play did more for reading skills than is normally achieved with a year of spontaneous reading development or demanding traditional reading treatments.Thu, 28 Feb 2013 12:41:41 EST oceans may have delayed spread of complex life A new model suggests that inhospitable hydrodgen-sulfide rich waters could have delayed the spread of complex life forms in ancient oceans. The research considers the composition of the oceans 550-700 million years ago and shows that oxygen-poor toxic conditions, which may have delayed the establishment of complex life, were controlled by the biological availability of nitrogen.Thu, 28 Feb 2013 11:34:34 EST cosmic start for amino acids and DNA ingredients Using new technology at the telescope and in laboratories, researchers have discovered an important pair of prebiotic molecules in interstellar space. The discoveries indicate that some basic chemicals that are key steps on the way to life may have formed on dusty ice grains floating between the stars.Thu, 28 Feb 2013 11:34:34 EST scientists discover 18-kilogram meteorite An international team of scientists have discovered a meteorite with a mass of 18 kilograms embedded in the East Antarctic ice sheet, the largest?such meteorite found in the region since 1988.Thu, 28 Feb 2013 11:34:34 EST of a giant Planet? Candidate protoplanet spotted inside its stellar womb Astronomers have obtained what is likely the first direct observation of a forming planet still embedded in a thick disc of gas and dust. If confirmed, this discovery will greatly improve our understanding of how planets form and allow astronomers to test the current theories against an observable target.Thu, 28 Feb 2013 10:33:33 EST demonstrate the acceleration of electrons by a laser in a vacuum The acceleration of a free electron by a laser is a long-time goal of solid-state physicists. Physicists have established that an electron beam can be accelerated by a laser in free space. This has never been done before at high energies and represents a significant breakthrough, and may have implications for fusion as a new energy source.Thu, 28 Feb 2013 09:38:38 EST wireless brain sensor unveiled: Wireless, broadband, rechargeable, fully implantable In a significant advance for brain-computer interfaces, engineers have developed a novel wireless, broadband, rechargeable, fully implantable brain sensor that has performed well in animal models for more than a year.Thu, 28 Feb 2013 09:38:38 EST interface allows transmission of tactile and motor information between rats Researchers have electronically linked the brains of pairs of rats for the first time, enabling them to communicate directly to solve simple behavioral puzzles. A further test of this work successfully linked the brains of two animals thousands of miles apart -- one in Durham, N.C., and one in Natal, Brazil.Thu, 28 Feb 2013 09:38:38 EST energy: Nanotubes to channel osmotic power The salinity difference between fresh water and salt water could be a source of renewable energy. However, power yields from existing techniques are not high enough to make them viable. A solution to this problem may now have been found. Researchers have discovered a new means of harnessing this energy: osmotic flow through boron nitride nanotubes generates huge electric currents, with 1,000 times the efficiency of any previous system.Thu, 28 Feb 2013 09:35:35 EST with quantum-memory Order tends towards disorder. This is also true for quantum states. Measurements show that in quantum mechanics this transition can be quite different from what we experience in our daily lives.Thu, 28 Feb 2013 08:02:02 EST monkeys use shapes to strategize their use of tools Bearded capuchin monkeys deliberately place palm nuts in a stable position on a surface before trying to crack them open, revealing their capacity to use tactile information to improve tool use.Wed, 27 Feb 2013 18:35:35 EST work without connection to brain: Ectopic eyes function without natural connection to brain For the first time, scientists have shown that transplanted eyes located far outside the head in a vertebrate animal model can confer vision without a direct neural connection to the brain. Biologists used a frog model to shed new light -- literally -- on one of the major questions in regenerative medicine and sensory augmentation research.Wed, 27 Feb 2013 18:33:33 EST the human genome: First step-by-step look at transcription initiation Researchers have achieved a major advance in understanding how genetic information is transcribed from DNA to RNA by providing the first step-by-step look at the biomolecular machinery that reads the human genome.Wed, 27 Feb 2013 15:13:13 EST limbs and nervous system of one of Earth's earliest animals discovered Unique fossils literally 'lift the lid' on ancient creature's head to expose one of the earliest examples of food manipulating limbs in evolutionary history, dating from around 530 million years ago.Wed, 27 Feb 2013 13:44:44 EST walks again after surgery to reverse muscle paralysis After four years of confinement to a wheelchair, Rick Constantine, 58, is now walking again after undergoing an unconventional surgery to restore the use of his leg.Wed, 27 Feb 2013 13:43:43 EST brains coordinate singing with intricate timing As a bird sings, some neurons in its brain prepare to make the next sounds while others are synchronized with the current notes?a coordination of physical actions and brain activity that is needed to produce complex movements. The finding that may lead to new ways of understanding human speech production.Wed, 27 Feb 2013 13:43:43 EST can have immune systems: A pirate phage commandeers the immune system of bacteria A new study reports that a viral predator of the cholera bacteria has stolen the functional immune system of bacteria and is using it against its bacterial host. This provides the first evidence that this type of virus, the bacteriophage, can acquire an adaptive immune system. The study has implications for phage therapy, the use of phages to treat bacterial diseases.Wed, 27 Feb 2013 13:43:43 EST's NuSTAR helps solve riddle of black hole spin Two X-ray space observatories, NASA's Nuclear Spectroscopic Telescope Array (NuSTAR) and the European Space Agency's XMM-Newton, have teamed up to measure definitively, for the first time, the spin rate of a black hole with a mass 2 million times that of our sun.Wed, 27 Feb 2013 13:25:25 EST diet contributes to exposure to endocrine-disrupting chemicals: Phthalates and BPA While water bottles may tout BPA-free labels and personal care products declare phthalates not among their ingredients, these assurances may not be enough. According to a new study, we may be exposed to these chemicals in our diet, even if our diet is organic and we prepare, cook, and store foods in non-plastic containers. Children may be most vulnerable.Wed, 27 Feb 2013 12:19:19 EST'Network' analysis of brain may explain features of autism A look at how the brain processes information finds distinct pattern in autistic children. Using EEGs to track the brain's electrical cross-talk, researchers found structural difference in brain connections. Compared with neurotypical children, those with autism have multiple redundant connections between neighboring brain areas at expense of long-distance links. The study, using "network analysis" like with airlines or electrical grids, may help in understanding some classic autistic behaviors.Wed, 27 Feb 2013 10:20:20 EST A chance for highly endangered mammals Oocytes of lions, tigers and other cat species survive the preservation in liquid nitrogen. Scientists have now succeeded in carrying out cryopreservation of felid ovary cortex.Wed, 27 Feb 2013 10:19:19 EST about the future may lead to longer, healthier life Older people who have low expectations for a satisfying future may be more likely to live longer, healthier lives than those who see brighter days ahead, according to new research.Wed, 27 Feb 2013 10:19:19 EST on animal memory opens doors to research on memory impairment diseases A new study offers the first evidence of source memory in a nonhuman animal. The findings have fascinating implications, both in evolutionary terms and for future research into the biological underpinnings of memory, as well as the treatment of diseases marked by memory failure such as Alzheimer's, Parkinson's and Huntington's, or disorders such as schizophrenia, PTSD and depression.Wed, 27 Feb 2013 08:59:59 EST fabrication technique could provide breakthrough for solar energy systems Scientists are using a novel fabrication process to create ultra-efficient solar energy rectennas capable of harvesting more than 70 percent of the sun's electromagnetic radiation and simultaneously converting it into usable electric power.Wed, 27 Feb 2013 08:59:59 EST Greek observatory sheds light on old star Continuing a tradition stretching back more than 25 centuries, astronomers have used the new 2.3-meter 'Aristarchos' telescope, sited at Helmos Observatory (2340m high) in the Pelοponnese Mountains in Greece, to determine the distance to and history of an enigmatic stellar system, discovering it to likely be a binary star cocooned within an exotic nebula.Wed, 27 Feb 2013 08:58:58 EST much vitamin D during pregnancy can cause food allergies, research suggests Pregnant women should avoid taking vitamin D supplements, new research suggests. Substitution appears to raise the risk of children developing a food allergy after birth.Wed, 27 Feb 2013 08:58:58 EST risk of sleep disorder narcolepsy in children who received swine flu vaccine A study finds an increased risk of narcolepsy in children and adolescents who received the A/H1N1 2009 influenza vaccine (Pandemrix) during the pandemic in England.Tue, 26 Feb 2013 19:40:40 EST sea turtle could be extinct within 20 years at last stronghold in the Pacific Ocean An international team led by the University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB) has documented a 78 percent decline in the number of nests of the critically endangered leatherback sea turtle (Dermochelys coriacea) at the turtle's last stronghold in the Pacific Ocean.Tue, 26 Feb 2013 14:12:12 EST test holographic technique for restoring vision Researchers are testing the power of holography to artificially stimulate cells in the eye, with hopes of developing a new strategy for bionic vision restoration. Computer-generated holography, they say, could be used in conjunction with a technique called optogenetics, which uses gene therapy to deliver light-sensitive proteins to damaged retinal nerve cells. In conditions such as retinitis pigmentosa (RP), these light-sensing cells degenerate and lead to blindness.Tue, 26 Feb 2013 13:42:42 EST well could help spread disease, water flea study suggests Plentiful food can accelerate the spread of infections, scientists have shown in a study of water fleas. Scientists studying bacterial infections in tiny water fleas have discovered that increasing their supply of food can speed up the spread of infection.Tue, 26 Feb 2013 12:05:05 EST glass possible: In probing mysteries of glass, researchers find a key to toughness Glass doesn't have to be brittle. Scientists propose a way of predicting whether a given glass will be brittle or ductile -- a property typically associated with metals like steel or aluminum -- and assert that any glass could have either quality.Tue, 26 Feb 2013 11:40:40 EST the (quantum) dots: First viable high-speed quantum computer moves closer Scientists have developed a new method that better preserves the units necessary to power lightning-fast electronics, known as qubits. Hole spins, rather than electron spins, can keep quantum bits in the same physical state up to 10 times longer than before, the report finds.Tue, 26 Feb 2013 11:40:40 EST discovery could hold key to causes of inherited diseases Fresh insights into the protective seal that surrounds the DNA of our cells could help develop treatments for inherited muscle, brain, bone and skin disorders. Researchers have discovered that the proteins within this coating -- known as the nuclear envelope -- vary greatly between cells in different organs of the body.Tue, 26 Feb 2013 11:38:38 EST battery completes stretchable electronics package: Can stretch, twist and bend -- and return to normal shape Researchers have demonstrated a stretchable lithium-ion battery -- a flexible device capable of powering their innovative stretchable electronics. The battery can stretch up to 300 percent of its original size and still function -- even when stretched, folded, twisted and mounted on a human elbow. The battery enables true integration of electronics and power into a small, stretchable package that is wirelessly rechargeable.Tue, 26 Feb 2013 11:38:38 EST digital holography allows firefighters to see through flames, image moving people Firefighters now have a new tool that could help save lives. A team of researchers have developed a new technique using digital holography that can "see" people through intense flames -- the first time a holographic recording of a live person has been achieved while the body is moving. The new technique allows imaging through both.Tue, 26 Feb 2013 10:14:14 EST for an artificial brain: Scientists experiment with memristors that imitate natural nerves Scientists have long been dreaming about building a computer that would work like a brain. This is because a brain is far more energy-saving than a computer, it can learn by itself, and it doesn't need any programming. Scientists are experimenting with memristors -- electronic microcomponents that imitate natural nerves.Tue, 26 Feb 2013 10:14:14 EST source of human kidney cells created Researchers have successfully generated human kidney cells from human embryonic stem cells in vitro1. Specifically, they produced the renal cells under artificial conditions in the lab without using animals or organs. This has not been possible until now.Tue, 26 Feb 2013 09:21:21 EST observed properties of vacuums: Light particles illuminate the vacuum Researchers have succeeded in showing experimentally that vacuums have properties not previously observed. According to the laws of quantum mechanics, it is a state with abundant potentials. Vacuums contain momentarily appearing and disappearing virtual pairs, which can be converted into detectable light particles.Tue, 26 Feb 2013 09:21:21 EST reinforces learning: Children?s brains transform subconsciously learned material into active knowledge During sleep, our brains store what we have learned during the day a process even more effective in children than in adults, new research shows.Tue, 26 Feb 2013 08:11:11 EST diet helps cut risk of heart attack, stroke: Results of PREDIMED study presented Results of a major study aimed at assessing the efficacy of the Mediterranean diet in the primary prevention of cardiovascular diseases show that such a diet supplemented with extra-virgin olive oil or tree nuts reduces by 30 percent the risk of suffering a cardiovascular death, a myocardial infarction or a stroke.Mon, 25 Feb 2013 18:15:15 EST levels of several toxic metals found in children with autism Researchers have found significantly higher levels of toxic metals in children with autism, compared to typical children. They hypothesize that reducing early exposure to toxic metals may help lessen symptoms of autism, though they say this hypotheses needs further examination.Mon, 25 Feb 2013 16:22:22 EST stem cells grown in culture, transplanted with demonstrated therapeutic benefit For decades scientists around the world have attempted to regenerate primary liver cells known as hepatocytes because of their numerous biomedical applications, including hepatitis research, drug metabolism and toxicity studies, as well as transplantation for cirrhosis and other chronic liver conditions. But no lab in the world has been successful in identifying and growing liver stem cells in culture -- using any available technique -- until now.Mon, 25 Feb 2013 15:31:31 EST extremes provoked by trapping of giant waves in the atmosphere The world has suffered from severe regional weather extremes in recent years, such as the heat wave in the United States in 2011. Behind these devastating individual events there is a common physical cause, propose scientists in a new study. It suggests that human-made climate change repeatedly disturbs the patterns of atmospheric flow around the globe's Northern hemisphere through a subtle resonance mechanism.Mon, 25 Feb 2013 15:31:31 EST to climate cycles dug from South Pole snow pit Particles from the upper atmosphere trapped in a deep pile of Antarctic snow hold clear chemical traces of global meteorological events, climate scientists from France have found. Anomalies in oxygen found in sulfate particles coincide with several episodes of the world-wide disruption of weather known as El Nino and can be distinguished from similar signals left by the eruption of huge volcanoes, the team reports.Mon, 25 Feb 2013 15:31:31 EST in diets of people in coastal Peru dates to 5,000 years ago Scientists have concluded that during the Late Archaic, maize (corn) was a primary component in the diet of people living in the Norte Chico region of Peru, an area of remarkable cultural florescence in 3rd millennium B.C. Up until now, the prevailing theory was that marine resources, not agriculture and corn, provided the economic engine behind the development of civilization in the Andean region of Peru.Mon, 25 Feb 2013 15:31:31 EST may affect the developing brain by disrupting gene regulation Environmental exposure to bisphenol A (BPA), a widespread chemical found in plastics and resins, may suppress a gene vital to nerve cell function and to the development of the central nervous system, according to a new study.Mon, 25 Feb 2013 15:31:31 EST evidence for extraterrestrial life might come from dying stars Even dying stars could host planets with life -- and if such life exists, we might be able to detect it within the next decade. This encouraging result comes from a new theoretical study of Earth-like planets orbiting white dwarf stars. Researchers found that we could detect oxygen in the atmosphere of a white dwarf's planet much more easily than for an Earth-like planet orbiting a Sun-like star.Mon, 25 Feb 2013 13:16:16 EST of spirituality can induce liberal attitudes, researchers find People become more politically liberal immediately after practising a spiritual exercise such as meditation, researchers have found.Mon, 25 Feb 2013 13:15:15 EST maps depict potential worldwide coral bleaching by 2056 New maps by scientists show how rising sea temperatures are likely to affect all coral reefs in the form of annual coral bleaching events under different emission scenarios. If carbon emissions stay on the current path most of the world's coral reefs (74 percent) are projected to experience coral bleaching conditions annually by 2045, results of the study show.Mon, 25 Feb 2013 12:20:20 EST


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