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Californian Sudden Oak Death Epidemic is 'Unstoppable'

May 3, 2016 9:52 am | by Univeristy of Cambridge | Comments

New research shows the sudden oak death epidemic in California cannot now be stopped, but that its tremendous ecological and economic impacts could have been greatly reduced if control had been started earlier.

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Asthma Linked to DNA Damage in Lungs

May 3, 2016 9:45 am | by MIT | Comments

House dust mites, which are a major source of allergens in house dust, can cause asthma in adults and children. Researchers have now found that these mites have a greater impact than previously known.

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Earth Estimated to House 1 Trillion Species

May 3, 2016 9:26 am | by Indiana University | Comments

The largest-ever analysis of microbial data reveals an ecological law concluding 99.999 percent of species remain undiscovered. The study states Earth could contain nearly 1 trillion species.

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Meta-Vikings: Runestone Long Thought to Honor Kings Actually Monument to Writing Itself

May 3, 2016 9:19 am | by Seth Augenstein, Digital Reporter | Comments

The Rök Runestone was carved in Sweden in the late 800s. Since it was discovered in the 1940s, interpretations of the writing honed in on supposed references to heroic journeys, battles and warrior-kings. But a new interpretation comes to a different conclusion.

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Video Game Allows Citizen Scientists to Help Develop New TB Test

May 3, 2016 9:13 am | by Stanford University School of Medicine | Comments

Researchers are releasing a new version of a web-based video game that will harness the creative brain power of thousands of nonscientist players. The goal is for players to design a molecule that could help spur the development of a new tuberculosis test.

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Three Earth-like Planets Seen Around Ultracool Dwarf Star

May 3, 2016 9:06 am | by ESO | Comments

TRAPPIST-1 is an ultracool dwarf star,  much cooler and redder than the Sun and barely larger than Jupiter. Such stars are both very common in the Milky Way and very long-lived, but this is the first time that planets have been found around one of them.

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World's Tiniest Engine Powers Itself

May 3, 2016 8:58 am | by University of Cambridge | Comments

Researchers have developed the world's tiniest engine - just a few billionths of a meter in size - which uses light to power itself. The nanoscale engine could form the basis of future nano-machines that can be used in a variety of applications.

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Two Genes in Women Identified as Cause for Increased Chance of Birthing Fraternal Twins

May 2, 2016 3:00 pm | by Lauren Scrudato, Associate Editor | Comments

Scientists have long known that certain factors – such as becoming pregnant at an older age or having a family history of twins – can increase women’s chances of giving birth to fraternal twins, but the underlying reasons have remained a mystery, until now.  

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Genetic Analysis of Ice Age Europeans Indicates Dramatic Population Change

May 2, 2016 2:17 pm | by Howard Hughes Medical Institute | Comments

Analyses of ancient DNA from prehistoric humans paint a picture of dramatic population change in Europe from 45,000 to 7,000 years ago, according to a new study.

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Cancer Drugs Tested with Flawed Time-based Method, Says Vanderbilt Study

May 2, 2016 2:12 pm | by Seth Augenstein, Digital Reporter | Comments

The in vitro method of testing cancer drugs on tumor cells is based on observing the rate of growth or death in the cells after set time frames, mostly 24 hours or 72 hours. However, those timeframes aren’t accurate for determining how effective they actually are in the long-run for patients.

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Endangered Venomous Mammal Predates Dinosaur Extinction

May 2, 2016 2:06 pm | by University of Illinois | Comments

The mitochondrial genome for the Hispaniolan solenodon has been completely sequenced, filling in the last major branch of placental mammals on the tree of life. This confirmed that the venomous mammal diverged from all other living mammals 78 million years ago.

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'Hydropeaking' of River Water Levels Disrupts Insect Survival

May 2, 2016 2:02 pm | Comments

A group of researchers concluded today in a study that “hydropeaking” of water flows on many rivers in the west has a devastating impact on aquatic insect abundance.

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DNA Can Take on Properties of Sand or Toothpaste, Study Shows

May 2, 2016 1:50 pm | by University of California, San Diego | Comments

When does DNA behave like sand or toothpaste? When the genetic material is so densely packed within a virus, it can behave like grains of sand or toothpaste in a tube, biophysicists report in a recent study.

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Evidence Found in Brain for 'Visual Stereotyping'

May 2, 2016 1:46 pm | by New York University | Comments

The stereotypes we hold can influence our brain's visual system, prompting us to see others' faces in ways that conform to these stereotypes, neuroscientists at New York University have found.

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Discovery of a Fundamental Limit to Evolution of the Genetic Code

May 2, 2016 10:05 am | by Institute for Research in Biomedicine (IRB Barcelona) | Comments

A study offers an explanation as to why the genetic code, the dictionary used by organisms to translate genes into protein, stopped growing 3,000 million years ago. The reason is attributed to the structure of transfer RNAs.

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