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The Lead

Japanese Volcano Death Toll Stands at 36

September 29, 2014 | by Associated Press, Emily Wang | Comments

Five more bodies were found near the summit of a Japanese volcano today, bringing the total presumed dead to 36, police say, as toxic gases and ash from the still-erupting mountain have forced rescue workers to halt efforts to recover the victims.

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Mystery Culprit in Nine Child Paralysis Cases

September 29, 2014 8:30 am | by Associated Press, Mike Stobbe | Comments

Health officials are investigating nine cases of muscle weakness or paralysis in Colorado children and whether the culprit might be a virus causing severe respiratory illness across the country.

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Find Challenges Efficacy of Antimicrobial Textiles

September 29, 2014 7:00 am | by Univ. of Alberta | Comments

Anti-odor clothing may not be living up to its promise, and a researcher is saying it could all be a matter of how the product was tested. In two separate experiments, the researcher and her team found that some antimicrobial textiles were far more effective at performing their advertised tasks in the lab than in testing on humans.

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Underwater Robot Could Improve Port Security

September 29, 2014 7:00 am | by MIT, Larry Hardesty | Comments

Researchers have unveiled an oval-shaped submersible robot, a little smaller than a football, with a flattened panel on one side that it can slide along an underwater surface to perform ultrasound scans. Originally designed to look for cracks in nuclear reactors’ water tanks, the robot could also inspect ships for the false hulls and propeller shafts that smugglers frequently use to hide contraband.

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Climate Change: Mixed Bag for Common Frog

September 29, 2014 7:00 am | by Case Western Reserve Univ. | Comments

Scientists have found amphibians worldwide are breeding earlier because of climate change, but how that affects species is just now being answered. After warmer winters, wood frogs breed earlier and produce fewer eggs. Frogs produce more eggs during winters with more rain and snow.

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Human Genome was Shaped by Internal Arms Race

September 29, 2014 7:00 am | by UC Santa Cruz | Comments

New findings suggest that an evolutionary arms race between rival elements within the genomes of primates drove the evolution of complex regulatory networks that orchestrate the activity of genes in every cell of our bodies.

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Unapproved GMO Wheat Found in Montana

September 29, 2014 7:00 am | by Associated Press, Mary Jalonick | Comments

Unregulated genetically modified wheat has popped up in a second location in the U.S., this time in Montana, the Agriculture Department says. No genetically engineered wheat has been approved for U.S. farming, and the discovery of unapproved varieties can pose a potential threat to U.S. trade with countries that have concerns about genetically modified foods.

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Tech May Help Smartphone Batteries

September 26, 2014 2:00 pm | by The Univ. of Texas at Dallas | Comments

Researchers have created technology that could be the first step toward wearable computers with self-contained power sources or, more immediately, a smartphone that doesn’t die after a few hours of heavy use. The technology taps into the power of a single electron to control energy consumption inside transistors, which are at the core of most modern electronic systems.

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One in 10 Antibiotic Treatments Fail

September 26, 2014 2:00 pm | by Cardiff Univ. | Comments

Over a 22 year period, more than one in 10 of all antibiotic treatments in a primary care setting failed. This rate has increased and continues to rise, according to a new study that analyzed almost 11 million antibiotic prescriptions in the UK.

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Skin Turns Radiation to Heat with Rapid Reaction

September 26, 2014 2:00 pm | by Lund Univ. | Comments

Researchers have worked out how the pigment of the skin manages to protect the body from the sun’s dangerous UV rays. The skin pigment converts the UV radiation into heat through a rapid chemical reaction that shoots protons from the molecules of the pigment.

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Thousands of Ebola Vaccines Available Soon

September 26, 2014 2:00 pm | by Associated Press | Comments

The World Health Organization says there should be thousands of doses of experimental Ebola vaccines available in the coming months and they could eventually be given to health care workers and other people who have had contact with the sick.

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California May Impose Strictest Pesticide Restrictions

September 26, 2014 2:00 pm | by Associated Press, Scott Smith | Comments

California farmers who spray a widely used insecticide on some of the state's most abundant crops may soon have to overcome the nation's steepest restrictions or find another pest killer, officials said this week. Regulators are proposing heavy restrictions— but not an all-out ban— on chlorpyrifos, used to treat crops like grapes and almonds.

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Officials: Electronics Allowed on European Flights

September 26, 2014 2:00 pm | by Associated Press, David Rising | Comments

Passengers on European airlines may soon be able to use portable electronics, including cellphones and tablet computers, any time during flights, under new safety guidelines issued today.

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Wreck Off Haiti Isn't Columbus' Ship

September 26, 2014 2:00 pm | by Associated Press | Comments

Haiti's culture minister says a shipwreck off the country's north coast probably isn't a lost flagship of Christopher Columbus, as a U.S. explorer has claimed.

Formula Could Yield Greener Concrete

September 26, 2014 2:00 pm | by MIT, David Chandler | Comments

Concrete is the world’s most used construction material and a leading contributor to global warming, producing as much as one-tenth of industry-generated greenhouse gas emissions. Now, a new study suggests a way in which those emissions could be reduced by more than half— and the result would be a stronger, more durable material.

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Finally: Bottleneck in Crystal Prediction Solved

September 26, 2014 7:00 am | by Princeton Univ. | Comments

The various patterns that atoms of a solid material can adopt, called crystal structures, can have a huge impact on its properties. Being able to accurately predict the most stable crystal structure for a material has been a longstanding challenge for scientists.

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