Children with autism have a surplus of synapses in the brain, and this excess is because of a slowdown in a normal brain “pruning” process during development, according to a study by neuroscientists. Because synapses are the points where neurons connect and communicate with each other, the excessive synapses may have profound effects on how the brain functions.
Citizen scientists are saving the lives of people living in the shadow of deadly volcanoes, according to new research. A report reveals the success of a volunteer group set up to safeguard communities around the “Throat of Fire” Tungurahua volcano in the Ecuadorian Andes.
Using a new modeling approach, researchers in England estimated the levels of 12 pharmaceutical compounds in rivers across the UK. They found that while most of the compounds were likely to cause only a low risk to aquatic life, ibuprofen might be having an adverse effect in nearly 50 percent of the stretches of river studied.
NASA's Voyager 2 spacecraft gave humanity its first close-up look at Neptune and its moon Triton in the summer of 1989. Like an old film, Voyager's historic footage of Triton has been "restored" and used to construct the best-ever global color map of that strange moon.
The onset of Alzheimer’s disease can be slowed and some of its symptoms curbed by a natural compound that is found in pomegranate. Also, the painful inflammation that accompanies illnesses such as rheumatoid arthritis and Parkinson’s disease could be reduced.
The moon appears to be a tranquil place, but new modeling suggests that, over the eons, periodic storms of solar energetic particles may have significantly altered the properties of the soil in the moon’s coldest craters through the process of sparking. This find could change our understanding of the evolution of planetary surfaces in the solar system.
About 63 trillion gallons of water have been lost to drought in the western U.S., enough to blanket the region with four inches of water, according to a study. Researchers arrived at the conclusion by measuring the level of the earth's crust with a network of GPS stations that is normally used to predict earthquakes.
An Oklahoma oral surgeon, whose filthy clinics led to the testing of thousands of patients for HIV and hepatitis, permanently surrendered his professional license today.
China wants to build 60 coal-to-gas plants as part of a controversial energy plan. The country hopes the plants will churn out desperately needed natural gas and electricity while cleaning up the toxic skies above. However, the plants will also release vast amounts of heat-trapping CO2, even as the world struggles to curb greenhouse gas emissions and stave off global warming.
A new health impact assessment provides short- and long-term recommendations for urban water conservation that save water while also protecting and promoting public health.
An experiment has revealed a well-organized 3-D grid of quantum "tornadoes" inside microscopic droplets of super-cooled liquid helium. This is the first time this formation has been seen at such a tiny scale.
New research suggests a one-two punch could help battle polio in some of the world's most remote and strife-torn regions. Giving a single vaccine shot to children who've already swallowed drops of an oral polio vaccine greatly boosted their immunity.
A team has developed an algorithm that enables a drone to monitor aspects of its “health” in real time. With the algorithm, a drone can predict its fuel level and the condition of its propellers, cameras and other sensors throughout a flight, and take proactive measures— for example, rerouting to a charging station— if needed.
Thanks to new insights into the details of photosynthetic water splitting, the prospects for the development of clean fuels based on water and sunlight are improving.
A scientist developed a wound-healing peptide while researching how electrical signals trigger heartbeats. He never imagined that the peptide, ACT1, would prove to heal venous leg ulcers twice as quickly as the current standard of care.
A team of researchers has developed an innovative method for using affordable, consumer-grade 3-D printers and materials to fabricate custom medical implants that can contain antibacterial and chemotherapeutic compounds for targeted drug delivery.