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Crowdsourced Supercomputing May Solve Microbe Mysteries

October 24, 2014 7:00 am | by UNSW | News | Comments

Scientists hope to unlock the secrets of millions of marine microbes from waters as far apart as Sydney’s Botany Bay and the Amazon River in Brazil, with the help of an international team of volunteers sharing their spare computer capacity to create a research supercomputer.

Synthetic Biology on Normal Paper Yields Biosensors

October 24, 2014 7:00 am | by Wyss Institute for Biologically Inspired Engineering | News | Comments

New achievements in synthetic biology will allow complex cellular recognition reactions to...

Once-useful Gene Now has Negative Health Impacts

October 24, 2014 7:00 am | by Cell Press | News | Comments

In individuals living in the Arctic, researchers have discovered a genetic variant that arose...

Beetroot Helps Athletes, Heart Patients

October 23, 2014 2:00 pm | by Kansas State Univ. | News | Comments

Football teams are claiming a special ingredient improves their athletic performance and,...

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Feather Find Gets Scientists in a Flap

October 23, 2014 2:00 pm | by Univ. of Southampton | News | Comments

Relatively little work has been done on feather morphology, especially from a mechanical perspective and never at the nanoscale. Now, scientists have revealed that feather shafts are made of a multi-layered fibrous composite material, much like carbon fiber, which allows the feather to bend and twist to cope with the stresses of flight.

Researchers Break Barrier to Engineer First Protein Microfiber

October 23, 2014 2:00 pm | by New York Univ. Polytechnic School of Engineering | News | Comments

Researchers have broken new ground in the development of proteins that form specialized fibers used in medicine and nanotechnology. For as long as scientists have been able to create new proteins that are capable of self-assembling into fibers, their work has taken place on the nanoscale. Now, this achievement has been realized on the microscale.

Method Allows Fast Analysis of Cancer Mutations

October 23, 2014 7:00 am | by MIT, Anne Trafton | News | Comments

Sequencing the genomes of tumor cells has revealed thousands of genetic mutations linked with cancer. However, sifting through this deluge of information to figure out which of these mutations actually drive cancer growth has proven to be a tedious, time-consuming process. Now, researchers have developed a new way to model the effects of these genetic mutations in mice.

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Gait Linked to Dementia

October 23, 2014 7:00 am | by Newcastle Univ. | News | Comments

Researchers have found a definitive link between gait– the way someone walks– and early changes in cognitive function in people with Parkinson's disease. And the find could mean that gait may be used as an early warning sign to help predict the development of cognitive impairment and dementia in Parkinson’s.

Tiny Touches Can Keep You Upright on Unsteady Feet

October 23, 2014 7:00 am | by Univ. of Birmingham | News | Comments

Being unsteady on our feet is something we can experience throughout life– and a new study has shown how even the lightest fingertip touch can help people to maintain their balance. The research explains how neural and mechanical mechanisms synchronize our sway with another person.

Researchers Sequence Early Modern Human DNA

October 23, 2014 7:00 am | by Max Planck Institute | News | Comments

A research team has sequenced the genome of a 45,000-year-old modern human male from western Siberia. The comparison of his genome to the genomes of people that lived later in Europe and Asia show that he lived close in time to when the ancestors of present-day people in Europe and eastern Asia went different ways.

Ebola 'Czar' Gets to Work

October 22, 2014 2:00 pm | by Associated Press, Connie Cass, Alicia Caldwell | News | Comments

A TV news cameraman treated for Ebola is going home today, the fifth patient transported from West Africa to recover at a U.S. hospital, as President Barack Obama brought together top aides and his new Ebola "czar," Ron Klain, to coordinate a national response to the deadly disease.

1918's Spanish Flu Can Teach Us About Pandemics

October 22, 2014 2:00 pm | by Michigan State Univ. | News | Comments

Just in time for flu season, a new study of “the mother of all pandemics” could offer insight into infection control measures for the flu and other epidemic diseases. In 1918, the Spanish flu killed 50 million people worldwide, 10 to 20 million of whom were in India. In the U.S. alone, the Spanish flu claimed 675,000 lives in nine months.

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Dental Care Linked to Respiratory Risks in ICU

October 22, 2014 2:00 pm | by Society for Healthcare Epidemiology of America | News | Comments

New research shows vulnerable patients in the intensive care unit who received enhanced oral care from a dentist were at significantly less risk for developing a lower respiratory tract infection, like ventilator-associated pneumonia, during their stay.

3-D Videos of Trees Help People Get Over Stress

October 22, 2014 2:00 pm | by Univ. of Illinois | News | Comments

While numerous studies have affirmed nature’s stress-reduction properties, scientists haven’t known the specific amount of exposure needed to induce these calming effects. Now, researchers have found that viewing 3-D videos of residential streets with varying amounts of tree canopy significantly improved participants’ physiological and psychological recovery from a stressful experience.

Shift Workers Should Skip High-iron Foods at Night

October 22, 2014 7:00 am | by Univ. of Utah | News | Comments

Workers punching in for the graveyard shift may be better off not eating high-iron foods at night so they don’t disrupt the circadian clock in their livers. Disrupted circadian clocks, researchers believe, are the reason that shift workers experience higher incidences of type 2 diabetes, obesity and cancer.

Peanuts in Dust Linked to Allergy in Kids with Mutation

October 22, 2014 7:00 am | by King’s College London | News | Comments

A new study has found a strong link between exposure to peanut protein in household dust during infancy and the development of peanut allergy in children genetically predisposed to a skin barrier defect.

Aquaponic Systems Can Be Sustainable

October 22, 2014 7:00 am | by Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service | Videos | Comments

If growing vegetables in a box with no soil and out of direct sunlight sounds a little fishy, well, it is. Aquaponics is a relatively new way of intensified farming that combines aquaculture and hydroponics, according to a vegetable specialist.

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Color, Texture Matter Most for Tomatoes

October 22, 2014 7:00 am | by Institute of Food Technologists | News | Comments

A new study evaluated consumers’ choice in fresh tomato selection and revealed which characteristics make the red fruit most appealing. The researchers found that the most important fresh tomato attributes were color, amount of juice when sliced and size.

Europeans Were Lactose Intolerant Post Agriculture

October 22, 2014 7:00 am | by Univ. College Dublin | News | Comments

By analyzing DNA extracted from the petrous bones of skulls of ancient Europeans, scientists have identified that these peoples remained intolerant to lactose for 5,000 years after they adopted agricultural practices and 4,000 years after the onset of cheese-making.

Experimental Drug May Treat Norovirus

October 21, 2014 2:00 pm | by Univ. of Cambridge | News | Comments

An experimental drug currently being trialed for influenza and Ebola viruses could have a new target: norovirus, often known as the winter vomiting virus. A team of researchers has shown that the drug, favipiravir, is effective at reducing– and in some cases eliminating– norovirus infection in mice.

Research Yields Possible Precursor to Life

October 21, 2014 8:48 am | by Univ. of Southern Denmark | News | Comments

Researchers working toward the technology of the future are interested in the origin of life. If we can create artificial living systems, we may not only understand the origin of life, we could also revolutionize technology.

Science Doesn’t Support ‘Brain Game’ Claims

October 21, 2014 8:42 am | by Stanford Univ. | News | Comments

Scientists have issued a statement saying they are skeptical about the effectiveness of so-called "brain game" products, which are marketed as helping older adults boost their mental powers. Signing the document were 69 scholars, including cognitive psychologists and neuroscientists from around the world.

Mental Rest, Reflection Aid Learning

October 21, 2014 8:35 am | by The Univ. of Texas at Austin | News | Comments

A new study that may have implications for approaches to education finds that brain mechanisms, engaged when people allow their minds to rest and reflect on things they've learned before, may boost later learning.

Research Points to Off Switch for Drug Resistance in Cancer

October 21, 2014 8:23 am | by Salk Institute for Biological Studies | News | Comments

Scientists have uncovered details about how cancer is able to become drug resistant over time, a phenomenon that occurs because cancer cells within the same tumor aren't identical— the cells have slight genetic variation, or diversity. Variations in breast cancer cells' RNA, the molecule that decodes genes and produces proteins, helps the cancer evolve more quickly than previously thought.

CD8 T Cells Will Fight Many Viruses

October 21, 2014 8:14 am | by Brown Univ. | News | Comments

Scientists think of CD8 T cells as long-lived cells that become tuned to fight just one pathogen, but a new study finds that once CD8 T cells fight one pathogen, they also join the body's "innate" immune system, ready to answer the calls of the cytokine signals that are set off by a wide variety of infections.

Researchers ID Key Transition to Problematic Drinking

October 21, 2014 8:10 am | by UC San Francisco | News | Comments

A team of researchers has found that a tiny segment of genetic material known as a microRNA plays a central role in the transition from moderate drinking to binge drinking and other alcohol use disorders.

Tarantula Toxin Exposes Activity in Live Cells

October 21, 2014 8:06 am | by UC Davis | Videos | Comments

Researchers have created a cellular probe that combines a tarantula toxin with a fluorescent compound to help scientists observe electrical activity in neurons and other cells. The probe binds to a voltage-activated potassium ion channel subtype, lighting up when the channel is turned off and dimming when it is activated.

Subliminal Aging Messages Improve Physical Functioning in Elderly

October 20, 2014 2:53 pm | by Yale | News | Comments

Older individuals who are subliminally exposed to positive stereotypes about aging showed improved physical functioning that can last for several weeks. Researchers used a novel intervention method to examine for the first time whether exposure to positive age stereotypes could weaken negative age stereotypes and their effects over time, and lead to healthier outcomes.

Brain Activity Provides Evidence for Internal Calorie Counter

October 20, 2014 2:38 pm | by Association for Psychological Science | News | Comments

As you glance over a menu or peruse the shelves in a supermarket, you may be thinking about how each food will taste and whether it’s nutritious, or you may be trying to decide what you’re in the mood for. A new neuroimaging study suggests that while you’re thinking all these things, an internal calorie counter of sorts is also evaluating each food based on its caloric density.

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