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Bomb-sniffing Dogs Shouldn't Be Trained on Pseudo-explosives

November 24, 2014 2:00 pm | by Springer | News | Comments

When it comes to teaching dogs how to sniff out explosives, there’s nothing quite like the real thing to make sure they’re trained right. That’s the message from researchers, after finding that dogs that are trained with so-called pseudo-explosives could not reliably sniff out real explosives— and vice versa.

Device Key to Practical Biological Circuits

November 24, 2014 2:00 pm | by MIT, David Chandler | News | Comments

Scientists have come up with a way of greatly reducing that the unpredictability of biological...

How Cells Defend Themselves Against Unwanted Guests

November 24, 2014 2:00 pm | by Univ. College London | News | Comments

The structure of pores found in cell nuclei has been uncovered by a team of scientists,...

Doubling Saturated Fat in Diet Does Not Affect Blood

November 24, 2014 8:40 am | by The Ohio State Univ. | News | Comments

Doubling, or even nearly tripling, saturated fat in the diet does not drive up total levels of...

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Ancient Flesh Brings Mammoth Cloning Closer

November 24, 2014 8:28 am | by The Natural History Museum, London | News | Comments

Mammoth cloning is closer to becoming a reality following the discovery of the best-preserved specimen ever found. An autopsy on the 40,000-year-old mammoth has yielded surprisingly fresh-looking flesh that could contain enough intact DNA to make cloning possible, galvanizing scientists who have been working for years to bring back the extinct elephant relative.

Exceptional Control Behind Dragonflies' Fluid Flight

November 24, 2014 7:00 am | by American Physical Society's Division of Fluid Dynamics | News | Comments

Dragonflies can easily right themselves and maneuver tight turns while flying. Each of their four wings is controlled by separate muscles, giving them exquisite control over their flight.

Extremophiles May Be Key to Antibacterial Drugs

November 24, 2014 7:00 am | by Vanderbilt Univ. | News | Comments

One of the most mysterious forms of life may turn out to be a rich and untapped source of antibacterial drugs. The mysterious life form is Archaea, a family of single-celled organisms that thrive in environments like boiling hydrothermal pools and smoking deep sea vents that are too extreme for most other species to survive.


Nail Stem Cells Are Highly Versatile

November 24, 2014 7:00 am | by USC Stem Cell | Videos | Comments

There are plenty of body parts that don’t grow back when you lose them. Nails are an exception, and a new study reveals some of the reasons why. A team of researchers has identified a new population of nail stem cells, which have the ability to either self-renew or undergo specialization or differentiation into multiple tissues.

Polyethylene, Glazing Disinfect Soil

November 21, 2014 2:00 pm | by American Society for Horticultural Science | News | Comments

Soil solarization, a process that uses solar radiation to rid the soil of pests, is most common in regions with high solar radiation and high temperatures during the summer season. New research has found that soil solarization is most effective when moist soil is covered tightly with polyethylene inside a high tunnel covered with glazing.

Laser Accurately Measures Trees

November 21, 2014 2:00 pm | by Univ. College London | News | Comments

A terrestrial laser scanning technique that allows the structure of vegetation to be 3-D-mapped to the millimeter is more accurate in determining the biomass of trees and carbon stocks in forests than current methods, according to new research. The study authors believe it could be an important development in the monitoring of carbon stocks for worldwide climate policy-making.

Bee Brains Shed Light on Human Memories

November 21, 2014 2:00 pm | by Univ. of Queensland | News | Comments

Scientists have discovered that genes switch off as memories are being formed, allowing for new connections between nerve cells. The discovery could eventually lead to a key for treating conditions such as autism and dementia.

Bandits Steal Suspected Ebola-tainted Blood

November 21, 2014 2:00 pm | by Associated Press, Boubacar Diallo | News | Comments

It was a highway robbery but the bandits got more than they bargained for when they stopped a taxi van in Guinea and made off with blood samples that are believed to be infected with the deadly Ebola virus. Authorities publicly appealed on national radio Friday to the unidentified robbers to hand over the samples that were stolen during a 165-mile trek from central Kankan prefecture to a test site in southern Gueckedou.


Research Aims to ID Genetics of Deadly Dog Disease

November 21, 2014 2:00 pm | by Tufts Univ. | News | Comments

Veterinary researchers are working to decipher the genetics of bloat, a common cause of death in large dogs. For veterinarians and breeders, bloat remains a baffling disease that’s difficult to prevent or treat.

Urbane Female Bats are Picky Eaters

November 21, 2014 7:00 am | by Univ. of Stirling | News | Comments

Female bats are fussier than males when it comes choosing where to eat in urban areas, according to new research. Town and city planners must take the needs of females into account when managing urban woodlands, to prevent a decline in numbers of certain bat species.

Newer Hybrids Give Corn Producers Options

November 21, 2014 7:00 am | by Texas A&M AgriLife Research | Videos | Comments

Scientists are wrapping up a two-year study to determine the best combination of corn hybrids, planting dates and maturity to maintain yield and maximize water-use efficiency.

Running Keeps You Young

November 21, 2014 7:00 am | by Univ. of Colorado Boulder | News | Comments

A new study shows that senior citizens who run several times a week for exercise expend about the same amount of energy walking as a typical 20-year-old. But older people who walk for exercise rather than jog expend about the same amount of energy walking as older, sedentary adults, and expend up to 22 percent more energy walking than the 20-something crowd.

Fishermen Are Fighting Crab Menace

November 21, 2014 7:00 am | by ScienceNetwork WA | News | Comments

Perth fishermen have helped stop a nasty crab invading West Australian waters that could have devastated local marine biodiversity. Introduced pests like this are one of the greatest threats to global marine biodiversity.


Plague Outbreaks Linked to El Niño

November 21, 2014 7:00 am | by Univ. of Liverpool | News | Comments

The El Niño Southern Oscillation (ENSO) is an ocean-atmosphere fluctuation of air pressure and sea surface temperature. Now, scientists have shown that large outbreaks of plague in Madagascar tend to coincide with the timing of ENSO events.

Understanding Wheat Virus Epidemics Aids Control

November 21, 2014 7:00 am | by The Univ. of Western Australia | News | Comments

Critical new understanding of the disease cycle of a wheat virus will help farmers around the world protect their wheat crops from a devastating disease and major yield losses. A researcher has identified that wheat seed is critical for the dissemination of wheat streak mosaic virus and its persistence between successive growing seasons.

Imaginings, Reality Run in Opposite Directions

November 20, 2014 2:29 pm | by Univ. of Wisconsin–Madison | News | Comments

Aiming to discern discrete neural circuits, researchers have tracked electrical activity in the brains of people who alternately imagined scenes or watched videos. They found that, as real as that daydream may seem, its path through your brain runs opposite reality.

Italy Outraged After Deadly Asbestos Case Thrown Out

November 20, 2014 2:12 pm | by Associated Press | News | Comments

Premier Matteo Renzi added his voice to a chorus of outrage across Italy today after the country's highest court threw out a conviction against a Swiss businessman for some 3,000 asbestos-related deaths blamed on contamination from a construction company. The Court of Cassation has ruled that the statute of limitations expired in the environmental negligence case.

Forty Years Later: Researchers Get Full View of Flu Machine

November 20, 2014 2:00 pm | by European Molecular Biology Laboratory | News | Comments

Research has yielded the first complete structure of one of the flu virus’ key machines. The machine in question, the influenza virus polymerase that was discovered 40 years ago, carries out two vital tasks for the virus.

Biotech May Save Sushi

November 20, 2014 2:00 pm | by Associated Press, Elaine Kurtenbach | News | Comments

Of all the overfished fish in the seas, luscious, fatty bluefin tuna are among the most threatened. A marine scientist is fine-tuning a technology to use mackerel surrogates to spawn the bluefin, a process he hopes will enable fisheries to raise the huge, torpedo-shaped fish more quickly and at lower cost than conventional aquaculture. The aim: to relieve pressure on wild fish stocks while preserving vital genetic diversity.

Nanosilver Can Upset the Gut

November 20, 2014 7:00 am | by Queen’s Univ. | News | Comments

New research has shown nanosilver, which is often added to water purification units, can upset your gut. The discovery is important as people are being exposed to more and more nanoparticles every day.

Statins May Have Long-term Heart Benefits

November 20, 2014 7:00 am | by Associated Press, Marilynn Marchione | News | Comments

Research shows that taking a cholesterol-lowering drug for five years in middle age can lower heart and death risks for decades afterward. The benefits seem to grow over time and may last for life.

Calcium Loss Causes 'Jellification' of Lakes

November 20, 2014 7:00 am | by Univ. of Cambridge | News | Comments

Declining calcium levels in some North American lakes are causing major depletions of dominant plankton species, enabling the rapid rise of their ecological competitor: a small jelly-clad invertebrate. Scientists say increasing “jellification” will damage fish stocks and filtration systems that allow lakes to supply drinking water, and that lakes may have been pushed into an entirely new ecological state.

Sense of Touch Lets Bacterium Infect Anything

November 20, 2014 7:00 am | by Princeton Univ. | News | Comments

New research has found that one of the world's most prolific bacteria manages to afflict humans, animals and even plants by way of a mechanism not before seen in any infectious microorganism— a sense of touch. This unique ability helps make the bacteria ubiquitous, but it also might leave these antibiotic-resistant organisms vulnerable to a new form of treatment.

Gut Microbes Influence Blood-brain Barrier

November 19, 2014 2:21 pm | by Karolinska Institutet | News | Comments

A new study in mice has shown that our natural gut-residing microbes can influence the integrity of the blood-brain barrier, which protects the brain from harmful substances in the blood. The find provides experimental evidence that our indigenous microbes contribute to the mechanism that closes the blood-brain barrier before birth.

Light May Skew Lab Tests on Nanoparticles' Health Effects

November 19, 2014 2:00 pm | by NIST | News | Comments

Truth shines a light into dark places. But sometimes to find that truth in the first place, it’s better to stay in the dark. That’s what recent findings show about methods for testing the safety of nanoparticles. It turns out that previous tests indicating that some nanoparticles can damage our DNA may have been skewed by inadvertent light exposure in the lab.

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