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Saturday, October 4, 2014

ScienceDaily: Top News

ScienceDaily: Top News

NASA's SDO watches giant filament on the sun

Posted: 03 Oct 2014 06:43 PM PDT

A snaking, extended filament of solar material currently lies on the front of the sun -- some 1 million miles across from end to end. Filaments are clouds of solar material suspended above the sun by powerful magnetic forces. Though notoriously unstable, filaments can last for days or even weeks.

More accurate model for greenhouse gases from peatlands

Posted: 03 Oct 2014 06:43 PM PDT

Scientists have created a new model to more accurately describe the greenhouse gases likely to be released from Arctic peatlands as they warm.

Engineers use 3-D gaming gear to give eye-opening look at cells in action

Posted: 03 Oct 2014 06:43 PM PDT

For hundreds of years biologists have studied cells through the lens of a microscope. With a little help from a team of engineers, these scientists could soon be donning 3-D glasses in a home-theater-like lab to take their own fantastic voyage into the petri dish.

Neurobiological basis of human-pet relationship: Mothers' brains respond differntly to images of their child and their dog

Posted: 03 Oct 2014 06:43 PM PDT

How closely does the relationship between people and their non-human companions mirror the parent-child relationship? Researchers makes a contribution to answering this complex question by investigating differences in how important brain structures are activated when women view images of their children and of their own dogs.

Pain words stand out more for those experiencing it

Posted: 03 Oct 2014 10:57 AM PDT

Ache, agony, distress and pain draw more attention than non-pain related words when it comes to people who suffer from chronic pain, a research using state-of-the-art eye-tracking technology has found.

Untangling how cables coil

Posted: 03 Oct 2014 10:57 AM PDT

Engineers together with computer scientists have developed a method that predicts the pattern of coils and tangles that a cable may form when deployed onto a rigid surface. The research combined laboratory experiments with custom-designed cables, computer-graphics technology used to animate hair in movies, and theoretical analyses.

Crumpled graphene could power future stretchable electronics

Posted: 03 Oct 2014 10:57 AM PDT

When someone crumples a sheet of paper, that usually means it's about to be thrown away. But researchers have now found that crumpling a piece of graphene "paper" -- a material formed by bonding together layers of the two-dimensional form of carbon -- can actually yield new properties that could be useful for creating extremely stretchable supercapacitors to store energy for flexible electronic devices.

Surfactants, such as soaps and detergents, do not harm the environment, study suggests

Posted: 03 Oct 2014 10:57 AM PDT

What happens to soap and detergent surfactants when they run down the drain? Do they seep into the groundwater, lakes and streams, where they could pose a risk to fish and frogs? Not likely. This is shown in a new and very comprehensive report of the potential impact on the environment of the enormous amounts of common surfactants used day in and day out by consumers all over the world.

Fast, cheap nanomanufacturing: Tiny conical tips fabricate nanoscale devices cheaply

Posted: 03 Oct 2014 10:54 AM PDT

Scientists have developed dense arrays of microscopic cones that harness electrostatic forces to eject streams of ions. The technology has a range of promising applications: depositing or etching features onto nanoscale mechanical devices; spinning out nanofibers for use in water filters, body armor, and "smart" textiles; or propulsion systems for fist-sized "nanosatellites."

Viral infection may trigger childhood diabetes in utero

Posted: 03 Oct 2014 10:54 AM PDT

A likely trigger for juvenile diabetes before birth has been identified by researchers who have put forth evidence that the autoimmune disease is initiated in utero. Women who contract a viral infection during pregnancy transmit viruses to their genetically susceptible fetuses, sparking the development of type 1 diabetes, they propose.

New discovery in the microbiology of serious human disease

Posted: 03 Oct 2014 10:53 AM PDT

Previously undiscovered secrets of how human cells interact with a bacterium which causes a serious human disease have been revealed in new research by microbiologists.

A family meal a day may keep obesity away

Posted: 03 Oct 2014 10:52 AM PDT

Increasing rates of adolescent obesity and the likelihood that obesity will carry forward into adulthood, have led to various preventive initiatives. It has been suggested that family meals, which tend to include fruits, vegetables, calcium, and whole grains, could be protective against obesity.  In a new study, researchers studied whether frequent family meals during adolescence were protective for overweight and obesity in adulthood.

Fish colon offers insight into evolution

Posted: 03 Oct 2014 10:51 AM PDT

Skates have primitive colons. This may not sound like a big deal, but it is. The discovery could change scientific understanding of evolution, of how animals emerged from water to live on land.

Making oxygen before life: Oxygen can form directly from carbon dioxide in upper atmosphere

Posted: 03 Oct 2014 06:22 AM PDT

About one-fifth of the Earth's atmosphere is oxygen, pumped out by green plants as a result of photosynthesis and used by most living things on the planet to keep our metabolisms running. Scientists have now shown that oxygen can be formed directly from carbon dioxide in the upper atmosphere, changing models of how the atmosphere evolved early in Earth's history.

Why we can't tell a Hollywood heartthrob from his stunt double

Posted: 03 Oct 2014 06:22 AM PDT

Johnny Depp has an unforgettable face. Tony Angelotti, his stunt double in 'Pirates of the Caribbean,' does not. So why is it that when they're swashbuckling on screen, audiences worldwide see them both as the same person? Scientists have pinpointed the brain mechanism by which we latch on to a particular face even when it changes.

Global database: Cattle genome cracked in detail

Posted: 03 Oct 2014 06:22 AM PDT

An international consortium of scientists has increased the detailed knowledge of the variation in the cattle genome by several orders of magnitude by creating a global database. The first generation of the new data resource, which will be open access, forms an essential tool for scientists working with cattle genetics and livestock history.

Help explain 'chemo brain' through snail research

Posted: 03 Oct 2014 06:20 AM PDT

It is estimated that as many as half of patients taking cancer drugs experience a decrease in mental sharpness. While there have been many theories, what causes "chemo brain" has eluded scientists.

New method for detecting water on Mars

Posted: 03 Oct 2014 03:45 AM PDT

An undergraduate student has helped develop a new method for detecting water on Mars. Water is a key indicator for the potential of microbial life on the red planet. While reseachers didn't see evidence of it from two sites they studied, their method could look for water elsewhere.

Genetic test reveals risk of atrial fibrillation, stroke

Posted: 03 Oct 2014 03:44 AM PDT

Many of those who are genetically predisposed to develop atrial fibrillation, which dramatically raises the risk of stroke, can be identified with a blood test, new research shows.

Hunting viruses that play hide and seek

Posted: 03 Oct 2014 03:44 AM PDT

Every year, two million children die of acute respiratory infections. Among the culprits are several different viruses, one of which your child almost certainly has had without you or the doctors ever knowing it. The good news is that researchers believe you are most likely immune after having had this virus just once.

Batteries included: A solar cell that stores its own power

Posted: 03 Oct 2014 03:43 AM PDT

Is it a solar cell? Or a rechargeable battery? Actually, the patent-pending device is both: the world's first solar battery. Scientists have succeeding in combining a battery and a solar cell into one hybrid device.

High alcohol intake linked to heightened HPV infection risk in men

Posted: 02 Oct 2014 07:12 PM PDT

A high alcohol intake is linked to a heightened risk of human papillomavirus infection among men, suggests research. The findings seem to be independent of other risk factors for the infection, such as number of sexual partners and smoking.

Second case of apparent HIV 'cure' in baby followed by reappearance of virus

Posted: 02 Oct 2014 07:11 PM PDT

A new case report is the second report of apparent viral remission followed by rebound in a baby given early ART treatment, after the case of the 'Mississippi baby' received widespread attention in the last year.

Ovarian tissue, egg freezing should be made widely available to prevent age-related infertility, say leading fertility experts

Posted: 02 Oct 2014 07:11 PM PDT

Over the past 10 years, researchers have restored the fertility of female cancer patients who would otherwise have been left infertile after treatment, having been offered oocyte cryopreservation. The technique enables women to freeze their eggs and use them at a later time to conceive a child. Several babies have been born to cancer patients using this technique, which is no longer classed as experimental.

Blood tests predict kidney disease patients' risk of developing heart failure

Posted: 02 Oct 2014 03:39 PM PDT

Kidney disease patients with detectable levels of a blood protein called high-sensitivity troponin T had up to a 5-fold increased risk of developing heart failure, research shows. Those with high levels of a protein called N-terminal pro-B-type natriuretic peptide had a nearly 10-fold increased risk of developing heart failure.

Exercise linked with improved physical, mental health among dialysis patients

Posted: 02 Oct 2014 03:39 PM PDT

Among dialysis patients, aerobic activity was linked positively with health-related quality of life and inversely with depressive symptoms and premature death. In general, patients had higher aerobic activity levels if they were treated in dialysis clinics offering exercise programs.

New pathway linking the brain to high blood pressure identified

Posted: 02 Oct 2014 03:39 PM PDT

New research has uncovered a new pathway by which the brain uses an unusual steroid to control blood pressure. The study suggests new approaches for treating high blood pressure and heart failure.

Osteoporosis treatment may also benefit breast cancer patients

Posted: 02 Oct 2014 01:27 PM PDT

Treatment approaches to reduce the risk of bone metastasis associated with breast cancer may be one step closer to becoming a reality. According to a study, findings show that medication used to treat bone deterioration in post-menopausal women may also slow skeletal metastasis caused from breast cancer. This study is among the first to link bisphosphonate use with improved survival in women with breast cancer.

'Mini-stroke' may lead to post-traumatic stress disorder

Posted: 02 Oct 2014 01:27 PM PDT

About 30 percent of transient ischemic attack or 'mini-stroke' patients had symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) results from a new study show. Those with PTSD had more depression, anxiety and reduced mental and physical quality of life. Patients overestimating their stroke risk and who don't cope with their mini-stroke well are at higher risk to develop PTSD.

Software for Google glass that provides captions for hard-of-hearing users

Posted: 02 Oct 2014 01:26 PM PDT

Speech-to-text software for Google Glass has been created that helps hard-of-hearing users with everyday conversations. A hard-of-hearing person wears Glass while a second person speaks directly into a smartphone. The speech is converted to text, sent to Glass and displayed on its heads-up display.

Gene can predict aggressive prostate cancer at diagnosis

Posted: 02 Oct 2014 01:26 PM PDT

A biomarker living next door to the KLK3 gene can predict which GS7 prostate cancer patients will have a more aggressive form of cancer, researchers have found.

Big-headed ants grow bigger when faced with fierce competitors

Posted: 02 Oct 2014 11:18 AM PDT

The big-headed ant (Pheidole megacephala) is considered one of the world's worst invasive ant species. As the name implies, its colonies include soldier ants with disproportionately large heads. Their giant, muscle-bound noggins power their biting parts, the mandibles, which they use to attack other ants and cut up prey. In a new study, researchers report that big-headed ant colonies produce larger soldiers when they encounter other ants that know how to fight back.

HIV pandemic's origins located

Posted: 02 Oct 2014 11:17 AM PDT

The present HIV pandemic almost certainly originated in Kinshasa, the capital of the Democratic Republic of the Congo, according to a new study. An international team of scientists reconstructed the genetic history of the HIV-1 group M pandemic, which saw HIV spread across Africa and around the world. Their analysis suggests that the common ancestor of group M is likely to have emerged in Kinshasa around 1920.

Study of mountain lion energetics shows the power of the pounce

Posted: 02 Oct 2014 11:17 AM PDT

High-tech collars enabled scientists to record the energetics of mountain lion hunting behavior, showing why cats use "stalk and pounce" and how they overpower large prey.

Insect diversification: Metamorphosing insects biggest contributors to insect evolution

Posted: 02 Oct 2014 11:17 AM PDT

Two new datasets on insect evolution have compiled by biologists, revealing that metamorphosing insects diversify more quickly than other insects and are therefore the biggest contributors to the evolution of insect diversity.

Factors associated with childhood brain tumors identified

Posted: 02 Oct 2014 11:16 AM PDT

Older parents, birth defects, maternal nutrition and childhood exposure to CT scans and pesticides are increasingly being associated with brain tumors in children, according to new research.

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