- New technique could harvest more of the sun's energy
- Warmer Pacific Ocean could release millions of tons of seafloor methane
- Ancient balloon-shaped animal fossil sheds light on Earth's ancient seas
- Injectable 3-D vaccines could fight cancer, infectious diseases
- New model for snake venom evolution proposed
- A pill for obesity? Stem cell scientists convert white fat to brown fat
- Barrier-breaking drug may lead to spinal cord injury treatments
Posted: 09 Dec 2014 07:18 AM PST
As solar panels become less expensive and capable of generating more power, solar energy is becoming a more commercially viable alternative source of electricity. However, the photovoltaic cells now used to turn sunlight into electricity can only absorb and use a small fraction of that light, and that means a significant amount of solar energy goes untapped. A new technology represents a first step toward harnessing that lost energy.
Posted: 09 Dec 2014 07:12 AM PST
Water off Washington's coast is warming a third of a mile down, where seafloor methane shifts from a frozen solid to a gas. Calculations suggest ocean warming is already releasing significant methane offshore of Alaska to Northern California.
Posted: 09 Dec 2014 05:16 AM PST
A rare 520-million-year-old fossil shaped like a 'squashed bird's nest' that will help to shed new light on life within Earth's ancient seas has been discovered in China by an international research team. The fossil is of a probable 'chancelloriid', a group of bizarre, balloon-shaped animals with an outer skeleton of defensive spines.
Posted: 08 Dec 2014 02:07 PM PST
A non-surgical injection of programmable biomaterial that spontaneously assembles in vivo into a 3-D structure could fight and even help prevent cancer and also infectious disease such as HIV, scientists have demonstrated. Tiny biodegradable rod-like structures made from silica, known as mesoporous silica rods (MSRs), can be loaded with biological and chemical drug components and then delivered by needle just underneath the skin, they explain.
Posted: 08 Dec 2014 12:26 PM PST
Researchers have found genetic evidence that highly toxic venom proteins were evolutionarily 'born' from non-toxic genes, which have other ordinary jobs around the body, such as regulation of cellular functions or digestion of food.
Posted: 08 Dec 2014 11:55 AM PST
Researchers have taken what they are describing as 'the first step toward a pill that can replace the treadmill' for the control of obesity -- though it, of course, would not provide all the additional benefits of exercise. The researchers have already identified two compounds that can accomplish that in human cells.
Posted: 03 Dec 2014 11:25 AM PST
Injections of a new drug may partially relieve paralyzing spinal cord injuries, based on indications from a study in rats. Every year, tens of thousands of people are paralyzed by spinal cord injuries. The injuries crush and sever the long axons of spinal cord nerve cells, blocking communication between the brain and the body and resulting in paralysis below the injury. On a hunch, researchers came up with the idea of designing a drug that would help axons regenerate without having to touch the healing spinal cord, as current treatments may require. The results, they say, are "amazing."
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