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Wednesday, December 10, 2014

ScienceDaily: Top Science News

ScienceDaily: Top Science News

Metal test could help diagnose breast cancer early

Posted: 09 Dec 2014 09:01 AM PST

It may be possible to develop a simple blood test that, by detecting changes in the zinc in our bodies, could help to diagnose breast cancer early, scientists say. In a world-first, the researchers were able to show that changes in the isotopic composition of zinc, which can be detected in a person's breast tissue, could make it possible to identify a 'biomarker' (a measurable indicator) of early breast cancer.

New technique could harvest more of the sun's energy

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.

How pace of climate change will challenge ectotherms

Posted: 09 Dec 2014 07:18 AM PST

40 years of data has been analyzed to outline climate change challenge for ectotherms (animals who rely on external sources of heat to control body temperature). The research showed that many groups of ectotherms, which make up more than 90 percent of all animals, are able to change their physiological function to cope with an altered environment, but the rapid pace and fluctuations of human-induced climate change present serious challenges.

Temperature anomalies are warming faster than Earth's average, study finds

Posted: 09 Dec 2014 07:13 AM PST

It's widely known that the Earth's average temperature has been rising. But new research finds that spatial patterns of extreme temperature anomalies -- readings well above or below the mean -- are warming even faster than the overall average. It may seem counterintuitive that global warming would be accompanied by colder winter weather at some locales. But scientists say the observation aligns with theories about climate change, which hold that amplified warming in the Arctic region produces changes in the jet stream, which can result in extended periods of cold weather at some locations in the mid-northern latitudes.

Warmer Pacific Ocean could release millions of tons of seafloor methane

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.

Are you helping your toddler's aggressive behavior? Link between affectionate parenting, language development, aggression explored

Posted: 09 Dec 2014 07:10 AM PST

Physical aggression in toddlers has been thought to be associated with the frustration caused by language problems, but a recent study shows that this isn't the case. The researchers did find, however, that parental behaviors may influence the development of an association between the two problems during early childhood. Frequent hitting, kicking, and a tendency to bite or push others are examples of physical aggression observed in toddlers.

Astronomers identify gas spirals as a nursery of twin stars through ALMA

Posted: 09 Dec 2014 05:16 AM PST

Astronomers have found spiral arms of molecular gas and dust around the "baby twin" stars, binary protostars. Gas motions to supply materials to the twin were also identified. These observational results unveil, for the first time, the mechanism of the birth and growth of binary stars, which are ubiquitous throughout the universe.

Ancient balloon-shaped animal fossil sheds light on Earth's ancient seas

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.

Injectable 3-D vaccines could fight cancer, infectious diseases

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.

Adult-onset diabetes, obesity cured in lab mice, scientists report

Posted: 08 Dec 2014 11:44 AM PST

A new treatment for adult-onset diabetes and obesity has essentially cured lab animals of obesity, diabetes and associated lipid abnormalities through improved glucose sensitivity, reduced appetite and enhanced calorie burning.

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