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Science current events and breaking science news on health, climate change, nanotechnology, the environment, stem cells, global warming, current cancer research, physics, biology, computer science, astronomy, endangered species and alternative energy.

Researchers discover molecular approach to promote cancer cell death

Lung cancer researchers at Winship Cancer Institute of Emory University have discovered a novel strategy to exploit apoptosis, a form of programmed cell death, for the treatment of lung cancer.

Savannahs slow climate change

Tropical rainforests have long been considered the Earth's lungs, sequestering large amounts of carbon dioxide from the atmosphere and thereby slowing down the increasing greenhouse effect and associated human-made climate change.

Supercomputer unlocks secrets of plant cells to pave the way for more resilient crops

Scientists from IBM Research and the Universities of Melbourne and Queensland have moved a step closer to identifying the nanostructure of cellulose -- the basic structural component of plant cell walls.

Scientists unveil prostate cancer's 'Rosetta Stone'

Almost 90 per cent of men with advanced prostate cancer carry genetic mutations in their tumours that could be targeted by either existing or new cancer drugs, a landmark new study reveals.

Lawrence Livermore researchers use seismic signals to track above-ground explosions

Lawrence Livermore researchers have determined that a tunnel bomb explosion by Syrian rebels was less than 60 tons as claimed by sources.

Hubble observes one-of-a-kind star nicknamed 'Nasty'

Astronomers using NASA's Hubble Space Telescope have uncovered surprising new clues about a hefty, rapidly aging star whose behavior has never been seen before in our Milky Way galaxy.

Clinical trial shows intuitive control of robotic arm using thought

Paralyzed from the neck down after suffering a gunshot wound when he was 21, Erik G. Sorto now can move a robotic arm just by thinking about it and using his imagination.

Eastern diamondback rattlesnakes' quest for fire

Two words that arouse immediate fear in some people inspire something else altogether in Jennifer Fill.

People with depression may be more likely to develop Parkinson's disease

People with depression may be more likely to develop Parkinson's disease, according to a large study by researchers at Umeå University, Sweden.

Obese teens' brains unusually susceptible to food commercials, Dartmouth study finds

A Dartmouth study finds that TV food commercials disproportionately stimulate the brains of overweight teen-agers, including the regions that control pleasure, taste and -- most surprisingly -- the mouth, suggesting they mentally simulate unhealthy eating habits.

Fine particulate air pollution associated with increased risk of childhood autism

Exposure to fine particulate air pollution during pregnancy through the first two years of a child's life may be associated with an increased risk of the child developing autism spectrum disorder (ASD), a condition that affects one in 68 children, according to a University of Pittsburgh Graduate School of Public Health investigation of children in southwestern Pennsylvania.

What would it take to limit climate change to 1.5¬°C?

Limiting temperature rise by 2100 to less than 1.5¬°C is feasible, at least from a purely technological standpoint, according to the study published in the journal Nature Climate Change by researchers at the International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis (IIASA), the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research (PIK), and others.

Cooling the cloud: Binghamton Ph.D. student sets sights on improving data-center efficiency

Data centers -- large clusters of servers that power cloud computing operations, e-commerce and more -- are one of the largest and fastest-growing consumers of electricity in the United States.

Enhancing knowledge crucial to improving energy-saving behaviors, study shows

Increasing public knowledge and understanding about energy issues is vital if improved energy-saving behaviours are to be encouraged among individuals and organisations, a study suggests.

From reverberating chaos to concert halls, good acoustics is culturally subjective

Play a flute in Carnegie Hall, and the tone will resonate and fill the space. Play that same flute in the Grand Canyon, and the sound waves will crash against the rock walls, folding back in on each other in sonic chaos.

Inland ice in Antarctica melting fast

Many glaciers on the Southern Antarctic Peninsula (SAP) -- a region previously thought to be stable compared to other glacier masses in Antarctica -- became destabilized in 2009, and they have been melting at accelerating rates ever since, researchers say.

Blood to feeling: McMaster scientists turn blood into neural cells

Scientists at McMaster University have discovered how to make adult sensory neurons from human patients simply by having them roll up their sleeve and providing a blood sample.

Estuaries protect Dungeness crabs from deadly parasites

Parasitic worms can pose a serious threat to the Dungeness crab, a commercially important fishery species found along the west coast of North America.

EBV co-infection may boost malaria mortality in childhood

Many people who live in sub-Saharan Africa develop a natural immunity to malaria, through repeated exposure to Plasmodium parasites.

Obesity and weight loss change splicing pattern of obesity and type 2 diabetes genes

Alternative splicing of obesity and type 2 diabetes related genes may contribute to the pathophysiology of obesity, according to research from the University of Eastern Finland. Obesity leads to changes in the splicing pattern of metabolically relevant genes such as TCF7L2 and INSR, resulting in impaired insulin action.

Ledipasvir plus sofosbuvir: Hint of added benefit in further patient group

The German Institute for Quality and Efficiency in Health Care (IQWiG) has assessed documents subsequently submitted by the drug manufacturer in the commenting procedure on the dossier assessment of the fixed-dose drug combination of ledipasvir and sofosbuvir (trade name: Harvoni).

Bacteria cooperate to repair damaged siblings

A University of Wyoming faculty member led a research team that discovered a certain type of soil bacteria can use their social behavior of outer membrane exchange (OME) to repair damaged cells and improve the fitness of the bacteria population as a whole.

Anti-stroke drug effective treatment for middle-ear infections, researchers say

An existing anti-stroke drug is an effective treatment for middle-ear infections, showing the ability to suppress mucus overproduction, improve bacterial clearance and reduce hearing loss, according to researchers at Georgia State University and the University of Rochester.

EARTH: Flames fan lasting fallout from Chernobyl

In the years following the 1986 Chernobyl nuclear disaster, forest fires billowed plumes of contaminated smoke, carrying radioactive particles throughout Europe on the wind.

Team publishes findings about compound with potential for treating rheumatoid arthritis

Montana State University researchers and their collaborators have published their findings about a chemical compound that shows potential for treating rheumatoid arthritis.

Personalized care during eye visits didn't lower HbA1c levels for diabetics

Providing personalized education and risk assessment for patients with diabetes when they visit the ophthalmologist did not improve glycemic control as measured by hemoglobin A1c levels compared with patients who received usual care, according to a study published online by JAMA Ophthalmology.

Requiem for an ancient tongue worm

Researchers have discovered the 425-million-year-old fossil remains of a new species of parasite, still attached to the host animal it invaded long ago.

Endocrine-disrupting chemicals in baby teethers

In laboratory tests, two out of ten teethers, plastic toys used to sooth babies' teething ache, release endocrine disrupting chemicals. One product contains parabens, which are normally used as preservatives in cosmetics, while the second contains six so-far unidentified endocrine disruptors.

Cost of wages and lack of competence the greatest obstacles to productivity improvement

According to small and medium-sized enterprises, sizable social security and other wage-related costs still form the single greatest obstacle for improving productivity.

Symbiosis turns messy in 13-year cicadas

Bacteria that live in the guts of cicadas have split into many separate but interdependent species in a strange evolutionary phenomenon that leaves them reliant on a bloated genome, a new paper by CIFAR Fellow John McCutcheon's lab (University of Montana) has found.

Turn that defect upside down

Most people see defects as flaws. A few Michigan Technological University researchers, however, see them as opportunities.

Switching off brain circuit renders mice 'out of touch' with environment

The sense of touch is important but often taken for granted in daily life because it seems simple and automatic. New research suggests that the apparent simplicity of tactile sensation comes from a clever two-stage brain circuit.

Snacking on protein can improve appetite control and diet quality in teens

Although eating high-protein, afternoon snacks can aid appetite control in adults, little information exists to guide parents on what types of snacks might benefit their adolescent children.

Anticipating temptation may reduce unethical behavior, research finds

Why do good people do bad things? It's a question that has been pondered for centuries, and new research published by the Society for Personality and Social Psychology may offer some insights about when people succumb to versus resist ethical temptations.

Plant receptors with built-in decoys make pathogens betray themselves

Receptors carrying built-in decoys are the latest discovery in the evolutionary battle between plants and pathogens. The decoy domains within the receptor detect pathogens and raise the cell's alarm when there is an infection.

Research identifies best treatment for blood pressure in diabetic kidney disease

Blood pressure lowering drugs do not improve life expectancy among adults with diabetes and kidney disease, a new study of the global evidence published today in The Lancet reveals.

Premature aging: Scientists identify and correct defects in diseased cells

Scientists from the Institut Pasteur and CNRS, in collaboration with scientists from the Institut Gustave Roussy and CEA, have succeeded in restoring normal activity in cells isolated from patients with the premature aging disease Cockayne syndrome.

Best and safest blood pressure treatments in kidney and diabetes patients compiled

The first definitive summary of the best and safest blood pressure lowering treatments for kidney disease and diabetes patients has been compiled by New Zealand doctor and researcher Associate Professor Suetonia Palmer.

Faster heart rate linked to diabetes risk

An association between resting heart rate and diabetes suggests that heart rate measures could identify individuals with a higher future risk of diabetes, according to an international team of researchers.

How supercooled water is prevented from turning into ice

Water behaves in mysterious ways. Especially below zero, where it is dubbed supercooled water, before it turns into ice.

Odds are that chronic gamblers are often also depressed

If a young man is a chronic gambler, the chances are extremely high that he also suffers from depression.

CWRU dental researchers find some immune cells change to prolong inflammation

Researchers at Case Western Reserve University School of Dental Medicine have unraveled one of the mysteries of how a small group of immune cells work: That some inflammation-fighting immune cells may actually convert into cells that trigger disease.

Douglas study on neurogenesis in the olfactory bulb

A new study published by the team of Naguib Mechawar, Ph.D., a researcher at the Douglas Institute (CIUSSS de l'Ouest-de-l'èle-de-Montréal) and Associate Professor in the Department of Psychiatry at McGill University, suggests that the integration of new neurons in the adult brain is a phenomenon more generally compromised in the brains of depressed patients.

All sounds made equal in melancholy

The room is loud with chatter. Glasses clink. Soft music, perhaps light jazz or strings, fills the air. Amidst all of these background sounds, it can be difficult to understand what an adjacent person is saying.

Head injuries could result in neurodegenerative disease in rugby union players

A new article publishing online today in the Quarterly Journal of Medicine has reported the first case showing an association between exposure to head injuries in rugby union players and an increased risk in neurodegenerative disease.

Experts map surgical approaches for auditory brainstem implantation

A technique called auditory brainstem implantation can restore hearing for patients who can't benefit from cochlear implants.

Smoking and drug abuse could more than triple annual ER visits

Smokers are four times more likely than non-smokers to become frequent visitors of emergency rooms.

Human stem cell model reveals molecular cues critical to neurovascular unit formation

Crucial bodily functions we depend on but don't consciously think about -- things like heart rate, blood flow, breathing and digestion -- are regulated by the neurovascular unit.

Time is muscle in acute heart failure

Urgent diagnosis and treatment in acute heart failure has been emphasised for the first time in joint recommendations published today in European Heart Journal.

Pliability, elasticity of skin increase following wrinkle treatment with Botox

Skin pliability and elasticity improved after treatment with onabotulinum toxin (Botox) for mild facial wrinkles and the effect lasted for up to four months, according to a report published online by JAMA Facial Plastic Surgery.

Study uses farm data to aid in slowing evolution of herbicide-resistant weeds

The widespread evolution of herbicide-resistant weeds is costing farmers, especially through decreases in productivity and profitability. Although researchers and industry personnel have made recommendations to slow this evolution, an understanding of the patterns and causes of the resistance has been limited.

Subconscious learning shapes pain responses

In a new study led from Sweden's Karolinska Institutet, researchers report that people can be conditioned to associate images with particular pain responses - such as improved tolerance to pain - even when they are not consciously aware of the images.

Low stent thrombosis rates with primary PCI, regardless of antithrombotic choice

Stent thrombosis following urgent angioplasty for acute heart attack occurred in less than 1% of patients in a large, "real-world" registry, regardless of whether the antithrombotic treatment used during the procedure was bivalirudin, heparin alone, or a GP IIb/IIIa inhibitor (typically in combination with heparin).

Continuous glucose monitoring with real-time measurement devices has added benefit

Patients with insulin-dependent diabetes can better control their HbA1c value with a combination of blood glucose self-monitoring (BGSM) and continuous interstitial glucose monitoring (CGM) using a real-time measurement device (real-time CGM) than with BGSM alone without severe or serious hypoglycaemia occurring more frequently.

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