November 14, 2012

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Bactrian Camel Genome Might Help Survival in Harsh Environments

bactrian-camel

Bactrian camels have sky-high blood glucose levels, a diet loaded with salt and tend to pack away fat. These evolutionary adaptations help them survive in extremely dry and cold regions of the world. The scientists published their findings in the journal Nature Communications. Chinese and Mongolian researchers have begun to unravel the genomic particularities behind […]

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November 14, 2012

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Jellyfish-Inspired Microchip Can Be Used to Capture Cancer Cells

jellyfish-microchip

Scientists have built a jellyfish-inspired microchip that can capture cancer and other rare cells in human blood. The scientists published their findings in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. Jellyfish capture food particles with their long tentacles, which are equipped with repeating patterns of sticky structures. Researchers at Brigham and Women’s Hospital […]

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November 14, 2012

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Astronomers Discover a Probable Free-Floating Planet, CFBDSIR2149

free-floating planet

Using the Canada-France-Hawaii Telescope and ESO’s Very Large Telescope, astronomers discovered CFBDSIR2149, a large free-floating object near the AB Doradus Moving Group. Astronomers using ESO’s Very Large Telescope and the Canada-France-Hawaii Telescope have identified a body that is very probably a planet wandering through space without a parent star. This is the most exciting free-floating […]

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November 14, 2012

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New Study Indicates False Memories Linger For Years

inception-false-memory

Each time a memory is recalled, the memory is imperfectly re-stitched by the brain. Memories retain familiarity but can be filled with holes that have worn down with time. Research has shown that it is fairly easy to take advantage of our fallible memory. Simply changing a word in a question can contort what people […]

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November 14, 2012

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NASA’s 3-D Printing of Rocket Engine Parts Might Boost Larger Manufacturing Trend

first test piece produced on the M2 Cusing Machine

NASA’s Space Launch System (SLS) is its first heavy-lift booster rocket since Saturn 5 took US astronauts to the moon. SLS will play a central role in the future of American spaceflight, but might also provide a critical test for technology expected to revamp the country’s ailing manufacturing industry. Selective Laser Melting (SLM) is being […]

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November 14, 2012

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Deforestation Adds More Atmospheric CO2 than the Sum Total of Cars & Trucks on the World’s Roads

deforestation-argentina-independent

Deforestation in tropical rainforests adds more carbon dioxide to the Earth’s atmosphere than the sum total of cars and trucks on the world’s roads. Cars and trucks account for 14% of global carbon emissions, while most analysts attribute 15% to deforestation. One of the reasons why logging is bad for the climate is that when […]

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November 14, 2012

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Duke University Creates “Perfect” Microwave Cloak

duke-unversity-microwave-cloak

Scientists have been able to successfully cloak an object, rendering a centimeter-scale cylinder invisible to microwaves. Many different invisibility cloaks have been demonstrated, but all of those reflect some of the incidental light, making the illusion incomplete. This is the first to cloak an object perfectly. The scientists published their findings in the journal Nature […]

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November 14, 2012

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Whole-Genome Analysis Identifies the Source of a Recent MRSA Outbreak

methicillin-resistant-staphylococcus-aureus

In Cambridge, UK, there was a superbug outbreak at a special-care neonatal unit that lasted several months last year. Thanks to insights gained from whole-genome sequencing, the outbreak was stopped. The scientists reported their findings in the journal Lancet Infectious Disease. This is the first time that scientists have sequenced pathogen genomes to actively control […]

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November 14, 2012

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Data Reveals That the Orion Nebula Cluster is a Mix of Two Clusters

Orion nebula

Using a combination of optical, infrared, and mid-infrared data, a team of astronomers revealed that the star cluster known as NGC 1980 is a distinct massive cluster of slightly older stars in front of the Orion nebula. Using images from the 340 Mpx MegaCam camera on the Canada-France-Hawaii Telescope (CFHT) from the summit of Mauna […]

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November 13, 2012

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Aversion to Clashing Harmonies is Due to Mathematical Relationships of Overtones

headphones-music-kid

There are many people who dislike clashing dissonances of some modernist composers. It’s been long thought that dissonant musical chords contain acoustic frequencies that interfere with another, disturbing people. Now, a new study indicates that humans prefer consonant chords because of the mathematical relationship between the many different frequencies that make up the sounds. The […]

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November 13, 2012

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Bacterial Disease Threatens Coconut Gene Bank

Vahine-Island-Coconut-Trees

A bacterial disease outbreak is threatening a collection of 3,200 coconut palms in the South Pacific. This gene bank is located in Papua New Guinea and is part of an international collection of the South Pacific’s coconut species. The warning was issued at a meeting of the pacific coconut research and development strategy in Samoa […]

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November 13, 2012

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Chimps and Humans Harbor Similar Gut Enterotypes

humans and chimpanzees share the same three distinct communities of bacteria in their guts

A team of scientists have discovered that humans and chimpanzees share the same three distinct communities of bacteria in their guts. In the last few years, scientists have made great inroads in understanding the crucial interactive role gut bacteria play in harvesting nutrients, assisting immune systems, and protecting the host against pathogens. Now Yale University […]

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November 13, 2012

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Canadian Park Biologists Aim to Eradicate Rats in Queen Charlotte Islands

rats-trapped-cage

The Queen Charlotte Islands are a biodiverse archipelago and Parks Canada has been trying to restore the balance in the ecosystem by getting rid of rats, which seem to be the main culprits of hobbling the ecosystem. The Queen Charlotte Islands were invaded by rats three centuries ago, and are being restored to their original […]

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November 13, 2012

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UK’s 90 Million Ash Trees Are Likely to be Wiped Out

ash-dieback-uk

The UK’s new plan that will deal with ash disease might not come in time, as most of the country’s 90 million ash trees are likely to be wiped out. Ash dieback is caused by the fungus Chalara fraxinea and it will probably kill 99% of the ash trees in the UK. Diseased trees will […]

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November 13, 2012

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Fungal Meningitis Has New Appetite for Human Brains

Meningitis-Outbreak

In the USA, an ongoing fungal meningitis outbreak has killed 30 people and sickened another 419. The fungus responsible has never wrecked such havoc before. Exserohilum rostratum is a plant-eating generalist fungus that has a spore-launching mechanism ideal for airborne infection. It is usually found in grasses, but it will dine on anything, including humans. […]

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