Science2.0

How Honeybee Queens Avoid Inbreeding

Science2.0 - April 29, 2015 - 3:20pm

Genetic variation is important in a healthy population and recombination, or crossing-over, which occurs when sperm and egg cells are formed and segments of each chromosome pair are interchanged, is a vital part of maintaining genetic variation.

Honeybees take it to a whole other level and a new study finds that the extreme recombination rates found in this species - 20X higher than humans, higher than measured in any other animal  - seem to be crucial for their survival.


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Transforming All Blood Donations Into Universal Type O

Science2.0 - April 29, 2015 - 3:07pm

Every day, thousands of people need donated blood but blood transfusions require that the blood type of the donor match that of the recipient., unless it is blood without A- or B-type antigens, such as type O, that can be given to all of those in need. Mismatched blood with A or B antigens could provoke an immune reaction and even cause death. 

For that reason, Type O is often in short supply, but science may soon have a solution. Stephen G. Withers and colleagues write in Journal of the American Chemical Society of an efficient way to transform A and B blood into a neutral type O that can be given to any patient. 


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Sanctions, Divestment: Feel-good Policies But They Often Fail

Science2.0 - April 29, 2015 - 1:26pm

Economic sanctions and divestment campaigns are attractive but often flawed tactics for accomplishing international political goals.

The social stigma the campaigns create often fails to match the economic pain these campaigns inflict, making the costs of resisting them for governments like Russia, Syria and Iran tolerable in most cases.

Indeed, sanctions succeed less than a third of the time they are imposed, according to researchers at the nonpartisan Peterson Institute for International Economics, and divestment campaigns have an even less certain track record.

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The Human Element Of Self-Driving Cars

Science2.0 - April 29, 2015 - 1:17pm

Self-driving cars are expected to revolutionize the automobile industry. Rapid advances have led to working prototypes faster than most people expected. The anticipated benefits of this emerging technology include safer, faster and more eco-friendly transportation.

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Gene Mapping Reveals Differing Roles For Soy In Breast Cancer

Science2.0 - April 29, 2015 - 1:01pm

Scientists have mapped the human genes triggered by the phytonutrients in soy, revealing the complex role the legume plays in both preventing and advancing breast cancer.


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Paleo-Eskimos And Neo-Eskimos Migrated From Alaska's North Slope

Science2.0 - April 29, 2015 - 12:47pm

New genetic testing of Iñupiat people currently living in Alaska's North Slope has determined the migration patterns and ancestral pool of the people who populated the North American Arctic over the last 5,000 years and found that all mitochondrial DNA haplogroups previously found in the ancient remains of Neo- and Paleo-Eskimos and living Inuit peoples from across the North American Arctic were found within the people living in North Slope villages.


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Underwater Volcanoes, Musicians Ridge Do The Hawaiian Bend

Science2.0 - April 29, 2015 - 12:36pm

Some of the ocean's underwater volcanoes did not erupt from hot spots in the Earth's mantle but instead formed from cracks or fractures in the oceanic crust, which would help explain the spectacular bend in the famous underwater range known as the Hawaiian-Emperor seamount chain, where the bottom half kinks at a sixty degree angle to the east of its top half. 

It has long been accepted that as the Earth's plates move over fixed hot spots in its underlying mantle, resulting eruptions create chains of now extinct underwater volcanoes or 'seamounts'.


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Cold Case Tibet: Climate Change Implicated In Collapse 4,000 Years Ago

Science2.0 - April 29, 2015 - 12:28pm
Climate change may have been be responsible for the abrupt collapse of civilization on the fringes of the Tibetan Plateau around 2,000 B.C. - but it wasn't the modern political connotation of climate change, with man-made carbon dioxide causing warming, it was global cooling.
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Stem-Cell-Based Therapy For Breast Cancer Metastases In The Brain Promising

Science2.0 - April 29, 2015 - 12:13pm

Researchers have developed a mouse model of brain-metastatic breast cancer and found the potential of stem-cell-based therapy to eliminate metastatic cells from the brain and prolong survival is strong.

The research team developed a mouse model that closely mimics what is seen in patients. They found that injecting into the carotid artery breast cancer cells that express markers allowing them to enter the brain - cells labeled with bioluminescent and fluorescent markers to enable tracking by imaging technologies - resulted in the formation of many metastatic tumors throughout the brain, mimicking what is seen in advanced breast cancer patients. Current therapeutic options for such patients are limited, particularly when there are many metastases. 


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Endogenous Material For Artificial Blood Vessels

Science2.0 - April 29, 2015 - 3:04am

Blocked blood vessels can quickly become dangerous so it's often necessary to replace them, either by another vessel taken from the body or with artificial vascular prostheses. A new project has developed artificial blood vessels made from a special elastomer material, which has excellent mechanical properties and over time, these artificial blood vessels are replaced by
endogenous material
 so that by the end of this restorative process, a natural, fully functional vessel is once again in place. 

The work in rats was conducted by Vienna University of Technology and Vienna Medical University.


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One-Shot Learning: Now With A Switch

Science2.0 - April 28, 2015 - 11:23pm

Most of the time, we learn only gradually, incrementally building connections between actions or events and outcomes. But there are exceptions--every once in a while, something happens and we immediately learn to associate that stimulus with a result. For example, maybe you have had bad service at a store once and sworn that you will never shop there again.


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Mental Health Disorders Don't Predict Future Violence - Except In One Group

Science2.0 - April 28, 2015 - 10:30pm

Most psychiatric disorders - including depression -- do not predict future violent behavior, according to a longitudinal study of delinquent youth. Some delinquent youth with current psychiatric illness may also be violent - males with mania were more than twice as likely to report current violence than those without - but those relationships are not necessarily causal. 

The one exception is when there is substance abuse and dependence. That was a predictor of violence in people with psychiatric conditions.


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At The NHS, Diversity Does Not Lead To Better Quality

Science2.0 - April 28, 2015 - 10:00pm

A new study found that alternative providers of primary care in the UK's NHS do not perform as well as traditional GP practices.


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When It Comes To Learning, Kids Do Think Better On Their Feet

Science2.0 - April 28, 2015 - 9:30pm

Since 2006, some schools have been giving up desks in the belief that sedentary education is doing a disservice to children. Another study adds to that debate. The Texas A&M Health Science Center School of Public Health finds students with standing desks are more attentive than their seated counterparts, with 12 percent greater on-task engagement in classrooms with standing desks 

 The findings were based on a study of almost 300 children in second through fourth grade who were observed over the course of a school year. Engagement was measured by on-task behaviors such as answering a question, raising a hand or participating in active discussion and off-task behaviors like talking out of turn.


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Calcium Sensing Receptor: Asthma's Potential Root Cause And A Novel Treatment

Science2.0 - April 28, 2015 - 9:00pm

Researchers have described the role of the calcium sensing receptor (CaSR) in causing asthma, a disease which affects 300 million people worldwide, by using mouse models of asthma and human airway tissue from asthmatic and non-asthmatic people.


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Parent Training Reduces Disruptive Behavior In Autistic Kids

Science2.0 - April 28, 2015 - 8:30pm

Up to 6 out of 1,000 children worldwide may be on the spectrum of an autistic disorder (ASD) and 50 percent of those kids demonstrate serious and disruptive behavior, including tantrums, aggression, self-injury and noncompliance. For children with ASD, serious disruptive behavior interrupts daily functioning and social skills development, limits their ability to benefit from education and speech therapy, can increase social isolation and intensify caregiver stress. 

Luc Lecavalier and colleagues from The Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center conducted a 24-week parent training study designed to effectively reduce serious behavioral problems in young children with ASD. 


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What Happens When MSs Patients Stop Taking Medication?

Science2.0 - April 28, 2015 - 8:02pm

What happens when a patient with multiple sclerosis (MS) who is clinically stable stops taking their medication?

An international, multi-site study found almost 40 percent of patients had some disease activity return after they stopped, according to research presented at the American Academy of Neurology Annual Meeting last week.

"Despite long periods of disease stability while taking medication, we found a large minority of patients who stopped experienced relapses or disability progression," says lead study author Ilya Kister, MD, an assistant professor of neurology at the NYU Langone Multiple Sclerosis Comprehensive Care Center. "We need to identify situations when it is safe for patients with MS to stop taking these medications."


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What Business Discipline To Major In?

Science2.0 - April 28, 2015 - 7:14pm
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What Business Discipline To Major In?

Science2.0 - April 28, 2015 - 7:02pm

You may find these remarks cynical. You may find them helpful.

Strategy

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Why Are Earthquakes Still So Hard To Predict?

Science2.0 - April 28, 2015 - 7:00pm

Can earthquakes ever be predicted? This question is timely after the magnitude 7.8 earthquake that struck Nepal recently. If authorities had more warning that the earthquake was coming, they may have been able to save more lives.

While Nepal is a documented area of previous seismic activity, at the moment there is no technique that provides predictions of sufficient clarity to allow for evacuations at short notice. So if we cannot predict these events now, are there avenues of research to provide useful predictions in the future?

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