Science2.0

Typhoon Haiyan May Contaminate Philippines Aquifer For Years

Science2.0 - April 17, 2015 - 1:00pm

In 2013, Typhoon Haiyan killed more than 6,000 people and destroying nearly $3 billion worth of property in the Philippines. While the country is still recovering from the storm, researchers have found that an aquifer on the island of Samar inundated with salt water by the storm surge could remain undrinkable for up to 10 years - a second aquifer on the island that was also inundated has recovered much more quickly.

Geology and infrastructure play key roles in determining whether aquifers that provide drinking water are inundated with seawater during a typhoon or hurricane and how long the contamination lasts.


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3 Easy Steps To Making Beer The Scientific Way

Science2.0 - April 17, 2015 - 1:00pm

Karin Heineman, Inside Science TV –  Beer! Most Americans choose it over all other alcoholic beverages.

It's also one of the world's oldest beverages. In fact the first evidence of beer production dates back to Ancient Egypt and Mesopotamia in the fifth millennium BC. People have been brewing beer for a very long time, even before anyone really understood what turns its ingredients into alcohol.

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Genetic Modification Led To Maize Roots Evolving To Be More Nitrogen Efficient

Science2.0 - April 17, 2015 - 12:30pm
Genetic modification of maize over the last century has led to desirable shoot characteristics and increased yield - and that likely contributed to the evolution of root systems that are more efficient in acquiring nutrients, such as nitrogen, from the soil, according to a new study. 

About half of the yield gains in commercial corn in the last 100 years has come from improved plant genetics, explained Larry York, a postdoctoral research fellow at the University of Nottingham. The other half came largely from agronomic practices, such as fertilizer use and higher planting densities. 
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Professional Golf: For Most It Is A Lonely Life On A Meager Income

Science2.0 - April 17, 2015 - 2:25am
If you just watched the Master's Tournament in Augusta, Georgia, you saw the second-youngest player ever to win. That is a pretty good way for a young man to spend the next year.

But for most golfers, like most young baseball players, the reality is much different. 

An EPGA tour player for 12 years commented to Dr. John Fry of Myerscough College on the life: "The word that jumps in my head is lonely".
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Myth: You Have To Finish All Your Antibiotics

Science2.0 - April 16, 2015 - 11:11pm

Most people believe – and have been told by health professionals – that it’s essential to finish a course of antibiotics to prevent antibiotic resistance.

But this advice is not only wrong, it could actually be harmful.

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LEM - Newly Discovered Protein Boosts Immunity To Cancer

Science2.0 - April 16, 2015 - 9:53pm
A newly discovered protein plays a central role in promoting immunity to viruses and cancer, according to experiments in mice and human cells.

 The hitherto unknown protein, which the researchers named lymphocyte expansion molecule, or LEM, modulates the proliferation of human T cells as well as in mice, by promoting the proliferation of cytotoxic T cells, which kill cancer cells and cells infected with viruses.

The discovery was unexpected because the new protein had no known function and doesn't resemble any other protein. Researchers from Imperial College London who led the study are now developing a gene therapy designed to boost the infection-fighting cells, and hope to begin human trials in three years. 
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Do All These Health Awareness Day Campaigns Actually Help Anyone?

Science2.0 - April 16, 2015 - 9:44pm
In 2014, there were almost 200 health awareness days, weeks or months on the 2014 U.S. Department of Health and Human Services' National Health Observances calendar.  

Since there are only 250 days in a working year, that means one day each week was not given over to some kind of health awareness effort. H.H.S. says their mission is to advocate for "evidence-based" interventions for health problems, so what evidence did they use that 200 health "awareness" campaigns were making a difference? Are they really helping anyone, or is it just less-successful attempts to get people to dump water on their own heads?
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No Batteries Required - New Camera Runs Forever

Science2.0 - April 16, 2015 - 9:12pm

A research team has created a prototype video camera that is fully self-powered.

Solar panels and digital cameras obviously have different purposes - one converts light to power while the other simply measures it - but both are constructed from essentially the same components. At the heart of any digital camera is an image sensor, a chip with millions of pixels. The key enabling device in a pixel is the photodiode, which produces an electric current when exposed to light. This mechanism enables each pixel to measure the intensity of light falling on it. The same photodiode is also used in solar panels to convert incident light to electric power. 


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SAYE: Herbal Tea Combats Malaria

Science2.0 - April 16, 2015 - 8:49pm

Malaria is a critical health problem in West Africa, 11 percent of deaths are related to it, but for a variety of reasons they have more confidence in alternative medicine than they do modern health care practices. 

However, some herbal medicines work and an analysis of the pharmacological properties of an herbal medication derived from Cochlospermum planchonii (a shrubby weed known as N'Dribala), Phyllanthus amarus and Cassia alata shows that it may be the case with SAYE, which means “jaundice” in the Dioula language. 

When combined with leaves and aerial portions of the latter two plants and formulated as a tea,
C. planchonii


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Recurrent Miscarriages Could Be Linked To Body Clock Genes

Science2.0 - April 16, 2015 - 8:00pm

It is estimated that 5% of women experience two clinical miscarriages and approximately 1% suffer three or more losses. 

Researchers at the University of Warwick and University Hospitals Coventry and Warwickshire (UHCW) NHS Trust have found that body clock genes could affect women's ability to have children. The study pinpoints how body clock genes are temporarily switched off in the lining of the womb to allow an embryo to implant. Timing of this event is critical for pregnancy. 


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Why Not Ask The Public What Works To Get People Into Clinical Trials?

Science2.0 - April 16, 2015 - 7:30pm

While a debate was raging between scientists and government regulators on how best to explain to patients the risks of participating in clinical research studies that compare standardized treatments, a team of bioethicists boldly went where no experts had gone before -- to the public.

The response? Keep it simple, but always ask permission, even when the research only involves gathering data from anonymized medical records. 


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Cannabidiol: Marijuana Extract May Bring Hope For Children With Severe Epilepsy

Science2.0 - April 16, 2015 - 7:00pm

A liquid form of marijuana shows promise as a treatment for children with severe epilepsy, according to a study released today which involved 213 people, ranging from toddlers to adults, with a median age of 11 who had severe epilepsy that did not respond to other treatments.

Participants had Dravet syndrome and Lennox-Gastaut syndrome, epilepsy types that can lead to intellectual disability and lifelong seizures, as well as 10 other types of severe epilepsy. 


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Want To Get Men Donating Online? Feature A Woman And Make It Competitive

Science2.0 - April 16, 2015 - 6:24pm
A real-world analysis of human behavior finds that men treat online giving as a competitive enterprise: Men will donate four times more money to an attractive female fundraiser if they feel like they are in competition with another male, which evolutionary psychologists contend is a subconscious sexual mandate based on biology.
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Artificial Photosynthesis: Solar-Powered Green Chemistry Rehabilitates CO2

Science2.0 - April 16, 2015 - 6:00pm
A breakthrough in artificial photosynthesis has been achieved with the development of  a hybrid system of semiconducting nanowires and bacteria that can capture carbon dioxide emissions before they are vented into the atmosphere and then, powered by solar energy, convert that carbon dioxide into valuable chemical products, including biodegradable plastics, pharmaceutical drugs and liquid fuels. 

The system mimics the natural photosynthetic process by which plants use the energy in sunlight to synthesize carbohydrates from carbon dioxide and water but this artificial photosynthetic system synthesizes the combination of carbon dioxide and water into acetate, the most common building block today for biosynthesis.
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For Academic Grad School Advice, Women And Minorities Should Prepare To Be Ignored

Science2.0 - April 16, 2015 - 5:33pm

The humanities are considered the least discriminatory academic discipline - known cases of discrimination do not reach statistical significance - but women and minorities are still collectively ignored at 1.4 times the rate of Caucasian males when seeking guidance about their futures.
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Eyes Are On The James Webb Space Telescope As Hubble's 25th Anniversary Approaches

Science2.0 - April 16, 2015 - 5:02pm
With the 25th anniversary of the Hubble Space Telescope next week, people are again thinking about its big successor. The very first month that this part of Science 2.0, the communications portal, went live, in January of 2007, we had an update on the James Webb Space Telescope and it was already way behind schedule. 
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New Technique Reduces Halo Effect Caused By Camera Lenses

Science2.0 - April 16, 2015 - 2:00pm
In a recent study, scientists have presented a new technique that significantly reduces the halo effect that is generated when using multi-focal. contact and intra-ocular, lenses and looking at bright point sources in dark conditions.

Presbyopia is a result of natural aging and stems from a gradual thickening and decrease in elasticity of the lens inside the eye. Corrective lenses used to address presbyopia often lead to a halo effect. This is basically a glow or color light pattern observed when looking at a bright source of light in front of a dark background.

It is mostly experienced at night when people see halos around street lamps and car headlights, and it can make driving at night unsafe or even impossible in extreme cases.
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Botox May Reach Central Nervous System

Science2.0 - April 16, 2015 - 1:55pm
Botulinum toxin, produced by the bacterium Clostridium botulinum, is one of the most poisonous biological substances known, but in true' the dose makes the poison' fashion,  Botulinum neurotoxin serotype A , commonly known as Botox - took C. botulinum  from being known for the serious paralytic illness Botulism to smoothing out wrinkles due to its paralytic effect.

It's been used for decades with no serious side effects and outside cosmetic surgery is also useful for the treatment of over-active muscles and spasticity, because it promotes local and long-term paralysis, but a new study has found that some of the toxin is transported via our nerves back to the central nervous system.
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Big 6? Capitanian Extinction Gets New Evidence

Science2.0 - April 16, 2015 - 1:30pm
Since the Cambrian Explosion, ecosystems have suffered repeated mass extinctions, 5 of which wiped out half of all species: The Cretaceous–Paleogene extinction, the Triassic–Jurassic extinction, the Permian–Triassic extinction, the Late Devonian extinction and the Ordovician–Silurian extinction.

20 years ago, a sixth major extinction was put forth in the Middle Permian (262 million years ago) in China. This Capitanian extinction was known only from equatorial settings and it was not recognized as an actual global crisis and was instead considered just one of many lesser mass extinctions. David P.G. Bond and colleagues provide the first evidence for severe Middle Permian losses amongst brachiopods in northern paleolatitudes (Spitsbergen).
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Pediatric Melanoma Declined While Adult Rose

Science2.0 - April 16, 2015 - 1:00pm

Melanoma, an aggressive form of skin cancer, has been increasing in incidence in adults over the past 40 years.

Pediatric melanoma is rare (5 or 6 children per million) but some studies indicate that incidence has been increasing. A new study in The Journal of Pediatrics found that is not so, and the incidence of pediatric melanoma in the United States decreased from 2004-2010.


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