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Less Random Fitness: A Refined Biological Evolution Model

Science2.0 - July 21, 2014 - 8:00pm

Models for the evolution of life are now being developed to try and clarify the long term dynamics of an evolving system of species. Specifically, a recent model proposed by Petri Kärenlampi from the University of Eastern Finland in Joensuu accounts for species interactions with various degrees of symmetry, connectivity, and species abundance. This is an improvement on previous, simpler models, which apply random fitness levels to species.

The findings demonstrate that the resulting replicator ecosystems do not appear to be a self-organized critical model, unlike the so-called Bak Sneppen model, a reference in the field. The reasons for this discrepancy are not yet known.


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Categories: Science2.0

Less Random Fitness: A Refined Biological Evolution Model

General - July 21, 2014 - 8:00pm

Models for the evolution of life are now being developed to try and clarify the long term dynamics of an evolving system of species. Specifically, a recent model proposed by Petri Kärenlampi from the University of Eastern Finland in Joensuu accounts for species interactions with various degrees of symmetry, connectivity, and species abundance. This is an improvement on previous, simpler models, which apply random fitness levels to species.

The findings demonstrate that the resulting replicator ecosystems do not appear to be a self-organized critical model, unlike the so-called Bak Sneppen model, a reference in the field. The reasons for this discrepancy are not yet known.


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Categories: News

Human Platelets Generated Using Bioreactor

General - July 21, 2014 - 7:00pm

Scientists have developed a scalable, next-generation platelet bioreactor to generate fully functional human platelets in vitro


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Categories: News

Human Platelets Generated Using Bioreactor

Science2.0 - July 21, 2014 - 7:00pm

Scientists have developed a scalable, next-generation platelet bioreactor to generate fully functional human platelets in vitro


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Categories: Science2.0

Dance Of The Dwarfs

Science2.0 - July 21, 2014 - 6:31pm

A new discovery that many small galaxies throughout the universe do not 'swarm' around larger ones like bees but instead 'dance' in orderly disc-shaped orbits is a challenge to our understanding of how the universe formed and evolved.   

The universe contains billions of galaxies. Some, such as the Milky Way, are immense, containing hundreds of billions of stars. Most galaxies, however, are dwarfs, much smaller and with only a few billion stars.

For decades astronomers have used computer models to predict how these dwarf galaxies should orbit large galaxies. They had always found that they should be scattered randomly.


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Categories: Science2.0

Dance Of The Dwarfs

General - July 21, 2014 - 6:31pm

A new discovery that many small galaxies throughout the universe do not 'swarm' around larger ones like bees but instead 'dance' in orderly disc-shaped orbits is a challenge to our understanding of how the universe formed and evolved.   

The universe contains billions of galaxies. Some, such as the Milky Way, are immense, containing hundreds of billions of stars. Most galaxies, however, are dwarfs, much smaller and with only a few billion stars.

For decades astronomers have used computer models to predict how these dwarf galaxies should orbit large galaxies. They had always found that they should be scattered randomly.


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Categories: News

Utilizing Fat's Healing Properties In Heart Disease

Science2.0 - July 21, 2014 - 6:00pm

Too much dietary fat is bad for the heart, everyone knows that by now, but not all fats are equal. The right kind of fat keeps the heart healthy, and a paper in The Journal of Experimental Medicine shows how it works.

Unlike saturated fats discussed in popular media, unsaturated dietary fatty acids, such as eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA), are known to protect against cardiovascular diseases. However, the mechanism and the specific fat metabolites responsible for this protection were unknown. 


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Categories: Science2.0

Utilizing Fat's Healing Properties In Heart Disease

General - July 21, 2014 - 6:00pm

Too much dietary fat is bad for the heart, everyone knows that by now, but not all fats are equal. The right kind of fat keeps the heart healthy, and a paper in The Journal of Experimental Medicine shows how it works.

Unlike saturated fats discussed in popular media, unsaturated dietary fatty acids, such as eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA), are known to protect against cardiovascular diseases. However, the mechanism and the specific fat metabolites responsible for this protection were unknown. 


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Categories: News

A Genetic Cause Of Common Breast Tumors

Science2.0 - July 21, 2014 - 5:00pm

A team of researchers made a seminal breakthrough in understanding the molecular basis of fibroadenoma, one of the most common breast tumors diagnosed in women. Led by Professors Teh Bin Tean, Patrick Tan, Tan Puay Hoon and Steve Rozen, the team used advanced DNA sequencing technologies to identify a critical gene called MED12 that was repeatedly disrupted in nearly 60% of fibroadenoma cases. 


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Categories: Science2.0

A Genetic Cause Of Common Breast Tumors

General - July 21, 2014 - 5:00pm

A team of researchers made a seminal breakthrough in understanding the molecular basis of fibroadenoma, one of the most common breast tumors diagnosed in women. Led by Professors Teh Bin Tean, Patrick Tan, Tan Puay Hoon and Steve Rozen, the team used advanced DNA sequencing technologies to identify a critical gene called MED12 that was repeatedly disrupted in nearly 60% of fibroadenoma cases. 


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Categories: News

Mapping Environmental Effects On DNA One Cell At A Time

General - July 21, 2014 - 4:18pm

A new single-cell technique can help investigate how the environment affects our development and the traits we inherit from our parents. It can be used to map all of the 'epigenetic marks' on the DNA within a single cell,which will boost understanding of embryonic development, enhance clinical applications like cancer therapy and even reduce the number of mice used in research.


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Categories: News

Mapping Environmental Effects On DNA One Cell At A Time

Science2.0 - July 21, 2014 - 4:18pm

A new single-cell technique can help investigate how the environment affects our development and the traits we inherit from our parents. It can be used to map all of the 'epigenetic marks' on the DNA within a single cell,which will boost understanding of embryonic development, enhance clinical applications like cancer therapy and even reduce the number of mice used in research.


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Delayed Language More Nature Than Nurture

Science2.0 - July 21, 2014 - 2:48pm

"She'll grow out of it," used to be a common phrase about raising kids, meaning it wasn't anything that was wrong physically or in upbringing, it is just the diversity of human existence. Some kids develop later. But in today's hyper-diagnosis culture, researchers have wanted to figure out if that old saying was true, or just wishful thinking.

A  study of 473 sets of twins followed since birth has found that, compared to single-born children, 47 percent of 24-month-old identical twins had language delay compared to 31 percent of non-identical twins. Overall, twins had twice the rate of late language emergence of single-born children. None of the children had disabilities affecting language acquisition. 


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Categories: Science2.0

Delayed Language More Nature Than Nurture

General - July 21, 2014 - 2:48pm

"She'll grow out of it," used to be a common phrase about raising kids, meaning it wasn't anything that was wrong physically or in upbringing, it is just the diversity of human existence. Some kids develop later. But in today's hyper-diagnosis culture, researchers have wanted to figure out if that old saying was true, or just wishful thinking.

A  study of 473 sets of twins followed since birth has found that, compared to single-born children, 47 percent of 24-month-old identical twins had language delay compared to 31 percent of non-identical twins. Overall, twins had twice the rate of late language emergence of single-born children. None of the children had disabilities affecting language acquisition. 


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Categories: News

Mitochondria And Antioxidants: A Tale Of Two Scientists

Science2.0 - July 21, 2014 - 1:53pm



There is a little miracle of science happening in your body right now. As you read this, a minuscule 5 grams of a high-energy molecule called adenosine triphosphate - ATP - is causing all kinds of reactions in order to give you the energy to sit at your computer. In total, 8 ounces of ATP is being recycled hundreds of times each day, so many times that a human can use their body weight - 200 pounds of ATP in my case – every 24 hours. 

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Categories: Science2.0

Mitochondria And Antioxidants: A Tale Of Two Scientists

General - July 21, 2014 - 1:53pm



There is a little miracle of science happening in your body right now. As you read this, a minuscule 5 grams of a high-energy molecule called adenosine triphosphate - ATP - is causing all kinds of reactions in order to give you the energy to sit at your computer. In total, 8 ounces of ATP is being recycled hundreds of times each day, so many times that a human can use their body weight - 200 pounds of ATP in my case – every 24 hours. 

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Categories: News

You Don't Stop Learning To Read In 4th Grade - Study

Science2.0 - July 21, 2014 - 11:32am

Teaching remains more art than science and a popular conjecture that has caught the attention of the education business has been that fourth grade is when students stop learning to read and start reading to learn.  People love to swap terms around that way. But is it accurate?

A new paper in Developmental Science says there is nothing special about fourth grade at all, there is no change in automatic word processing, a crucial component of that reading shift conjecture. Instead, some types of word processing become automatic before fourth grade, while others don't switch until after fifth.


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Categories: Science2.0

You Don't Stop Learning To Read In 4th Grade - Study

General - July 21, 2014 - 11:32am

Teaching remains more art than science and a popular conjecture that has caught the attention of the education business has been that fourth grade is when students stop learning to read and start reading to learn.  People love to swap terms around that way. But is it accurate?

A new paper in Developmental Science says there is nothing special about fourth grade at all, there is no change in automatic word processing, a crucial component of that reading shift conjecture. Instead, some types of word processing become automatic before fourth grade, while others don't switch until after fifth.


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Categories: News

Probiotic Plus: Fecal Transplants Let Packrats Eat Toxic Food

Science2.0 - July 21, 2014 - 9:00am

Woodrats lost their ability to eat toxic creosote bushes after antibiotics killed their gut microbes. Woodrats that never ate the plants were able to do so after receiving fecal transplants with microbes from creosote-eaters, University of Utah biologists found.

The new study confirms what biologists long have suspected: bacteria in the gut – and not just liver enzymes – are "crucial in allowing herbivores to feed on toxic plants," says biologist Kevin Kohl, a postdoctoral researcher and first author of a new paper in Ecology Letters.


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Categories: Science2.0

Probiotic Plus: Fecal Transplants Let Packrats Eat Toxic Food

General - July 21, 2014 - 9:00am

Woodrats lost their ability to eat toxic creosote bushes after antibiotics killed their gut microbes. Woodrats that never ate the plants were able to do so after receiving fecal transplants with microbes from creosote-eaters, University of Utah biologists found.

The new study confirms what biologists long have suspected: bacteria in the gut – and not just liver enzymes – are "crucial in allowing herbivores to feed on toxic plants," says biologist Kevin Kohl, a postdoctoral researcher and first author of a new paper in Ecology Letters.


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Categories: News