Science2.0

Syndicate content
Science 2.0® - Science for the next 2,000 years
Updated: 1 hour 48 min ago

Why Some Threatened Corals Swap “Algae” Partners After Bleaching Events

June 5, 2015 - 3:00pm

A new research study showed why threatened Caribbean star corals sometimes swap partners to help them recover from bleaching events. The findings are important to understand the fate of coral reefs as ocean waters warm due to climate change.


-->

read more

Categories: Science2.0

Amount Of Time New Yorkers Spend Sitting Around Far Exceeds Healthy Levels

June 5, 2015 - 1:00pm

New York City is one of the most walkable cities in the nation, providing many opportunities for physical activity, and New Yorkers are more likely to exercise regularly than the average U.S. adult - but instead they are also sitting far more than what is considered healthy. 

According to a new study published by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in its journal Preventing Chronic Disease, the average New York City resident sits more than seven hours a day--greatly exceeding the three hours or more per day that is associated with decreased life expectancy.


-->

read more

Categories: Science2.0

Fox News Or MSNBC May Be Biological, Say Evolutionary Psychologists

June 5, 2015 - 12:17pm

Beatles versus Rolling Stones. Ironman versus the Incredible Hulk. Deep dish versus thin crust. Such differences of opinion among family and friends rarely end in serious squabbles. Let the conversation turn to political parties, however, and lively disagreements can become downright ugly.

Why is it that even among the people we care about most, differences in political affiliation often result in awkwardness and discomfort, and pushed far enough, can feel like a threat to the entire relationship?


read more

Categories: Science2.0

Warmer Climates May Increase Pesticides' Toxicity In Fish

June 5, 2015 - 12:17pm

In a study of the effects of increasing climate temperatures on the toxicity of 3 contaminants in different fish species, researchers found that all pesticides and industrial contaminants studied--endosulfan, chlorpyrifos, and phenol--became toxic in the upper 5oC range of species' temperature tolerance.

"Within this narrow range of temperatures, other simultaneous changes--such as reduced shading of the water surface as a result of clearing vegetation or increased toxicant exposure--may combine to significantly increase the vulnerability of fish to global warming," said Dr. Ronald Patra, lead author of the Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry study.


read more

Categories: Science2.0

Cannabis Use In Male African Pygmies Linked To Decreased Risk Of Parasitic Worm Infection

June 5, 2015 - 12:17pm

In a population of Congo Basin foragers called the Aka, 67% of men—but only 6% of women—use cannabis, and the practice seems to protect against infection with parasitic worms.

The large sex difference, which is also seen in tobacco use, might be a consequence, in part, of women's avoidance of potentially toxic substances during childbearing years.

The results provide evidence of a link between parasite infection and drug use, two of the developing world's great health problems, and they highlight the need for more research on the high rate of substance use in Aka men.


read more

Categories: Science2.0

Recommendations Address How To Manage Seizures In Infants

June 5, 2015 - 12:17pm

New recommendations offer insights on strategies for treating infants with seizures. In an Epilepsia report, child neurologists who are members of the International League Against Epilepsy note that intervening at the time of a febrile seizure does not alter the risk for subsequent epilepsy, and there is no evidence to support the use of antiepileptic drugs for simple febrile seizures. However, recurrent seizures warrant an urgent assessment, and a variety of antiepileptic drugs may benefit these patients. Unfortunately, there is no high level evidence to support the use of any one particular drug among those that are currently available for use in infants with seizures.


read more

Categories: Science2.0

Genetically Engineered E. Coli Produces New Forms Of Popular Antibiotic

June 5, 2015 - 11:45am

Like a dairy farmer tending to a herd of cows to produce milk, researchers are tending to colonies of the bacteria Escherichia coli (E. coli) to produce new forms of antibiotics -- including three that show promise in fighting drug-resistant bacteria.

The research, which will be published May 29 in the journal Science Advances, was led by Blaine A. Pfeifer, an associate professor of chemical and biological engineering in the University at Buffalo School of Engineering and Applied Sciences. His team included first author Guojian Zhang, Yi Li and Lei Fang, all in the Department of Chemical and Biological Engineering.


read more

Categories: Science2.0

Finding Loopholes In The Genome

June 5, 2015 - 11:45am

Singapore -- Scientists from A*STAR's Bioinformatics Institute (BII) have developed an analytical model and computational tool to rapidly and accurately predict the occurrence and locations of R-loop Forming Sequences (RLFSs) in any genome or artificial nucleic acid sequences. R-loops, which are three-stranded RNA and DNA hybrid structures, can be crucial to many normal biological processes and have also been associated with triggering mutations, DNA breaks and diseases. These hybrid structures provide intriguing possibilities for use as novel targets for diagnostics and treatment of diseases including cancer, autoimmune and neurodegenerative conditions.


read more

Categories: Science2.0

Vulnerability Found In Some Drug-resistant Bacteria

June 5, 2015 - 2:47am

Using a complex modeling program that helps analyze the physical dynamics of large, structurally complex protein molecules, a research team has made progress towards finding a weak spot in the architecture of a group of enzymes that are essential to antibiotic resistance in a number of bacteria.

In an article published in PLOS ONE, University of North Carolina at Charlotte senior biology major Jenna R. Brown and her faculty mentor, UNC Charlotte professor of bioinformatics and genomics Dennis R. Livesay, present an analysis of the four currently known protein structures of the class C beta-lactamase enzymes - molecular machines that have evolved to allow bacteria to dismantle a variety of antibiotic molecules, including third generation cephalosporins.


read more

Categories: Science2.0

How We Make Emotional Decisions

June 5, 2015 - 2:47am

Some decisions arouse far more anxiety than others. Among the most anxiety-provoking are those that involve options with both positive and negative elements, such choosing to take a higher-paying job in a city far from family and friends, versus choosing to stay put with less pay.
MIT researchers have now identified a neural circuit that appears to underlie decision-making in this type of situation, which is known as approach-avoidance conflict. The findings could help researchers to discover new ways to treat psychiatric disorders that feature impaired decision-making, such as depression, schizophrenia, and borderline personality disorder.


read more

Categories: Science2.0

Modeling Storm Surge To Better Protect Texas

June 5, 2015 - 2:47am

The recent floods in Texas have caused some of the worst flooding since Hurricane Ike in 2008, causing the rainiest month in the state's history.

What lessons have been learned from Ike's devastation of the Galveston and Houston area, and how have they helped in the prediction of future such storms?

Researchers at the Institute for Computational Engineering and Sciences at the University of Texas at Austin have been studying computational models and simulations of hurricanes like Ike in order to predict the consequences of such natural disasters and better prepare the Texas Gulf Coast for their effects.


-->

read more

Categories: Science2.0

Why Academics Are Interested In The Naked Men Of Poldark And Outlander

June 4, 2015 - 4:00pm
The buzz in the press and on social media about TV costume dramas Poldark and Outlander has been formidable.

Adapted from hugely popular novels, they have drawn fans of the books (and, in the case of Poldark, of the original TV series) as well as newcomers. The shows aired within months of each other. Both are set within the 18th century and both occupy peripheral, Celtic territories – Cornwall in Poldark and the Scottish highlands in Outlander.

-->

read more

Categories: Science2.0

Bacteria May Cause Type 2 Diabetes

June 4, 2015 - 1:30pm

Bacteria and viruses have an obvious role in causing infectious diseases, but microbes have also been identified as the surprising cause of other illnesses, including cervical cancer (Human papilloma virus) and stomach ulcers (H. pylori bacteria).

A new study by University of Iowa microbiologists now suggests that bacteria may even be a cause of one of the most prevalent diseases of our time - Type 2 diabetes.

The research team led by Patrick Schlievert, PhD, professor and DEO of microbiology at the UI Carver College of Medicine, found that prolonged exposure to a toxin produced by Staphylococcus aureus (staph) bacteria causes rabbits to develop the hallmark symptoms of Type 2 diabetes, including insulin resistance, glucose intolerance, and systemic inflammation.


-->

read more

Categories: Science2.0

Noncoding RNA CCDC26 Regulates KIT Expression

June 4, 2015 - 1:00pm
A long noncoding RNA (lncRNA), which might give an impact on tyrosine kinase-targeted leukemia therapy, was found to be expressed in a leukemia cell line.

The function of the lncRNA CCDC26 is not fully understood; however, researchers found the mechanisms by which CCDC26 controls the receptor tyrosine kinase KIT expression. Recent transcriptomic studies have revealed the existence of numerous RNAs that are relatively long but not translated into proteins. Some of such lncRNAs are suggested to regulate the expression of other genes. Mutations or imbalances in the noncoding RNA repertoire within the body can therefore cause a variety of diseases such as cancer. However, the molecular functions of lncRNAs remain to be fully elucidated.
-->

read more

Categories: Science2.0

End Of All Life On Earth - A Billion Years From Now - Can It Be Avoided - And Who Will Be Here Then?

June 4, 2015 - 12:59pm

Many people worry about the possibility of the end of all life on our planet. However, the Earth is by far the most habitable planet in our solar system and there's no reason to expect that to change for hundreds of millions of years.

The Earth may become uninhabitable between 500 million and a billion years from now. That may seem a short time, when you compare it with the billions of years the Earth has evolved for. But compared with the length of time there have been humans on the Earth it's a very long time.

To get an idea of who may need to deal with this issue, the idea is, to look at the last billion years. And then think about where we or our evolutionary cousins might be after another billion years after that. First some background though.

-->

read more

Categories: Science2.0

Organic Imports And Toxin/Carcinogen Risks

June 4, 2015 - 5:02am
Corn infected by the fungus Aspergillus which can produce aflatoxin (Iowa State IPM)
-->

read more

Categories: Science2.0

Chaotic Tumbling Of Pluto's Moons

June 3, 2015 - 11:53pm
If you lived on one of Pluto's moons, you might have a hard time determining when, or from which direction, the sun will rise each day. Two of Pluto's moons, Nix and Hydra, wobble unpredictably, according to a new data analysis.
-->

read more

Categories: Science2.0

Brain Waves Study Shows How Different Teaching Methods Affect Reading Development

June 3, 2015 - 11:20pm

Beginning readers who focus on letter-sound relationships, or phonics, instead of trying to learn whole words, increase activity in the area of their brains best wired for reading, according to new Stanford research investigating how the brain responds to different types of reading instruction.

In other words, to develop reading skills, teaching students to sound out "C-A-T" sparks more optimal brain circuitry than instructing them to memorize the word "cat." And, the study found, these teaching-induced differences show up even on future encounters with the word.


read more

Categories: Science2.0

Yeast Protein Network Could Provide Insights Into Human Obesity

June 3, 2015 - 11:20pm

A team of biologists and a mathematician have identified and characterized a network composed of 94 proteins that work together to regulate fat storage in yeast.

"Removal of any one of the proteins results in an increase in cellular fat content, which is analogous to obesity," says study coauthor Bader Al-Anzi, a research scientist at Caltech. The findings, detailed in the May issue of the journal PLOS Computational Biology, suggest that yeast could serve as a valuable test organism for studying human obesity.


read more

Categories: Science2.0

Soil Erosion Contributes Significantly To Global Carbon Emissions

June 3, 2015 - 11:20pm

Soil erosion that occurs in rainy seasons leads to a significant amount of carbon being released into the atmosphere, a new study shows.

Investigators who analyzed 240 runoff plots from different regions of the world found that organic carbon losses from soils corresponds to about one-sixth of annual fossil fuel-induced carbon emissions with highest rates for semi-arid soils followed by tropical soils and temperate soils.

"The organic carbon lost from soils is more likely to reach the atmosphere under semi-arid sandy soils of weak structure compared to clayey tropical or temperate soils where organic matter is more protected," said Dr. Vincent Chaplot, co-author of the study published in Earth Surface Processes and Landforms.

DOI: 10.1002/esp.3758


Categories: Science2.0