Tech

Key milestone for brown fat research with a ground-breaking MRI scan

Key milestone for brown fat research with a ground-breaking MRI scan

The first MRI scan to show 'brown fat' in a living adult could prove to be an essential step towards a new wave of therapies to aid the fight against diabetes and obesity.

Researchers from Warwick Medical School and University Hospitals Coventry and Warwickshire NHS Trust used a magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) based method to identify and confirm the presence of brown adipose tissue in a living adult.

Simplicity is key to co-operative robots

Simplicity is key to co-operative robots

A way of making hundreds - or even thousands - of tiny robots cluster to carry out tasks without using any memory or processing power has been developed by engineers at the University of Sheffield, UK.

The team, working in the Sheffield Centre for Robotics (SCentRo), in the University's Faculty of Engineering, has programmed extremely simple robots that are able to form a dense cluster without the need for complex computation, in a similar way to how a swarm of bees or a flock of birds is able to carry out tasks collectively.

Scientists capture ultrafast snapshots of light-driven superconductivity

Scientists capture ultrafast snapshots of light-driven superconductivity

A new study pins down a major factor behind the appearance of superconductivity—the ability to conduct electricity with 100 percent efficiency—in a promising copper-oxide material.

Scientists used carefully timed pairs of laser pulses at SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory's Linac Coherent Light Source (LCLS) to trigger superconductivity in the material and immediately take x-ray snapshots of its atomic and electronic structure as superconductivity emerged.

Significant baseline levels of arsenic found in Ohio soils are due to natural processes

Significant baseline levels of arsenic found in Ohio soils are due to natural processes

RICHLAND, Wash. – Geologic and soil processes are to blame for significant baseline levels of arsenic in soil throughout Ohio, according to a study published recently in the Journal of Environmental Quality.

The Lancet: Changing where a baby is held immediately after birth could lead to improved uptake of procedure that reduces infant

Changing where a newborn baby is held before its umbilical cord is clamped could lead to improved uptake in hospitals of delayed cord clamping, leading to a decreased risk of iron deficiency in infancy, according to new results published in The Lancet.

Delaying clamping of the umbilical cord until around two minutes after birth allows for blood to pass from the mother's placenta to the baby, and has previously been shown to reduce the risk of iron deficiency in infancy.

Dermatologists with access to sample drugs write costlier prescriptions, Stanford study finds

STANFORD, Calif. — Dermatologists with access to free drug samples are more likely than those without access to samples to write prescriptions for drugs that are more expensive, according to a study by researchers at the Stanford University School of Medicine.

Free drug samples can change prescribing habits of dermatologists

The availability of free medication samples in dermatology offices appears to change prescribing practices for acne, a common condition for which free samples are often available.

Free drug samples provided by pharmaceutical companies are widely available in dermatology practices.

Information storage for the next generation of plastic computers

Inexpensive computers, cell phones and other systems that substitute flexible plastic for silicon chips may be one step closer to reality, thanks to research published on April 16 in the journal Nature Communications.

The paper describes a new proposal by University of Iowa researchers and their colleagues at New York University for overcoming a major obstacle to the development of such plastic devices—the large amount of energy required to read stored information.

Scientists re-define what's healthy in newest analysis for Human Microbiome Project

ANN ARBOR, Mich. – As scientists catalog the trillions of bacteria found in every nook and cranny of the human body, a new look by the University of Michigan shows wide variation in the types of bacteria found in healthy people.

Based on their findings in today's Nature, there is no single healthy microbiome. Rather each person harbors a unique and varied collection of bacteria that's the result of life history as well their interactions with the environment, diet and medication use.

Rice U. study: Performance measures for CEOs vary greatly

HOUSTON – (April 16, 2014) – As companies file their annual proxy statements with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) this spring, a new study by Rice University and Cornell University shows just how S&P 500 companies have tied CEO compensation to performance. The study found large variations in the choice of performance measures, and the researchers said that companies tend to choose measures that are informative of CEO actions.