Earth

Irvine, Calif., May 2, 2019 - Water polo athletes take note: A new study by University of California, Irvine researchers maps out the frequency of head injuries in the sport and reveals which positions are the most vulnerable.

The first-of-its-kind report, which tracked several dozen male collegiate water polo players over three seasons, was published today in PLOS One, a peer-reviewed, open-access scientific journal.

AMES, Iowa - A recently published study from Iowa State University medical entomologists found transmission of West Nile virus most often occurs in Iowa's western counties, where the data also found the heaviest concentrations of the mosquito species most often identified as the vector of disease transmission.

The biblical King Balak may have been a historical figure, according to a new reading of the Mesha Stele, an inscribed stone dating from the second half of the 9th century BCE.

A new study published April 30 in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences identified three factors critical in the rise of mammal communities since they first emerged during the Age of Dinosaurs: the rise of flowering plants, also known as angiosperms; the evolution of tribosphenic molars in mammals; and the extinction of non-avian dinosaurs, which reduced competition between mammals and other vertebrates in terrestrial ecosystems.

Reconstruction of the most complete fossil lizard found in Australia, a 15 million year old relative of our modern blue tongues and social skinks named Egernia gillespieae, reveals the creature was equipped with a robust crushing jaw and was remarkably similar to modern lizards.

A new study lead by Flinders University PHD student Kailah Thorn, published in the journal of Vertebrate Palaeontology, combined the anatomy of of living fossils with DNA data to put a time scale on the family tree of Australia's 'social skinks'.

EVANSTON, Ill. -- Not everything about glass is clear. How its atoms are arranged and behave, in particular, is startlingly opaque.

The problem is that glass is an amorphous solid, a class of materials that lies in the mysterious realm between solid and liquid. Glassy materials also include polymers, or commonly used plastics. While it might appear to be stable and static, glass' atoms are constantly shuffling in a frustratingly futile search for equilibrium. This shifty behavior has made the physics of glass nearly impossible for researchers to pin down.

PHILADELPHIA (April 30, 2019) - Several years ago the internet was captivated by the enigma of "the dress" - specifically, was the dress black and blue, or was it white and gold? No matter what you saw, the viral debate served to highlight that humans differ remarkably in how we each perceive our personal sensory world.

WASHINGTON - The array of toxic pollutants in California drinking water could cause more than 15,000 cases of cancer, according to a peer-reviewed EWG study that is the first ever to assess the cumulative risk from all contaminants in the state's public water systems.
 

In a paper published today in the journal Environmental Health, EWG scientists used a novel analytical method that calculated the combined health impacts of carcinogens and other toxic contaminants in 2,737 community water systems in California.

Scientists from the National University of Science and Technology "MISIS" together with their colleagues from Derzhavin Tambov State University and Saratov Chernyshevsky State University have figured out that graphene is capable of purifying water, making it drinkable, without further chlorination. "Capturing" bacterial cells, it forms flakes that can be easily extracted from the water. Graphene separated by ultrasound can be reused. The article on the research is published in Materials Science & Engineering C.

Teams all over the world are working intensively on the development of perovskite solar cells. The focus is on what are known as metal-organic hybrid perovskites whose crystal structure is composed of inorganic elements such as lead and iodine as well as an organic molecule.

The discovery, published today in Nature Communications by researchers from La Trobe University and the University of Queensland, provides details on how proteins in the outer membrane of bacteria - the bacteria's 'superglue' - are able to stick to and populate parts of the human body.

This new information paves the way for the development of innovative treatments for preventing and curing infections, in what could be a significant step forward for new anti-microbial development.

In 1956, the Würzburg botanist Otto Ludwig Lange observed an unusual phenomenon in the Mauritanian desert in West Africa: he found plants whose leaves could heat up to 56 degrees Celsius. It is astonishing that leaves can withstand such heat. At the time, the professor was unable to say which mechanisms were responsible for preventing the leaves from drying out at these temperatures. More than 50 years later, the botanists Markus Riederer and Amauri Bueno from Julius-Maximilians-Universität Würzburg (JMU) in Bavaria, Germany, succeeded in revealing the secret.

Milan, Italy: Mesothelioma patients are twice as likely to survive for two years or longer, if they are treated with a high dose of radiation to the affected side of the trunk, according to research presented at the ESTRO 38 conference.

Mesothelioma is a rare but aggressive form of cancer that grows in the layers of tissues surrounding the lungs. It is usually caused by exposure to asbestos. Patients typically only live for a year or two following diagnosis and treatment options are very limited.

LA JOLLA, CA--A family of cancer suppressive proteins, known as TET proteins, help regulate gene activity via their influence on chromosomal architecture. However, until now it wasn't entirely clear how genes were activated by TET proteins to make sure that cells perform their normal functions efficiently.

WASHINGTON, D.C., April 26, 2019 -- An international group of researchers has taken one of the first major steps in finding the biological changes in the brain that drive fetal alcohol spectrum disorder (FASDs). New work using chaos theory to analyze brain signals, discussed this month in the journal Chaos, from AIP Publishing, shows the long-term effects.