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Prehistoric mega-lake sediment offers key insight into how inland regions responded to ‘super-greenhouse’ event

Sediment found at the site of one of the largest lakes in Earth's history could provide a fascinating new insight into how inland regions responded to global climate change millions of years ago. Continue reading ...

Novel mechanism identified that protects pancreas from digestive enzymes

Researchers have uncovered the mechanism by which the stress hormone FGF21 keeps digestive enzymes from damaging the pancreas. Continue reading ...

Magnetic recording with light and no heat

A strong short light pulse can record data on a magnetic layer of yttrium iron garnet doped with Co-ions. The novel mechanism outperforms existing alternatives allowing ever fastest write-read magnetic recording accompanied by unprecedentedly low heat load, researchers report. Continue reading ...

A toolkit for transformable materials

Researchers have developed a general framework to design reconfigurable metamaterials. The design strategy is scale independent, meaning it can be applied to everything from meter-scale architectures to reconfigurable nano-scale systems such as photonic crystals, waveguides and metamaterials to guide heat. Continue reading ...

International effort announced to try to save the world’s most endangered marine mammal

An ambitious, emergency plan to help save the vaquita porpoise from extinction in the northern Gulf of California has been recommended by the International Committee for the Recovery of the Vaquita (CIRVA). The plan involves relocating some of the remaining vaquitas to a temporary sanctuary, while crucial efforts aimed at eliminating illegal fishing and removing gillnets from their environment continue. Continue reading ...

Toxic brain cells may drive many neurodegenerative disorders, study finds

While most of us haven't heard of astrocytes, these cells are four times as plentiful in the human brain as nerve cells. Now, a team led by researchers has found that astrocytes, which perform many indispensable functions in the brain, can take on a villainous character, destroying nerve cells and likely driving many neurodegenerative diseases. Continue reading ...

Traffic jam in empty space

An important step towards a completely new experimental access to quantum physics has been made by researchers in Germany. The team of scientists has now shown how to manipulate the electric vacuum field and thus generate deviations from the ground state of empty space which can only be understood in the context of the quantum theory of light. Continue reading ...

Super-resolution imaging offers fast way to discern fate of stem cells

A new way to identify the state and fate of individual stem cells earlier than previously possible has now been developed by a team of scientists. Continue reading ...

Which facebook ‘friends’ help most when looking for a job? Depends where you live in the world

Research used anonymous Facebook data from almost 17 million social connections in 55 countries to determine that the role of weak and strong ties in job searches is important around the world, but the value of a single strong tie is even more important for job seekers in countries with pronounced income inequality. Continue reading ...

Heat from earth’s core could be underlying force in plate tectonics

For decades, scientists have theorized that the movement of Earth's tectonic plates is driven largely by negative buoyancy created as they cool. New research, however, shows plate dynamics are driven significantly by the additional force of heat drawn from the Earth's core. The new findings also challenge the theory that underwater mountain ranges known as mid-ocean ridges are passive boundaries between moving plates. The findings show the East Pacific Rise, the Earth's dominant mid-ocean ridge, is dynamic as heat is transferred. Continue reading ...

Massive sea lion, fur seal hunting in the Patagonian coasts is altering Southern Atlantic Ocean ecosystems

Sea lion hunting by the Europeans at the Atlantic coasts of South America – it started in the 19th Century and continued up to the second half of the 20th century in Argentina and Uruguay – changed its nutrition guidelines of these pinnipeds as well as the structure of the coastal trophic network, according to new research. Continue reading ...

Severe side effects of approved multiple sclerosis medication

The multiple sclerosis (MS) therapy alemtuzumab can trigger severe, unpredictable side effects. Scientists report on two patients for whom the infusion of alemtuzumab significantly worsened symptoms. The team also describes a treatment that successfully curbed the harmful side effects. Continue reading ...

Heartbeat could be used as password to access electronic health records

Researchers have devised a new way to protect personal electronic health records using a patient's own heartbeat. Continue reading ...

Gestational diabetes increases risk for postpartum depression

Gestational diabetes raises the risk of postpartum depression in first-time mothers, researcher have concluded. Continue reading ...

Study finds new target for controlling cell division

Modern genome sequencing methods used to measure the efficiency of synthesis of individual protein during cell division has found that the enzymes that make lipids and membranes were synthesized at much greater efficiency when a cell is ready to split. Continue reading ...

Researcher examines effect of exercise on breast cancer survivors

A new study has focused on the effects of exercise and physical activity on postmenopausal breast cancer survivors taking AIs -- hormone-therapy drugs that stop the production of estrogen. The work concludes that a combination of resistance and aerobic exercise helps mitigate the side effects of AIs and improves health outcomes in breast cancer survivors, particularly their body composition. Continue reading ...

Deep-space mission to metal asteroid

Scientists are planning to send a deep-space probe to a metal asteroid, enabling them to see what is believed to be a planetary core. Psyche, an asteroid orbiting the sun between Mars and Jupiter, is made almost entirely of nickel-iron metal. Continue reading ...

2016 warmest year on record globally, NASA and NOAA data show

Earth's 2016 surface temperatures were the warmest since modern recordkeeping began in 1880, according to independent analyses by NASA and NOAA. This makes 2016 the third year in a row to set a new record for global average surface temperatures. Continue reading ...

2016 likely the warmest year since records began

Temperature data for 2016 show it likely edged ahead of 2015 as the world's warmest year. Continue reading ...

New data show heightened risk of birth defects with antidepressants prescribed during pregnancy

Antidepressants prescribed to pregnant women could increase the chance of having a baby with birth defects, new research indicates. Continue reading ...

New broad-spectrum antiviral protein can inhibit HIV, other pathogens in some primates

A protein-coding gene called Schlafen11 (SLFN11) may induce a broad-spectrum cellular response against infection by viruses including HIV-1, researchers have discovered. Continue reading ...

Vitamin B-12, and a knockoff version, create complex market for marine vitamins

Vitamin B-12 exists in two different, incompatible forms in the oceans. An organism thought to supply essential vitamin B-12 in the marine environment is actually churning out a knockoff version. Continue reading ...

Luminescent proteins provide color to ecological and cheap bio-displays

Mobile phone, computer and TV displays all use very expensive color filters and other components, which cannot be easily recycled. Scientists have designed a new screen, which is cheaper and ecological as it uses a hybrid material. This material's luminescent proteins can be used in backlighting systems and color filters made using a 3-D printing technique. Continue reading ...

Harnessing the energy of fireworks for fuel

The world relies heavily on gasoline and other hydrocarbons to power its cars and trucks. In search of an alternative fuel type, some researchers are turning to the stuff of fireworks and explosives: metal powders. And now one team is reporting a method to produce a metal nanopowder fuel with high energy content that is stable in air and doesn't go boom until ignited. Continue reading ...

Toward a ‘smart’ patch that automatically delivers insulin when needed

Treatment for certain diabetes cases involves constant monitoring of blood-glucose levels and daily insulin shots. But scientists are now developing a painless 'smart' patch that monitors blood glucose and releases insulin when levels climb too high. The device has been tested on mice. Continue reading ...

What’s behind the durian fruit’s notorious stench?

Most people who have tried durian either love it or hate it. The fruit's yellowish flesh is sweet and custard-like, but it comes with an overpowering stench of garbage. Scientists studying the unique fruit have now analyzed a set of 20 stinky and fruity chemical ingredients and found that a mere two compounds can re-create the overall smell. Continue reading ...

Cancer treatment for transplant patients discovered

Nephrologists have published a letter that profiles a novel drug combination with the potential to help prevent rejection of a donor kidney in transplant patients undergoing cancer treatment. Continue reading ...

Protein involved in blood clotting stimulates liver repair

A new pathway in the body that stimulates liver repair has been uncovered by researchers. Using an experimental model of high-dosage acetaminophen, the team found that liver injury activated blood clotting, which then stimulated liver repair. Continue reading ...

Researchers develop ways to improve machining, milling processes

Fixing flaws introduced during the machining of large components used in the aircraft and heavy equipment industries can be time-consuming for manufacturers – and costly if they must scrap the flawed parts after they’ve been fabricated. A new approach is helping manufacturers eliminate those flaws before the parts are created. Continue reading ...

DNA-testing smartphone aims to tackle drugs resistance

A smartphone attachment that analyses DNA could help improve cancer and tuberculosis treatments. Continue reading ...