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Gravity probe exceeds performance goals

The long-planned space mission that seeks to detect gravitational waves is on course to be selected this summer. Continue reading ...

Second cause of hidden hearing loss identified

Some people can pass a hearing test but have trouble understanding speech in a noisy environment. New research identifies a new mechanism for this condition just years after its discovery. Continue reading ...

Eclipse to be turned into mega-movies

Citizen photos taken during August's total solar eclipse in the US will be spliced into continuous videos. Continue reading ...

Naica’s crystal caves hold long-dormant life

Long-dormant microbes are found inside giant crystals of the Naica mountain caves - and revived. Continue reading ...

Yeast found in babies’ guts increases risk of asthma

Microbiologists have found a yeast in the gut of new babies in Ecuador that appears to be a strong predictor that they will develop asthma in childhood. The new research furthers our understanding of the role microscopic organisms play in our overall health. Continue reading ...

There and back again: Catalyst mediates energy-efficient proton transport for reversibility

A complex with a proton pathway and stabilized by outer coordination sphere interactions is reversible for hydrogen production/oxidation at room temperature and pressure, researchers have found. Continue reading ...

Micro-RNA may amplify effectiveness of sorafenib in difficult liver cancer cases

Only 25% of patients respond to sorafenib treatment, so researchers have endeavored to understand its mechanism of action and discover a way to boost its effectiveness. Continue reading ...

Speciation is not all about good looks: For stick insects, the right partner should smell good too

An attractive scent is just as important as good looks when it comes to choosing a mate -- at least among stick insect populations. Continue reading ...

Low level vitamin D during remission contributes to relapse in ulcerative colitis patients

Lower levels of vitamin D in the blood increase the risk of clinical relapse in patients with Ulcerative Colitis (UC), an inflammatory bowel disease that causes long-lasting inflammation and ulcers in the colon, a new study has found. Continue reading ...

Scientists uncover how Zika virus causes microcephaly

A multidisciplinary team has uncovered the mechanisms that the Zika virus uses to alter brain development, outlines a new report. Continue reading ...

Climate-driven permafrost thaw

In bitter cold regions like northwestern Canada, permafrost has preserved relict ground-ice and vast glacial sedimentary stores in a quasi-stable state. These landscapes therefore retain a high potential for climate-driven transformation, say researchers. Continue reading ...

Egg-free surrogate chickens produced in bid to save rare breeds

Hens that do not produce their own chicks have been developed for use as surrogates to lay eggs from rare breeds. The advance -- using gene-editing techniques -- could help to boost breeding of endangered birds, as well as improving production of commercial hens, researchers say. Continue reading ...

From mice, clues to microbiome’s influence on metabolic disease

The community of microorganisms that resides in the gut, known as the microbiome, has been shown to work in tandem with the genes of a host organism to regulate insulin secretion, a key variable in the onset of the metabolic disease diabetes, new research has found. Continue reading ...

‘Complexity’ of exports is a good predictor of income inequality

A new paper argues that everything else being equal, the complexity of a country's exports also correlates with its degree of economic equality: The more complex a country's products, the greater equality it enjoys relative to similar-sized countries with similar-sized economies. Continue reading ...

Designing new materials from ‘small’ data

Researchers have developed a novel workflow combining machine learning and density functional theory calculations to create design guidelines for new materials that exhibit useful electronic properties, such as ferroelectricity and piezoelectricity. Continue reading ...

Congo River fish evolution shaped by intense rapids

New research provides compelling evidence that a group of strange-looking fish living near the mouth of the Congo River are evolving due to the intense hydraulics of the river's rapids and deep canyons. The study reveals that fishes in this part of the river live in 'neighborhoods' that are separated from one another by the waters' turbulent flow. Continue reading ...

Efficient power converter for internet of things

Researchers have presented a new power converter that maintains its efficiency at currents ranging from 500 picoamps to 1 milliamp, a span that encompasses a 200,000-fold increase in current levels. Continue reading ...

Developing a catalytic conveyor belt

Capitalizing on previous studies in self-powered chemo-mechanical movement, researchers have developed a novel method of transporting particles that utilizes chemical reactions to drive fluid flow within microfluidic devices. Continue reading ...

Using historical herbarium specimens to track heavy metal pollution in the eastern United States

Plant specimens stored in herbaria are being used to explore important ecological questions. Researchers have now shown the effectiveness of herbarium specimens of herbaceous plants to track changes in heavy metal concentrations over time. The study compares concentrations of copper, lead, and zinc in specimens collected around Providence, RI, from 1846 to 1916, and compares these levels to plants collected from the same areas in 2015. Continue reading ...

It’s more than just climate change

Accurately modeling climate change and interactive human factors -- including inequality, consumption, and population -- is essential for the effective science-based policies and measures needed to benefit and sustain current and future generations. A recent study presents extensive evidence of the need for a new paradigm of modeling that fully incorporates the feedbacks between Earth systems and human systems. Continue reading ...

Gene editing can complement traditional food-animal improvements

Animal scientist say that gene editing -- following in the footsteps of traditional breeding -- has tremendous potential to boost the sustainability of livestock production, while also enhancing food-animal health and welfare. Continue reading ...

Hubble spotlights a celestial sidekick

Technically, this picture is merely a sidekick of the actual object of interest -- but space is bursting with activity, and this field of bright celestial bodies offers plenty of interest on its own. Continue reading ...

Powerful optical imaging technology catches DNA naturally fluorescing

Biomedical engineers have developed imaging technology that is the first to see DNA 'blink,' or fluoresce. The tool enables researchers to study individual biomolecules (DNA, chromatin, proteins) as well as important global patterns of gene expression, which could yield insights into cancer. Continue reading ...

Looking for the next leap in rechargeable batteries

Researchers may have just found a solution for one of the biggest stumbling blocks to the next wave of rechargeable batteries -- small enough for cellphones and powerful enough for cars. Continue reading ...

How humans bond: The brain chemistry revealed

In a new study, researchers found for the first time that the neurotransmitter dopamine is involved in human bonding, bringing the brain's reward system into our understanding of how we form human attachments. The results, based on a study with 19 mother-infant pairs, have important implications for therapies addressing postpartum depression as well as disorders of the dopamine system such as Parkinson's disease, addiction, and social dysfunction. Continue reading ...

Team tracks rare T cells in blood to better understand annual flu vaccine

A team has found a way to identify the small population of circulating helper T cells present in the blood after an annual flu vaccine to monitor their contribution to antibody strength. A technique that identifies these helper immune cells could inform future vaccine design, especially for vulnerable populations. Continue reading ...

System automatically detects cracks in nuclear power plants

A new automated system detects cracks in the steel components of nuclear power plants and has been shown to be more accurate than other automated systems. Continue reading ...

Digital fabrication in architecture

Society faces enormous challenges in constructing high-quality, future-oriented built environments. Construction sites today look much like the building sites did at the beginning of the 20th century. Current research on digital fabrication in architecture indicates that the development and integration of innovative digital technologies within architectural and construction processes could transform the building industry -- on the verge of a building industry 4.0. Digital technologies in architecture and construction could increase productivity creating new jobs. Continue reading ...

Researchers use big-brother tech to spy on bumblebees

RFID chips like the ones used to protect merchandise from shoplifting reveal surprising clues about life in a bumblebee colony, say investigators. Continue reading ...

Plastic ‘nurdles’ found littering UK beaches

Billions of tiny plastic lentil-sized pellets can be spotted on UK shores - but how do 'nurdles' get there? Continue reading ...