Most Recently Added Most commentedBy Title | A-Z

Scientists discover protein that can slow brain tumor growth in mice

May 14, 2014

MRI image of glioblastoma (credit: Wikipedia commons)

Biochemists have identified a protein that can be used to slow down or speed up the growth of glioblastoma brain tumors in mice.

A preclinical study led by Eric J. Wagner, Ph.D., and Ann-Bin Shyu, Ph.D., of The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston (UTHealth) and Wei Li, Ph.D., of Baylor College of Medicine appear in Nature.

“Our work could lead to… read more

A DNA-based nanosensor that detects cancer by its pH

May 13, 2014

dna_nanosensor

Bioengineers at the University of Rome, Tor Vergata and the University of Montreal have used DNA to develop a tool that detects and reacts to chemical changes caused by cancer cells. It may one day be used to deliver drugs to tumor cells.

The researchers’ nanosensor measures pH variations at the nanoscale, indicating how acidic (a lower pH level) or alkaline (a higher pH level).… read more

How to smuggle killer drugs into cancer cells

May 13, 2014

killer drug

Biomedical engineering researchers have developed an anti-cancer drug-delivery method that essentially smuggles the drug into a cancer cell before triggering its release.

“This is an efficient, fast-acting way of delivering drugs to cancer cells and triggering cell death,” says Dr. Ran Mo, lead author of a paper on the work and a postdoctoral researcher in the joint biomedical engineering program at North Carolina State University and the… read more

Robotics experts to debate ‘killer robots’ policies at UN

May 13, 2014

Crusher unmanned ground combat vehicle (credit: National Robotics Engineering Center of Carnegie Mellon University)

A leading robotics expert, Professor Noel Sharkey from the University of Sheffield’s Department of Computer Science, will speak to the United Nations in Geneva from May 13–16 to help global leaders understand the pros and cons of lethal autonomous weapons systems.

Sharkey is holding a debate with Professor Ronald Arkin from the Georgia Institute of Technology at the UN’s Convention of Certain Conventional Weapons (CCW) in Geneva to… read more

West Antarctic Ice Sheet collapse is underway

May 13, 2014

ThwaitesShelf

Antarctica’s fast-moving Thwaites Glacier will likely disappear in a matter of centuries, potentially raising sea level by more than a half-a-meter (two feet), National Science Foundation-funded researchers at the University of Washington have concluded

Data gathered by NSF-funded airborne radar, detailed topography maps, and computer modeling were used to make the determination.

The glacier acts as an ice dam, stabilizing and regulating movement toward the sea… read more

Astronomers find Sun’s sibling star

May 12, 2014

HD 162826

A team of researchers led by astronomer Ivan Ramirez of The University of Texas at Austin has identified the first “sibling” of the sun — a star almost certainly born from the same cloud of gas and dust as our star.

Ramirez’s methods will help astronomers find other solar siblings, which could lead to an understanding of how and where our sun formed, and how our solar… read more

Anti-aging gene also enhances cognition

Could have broad therapeutic implications
May 12, 2014

How Klotho enhances cognition (credit: Dena B. Duval/Cell)

A variant of the gene KLOTHO is known for its anti-aging effects in people fortunate enough to carry one copy. Now researchers find that it also benefits brain function by increasing overall levels of klotho in the bloodstream and brain.

But the improvements in learning and memory associated with klotho elevation aren’t strictly tied to aging. They do occur in aging mice, but also in young animals, according to… read more

Regenerating plastic material grows back after damage

May 12, 2014

regenerating_plastic

University of Illinois researchers have developed self-repairing materials that not only heal, but also regenerate.

Until now, self-repairing materials (such as the “terminator” polymer) could only bond tiny microscopic cracks. The new materials fill in large cracks and holes by regrowing material.

“We have demonstrated repair of a nonliving, synthetic materials system in a way that is reminiscent of repair-by-regrowth as seen in some living systems,”… read more

Can robots be trusted to know right from wrong?

May 12, 2014

HAL 9000 (credit: Warner Bros.)

Is it possible to develop “moral” autonomous robots with a sense for right, wrong, and the consequences of both?

Researchers from Tufts University, Brown University, and Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute think so, and are teaming with the U.S. Navy to explore technology that would pave the way to do exactly that.

“Moral competence can be roughly thought about as the ability to learn,… read more

Scientists create new lifeform with added DNA base pair

May 9, 2014

(Credit: iStock)

Scientists at The Scripps Research Institute (TSRI) have engineered a bacterium whose genetic material includes an added pair of DNA “letters” (bases) not found in nature.

The research was intended to created new proteins — and even new organisms — that have never existed before.

“Life on Earth in all its diversity is encoded by only two pairs of DNA bases, A-T and C-G,read more

GaitTrack app makes cellphone a medical monitor for heart and lung patients

May 9, 2014

(Credit: University of Illinois)

By simply carrying around their cellphones, patients who suffer from chronic disease could soon have an accurate health monitor that warns their doctors when their symptoms worsen.

GaitTrack, an app developed by researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and the U. of I. at Chicago, doesn’t just count steps. It uses eight parameters to perform a detailed analysis of a person’s gait, orread more

Brain ‘noise’ found to nurture synapses

May 8, 2014

McCabe-CUMC-image-brain-noise

A long-overlooked form of neuron-to-neuron communication called “miniature neurotransmission” plays an essential role in the development of synapses, a study by researchers at Columbia University Medical Center (CUMC) has shown.

The findings, made in fruit flies, raise the possibility that abnormalities in miniature neurotransmission may contribute to neurodevelopmental diseases. The findings were published in the journal Neuron.

The primary way in which neurons communicate with each… read more

Astronomers create first realistic virtual universe

May 8, 2014

illustris-simulation

Astronomers have created the first realistic virtual universe using a computer simulation called “Illustris.”

Illustris can recreate 13 billion years of cosmic evolution in a cube 350 million light-years on a side with unprecedented resolution.

“Until now, no single simulation was able to reproduce the universe on both large and small scales simultaneously,” says lead author Mark Vogelsberger (MIT/Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics),… read more

Imaging the crystal edges of 2D molybdenum disulfide

Another step toward novel 2D ultrasmall and ultrafast electronic and photonic devices, replacing silicon
May 8, 2014

Xiang-Zhang-crystal-images

Researchers with Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab) have recorded the first observations of a strong nonlinear optical resonance along the edges of a single layer of two-dimensional molybdenum disulfide, which may enable novel ultrasmall and ultrafast electronic and photonic devicesas well as a catalyst for the hydrogen evolution reaction in fuel cells, desulfurization, andread more

Are you ready for contact with extraterrestrial intelligence?

May 7, 2014

Are-we-ready-for-contact-with-extraterrestrial-intelligence_image_380

Some SETI (search for extraterrestrial intelligence) scientists are considering “Active SETI” to detect possible extraterrestrial civilizations.

Psychologist Gabriel G. de la Torre, professor at the University of Cádiz (Spain) questions this idea, based on results* from a survey taken by students, which revealed a general level of ignorance about the cosmos and the influence of religion on these matters.

Some astrophysicists, such as Stephen… read more

close and return to Home