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Universe mostly forgets its past during cosmic rebirth

July 3, 2007

A new study by Martin Bojowald, a theorist at the Pennsylvania State University, and colleagues suggests that with each big bang, the universe mostly forgets its past and starts anew.

The model showed that most, but not all, of the information about what came before the big bang gets irretrievably lost through the big bang transition. And in a perpetual cycle of big bangs and crunches, this information loss… read more

Universe Measured: We’re 156 Billion Light-years Wide!

May 25, 2004

The universe is at least 156 billion light-years wide.

The calculation is based on the calculations that the universe is about 13.7 billion years old. So one might assume that the diameter of the universe is 27.4 billion light-years wide. But the universe has been expanding ever since the beginning of time, bringing the estimated diameter to 156 billion light-years.

Universe has more entropy than thought

October 7, 2009

A new calculation of the entropy of the universe by Australian physicists indicates that the collective entropy of all the supermassive black holes at the centers of galaxies is 10^104, about 100 times higher than previously calculated, suggesting that the universe is slightly further along on its gradual journey to heat death.

Universe Collapses: Well, TV’s, Anyway

July 6, 2004

The number of channels receivable by the average U.S. household declined last year, and appears to have stalled out at about 100.

If the decline is a genuine development, it seems to defy the TV industry’s claims of ultimately delivering a virtually unlimited channel universe via digital cable and satellite TV, and other new technologies such as video-on-demand.

Universe as Doughnut: New Data, New Debate

March 11, 2003

Rather than being infinite in all directions, the universe could be radically smaller in one direction; it may be even be shaped like a doughnut. The idea is based on new data produced by NASA’s Wilkinson Microwave Anisotropy Probe satellite.

Universal translator for web browsers

September 8, 2009

A new Firefox plug-in identifies the language used on a web page and automatically provides a translation to the user’s preferred language, with Google Translate used if translations are not available.

‘Universal’ memory aims to replace flash and DRAM

January 25, 2011

Unified device can perform both volatile and nonvolatile memory operations

Researchers from North Carolina State University have developed a single “unified” device that can perform both volatile and nonvolatile memory operation, with applications that could improve computer start times and energy efficiency for Internet servers.

“We’ve invented a new device that may revolutionize computer memory,” says Dr. Paul Franzon, a professor of electrical and computer engineering at NC State and co-author of a paper describing the research. “Our device… read more

Universal Influenza Vaccine Tested Successfully In Humans

January 27, 2008

The British-American biotech company Acambis reports the successful conclusion of Phase I trials of the universal flu vaccine in humans.

This vaccine is intended to provide protection against all “A” strains of the virus that causes human influenza, including pandemic strains. About two thirds of seasonal epidemics are due to these strains, as are almost all pandemic influenza strains.

This vaccine could eventually replace annual vaccinations against “A”… read more

Universal DNA database would make us all suspects

September 25, 2007

Imagine being a potential suspect for every crime committed in your country. That would be the logic if DNA from all of a country’s citizens were stored in police DNA records, claims a report by the UK-based Nuffield Council on Bioethics.

Universal Blood

April 3, 2007

Researchers have found a way to efficiently convert different human blood types into a neutral type that can be given to any patient by cleaving identifying sugars from the surface of red blood cells.

The process is currently in human testing and could be available within five years.

‘Universal’ allergy therapy a step closer (article preview)

July 24, 2008

Researchers at Cytos Biotechnology have developed a “universal” allergy therapy that makes the immune system stop reacting to harmless allergens (substances that cause allergies).

In trials, the therapy–a series of shots–helped people allergic to house dust mites and cat dander.

An overactive immune system is thought to be the cause of most allergic reactions. The new therapy “distracts” the immune system by giving patients a molecular decoy (CYT003-QbG10)… read more

United Therapeutics to develop cancer therapies based on research in novel stem-cell-like cells, via exclusive license from MIT

July 13, 2007

Could these stem-cell-like "metakaryotic" cells go haywire and cause some forms of cancer? Dr. Elena V. Gostjeva originally discovered this strange object in fetal gut samples and later, in colon tumor and cancer tissue. This photomicrograph shows an example of asymmetrical amitotic nuclear fission (cell replication without chromosomes) of a bell-shaped nucleus (left) within a metakaryotic cell forming a much larger cigar-shaped nucleus (right). The new nuclei derived from the bell-shaped nuclei populate fetal and tumor tissue by successive mitotic divisions. Gostjeva, Thilly and associates have found these bell-shaped nuclei in fetal organs, in precancerous tissues such as colonic polyps, and in markedly large numbers in solid tumors such as colon cancer. They are rarely spotted in normal adult tissues. (Credit: William Thilly)

United Therapeutics Corporation has signed an agreement with the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) to exclusively license breakthrough research that may lead to new ways to diagnose and treat cancer, has learned.

A research program, funded by United Therapeutics and led by MIT Professor William Thilly and MIT Research Scientist Dr. Elena V. Gostjeva, will further explore “metakaryotic” cells that may play a role in the development of… read more

Unique Quantum Effect Found in Silicon Nanocrystals

July 25, 2007

Researchers at the U.S. Department of Energy’s National Renewable Energy Laboratory, collaborating with Innovalight, Inc., have shown that a new and important effect called Multiple Exciton Generation (MEG) occurs efficiently in silicon nanocrystals. MEG results in the formation of more than one electron per absorbed photon.

The new result opens the door to the potential application of MEG for greatly enhancing the conversion efficiency of solar cells based on… read more

Unique nanomechanical response of DNA allows high-speed direct digital detection

December 22, 2009

A new type of nanoscale sensor feels the stiffness of DNA molecules on a microarray to distinguish the ones that formed the double helix with digital precision. The new technology dramatically improves and simplifies microarray analysis. (Sahin Group, Rowland Institute at Harvard)

Researchers at Harvard and Stanford University have reported a new technique for genetic analysis using nanomechanical response of hybridized DNA/RNA molecules.*

A new type of nanoscale sensor feels the stiffness of DNA molecules on a microarray to distinguish the ones that formed the double helix, with digital precision.

This technique is several orders of magnitude more sensitive than other approaches (such as fluorescent labels) and could allow for… read more

Unique motor-protein walk discovery may be clue to neural disorders

January 17, 2012


Harvard Medical School scientists have discovered a unique “drunken sailor” gait of dynein. Dynein is a protein that is critical for the function of every cell in the body and whose malfunction has been associated with neurodegenerative disorders such as Lou Gehrig’s disease and Parkinson’s disease.

Found in all of our cells, dynein is one of three types of “motor proteins” (dynein, myosin, and kinesin). These… read more

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