Most Recently Added Most commentedBy Title | A-Z

New discovery of the ways cells move could boost understanding of spread of cancer

June 25, 2013

Cheekcells_stained

Led by researchers at Harvard School of Public Health (HSPH) and the Institute for Bioengineering of Catalonia (IBEC), investigators found that epithelial cells — the type that form a barrier between the inside and the outside of the body, such as skin cells — move in a group, propelled by forces both from within and from nearby cells — to fill any unfilled spaces they encounter.… read more

Two-dimensional atomically flat transistors show promise for next-generation green electronics

June 25, 2013

flat_transistor

Researchers at UC Santa Barbara in collaboration with University of Notre Dame have demonstrated the highest reported drive current on a transistor made of a monolayer of tungsten diselenide (WSe2), a 2-dimensional atomic crystal categorized as a transition metal dichalcogenide (TMD).

The discovery is also the first demonstration of an “n-type” WSe2 field-effect-transistor (FET), showing the tremendous potential of this material for future low-power and… read more

Are you ready for smart ingestible pills that monitor your health and replace passwords?

June 25, 2013

CorTemp pill (credit: HQ Inc.)

People on the cutting edge are swallowing ingestible smart pills containing minuscule sensors and transmitters to monitor a range of health data and wirelessly share this information with a doctor, The New York Times reports.

A pill made by Proteus Digital Health can track medication-taking behaviors, monitor how a patient’s body is responding to medicine, and detect the person’s movements and rest patterns.

People with heart… read more

A key signaling pathway that triggers neuron growth

Transport proteins that play a crucial role in learning and brain disorders
June 24, 2013

A kinesin protein walking on a microtubule, transporting its cargo (credit: The Inner Life of a Cell by Cellular Visions and Harvard)

Neuroscientists at The Scripps Research Institute (TSRI) have identified a molecular program that controls an essential step in the fast-growing neocortex in brains of young mammals.

The finding fills in a significant gap in the scientific understanding of how neurons mature and of some developmental brain disorders.

“Mutations that may affect this signaling pathway already have been found in some autism cases,” said TSRI… read more

3D-printing miniaturized medical implants, compact electronics, tiny robots, and more

June 24, 2013

For the first time, a research team from the Wyss Institute at Harvard University and the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign demonstrated the ability to 3D-print a battery. This image shows the interlaced stack of electrodes that were printed layer by layer to create the working anode and cathode of a microbattery. [Ke Sun, Teng-Sing Wei, Jennifer Lewis, Shen J. Dillon]

A team based at Harvard University and the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign has printed precisely interlaced stacks of tiny battery electrodes, each less than the width of a human hair

3D printing can now be used to print lithium-ion microbatteries the size of a grain of sand. The printed microbatteries could supply electricity to tiny devices in fields from medicine to communications, including many that have… read more

Multiview 3D photography made simple

June 24, 2013

Because a light-field camera captures information about not only the intensity of light rays but also their angle of arrival, the images it produces can be refocused later (credit: Kshitij Marwah)

A new technique enables the conversion of an ordinary camera into a light-field camera capable of recording high-resolution, multiperspective images.

Lytro photograph: click to refocus, double-click to zoom
(credit: Amara D. Angelica)

Computational photography is the use of clever light-gathering tricks and sophisticated algorithms to extract more information from the visual environment than traditional cameras can.

The first commercial application of computational photography is… read more

Ferroelectric-graphene-based structure could lead to faster, smaller chips

June 24, 2013

Schematics of a ferroelectric-graphene-ferroelectric nanostructure. Different domains of ferroelectrics can define densely packed waveguide patterns on graphene. Terahertz plasmons at ultrashort wavelength can flow on these waveguides. (Credit: Qing Hu)

MIT researchers have proposed a new system that combines ferroelectric materials — the kind often used for data storage — with graphene, a two-dimensional form of carbon known for its exceptional electronic and mechanical properties.

The resulting hybrid technology could eventually lead to computer and data-storage chips that pack more components in a given area and are faster and less power-hungry.

The new system… read more

Measuring the human pulse from tiny head movements to help diagnose cardiac disease

Could possibly be incorporated in a tricorder
June 24, 2013

Using direction and magnitude of movement of feature points for pulse signal extraction

Researchers at MIT’s Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory have developed a new algorithm that can accurately measure the heart rates of people depicted in ordinary digital video by analyzing imperceptibly small head movements that accompany the rush of blood caused by the heart’s contractions.

In tests, the algorithm gave pulse measurements that were consistently within a few beats per minute… read more

A battery made of wood: long-lasting, efficient, environmentally friendly

June 23, 2013

wood_fibers

University of Maryland researchers have developed and tested a battery with anodes made of tin-coated wood that are a thousand times thinner than a piece of paper.

Using sodium instead of lithium (which is used in many rechargeable batteries) makes the battery environmentally benign. Also, while sodium doesn’t store energy as efficiently as lithium, its low cost and use of commonly available materials would make… read more

Fear of thinking war machines may push US to exascale

June 23, 2013

Tianhe-2-supercomputer

China’s retaking of the global supercomputing crown was discussed at a congressional forum this week on cognitive computing, Computerworld reports.

Unlike China and Europe, the U.S. has yet to adopt and fund an exascale development program.

Rep. Randy Hultgren (R-Ill.), who talked about China’s new 33.89-petaflop system, Tianhe-2, is finalizing a bill “that will push our nation toward exascale” — the American… read more

The Red Queen was right: life must continually evolve to avoid extinction

June 22, 2013

Alice_&_Red_Queen

A University of California, Berkeley study has found that a lack of new emerging species contributes to extinction over a period of millions of years.

The researchers studied 19 groups of mammals that either are extinct or in decline from a past peak in diversity, as in the case of horses, elephants, rhinos and others.

The “Red Queen” hypothesis

The study was conducted… read more

Funding for ALS patient Aaron Winborn’s cryopreservation meets goal

June 22, 2013

Winborn

The Society For Venturism has received the remaining $28,000 funding needed for cryopreservation of ALS patient Aaron Winborn at Cryonics Institute, according to Shannon Vyff, a director of the society (see “ALS patient hopes to be cryopreserved“).

In addition to funding from individuals, the Life Extension Foundation (LEF) in Fort Lauderdale, Florida is donating $10,000 toward Winborn’s cryopreservation… read more

BigBrain: an ultra-high-resolution 3D roadmap of the human brain

June 21, 2013

BigBrain (credit: Montreal Neurological Institute and Forschungszentrum Jülich)

A landmark three-dimensional (3-D) digital reconstruction of a complete human brain, called the BigBrain, shows for the first time the brain anatomy in microscopic detail — at a spatial resolution of 20 microns, smaller than the size of one fine strand of hair — exceeding that of existing reference brains presently in the public domain.

The new tool is made freely available to the broader scientific community to advance… read more

What do memories look like?

Glowing neurons reveal memory formation in vivo
June 21, 2013

A living neuron in culture: Green dots indicate excitatory synapses and red dots indicate inhibitory synapses. (Photo/Don Arnold)

A USC research team has engineered microscopic probes that light up synapses in a living neuron in real time by attaching fluorescent markers onto synaptic proteins, without affecting the neuron’s ability to function.

The fluorescent markers allow scientists to see live excitatory and inhibitory synapses for the first time, and how they change as new memories are formed.

The synapses appear as bright spots along dendrites… read more

How neural stem cells create new and varied neurons

June 21, 2013

fly_larval_brain

A new study examining the brains of fruit flies reveals a novel stem cell mechanism that may help explain how neurons form in humans.

“The question we confronted was ‘How does a single kind of stem cell, like a neural stem cell, make all different kinds of neurons?,’” said Chris Doe, a biology professor.

Researchers have known for some time that stem cells are capable of producing… read more

close and return to Home