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DNA nanorobots deliver ‘suicide’ messages to cancer cells, other diseases

February 17, 2012


Stem cell reprogramming made easier

September 23, 2013

iPSCs -- old vs new method

Weizmann Institute scientists show that removing one protein from adult cells enables them to efficiently turn back the clock to a stem-cell-like state.

Embryonic stem cells have the enormous potential to treat and cure many medical problems. That is why the discovery that induced embryonic-like stem cells can be created from skin cells was rewarded with a Nobel Prize in 2012.

But the process… read more

Design the best medical Tricorder and win $10 million

May 17, 2011

Medical Tricorder (credit: Paramount Pictures and/or CBS Studios)

A $10 million prize to develop a mobile solution that can diagnose patients better than or equal to a panel of board certified physicians has been announced by the X PRIZE Foundation and Qualcomm.

The Tricorder X PRIZE aims to incentivize consumer empowerment in healthcare by extending the reach of health information and services to more people.

The two organizations seek to… read more

IBM scientists discover new liquid molecular technique to charge memory, logic chips

Would use tiny ionic currents, processing data like the human brain
March 22, 2013

ionic liquid device

IBM has announced a materials science breakthrough at the molecular level that could pave the way for a new class of non-volatile memory and logic chips that would use less power than today’s silicon devices.

IBM’s scientists discovered a new way to power chips using tiny ionic currents, which are streams of charged molecules that can mimic the event-driven way in which the human brain operates.

Today’s computers… read more

Google escalates the competition in map services

May 16, 2013

New Google maps: search results appear

On Wednesday, Google unveiled a new Google Maps, by far the biggest redesign since it introduced Maps eight years ago, The New York Times reports.

When users who are logged into Google visit Maps, they will see the places they frequently visit highlighted, like restaurants, museums and their home. Google learns the places they go by drawing information from all of Google’s services — including search and… read more

Whole-genome sequences of supercentenarians reveal longevity clues

April 11, 2012


A team of researchers has analyzed the complete genomic sequences of male and female supercentenarians, both over 114 years old.

Surprisingly, the researchers showed that the DNA sequences are largely comparable to existing non-supercentenarian genomes, and the two individuals do not appear to carry most of the well-established human longevity-enabling variants already reported in the literature.

In fact, the supercentenarians have a comparable number of known disease-associated variants relative to… read more

Germany meets half its energy demand from solar, briefly

May 30, 2012


Solar power plants in Germany peaked at 22 gigawatts of output for a few hours on Friday and Saturday, yielding almost half the country’s energy needs from the renewable resource and setting a new record in the process, IEEE Spectrum Energywise reports.

In the wake of the decision to shutter all of its nuclear plants, solar power will need to play an even… read more

A 3,000-vehicle test of wireless crash-avoidance system

August 22, 2012


Tuesday’s launch of a new year-long test of “smart car” technology conducted by the University of Michigan Transportation Research Institute is designed to save lives and reduce injuries among American motorists.

The researchers plan to install wireless communication devices on nearly 3,000 vehicles that will let passenger cars, commercial trucks, and transit buses “talk” to each other, as well as to traffic lights and other… read more

Secrets of human speech uncovered

How the brain exerts symphony-like control of the vocal tract during the act of speaking
March 1, 2013


A team of researchers at UC San Francisco has uncovered the neurological basis of speech motor control, the complex coordinated activity of tiny brain regions that controls our lips, jaw, tongue and larynx as we speak.

The work has potential implications for developing brain-computer interfaces for artificial speech communication and for the treatment of speech disorders. It also sheds light on this ability, which is… read more

Hundreds of tiny untethered surgical tools tested in animal biopsies

Could find early signs of cancer or other diseases
April 25, 2013

Optical image of μ -gripper in the bile duct opening of the porcine<br />
liver. Scale bar represents 200 microns

“So what we plan to do is unleash swarms of hundreds of microscopic ‘grippers’ into your colon and let them just snip away at you, OK?”  — Future gastroenterologist to patient

By using swarms of untethered grippers, each as small as a speck of dust, Johns Hopkins engineers and physicians have devised a new way to perform biopsies that could provide a more effective way… read more

Controlling a flying robot with only the mind

Could help people who are paralyzed or have neurodegenerative diseases
June 7, 2013


Researchers in the University of Minnesota’s College of Science and Engineering have developed a new noninvasive system that allows people to control a flying robot using a brain-computer interface.

The study has the potential to help people who are paralyzed or have neurodegenerative diseases.

The open access study was published in IOP Publishing’s Journal of Neural Engineering.

Five subjects (three female and two… read more

NASA tests limits of 3D printing with powerful rocket engine check

August 28, 2013


The largest 3-D printed rocket engine component NASA ever has tested blazed to life Thursday, Aug. 22 during an engine firing that generated a record 20,000 pounds of thrust.

This test is a milestone for one of many important advances the agency is making to reduce the cost of space hardware. Innovations like additive manufacturing, or 3-D printing, foster new and more cost-effective capabilities in the U.S.… read more

Richard Clarke on who was behind the Stuxnet attack

April 5, 2012


The United States created the Stuxnet cyberworm attack on Iran’s nuclear fuel enrichment facility, says former counterterrorism czar Richard Clarke.

Problem: “thousands of people around the world have it and are playing with it,” he says. “And if I’m right, the best cyberweapon the United States has ever developed, it then gave the world for free.”

What’s more, the U.S. has developed the capability to conduct an offensive cyberwar,… read more

Higgs hunt heats up with final Tevatron data

July 3, 2012


On July 4 at 9 a.m. in Geneva (3 a.m. in New York), officials at the Large Hadron Collider are expected to present new results on, and possibly the discovery of, the Higgs boson.

Tevatron at Fermilab in Illinois announced their latest data on July 2, which gives more strong evidence for the existence of the… read more

Custom gene editing rewrites zebrafish DNA

September 24, 2012


Researchers led by Stephen Ekker, a molecular biologist at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota, have for the first time made custom changes to parts of the zebrafish (Danio rerio) genome, using artificial enzymes to cut portions of DNA out of targeted positions in a gene sequence, and replace them with synthetic DNA, Nature News reports.

One of the sequences that Ekker and his colleagues inserted into… read more

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