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Scientists say dolphins should be treated as non-human persons

January 7, 2010

Scientists studying dolphin behavior have suggested they could be the most intelligent creatures on Earth after humans, saying the size of their brains in relation to body size is larger than that of our closest relatives, the chimpanzees, and their behaviors suggest complex intelligence.

One scientist said they should therefore be treated as “non-human persons” and granted rights as individuals.

Scientists say dolphins should be treated as ‘non-human persons’

January 10, 2011

Dolphins have been declared the world’s second most intelligent creatures after humans, with scientists suggesting they are so bright that they should be treated as “non-human persons.”

“Many dolphin brains are larger than our own and second in mass only to the human brain when corrected for body size,” said Lori Marino, a zoologist at Emory University. “The neuroanatomy suggests psychological continuity between humans and dolphins and has profound… read more

Scientists say nerves use sound, not electricity

March 12, 2007

Copenhagen University researchers theorize that propagation of sonic solitons is a much more likely explanation for propagation of signal in neurons than electrical impulses.

The physicists say because the nerve membrane is made of a material similar to olive oil that can change from liquid to solid through temperature variations, they can freeze and propagate the solitons.

The scientists, whose work is in the Biophysical Society’s Biophysical Journal,… read more

Scientists say poles might flip

December 15, 2003

The Earth’s protective magnetic field has fallen about 10 percent since 1845 and if that continues, the field could flip.

These flips happen every 200,000 years, on average, scientists say. The last one was 780,000 years ago.

Whether the field flips or merely continues to weaken, more harmful particles would flow in from the sun, resulting in an estimated extra 100,000 cancer cases a year; and solar particles… read more

Scientists Say They’ve Found a Code Beyond Genetics in DNA

July 25, 2006

Researchers believe they have found a second code in DNA in addition to the genetic code. The second code, superimposed on the first, sets the placement of the nucleosomes, miniature protein spools around which the DNA is looped.

Scientists see promise in deep-learning programs

November 27, 2012

speech_translation_microsoft

Using deep learning, an AI technique inspired by theories about how the brain recognizes patterns, technology companies are reporting startling gains in fields as diverse as computer vision, speech recognition and the identification of promising new molecules for designing drugs, The New York Times reports.

The advances have led to widespread enthusiasm among researchers who design software to perform human activities like seeing, listening and thinking. They offer… read more

Scientists Seek to Create ‘Three-Parent’ Babies

October 20, 2004

UK Scientists are applying for a license to create human embryos with three genetic parents: their cells would contain a nucleus with genes from both parents, and their mitochondria would be from a woman other than the mother.

The aim is ultimately to prevent children from inheriting genetic diseases caused by mutations in DNA housed by their mitochondria — components of cells that produce energy.

Scientists Seek Ways to Rebuild the Body, Bypassing the Embryos

December 19, 2001

Alternatives to controversial human embryonic stem cells are being explored for creating tissue needed to repair damaged organs.
Possibilities include:

  • Adult stems cells are rare, hard to isolate and purify, hard to grow in culture, and may not exist for all tissues. Some success has been achieved with umbilical cord blood and fat sources.
  • Other cells are created from various sources, such as human embryos (by
  • read more

    Scientists seek ways to ward off killer asteroids

    December 22, 2008

    A blue-ribbon panel of scientists is trying to determine the best way to detect and ward off any wandering space rocks that might be on a collision course with Earth.

    The panel has been commmissioned by the National Academy of Sciences to propose the best way to detect and analyze 90 percent of the “near Earth objects” orbiting between Mars and Venus that are wider than 460 feet by… read more

    Scientists sequence genome of ‘sacred lotus,’ may hold anti-aging secrets

    Can survive for 1,000 years
    May 22, 2013

    Nelumbo nucifera from China, more commonly known as the 'sacred lotus'<br />
(Credit: Jane Shen-Miller /UCLA)

    A team of 70 scientists from the U.S., China, Australia and Japan reports having sequenced and annotated more than 86 percent of the genome of the “sacred lotus,” which is believed to have a powerful genetic system that repairs genetic defects, and may hold secrets about aging successfully.

    The Nelumbo nucifera plant is revered in China and elsewhere as a symbol of spiritual purity and longevity.… read more

    Scientists Set Sights on an Implantable Prosthetic for the Blind

    March 19, 2008
    John Pezaris

    A Massachusetts General Hospital neuroscientist is designing a prosthetic to bypass eyes and optic nerves and send image information directly to the regions of the brain that process them.

    The prosthesis proposed by John Pezaris would be worn like a pair of glasses, with digital cameras over a person’s eyes connecting to an array of electrodes implanted in the brain.

    In research published in 2007 he… read more

    Scientists Shed New Light On Right Brain Activity

    December 17, 2009

    New technology developed by researchers at University of Victoria in Canada can show how multiple parts of the right brain dynamically process spatial relationships.

    The MOST-EEG (Multiple Origin Spatio-Temporal -EEG) uses EEG signals, recorded while a study participant plays a video game for example, to construct a meaningful representation of the brain activity that took place while the participant learned and used the layout of the virtual environment.… read more

    Scientists Show First 3-D Image of Antibody Gene

    April 25, 2008
    (UCSD)

    UC San Diego and San Diego Supercomputer Center researchers and their colleagues used a multidisciplinary mix of geometry, biological research, and supercomputer techniques to show how a gene is organized in three-dimensional space.

    They used the immunoglobulin heavy chain locus–responsible for generating diverse kinds of antibodies–for the project.

    While many gene and genome sequences are known, how the genome is organized in three-dimensional space isn’t. The… read more

    Scientists show how to erase information without using energy

    January 26, 2011

    (Royal Society)

    Until now, scientists have thought that the process of erasing information requires energy (heat dissipation). But a new study by physicists Joan Vaccaro from Griffith University in Queensland, Australia and Stephen Barnett from the University of Strathclyde in Glasgow shows that, theoretically, information can be erased without using any energy at all.

    Instead, the cost of erasure can be paid in terms of another conserved quantity, such as spin… read more

    Scientists Show Stem Cells Don’t Cause Cancer

    February 15, 2008

    Japanese researchers have shown that stem cells made from reprogrammed adult skin cells can be implanted using a retrovirus without fear of causing cancer.

    Last year, researchers showed that adult human and mouse skin cells could be reprogrammed into stem cells similar to embryonic stem cells, but a major concern with those stem cells was the possibility that the retrovirus used to implant the cells might cause cancer.… read more

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