science + technology news

Blue LEDs to reset tired truckers’ body clocks

March 19, 2008

Blue LEDs in truck cabs and truck stops could be the key to reducing accidents caused by drowsy drivers by convincing the brain it’s morning, say Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute researchers.

Nearly 30% of all fatal accidents involving large trucks in the US happen during the hours of darkness.

The lie detector you’ll never know is there

January 5, 2006

THE US Department of Defense has revealed plans to develop a lie detector that can be used without the subject knowing they are being assessed.

The Remote Personnel Assessment (RPA) device will also be used to pinpoint fighters hiding in a combat zone, or even to spot signs of stress that might mark someone out as a terrorist or suicide bomber.

Arabic In, English Out

March 24, 2003

A new device being tested at the Office of Naval Research promises simultaneous machine translation and interpretation, using a blend of voice recognition, speech synthesis and translation technologies.

Snort stem cells to get them to brain

September 11, 2009

Snorting stem cells might be a way of getting large numbers of stem cells or therapeutic proteins such as neural growth factor into the brain without surgery, University Hospital of Tübingen researchers have found in an experiment with mice.

Signs of Hidden Ocean Underneath Titan’s Crust

March 24, 2008
(NASA-JPL)

Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory scientists say the observed slippage in Titan’s rotation suggests water between its surface and core, and a higher likelihood of ancient life on Saturn’s biggest moon.

Taiwan breeds green-glowing pigs

January 13, 2006

Scientists in Taiwan say they have bred three pigs that glow in the dark.

The pigs are transgenic, created by adding genetic material from jellyfish into a normal pig embryo. The scientists will use the transgenic pigs to study human disease.

Because the pig’s genetic material is green, it is easy to spot. So if, for instance, some of its stem cells are injected into another animal, scientists… read more

In eyes, a clock calibrated by wavelengths of light

July 6, 2011

Research at the Center for Chronobiology at the University of Basel has shown that by suppressing production of melatonin, blue-emitting electronics (produced by many kinds of energy-efficient light bulbs and electronic gadgets) shortchange our sleep and may contribute to a host of diseases.

Measuring the Risks of Nanotechnology

April 8, 2003

Do breakthroughs in nanotechnology present unique health and environmental dangers that need to be studied?

How Quantum Probability Theory Could Explain Human Logical Fallacies

September 17, 2009

Te principles of quantum information processing, including the ideas of superposition and interference, lead to better models of the way humans make decisions, suggests Jerome Busemeyer at Indiana University and colleagues.

Six more genes tied to diabetes

March 31, 2008

Oxford, Harvard, and National Human Genome Research Institute researchers and their colleagues have identified six new unexpected genetic variants involved in type 2 diabetes, boosting to 16 the total number of genetic factors associated with increased risk of the disease.

The new variant most strongly associated with type 2 diabetes was also recently implicated in prostate cancer.

Type 2 diabetes affects more than 200 million people worldwide, including… read more

Artificial cell can make its own genes

April 1, 2008
(David Kong/MIT)

An “artificial cell” capable of synthesising genes and making them into proteins quickly and cheaply has been developed by MIT researchers.

The first part of the device synthezises the genes using enzymes to join together DNA strands from a pool of short templates. The finished genes are then copied to produce many versions of the final product. Cycles of heating and cooling control the enzymes carrying out… read more

Rehab’s robotic revolution

January 31, 2006

Researchers envision a day when robots will become standard equipment in rehabilitation centers, giving stroke patients — and possibly patients with spinal cord injuries — a chance to take their recovery further than previously possible.

The KineAssist, just one of a legion of smart machines poised to bring physical therapy into the high-tech age, was developed at the Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago. It is essentially a hip brace and… read more

Nanocontainers Deliver Drugs Directly to Cells

April 28, 2003

Tiny nanocontainers composed of polymers may one day distribute drugs to specific spots within individual cells.

Burst of Technology Helps Blind to See

September 28, 2009

Advances in technology, genetics, brain science and biology are making the goal of restoring sight more feasible.

The approaches include gene therapy, which has produced improved vision in people who are blind from one rare congenital disease, stem cells, light-responding protein, retinal transplants, and implanted electrodes to stimulate visual areas.

Stem cell breakthrough for producing pancreatic tissue

April 4, 2008

University of Manchester and University of Sheffield researchers have discovered a new technique to turn embryonic stem cells (ESCs) into insulin-producing pancreatic tissue through genetic manipulation.

By making the ESC produce transcription factor PAX4, 20% became pancreatic beta cells.

Scientists have had difficulty turning stem cells into the specific cell required for any particular condition. Unprompted, the majority of stem cells turn into neurons.

Universityread more

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