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Ultrasensitive biosensor can detect proteins, aid in cancer diagnosis

September 21, 2010

Researchers at Boston College discovered that a cluster of carbon nanotubes coated with a thin layer of protein-recognizing polymer forms a biosensor capable of using electrochemical signals to detect minute amounts of proteins. This new biosensor could provide a crucial new diagnostic tool for the detection of cancer and other illnesses.

Graphene transistors clocked at 26GHz

December 12, 2008

IBM researchers have built high quality graphene transistors and clocked them running at 26 GHz.

Create a back-up copy of your immune system

June 24, 2007

An Anglo-American company called Lifeforce has received permission from the FDA to collect 480-milliliter samples of blood from healthy individuals, extract the white blood cells, and store them as an insurance policy against future disease.

New microscopy method visualizes microtubules in cells of living fish

May 17, 2012

Under green fluorescent light, cell structures, here microtubuli, can be observed in living fish embryos (credit: NIH, KIT)

A new hybrid method to visualize cell structures in living fish larvae has been developed by researchers of Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT), the Max Planck Institute for Polymer Research, Mainz, and the U.S. National Institutes of Health (NIH).

“The zebrafish is perfectly suited for genetic studies of cells, as its larvae are completely transparent,” explains Marina Mione of KIT.

Microtubules, a key… read more

Drugs Delivered By Robots in the Blood

October 4, 2004

A microscopic swimming robot unveiled by Chinese scientists could eventually be used for drug delivery or to clear arteries in humans.

The 3 mm by 2 mm by 0.4 mm triangular machine is propelled using an external magnetic field that controls its microscopic fins: the speed of the craft can be changed by altering the resonant frequency of the magnetic field.

The next model of the robot will… read more

First Potentially Habitable Exoplanet found

September 30, 2010

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A team of planet hunters from the University of California (UC) Santa Cruz and the Carnegie Institution has announced the discovery of a planet, Gliese 581g, with three times the mass of Earth orbiting a nearby star at a distance that places it squarely in the middle of the star’s “habitable zone.”

The research, sponsored by NASA and the National Science Foundation, placed… read more

Will Obama pursue space-based solar power?

December 23, 2008

Advocates for space-based solar power have posted a white paper on the topic on the transition website,, hoping to secure some support for developing the technology from the Obama administration, given the incoming president’s pledge to make developing alternative energy sources a top priority.

Singularity play features Yudkowsky

July 5, 2007

“In a seemingly deserted island, Dr. Eliezer Yudkowski [sic] and his artificial intelligence drones and cohorts wage a war to keep their circular narrative from ending. Their only weapon? The hope that humanity can finally evolve.”

That’s the premise of a play dealing with AI and the Singularity called “Yudkowski Returns: The Rise And Fall And Rise Again of Dr. Eliezer Yudkowski,” running at The Pretentious Festival… read more

Nanotechnology solutions for the post-CMOS era of semiconductor manufacturing

October 18, 2004

Using nanotechnologies to replace and/or extend the life of advanced CMOS manufacturing technologies is the goal of a new program from IMEC, Europe’s leading microelectronics research and development center.

IMEC program participants will investigate the use of semiconducting wires, carbon nanotubes and spintronics and, at the same time, develop the metrology and theoretical approach required as a backbone for implementation of the new methodologies.

Religion may have evolved because of its ability to help people exercise self-control

December 31, 2008

University of Miami professor of Psychology Michael McCullough finds that religious people have more self-control than do their less religious counterparts.

These findings imply that religious people may be better at pursuing and achieving long-term goals that are important to them and their religious groups. This, in turn, might help explain why religious people tend to have lower rates of substance abuse, better school achievement, less delinquency, better health… read more

Organic farming could feed the world

July 13, 2007

A switch to organic farming would not reduce the world’s food supply and could also increase food security in developing countries, say the authors of a new study.

They found that in developed countries, organic systems on average produce 92 percent of the yield produced by conventional agriculture. In developing countries, however, organic systems produce 80 percent more than conventional farms because the materials needed for organic farming are… read more

Injectable chip destroys cancer cells

October 22, 2004

Singaporean doctors have used an injectable radioactive “BrachySil” chip to destroy malignant cells and prolong the lives of inoperable liver cancer patients.

Bilingual, Bicultural ‘Roboceptionist’

October 19, 2010

The roboceptionist Hala exhibits facial gestures, and the monitor turns side-to-side like a head. Hala also is provided with a back story, a history and a personality to encourage people to converse with her. (College of Social and Behavioral Sciences)

Researchers at the University of Arizona and Carnegie Mellon University are working to create a robot receptionist. What makes the effort novel is that the “roboceptionist” is a bilingual and bicultural computer with a face and a natural language interface.

A three-year, $1 million grant from the Qatar National Research Foundation is funding basic advances in human-computer interaction. Majd Sakr, a professor at Carnegie Mellon University in Qatar, is… read more

Artificial molecule evolves in the lab

January 9, 2009

Scientists at Scripps Research Institute have designed an RNA molecule that emulates two of the essential features of life: it self-replicates and evolves by natural selection.

Graphene Nanoelectronics

July 24, 2007

Rensselaer physicists have showed that the length of graphene may be used to manipulate and tune the material’s energy gap (which determine if a material is metallic or semiconducting).

The research could lead to a way to mass produce metallic graphene, which could could one day replace copper as the primary interconnect material on computer chips, overcoming copper’s resistance and heat limitations as interconnects get smaller.

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