Πέμπτη, 31 Οκτωβρίου 2013

Science News SciGuru.com

Science News SciGuru.com

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Nurturing may protect kids from brain changes linked to poverty

Posted: 31 Oct 2013 07:14 AM PDT

Growing up in poverty can have long-lasting, negative consequences for a child. But for poor children raised by parents who lack nurturing skills, the effects may be particularly worrisome, according to a new study at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis.

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Heart study shows benefit for aortic stenosis patients

Posted: 30 Oct 2013 09:35 AM PDT

A landmark heart valve trial that included patients from the University of Michigan Frankel Cardiovascular Center showed positive results for those whose lives were impaired by aortic stenosis.

The clinical trial evaluated a new transcathether valve – the Medtronic CoreValve® System – and revealed some of the lowest stroke rates ever reported.

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How video gaming can be beneficial for the brain

Posted: 30 Oct 2013 09:32 AM PDT

Video gaming causes increases in the brain regions responsible for spatial orientation, memory formation and strategic planning as well as fine motor skills. This has been shown in a new study conducted at the Max Planck Institute for Human Development and Charité University Medicine St. Hedwig-Krankenhaus. The positive effects of video gaming may also prove relevant in therapeutic interventions targeting psychiatric disorders.

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Face It: Twins Who Smoke Look Older

Posted: 30 Oct 2013 09:25 AM PDT

Twins who smoke show more premature facial aging, compared to their nonsmoking identical twins, reports a study in the November issue of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery®, the official medical journal of the American Society of Plastic Surgeons (ASPS).

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Hair Loss Weighing on Your Mind? 'Gravity Theory' May Explain Male Pattern Baldness

Posted: 30 Oct 2013 08:21 AM PDT

The effects of gravity may explain the apparently paradoxical effects of testosterone in male pattern baldness, or androgenic alopecia (AGA), according to a special topic paper in Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery—Global Open®, the official open-access medical journal of the American Society of Plastic Surgeons (ASPS).

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ScienceDaily: Top Science News

ScienceDaily: Top Science News

Babies can learn their first lullabies in the womb

Posted: 30 Oct 2013 03:55 PM PDT

An infant can recognize a lullaby heard in the womb for several months after birth, potentially supporting later speech development.

A first step in learning by imitation, baby brains respond to another's actions

Posted: 30 Oct 2013 03:51 PM PDT

Imitation may be the sincerest form of flattery for adults, but for babies it's their foremost tool for learning. Now researchers have found the first evidence revealing a key aspect of the brain processing that occurs in babies to allow this learning by observation.

The secret math of plants: Biologists uncover rules that govern leaf design

Posted: 30 Oct 2013 12:29 PM PDT

Biologists have discovered fundamental rules for leaf design that underlie the ability of plants to make leaves that vary enormously in size.

How the universe's violent youth seeded cosmos with iron

Posted: 30 Oct 2013 12:29 PM PDT

By detecting an even distribution of iron throughout a massive galaxy cluster, astrophysicists can tell the 10-billion-year-old story of how exploding stars and black holes sowed the early cosmos with heavy elements.

New multiple action intestinal hormone corrects diabetes

Posted: 30 Oct 2013 11:29 AM PDT

Scientists have developed a new therapeutic approach for treatment of Type 2 diabetes. A novel single molecule hormone, which acts equally on the receptors of the insulin-stimulating hormones GLP-1 and GIP, was observed to reduce weight and improve blood sugar.

Lava world baffles astronomers: Planet Kepler-78b 'shouldn't exist'

Posted: 30 Oct 2013 11:29 AM PDT

Kepler-78b is a planet that shouldn't exist. This scorching lava world circles its star every eight and a half hours at a distance of less than one million miles - one of the tightest known orbits. According to current theories of planet formation, it couldn't have formed so close to its star, nor could it have moved there.

Earth-like exoplanet in mass and size: While too hot to support life, Kepler 78b is roughly the size of Earth

Posted: 30 Oct 2013 11:28 AM PDT

In August, researchers identified an exoplanet with an extremely brief orbital period: The team found that Kepler 78b, a small, intensely hot planet 400 light-years from Earth, circles its star in just 8.5 hours — lightning-quick, compared with our own planet's leisurely 365-day orbit. From starlight data gathered by the Kepler Space Telescope, the scientists also determined that the exoplanet is about 1.2 times Earth's size — making Kepler 78b one of the smallest exoplanets ever measured.

Incurable brain cancer gene silenced: Gene regulation technology increases survival rates in mice with glioblastoma

Posted: 30 Oct 2013 11:28 AM PDT

Glioblastoma multiforme, the brain cancer that killed Sen. Edward Kennedy, is aggressive and incurable. Researchers can now demonstrate delivery of a drug that turns off a critical gene in this complex cancer, increasing survival rates significantly in animals with the disease. The therapeutic, based on nanotechnology, is nimble enough to cross the blood-brain barrier and get to the brain tumor. Once there, it flips the switch of the oncogene to "off," silencing the gene.

Warming will disturb balance of soil nutrients in drylands, make drylands less productive

Posted: 30 Oct 2013 11:28 AM PDT

An increase in aridity due to global warming will disturb the balance of nutrients in the soil and reduce productivity of the world's drylands, which support millions of people, a landmark study predicts. The research was conducted by a global collaboration of scientists who studied sites in 16 countries. It shows that increasing aridity is associated with a reduction in carbon and nitrogen in the soil and an increase in phosphorus.

Chinese bats likely source of SARS virus

Posted: 30 Oct 2013 11:24 AM PDT

Scientists say they've produced "the clearest evidence yet" the SARS virus originated in Chinese horseshoe bats and that direct bat-to-human transmission is "plausible." The 2002 severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus (SARS-CoV) pandemic was one of the most significant public health events in recent history and researchers have been studying the virus to better understand how it is transmitted to prepare for future outbreaks.

Pain in infancy alters response to stress, anxiety later in life

Posted: 30 Oct 2013 09:55 AM PDT

Early life pain alters neural circuits in the brain that regulate stress, suggesting pain experienced by infants who often do not receive analgesics while undergoing tests and treatment in neonatal intensive care may permanently alter future responses to anxiety, stress and pain in adulthood, medical researchers have discovered.

Scientists digitally reconstruct giant steps taken by dinosaurs for the first time

Posted: 30 Oct 2013 09:55 AM PDT

Scientists were able to laser scan a 40 meter-long skeleton of the vast Cretaceous Agentinosaurus dinosaur. Then using an advanced computer modeling technique involving the equivalent of 30,000 desktop computers they recreated its walking and running movements and tested its locomotion ability tested for the very first time.

First results from LUX dark matter detector: Searching for elusive dark matter

Posted: 30 Oct 2013 09:55 AM PDT

In its first three months of operation, the Large Underground Xenon (LUX) experiment has proven itself to be the most sensitive dark matter detector in the world, scientists with the experiment have announced. Researchers are now preparing the detector, located a mile underground in an old South Dakota gold mine, for a 300-day run next year in hopes of detecting for the first time weakly interacting particles thought to account for most of the matter in the universe. Though dark matter has not yet been detected directly, scientists are fairly certain that it exists.

Brain regions can be specifically trained with video games

Posted: 30 Oct 2013 07:38 AM PDT

Video gaming causes increases in the brain regions responsible for spatial orientation, memory formation and strategic planning as well as fine motor skills. This has been shown in a new study. The positive effects of video gaming may also prove relevant in therapeutic interventions targeting psychiatric disorders.

World's most powerful terahertz quantum cascade laser

Posted: 30 Oct 2013 07:35 AM PDT

Terahertz waves are invisible, but incredibly useful; they can penetrate many materials which are opaque to visible light and they are perfect for detecting a variety of molecules. Terahertz radiation can be produced using tiny quantum cascade lasers, only a few millimeters wide. This special kind of lasers consists of tailor made semiconductor layers on a nanometer scale. A new world record has now been set; using a special merging technique, two symmetrical laser structures have been joined together, resulting in a quadruple intensity of laser light.

What happens when the lightbulb turns on? Measuring a person's creativity from single spoken words

Posted: 30 Oct 2013 06:31 AM PDT

Neuroscientists have created a quick but reliable test that can measure a person's creativity from single spoken words. The "noun-verb" test is so simple it can be done by virtually anyone anywhere -- even in an MRI machine, setting the stage for scientists to pinpoint how the brain comes up with unusually creative ideas. While some believe ingenuity is spontaneous, the researchers suspect there's a lot of hard work going on in the brain even when the proverbial light bulb turning on feels effortless.

Moral in the morning, but dishonest in the afternoon

Posted: 30 Oct 2013 06:31 AM PDT

Our ability to exhibit self-control to avoid cheating or lying is significantly reduced over the course of a day, making us more likely to be dishonest in the afternoon than in the morning, according to a new article.

Mechanisms of wound healing clarified in zebrafish study

Posted: 29 Oct 2013 02:19 PM PDT

A crucial component of wound healing in many animals, including humans, is the migration of nearby skin cells toward the center of the wound. How do these neighboring skin cells know which way to migrate? A new paper from scientists clarifies the role of calcium signaling in wound healing.