Science

Light may help restore function to paralysed muscles

Light may help restore function to paralysed musclesWashington, April 5 : Researchers have discovered a new method to artificially control muscles using light, with the potential to restore function to muscles paralysed by conditions such as motor neuron disease and spinal cord injury.

The technique developed by scientists at UCL and King's College London involves transplanting specially-designed motor neurons created from stem cells into injured nerve branches.

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3D structure of malaria parasite genome generated

3D structure of malaria parasite genome generatedWashington, April 5 : Researchers have generated a 3D model of the human malaria parasite genome at three different stages in the parasite's life cycle.

The parasite that causes malaria in humans is Plasmodium falciparum . The female Anopheles mosquito transmits P. falciparum from an infected human to healthy individuals, spreading malaria in the process.

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West Antarctic glaciers draining more ice than they did 40 years ago

West Antarctic glaciers draining more ice than they did 40 years agoWashington, March 27 : Researchers have found that six massive glaciers in West Antarctica are moving faster than they did 40 years ago, causing more ice to discharge into the ocean and global sea level to rise.

According to scientists, the amount of ice draining collectively from those half-dozen glaciers increased by 77 percent from 1973 to 2013.

The researchers studied the Pine Island, Thwaites, Haynes, Smith, Pope and Kohler glaciers, all of which discharge ice into a vast bay known as the Amundsen Sea Embayment in West Antarctica.

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75 million-year-old giant turtle's bone from fossil discoveries assembled

75 million-year-old giant turtle's bone from fossil discoveries assembledWashington, Mar 26 : Paleontologists have assembled a giant turtle's bone from fossil discoveries made centuries apart.

"As soon as those two halves came together, like puzzle pieces, you knew it," Ted Daeschler, PhD, associate curator of vertebrate zoology and vice president for collections at the Academy of Natural Sciences of Drexel University said.

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Aerosols in atmosphere tend to weaken hurricanes and cyclones

Aerosols in atmosphere tend to weaken hurricanes and cyclones Washington, March 24 : A new study has shown that aerosols in the atmosphere produced from human activities tend to weaken hurricane or tropical cyclones.

According to the study by a team of Texas A and M University researchers, aerosols tend to weaken the development of hurricanes or typhoons and also cause hurricanes to fall apart earlier, and wind speeds are lower than storms where anthropogenic aerosols are not present.

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New technology can create mugshots using only DNA

New technology can create mugshots using only DNAWashington, March 24 : Scientists have developed a new technology that can map accurate facial structures using racial, gender, and genetic markers using DNA.

The researchers at Penn State and the Catholic University of Leuven captured a 3D image of 600 volunteers and created a mesh of 7000 points that were used to precisely measure how genes attached to ancestry and gender affect the face's structural makeup, New Scientist reported.

Geneticist Mark Shriver is already using the statistical model aid in two serial rape cases in Pennsylvania and hopes that the tool can be used to improve images for ancient hominins.

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Gene linked to intellectual disability critical to brain development in humans

Gene linked to intellectual disability critical to brain development in humansWashington, Mar 24 : A latest research from the University of Adelaide has confirmed that a gene linked to intellectual disability is critical to the earliest stages of the development of human brains .

The gene known as USP9X, has been investigated by Adelaide researchers for more than a decade, however, in recent years scientists have begun to understand its particular importance to brain development.

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Titan's second largest sea has mirror-like smooth surface

Titan's second largest sea has mirror-like smooth surfaceWashington, Mar 21 : Radar measurements made in 2013 by NASA's Cassini spacecraft, reveal that the surface of Ligeia Mare, Titan's second largest sea, possesses a mirror-like smoothness, possibly due to a lack of winds.

"If you could look out on this sea, it would be really still. It would just be a totally glassy surface ," Howard Zebker, professor of geophysics and of electrical engineering at Stanford who is the lead author of a new study detailing the research, said.

The findings also indicate that the solid terrain surrounding the sea is likely made of solid organic materials and not frozen water.

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Owner's scent lingers on dog's brain like perfume: Study

Owner's scent lingers on dog's brain like perfume: StudyWashington, March 19 : A new study has revealed that owner's smell lingers in the dog's brain like a perfume and an area of their brain associated with reward responds more strongly to the scents of familiar humans.

The researcher revealed that when a dog was presented with scent samples from itself, an unfamiliar dog, a dog that lived in the subject's household, an unfamiliar human, and a human that lived in the subject's household, all five scents elicited a similar response in parts of the dogs' brains .

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Space ripples reveal first tremors of Big Bang

Space ripples reveal first tremors of Big BangWashington, Mar 18 : Researchers from the BICEP2 collaboration have announced the first direct evidence supporting the theory, known as " cosmic inflation."

Their data also represent the first images of gravitational waves, or ripples in space-time. These waves have been described as the "first tremors of the Big Bang."

Finally, the data confirm a deep connection between quantum mechanics and general relativity.

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Scientists recreate crust of Jupiter's moon Europa

Scientists recreate crust of Jupiter's moon EuropaWashington, March 15 : Researchers have said that water, salts and gases dissolved in the huge ocean that could exist below Europa's icy crust can rise to the surface generating the enigmatic geological formations associated to red-tinged materials that can be seen on this Jupiter's satellite.

The findings were confirmed by the experiment carried out in the laboratory with water, carbon dioxide and magnesium sulfate by researchers at Centro de Astrobiologia (CAB, Spain).

Scientists suspect that inside Europa, one of the icy moons of Jupiter, reservoirs of liquid water exists, the essential element for life on Earth.

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Scientists recreate crust of Jupiter's moon Europa

Scientists recreate crust of Jupiter's moon EuropaWashington, March 15 : Researchers have said that water, salts and gases dissolved in the huge ocean that could exist below Europa's icy crust can rise to the surface generating the enigmatic geological formations associated to red-tinged materials that can be seen on this Jupiter's satellite.

The findings were confirmed by the experiment carried out in the laboratory with water, carbon dioxide and magnesium sulfate by researchers at Centro de Astrobiologia (CAB, Spain).

Scientists suspect that inside Europa, one of the icy moons of Jupiter, reservoirs of liquid water exists, the essential element for life on Earth.

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Genetic factors that help humans break down milk identified

Genetic factors that help humans break down milk identifiedWashington, March 14 : Researchers have found that the beginning and successive spread of cattle domestication in Africa is behind humans' ability to digest milk sugar lactose.

The findings provide strong evidence that lactase persistence evolved in human populations as a dietary adaptation.

Study author Sarah Tishkoff of the University of Pennsylvania, said that the study sheds light on both the genetic basis and evolutionary history of a biologically relevant trait in humans and the origins of pastoralism in Africa.

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Soon, grow marijuana via new smartphone app

Soon, grow marijuana via new smartphone appWashington, Mar 13 : iMD is inventing an app that could help

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Scientists set to laser-blast orbiting space debris

Scientists set to laser-blast orbiting space debrisWashington, March 11 : Scientists have reportedly come up with a plan that would use lasers to remove orbiting space debris.

The Australian government has announced a 20 million dollars Cooperative Research Centre that will investigate using lasers to locate, track, and remove debris from space.

According to Cnet, researchers believe that at least several hundred thousand pieces of space debris are stuck out in orbit around the planet, creating hazards for satellites and spacecraft.

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