784,758 articles

Coronavirus live news: AstraZeneca pulls out of EU supply meeting; Russia relaxes restrictions

Drugmaker reportedly cancels meeting scheduled for Wednesday amid row over deliveries; Moscow eases some measures as cases fallHead of AstraZeneca rejects calls for UK vaccine to be diverted to EUUK hotel quarantine system to target travellers from high-risk areasNew Zealand: two new cases emerge in people who had left quarantineAstraZeneca vaccine ‘may not go to older people’ in EUSee all our...

Not obese after all: Captive Asian elephants less fat than average human

When Daniella Chusy, currently at Indiana University, U.S., learned that many captive elephants were thought to be overweight and that their low birth rates suggested that they may be facing a fertility crisis, she began seeing parallels with the obesity crisis humans face currently. But no one had actually measured how much fat captive Asian elephants (Elephas maximus) in zoos carry. "I was...

This is how America gets its vaccines

After just a week in office, the Biden administration is already under immense public pressure to fix America’s mangled vaccine rollout. Operation Warp Speed injected enormous sums into developing vaccines but left most of the planning—and cost—of administering them to states, which are now having to cope with the fallout. The reliance on chronically underfunded…

Genome-editing tool TALEN outperforms CRISPR-Cas9 in tightly packed DNA

Researchers used single-molecule imaging to compare the genome-editing tools CRISPR-Cas9 and TALEN. Their experiments revealed that TALEN is up to five times more efficient than CRISPR-Cas9 in parts of the genome, called heterochromatin, that are densely packed. Fragile X syndrome, sickle cell anemia, beta-thalassemia and other diseases are the result of genetic defects in the heterochromatin.

Carbon-chomping soil bacteria may pose hidden climate risk

Much of the earth's carbon is trapped in soil, and scientists have assumed that potential climate-warming compounds would safely stay there for centuries. But new research from Princeton University shows that carbon molecules can potentially escape the soil much faster than previously thought. The findings suggest a key role for some types of soil bacteria, which can produce enzymes that break...

Harpy eagles could be under greater threat than previously thought

Harpy eagles are considered by many to be among the planet's most spectacular birds. They are also among its most elusive, generally avoiding areas disturbed by human activity—therefore already having vanished from portions of its range—and listed by the International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN) as being 'Near-Threatened'.

The naming of Tooley crater

Like Einstein, Galileo, and Copernicus, former NASA program manager Craig Tooley now has a place on the Moon named in his honor. Tooley crater is a 7 km crater in a permanently shadowed region of Shoemaker crater near the lunar south pole. The new crater designation is official and can be used in journal articles and other publications.

World's largest opinion survey on climate change: Majority call for wide-ranging action

The results of the Peoples' Climate Vote, the world's biggest ever survey of public opinion on climate change are published today. Covering 50 countries with over half of the world's population, the survey includes over half a million people under the age of 18, a key constituency on climate change that is typically unable to vote yet in regular elections. 

Jigsaw puzzles make you smarter – and I’m living proof | Arwa Mahdawi

Should I worry about my addiction to 1,000-piece brainteasers? Not according to the scientistsIf you looked at my Google search history (which I would obviously never let anyone do), an alarming percentage of it would consist of variations of: “Is X actually good for you?” With X being whichever bad habit I’m engaged in. The amazing thing about the internet is that you can always find a...

'You say tomato, I say genomics': Genome sequences for two wild tomato ancestors

A research team led by University of Tsukuba has produced genome sequences for two wild species of tomato from South America, ancestors of the cultivated tomato. The ancestral species contain thousands of genes that are not present in modern types. The novel genes will help plant breeders produce new tomatoes with features like improved disease resistance, increased tolerance for the changing...

Ancient proteins help track early milk drinking in Africa

Got milk? The 1990s ad campaign highlighted the importance of milk for health and wellbeing, but when did we start drinking the milk of other animals? And how did the practice spread? A new study led by scientists from Germany and Kenya highlights the critical role of Africa in the story of dairying, showing that communities there were drinking milk by at least 6,000 years ago.

Carbon-chomping soil bacteria may pose hidden climate risk

Much of the earth's carbon is trapped in soil, and scientists have assumed that potential climate-warming compounds would safely stay there for centuries. But new research from Princeton University shows that carbon molecules can potentially escape the soil much faster than previously thought. The findings suggest a key role for some types of soil bacteria, which can produce enzymes that break...

Children can bypass age verification procedures in popular social media apps

Children of all ages can completely bypass age verification measures to sign-up to the world's most popular social media apps including Snapchat, Instagram, TikTok, Facebook, WhatsApp, Messenger, Skype and Discord by simply lying about their age, researchers at Lero, the Science Foundation Ireland Research Centre for Software have found.

Genome-editing tool TALEN outperforms CRISPR-Cas9 in tightly packed DNA

Researchers used single-molecule imaging to compare the genome-editing tools CRISPR-Cas9 and TALEN. Their experiments revealed that TALEN is up to five times more efficient than CRISPR-Cas9 in parts of the genome, called heterochromatin, that are densely packed. Fragile X syndrome, sickle cell anemia, beta-thalassemia and other diseases are the result of genetic defects in the heterochromatin.

How blood stem cells maintain their lifelong potential for self-renewal

A characteristic feature of all stem cells is their ability to self-renew. But how is this potential maintained throughout life? Scientists at the German Cancer Research Center (DKFZ) and the Heidelberg Institute for Stem Cell Technology and Experimental Medicine* (HI-STEM) have now discovered in mice that cells in the so-called "stem cell niche" are responsible for this,

Pace of prehistoric human innovation could be revealed by 'linguistic thermometer'

A physics professor has joined forces with language experts to build a 'linguistic thermometer' that can record the temperature of 'hot' or 'cold' (ie fast or slow) developments in modern linguistic features to create a computer-based model that can provide a better understanding of the development in human language and innovation stretching back to pre-history.

Secrets of traumatic stress hidden in the brain are exposed

Study explores lateralization changes in resting state brain network functional connectivity. Among military service members and Veterans with symptoms of traumatic stress, asymmetries of network and brain region connectivity patterns were identified prior to usage of HIRREM. A variety of changes in lateralized patterns of brain connectivity were identified post intervention. These laterality...

World's largest opinion survey on climate change: Majority call for wide-ranging action

An innovative UNDP global survey conducted in collaboration with Oxford University experts -- the largest-ever opinion survey on climate change (1.2 million people in 50 countries) -- finds 64% ( 2%) deem climate an 'emergency.' Worldwide, most people clearly want a strong and wide-ranging policy response, and 4 of 18 policy options received majority support.Distributed across mobile gaming...


TUESDAY 26. JANUARY 2021


Cell 'bones' mystery solved with supercomputers

Our cells are filled with 'bones,' in a sense. Thin, flexible protein strands called actin filaments help support and move around the bulk of the cells of eukaryotes, which includes all plants and animals. Always on the go, actin filaments constantly grow, shrink, bind with other things, and branch off when cells move.

Satellite data reveals bonds between emissions, pollution and economy

Burning fossil fuels has long powered world economies while contributing to air pollution and the buildup of greenhouse gases. A new analysis of nearly two decades of satellite data shows that economic development, fossil-fuel combustion and air quality are closely linked on the continental and national scales, but can be decoupled at the national level, according to Penn State scientists.

Southern Africa's most endangered shark just extended its range by 2,000 kilometers

A team of marine scientists led by the Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS) has confirmed that southern Africa's most threatened endemic shark—the Critically Endangered shorttail nurse shark (Pseudoginglymostoma brevicaudatum) - has been found to occur in Mozambique; a finding that represents a range extension of more than 2,000 kilometers (1,242 miles).

Extreme black holes have hair that can be combed

Black holes are considered amongst the most mysterious objects in the universe. Part of their intrigue arises from the fact that they are actually among the simplest solutions to Einstein's field equations of general relativity. In fact, black holes can be fully characterized by only three physical quantities: their mass, spin and charge. Since they have no additional "hairy" attributes to...

Researchers propose necessary corrections in global biodiversity policy

Since the founding of the United Nations Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) in Rio de Janeiro in 1992, member states have regularly agreed on global strategies to bring the increasingly rapid loss of biodiversity to a halt. In 2002, the heads of state adopted the so-called 2010 biodiversity targets. Eight years later, little progress had been made and 20 new, even more ambitious goals were...