245 articles from WEDNESDAY 6.1.2021

Covid-19 immunity likely lasts for years

Covid-19 patients who recovered from the disease still have robust immunity from the coronavirus eight months after infection, according to a new study. The result is an encouraging sign that the authors interpret to mean immunity to the virus probably lasts for many years, and it should alleviate fears that the covid-19 vaccine would require repeated booster shots to protect against the disease...

Cell biologists decipher signal that ensures no chromosome is left behind

Starting as a single cell, organisms undergo millions of generations of divisions to ultimately generate the bones, heart, brain and other components that make up a living being. The mainspring within this intricate process is the transfer of DNA through each subsequent cell split within discrete packets called chromosomes.

Physicists observe competition between magnetic orders

They are as thin as a hair, only a hundred thousand times thinner—so-called two-dimensional materials, consisting of a single layer of atoms, have been booming in research for years. They became known to a wider audience when two Russian-British scientists were awarded the Nobel Prize in Physics in 2010 for the discovery of graphene, a building block of graphite. The special feature of such...

Key features that help block excess light absorption during photosynthesis

New research reveals the core structure of the light-harvesting antenna of cyanobacteria or blue-green algae -- including key features that both collect energy and block excess light absorption. Scientists built a model of the large protein complex called phycobilisome that collects and transmits light energy. Phycobilisomes allow cyanobacteria to take advantage of different wavelengths of light...

Protective immunity against SARS-CoV-2 could last eight months or more

The findings, based on analyses of blood samples from 188 COVID-19 patients, suggest that responses to the novel coronavirus, SARS-CoV-2, from all major players in the 'adaptive' immune system, which learns to fight specific pathogens, can last for at least eight months after the onset of symptoms from the initial infection.

Resist the resistance: Fighting the good fight against bacteria

Drug-resistant bacteria could lead to more deaths than cancer by 2050, according to a report commissioned by the United Kingdom in 2014 and jointly supported by the U.K. government and the Wellcome Trust. In an effort to reduce the potential infection-caused 10 million deaths worldwide, Penn State researcher Scott Medina has developed a peptide, or small protein, that can target a specific...

Shiga toxin's not supposed to kill you

E. coli food poisoning is one of the worst food poisonings, causing bloody diarrhea and kidney damage. But all the carnage might be just an unintended side effect, report researchers. Their findings might lead to more effective treatments for this potentially deadly disease.

How Earth's oddest mammal got to be so bizarre

Often considered the world's oddest mammal, Australia's beaver-like, duck-billed platypus exhibits an array of bizarre characteristics: it lays eggs instead of giving birth to live babies, sweats milk, has venomous spurs and is even equipped with 10 sex chromosomes. Now, an international team of researchers led by University of Copenhagen has conducted a unique mapping of the platypus genome and...

Israel can expect a major earthquake of 6.5 on the Richter scale in the coming years

A first-of-its-kind study conducted under the bed of the Dead Sea reveals that a devastating earthquake measuring 6.5 on the Richter scale is expected to hit the region in the coming years. The study showed that an earthquake of this magnitude occurs in the land of Israel on an average cycle of between 130 and 150 years, but there have been cases in history where the lull between one earthquake...

The world's first integrated quantum communication network

Chinese scientists have established the world's first integrated quantum communication network, combining over 700 optical fibers on the ground with two ground-to-satellite links to achieve quantum key distribution over a total distance of 4,600 kilometers for users across the country. The team, led by Jianwei Pan, Yuao Chen, Chengzhi Peng from the University of Science and Technology of China in...

Investment risk and return from emerging public biotech companies comparable to non-biotech

Investing in biotech companies may not entail higher risk than investing in other sectors, according to a new report from Bentley University's Center for Integration of Science and Industry. A large scale study of biotechnology companies that completed Initial Public Offerings (IPOs) from 1997-2016 demonstrates that these companies produced more than $100 billion in shareholder value and almost...