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137,606 articles from ScienceDaily

Blocking Formation Of Toxic Plaques Implicated In Type 2 Diabetes

Amid growing evidence that the same abnormal clumping of proteins in Alzheimer's disease also contributes to type-2 diabetes, scientists are reporting discovery of a potent new compound that reduces formation of those so-called amyloid plaques. The report cites evidence correlating increases in amyloid formation in the pancreas with increases in severity and rate of progression of type-2 diabetes,...


THURSDAY 13. SEPTEMBER 2007


Biological Invasions Can Begin With Just One Insect

A new study has shown that a lone insect can initiate a biological invasion. The scientists examined patterns of genetic diversity in both native European and invasive North American populations of a solitary bee. They concluded that the invasion was most likely founded by one mated female.

Black Women More Likely To Have More Aggressive, Less Treatable Form Of Breast Cancer

A large analysis of racial differences in rates of estrogen receptor (ER)-negative breast cancer finds that black women in the United States are more likely than white women to have breast tumors that are ER-negative, researchers from the University of Michigan Comprehensive Cancer Center report. ER-negative tumors are associated with less favorable outcomes than those that are ER-positive, in...

Cassini Flies By Saturn's Walnut-Shaped Moon Iapetus

Cassini completed its closest flyby of the odd moon Iapetus on Sept. 10, 2007. The spacecraft flew about 1,640 kilometers (1,000 miles) from Iapetus' surface and is returning amazing views of the bizarre moon. All the data were successfully recorded on the spacecraft. Twenty-one minutes into the first post-flyby data downlink, the spacecraft went into a precautionary condition called safe mode....

Beer Drinking Has More To Do With Brain Rewards Than Taste Receptors

Different zests for beer might reveal more about alcohol's effect on the brain reward system than inherent differences in taste sensitivity, according to new research. In a study using mice scientists are attempting to map genes responsible for differences in beer consumption. Regardless of taste receptors, many strains of mice voluntarily consumed enough alcohol to become alcohol-dependent,...

Gamma Ray Lasers? Positronium Created In The Lab

Physicists have created molecular positronium, an entirely new object in the laboratory. Briefly stable, each molecule is made up of a pair of electrons and a pair of positrons. They made the molecules by firing positrons into a film of porous silica. The research paves the way for studying multi-positronium interactions and could one day help develop fusion power generation and directed energy...

Hunger Hormone Fights Aging In The Thymus

Immune function deteriorates with age because, in part, the thymus involutes, dramatically decreasing its immune cell output. New evidence indicates that in mice, thymic involution is caused by a decrease in thymic expression of a hormone better known as a stimulator of food intake (ghrelin) and its receptor. These results led the authors to caution that care should be taken when considering...

New Theory Explains Ice On Mars

Wobbles on Mars cause ice ages that are much more dramatic than those on Earth, says astronomer Norbert Schörghofer of the University of Hawaii. Thanks to our large, stabilizing Moon, Earth's rotation axis is always tilted by about 23 degrees. The tilt of Mars, however, can wobble by as much as10 degrees from its current 25 degrees. Wobbles cause big changes in the amount of sunlight reaching...

'Killer Bees' Now Established In New Orleans

Africanized honeybees, 'killer bees' have been found in the New Orleans area since July of 2005, but the regularity and frequency of finding them there is new cause for concern. Another confirmed positive Africanized honeybee sample in the New Orleans area indicates the bees are most likely established there now, according to the Agriculture and Forestry Commissioner.

Ancient Egyptians Mummified Their Cats With Utmost Care

Examination of Egyptian mummies has shown that animals such as cats and crocodiles were given a far more careful and expensive trip to the afterlife than previously thought. Mummification was crucial to the ancient Egyptians because they believed that if their bodies survived they could become immortal.

NASA Astronomers Find Bizarre Planet-mass Object Orbiting Neutron Star

Using NASA's Swift and Rossi X-ray Timing Explorer satellites, astronomers have discovered one of the most bizarre planet-mass objects ever found. The object’s minimum mass is only about 7 times the mass of Jupiter. But instead of orbiting a normal star, this low-mass body orbits a rapidly spinning pulsar. It orbits the pulsar every 54.7 minutes at an average distance of only about 230,000...

Testosterone In Womb Linked To Autism

Fetuses that produce high levels of testosterone have more autistic traits during development, according to new research. Scientists found a significant link between amniotic testosterone levels and the number of autistic traits in children. The researchers are following the development of children from 235 mothers, whose prenatal levels of testosterone were determined by amniocentesis.

Extinction Crisis Escalates: Red List Shows Apes, Corals, Vultures, Dolphins All In Danger

Life on Earth is disappearing fast and will continue to do so unless urgent action is taken, according to the 2007 IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. There are now 41,415 species on the IUCN Red List and 16,306 of them are threatened with extinction, up from 16,118 last year. The total number of extinct species has reached 785 and a further 65 are only found in captivity or in cultivation.

Life Expectancy Of Americans Reaches 78

A child born in the United States in 2005 can expect to live nearly 78 years (77.9) -- a new high -- according to a new report released by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The increase in life expectancy represents a continuation of a long-running trend. Over the past decade, life expectancy has increased from 75.8 years in 1995, and from 69.6 years in 1955.

New Evidence On The Role Of Climate In Neanderthal Extinction

The mystery of what killed the Neanderthals has moved a step closer to resolution after a new study has ruled out one of the competing theories -- catastrophic climate change -- as the most likely cause. The causes of their extinction have puzzled scientists for years -- with some believing it was due to competition with modern humans, while others blamed deteriorating climatic conditions.

Opportunity Takes A Dip Into Victoria Crater

NASA's Mars Exploration Rover Opportunity entered Victoria Crater for the first time September 11, 2007. It radioed home information via a relay by NASA's Mars Odyssey orbiter, reporting its activities for the day. Opportunity drove far enough in -- about four meters (13 feet) -- to get all six wheels past the crater rim.

Sugar Identified As Key To Malaria Parasite Invasion

Researchers have identified a sugar in mosquitoes that allows the malaria-causing parasite to attach itself to the mosquito's gut. Invasion of the midgut cell layer is an essential stage in the parasite's lifecycle and in malaria transmission. By reducing the level of the sugar, chondroitin sulfate, in the mosquito, the researchers prevented 95 percent of the parasites in the mosquito from...

Diabetes Drugs' Potential Adverse Side Effect Explained

Drugs that are agonists of the receptor PPAR-gamma are used to treat individuals with diabetes. However, it has been suggested that their use is associated with a slightly increased risk of heart failure. A potential explanation for this adverse effect that is observed in a minority of patients is outlined in a new study.

Enormous Spider Web Found In Texas

A massive spider web first spotted covering several acres of oak-elm woodlands along a Lake Tawakoni State Park trail in early August made national and international headlines throughout the Labor Day Weekend. Stumped as to the web's origin, the initial consensus of arachnologists and entomologists who saw an online photo of the web sent by Texas Parks and Wildlife Department biologist Mike Quinn...

How Plants Regulate Ripening And Decay

Ethylene tells plants when to germinate, bear fruit, drop their leaves and petals, and wither and die. Plants synthesize and release ethylene in response to changes in light and air temperature, and during the course of normal growth and development--as well as in response to pathogens or wounds. Recent research helps explain how plants regulate those all-important responses to ethylene, a body of...

Oohs And Aahs: Vowel Sounds Affect Our Perceptions Of Products

Would you drive a SUV called a Himmer? Phonetic symbolism refers to the notion that the sounds of words, apart from their assigned definition, convey meaning. A new article applies this theory to product names. The researchers find that product names with vowel sounds that convey positive attributes about the product are deemed more favorable by consumers by a two-to-one margin.

'Maggot Art' Offers Children Colorful Lesson In Entomology

After soaking in paint, dozens of maggots squirmed across construction paper leaving colorful trails behind them. "They're not going to be moving fast, so you have to be patient," Kim Schofield told a class of 31 fifth-grade students. Behold maggot art, said Schofield, a Texas Cooperative Extension program specialist in entomology.

Controlling Invasive Species: How Effective Is The Lacey Act?

Scientists examined the efficacy of the Lacey Act in their research communication, "Failure of the Lacey Act to protect US ecosystems against animal invasions." With over 100 years on the books (passed in 1900), the Lacey Act is the main legal defense against invasive animal species. The study appears in Frontiers in Ecology and the Environment.