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Author Topic: Recent Science News Stories and Science Articles  (Read 202551 times)

ejg1979

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Great post on virgin births in sharks this week on the supercollide blog.

http://www.supercollide.com/2008/10/shark-virgin-births-and-anthropology.html

I especially enjoyed the commentary on our own virgin birth stories!
 

Offline Pseudogene

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graham58

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Hello, I apologise in advance if this post is in the wrong forum but a while ago there was a competition where the winner received a book on the periodic table that was done in a humourous fashion. I just wondered what the title of this book was and if anyonne knew where it was available?
 

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Amber reveals ecology of 30 million year old spiders

Scientists at The University of Manchester and the Manchester Metropolitan University have carried out the first comparative scientific study of ancient spiders trapped in amber more than 30 millions years ago.

The study of fossilised spiders from the Baltic (Poland) and the Dominican (Caribbean) regions has revealed new insights into the ecologies of spiders dating back to the Cenozoic period.

It is the first time ancient spiders from different parts of the world have been compared on such a large scale. 671 species of spiders were compared in the study which is published in the March issue of the Royal Society's Journal Biology Letters.

Palaeoarachnologist Dr David Penney, of The University of Manchester's School of Earth, Atmospheric and Environmental Sciences who led the research, said: "Amber provides a unique window into past forest ecosystems. It retains an incredible amount of information, not just about the spiders themselves, but also about the environment in which they lived.

"We have not only been able to compare the size distributions of over 600 spiders but we have also been able to gain unique insights into the forest in which they lived."

By analysing the size distributions of the spiders and comparing the distinct hunting traits of each species, Dr Penney found that web-spinning spiders were bigger in Baltic amber than in Dominican amber, but that there was no difference between hunting spiders in either region. It was also found the fauna of the amber producing trees in each region accounted for this difference in size.

"Several lines of evidence show that greater structural complexity of Baltic compared to Dominican amber trees explains the presence of larger web-spinners. The Dominican trees are long, thin and smooth whereas the Baltic trees are wide and bushy, providing a much better environment for web-spinners to prosper," says Dr Penney.

The study demonstrates for the first time that spiders trapped in amber can be scientifically compared across deep time (30 million years). This is due to the fact that until now it was unknown whether the amber resins were trapping organisms uniformly. This study proves they were.

Mod edit - spammy link removed and blacklisted
« Last Edit: 12/03/2009 16:09:21 by BenV »
 

paul.fr

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Scientists find new bacteria species

From Harmeet Shah Singh
CNN
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NEW DELHI, India (CNN) -- Indian scientists have discovered three new species of bacteria in Earth's upper stratosphere that are resistant to ultraviolet radiation, researchers said.

The bacteria do not match any species found on Earth. They were found in samples that scientists collected when they sent a balloon into the stratosphere, the Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO) said in a statement Monday.

That layer of the Earth receives heavy doses of ultraviolet radiation, enough to kill most organisms.

In their analyses of the retrieved samples, microbiologists detected 12 bacterial and six fungal colonies.

Of them, three bacterial colonies were new species, the ISRO said.

Indian scientists named one of them Janibacter hoylei, after astrophysicist Fred Hoyle.

"While the present study does not conclusively establish the extraterrestrial origin of microorganisms, it does provide positive encouragement to continue the work in our quest to explore the origin of life," the ISRO said

http://edition.cnn.com/2009/TECH/science/03/17/india.bacteria/index.html?eref=ib_topstories
 

Offline 112inky

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going through these pages im constantly reminded of just how small and insignificant we really are,like a speck of dust in the vastness of space.

that's true friend... when i visited the great Himalayas... i was dumbstruck by its majestic and had the same feeeling....we are truly a speck of dust in this universe....
 

Offline 112inky

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The recent warming trend in the Atlantic Ocean is largely due to reductions in airborne dust and volcanic emissions during the past 30 years, according to a new study...
Since 1980, the tropical North Atlantic has been warming by an average of a quarter-degree Celsius (a half-degree Fahrenheit) per decade. Though this number sounds small, it can translate to big impacts on hurricanes, which thrive on warmer water, says Amato Evan, a researcher with the University of Wisconsin-Madison's Cooperative Institute for Meteorological Satellite Studies and lead author of the new study. For example, the ocean temperature difference between 1994, a quiet hurricane year, and 2005's record-breaking year of storms, was just one degree Fahrenheit...... :(
 

Offline Chemistry4me

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A good egg

27 May 2009


UK and Dutch scientists have mimicked an ancient Chinese culinary technique of preserving eggs to study how proteins cause disease.
 
Erika Eiser from the University of Cambridge and colleagues looked at how proteins in egg whites altered during this preservation process. The Chinese method involves wrapping raw eggs in an alkaline paste of lime, clay, salt, ash and tea and storing these so-called century eggs for several months. Eiser modified the method by incubating a boiled egg in a strong alkaline sodium hydroxide-salt solution for up to 26 days.

After peeling back the shell, Eiser found that the egg white had transformed into a gel. This transformation is caused by changes in the way protein strands, called ovalbumin, in the white are held together. Boiling an egg causes bonds between the protein strands to break and the proteins to partially unfold. The proteins then come together, or aggregate, in a different way to form the opaque and brittle white. The transformation was thought to be irreversible, but the alkali causes the proteins in the white to aggregate into fine strands to form a transparent and elastic gel. Eiser found that the gel was more stable than the white, and could be heated without changing its structure.

Paul Bartlett, an expert in colloids and protein aggregation at the University of Bristol, UK, comments that Eiser's findings 'will be important for understanding protein gels and will inspire more work in colloidal materials.'

'Similar chemical transformations could be used to change the properties of protein aggregates not only in food but also in other biomaterials,' says Eiser, who plans to test the method on different proteins. 'If we understand the mechanism that drives aggregation then we could slow it down or reverse the aggregation into something else.' This could be important in preventing diseases caused by unnatural protein aggregation such as Alzheimer's.

Anna Roffey

http://www.rsc.org/Publishing/ChemScience/Volume/2009/07/good_egg.asp
 

Offline SherlockScience

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There will soon be a orchestra which consists of dead musical instruments (like the "epigonion" and the "salpinx") which have been recreated using computer modeling, called the "Lost Sounds Orchestra":

newbielink:http://www.isgtw.org/?pid=1001954 [nonactive]

I wonder what it will sound like!
 

Offline neilep

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The "Great Wall" Of Space: Galactic Superclusters a Billion Light Years Away Extend for 5% of Observable Universe



GreatWall: The vastest structure ever is a collection of superclusters a billion light years away extending for 5% the length of the entire observable universe.  Insert "yo mamma" joke here.  If it took a God one week to make the Earth, going by mass it would take him two quintillion years to build this thing - far longer than science says the universe has existed for, and it's kind of fun to have those two the other way round for a change.  Though He could always omnipotently cheat and say "Let there be a Sloan Great Wall."


The great wall is a massive array of astronomical objects named after the observations which revealed them, the Sloan Digital Sky Survey.  An eight year project scanned over a quarter of the sky to generate full 3-D maps of almost a million galaxies.  Analysis of these images revealed a huge panel of galaxies 1.37 billion light years long, and even the pedantic-sounding .07 there is six hundred and sixty billion trillion kilometers.  This is science precisely measuring made-up sounding numbers.

This isn't the only wall out there - others exist, all with far greater lengths than width or depth, actual sheets of galaxies forming some of the most impressive anythings there are.  And these walls are only a special class of galactic filaments, long strings of matter stretched between mind-breaking expanses of emptiness.

The immensity of existence truly defies human understanding - which makes it very humanly awesome of us to try anyway.  If people could understand for a single second the true scale of everything out there, all our idiotic problems would evaporate instantly.  (Either because we got our acts together or our heads popped, no bets on which.)

Luke McKinney
 

Offline spiderhex

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just a quick reply to the article on conkers v. spiders.....it really does work...in my place it does, have also collected some more conkers to give to my neighbour.
 

Offline neilep

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Offline jameswilliam

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welcome to my website.........


newbielink:http://"www.google.com" [nonactive]
 

Offline BenV

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Really James?  Google.com is your website?
 

Offline neilep

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cool site James  ..I hope it catches on ! ::)
 

Offline tiptop

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Hi all this is very much informative, I enjoy your posts.
I have a question

Could the colour vision come before the blush? otherwise what use would the blush be.
 

Offline BenV

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Hi all this is very much informative, I enjoy your posts.
I have a question

Could the colour vision come before the blush? otherwise what use would the blush be.

Hi Tiptop,

Not many people will see your question in this thread, might I recommend starting a new thread (perhaps in the "Plant sciences zoology & evolution board?) with your question as the subject? 

That should get more attention and the discussion it deserves.
 

Offline Geezer

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Offline Kerry

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Lab News just ran a few stories on the possible causes of the mass extinction of the dinosaurs:

http://www.labnews.co.uk/laboratory_article.php/4968/2/2/did-this-kill-off-the-dinosaurs? [nofollow]

http://www.labnews.co.uk/laboratory_article.php/4970/2/2/mass-extinction-%E2%80%93-could-it-be-due-to-algae?- [nofollow]

Can't decide which one is more plausible...
 

Offline steammafe

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    • Hey guys, new guy in town
Here we go again. Unless there is nuclear fussion involved its not very likely any science is involved, but there is always someone wanting to make money.
 
What is so hard to understand that water is the ash of burning hydrogen? You dont get energy from ash.
 

Offline Ron Hughes

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Offline neilep

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Vast Cosmic Filament Discovered Connecting Milky Way to the Universe






Astronomers at The Australian National University have discovered proof of a vast filament of material that connects our Milky Way galaxy to nearby clusters of galaxies, which are similarly interconnected to the rest of the Universe.

“By examining the positions of ancient groupings of stars, called globular clusters, we found that the clusters form a narrow plane around the Milky Way rather than being scattered across the sky,” said Dr. Stephan Keller of the Research School of Astronomy and Astrophysics at ANU.


“Furthermore, the Milky Way’s entourage of small satellites are seen to inhabit the same plane. What we have discovered is evidence for the cosmic thread that connects us to the vast expanse of the Universe. The filament of star clusters and small galaxies around the Milky Way is like the umbilical cord that fed our Galaxy during its youth,” Keller observed.

There are two types of matter that made up the Universe – the dominant, enigmatic dark matter and ordinary matter in the form of galaxies, stars and planets. “A consequence of the Big Bang and the dominance of dark matter is that ordinary matter is driven, like foam on the crest of a wave, into vast interconnected sheets and filaments stretched over enormous cosmic voids – much like the structure of a kitchen sponge."

“Unlike a sponge, however," Keller added, "gravity draws the material over these interconnecting filaments towards the largest lumps of matter, and our findings show that the globular clusters and satellite galaxies of the Milky Way trace this cosmic filament. Globular clusters are systems of hundreds of thousands of ancient stars tightly packed in a ball. In our picture, most of these star clusters are the central cores of small galaxies that have been drawn along the filament by gravity.
“Once these small galaxies got too close the Milky Way the majority of stars were stripped away and added to our galaxy, leaving only their cores.

“It is thought that the Milky Way has grown to its current size by the consumption of hundreds of such smaller galaxies over cosmic time,” he concluded.

The Daily Galaxy via Australian National University


Image credit: IAC
 

Offline Apple

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Chance we broke the speed of light

newbielink:http://www.universetoday.com/89135/breaking-the-speed-of-light/ [nonactive]

still not proven but a chance
 

Offline awais_x

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Hi !!!!
I am very happy to see this site by increase my general knowledge please share more information about the science ....

WOOPS! I SEEM TO HAVE DROPPED SOME SPAM HERE.
« Last Edit: 10/10/2011 06:46:24 by Geezer »
 

Offline neilep

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Mystery allergy causes woman to age decades






Left: Nguyen Thi Phuong aged 21. Right: Now aged 26. Photo: Hotspot Media.





A 26-year-old Vietnamese woman has left doctors baffled as she lost her once youthful appearance.

Nguyen Thi Phuong believes that an allergic reaction to seafood she ate in 2008, caused the skin over her face and body to sag and wrinkle. It has come to light now, as she has shown her face in public for the first time since it happened.

Her story has led health experts to question what could have triggered her rapid aging as pictures show Phuong looking like two different people.





Mrs Nguyen had been treating herself with various types of medication, from a local pharmacy as she and her husband could not afford to have her examined at a hospital.

She said: “I was really itchy all over my body. I had to scratch even while sleeping. After one month of taking the drugs, I became less itchy but hives remained on my skin.

[See also: Woman is so bloated after eating people think she is pregnant]

“Then I switched to traditional medicine and all the hives disappeared, together with my itching. However, my skin began to sag and fold.”

The couple does not remember what the traditional medication was called, or which pharmacy they had bought it from.

In 2009 they decided to stop using the remedy; from then on Phuong wore a face mask whenever she was in public.

She said: “The skin on my face, chest and belly has folds like an old woman who has given birth several times although I have never had a child.

“But the rapid-aging syndrome hasn't affected my menstrual cycle, hair, teeth, eyes and mind.”

Phuong’s husband, Thanh Tuyen, insists her story is true and continues to stand by his wife despite the loss of her youthful appearance.

Tuyen said: “I married Phuong when she was a beautiful woman. I have followed her through her disease and have never been shocked at all.

“It's not easy to talk about one's own marital affairs. Just simply understand that I still love her very much.”

Mrs Nguyen has not had much luck treating her condition but there still may be a happy ending.

Phuong was able to have a free consultation at the Ho Chi Minh City Medicine and Pharmacy University Hospital, in Vietnam, with doctors who believed she may have been badly affected with the skin disease, mastocytosis.

From this diagnosis, doctors hope that with medical treatment they will be able to restore between 50 and 70% of her skin.




http://uk.lifestyle.yahoo.com/mystery-allergy-causes-woman-to-age-decades-in-just-a-few-days.html
 

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