It may not be a living breathing circuit, but it may be the next best thing. Researchers from the National Institute of Science and Technology (NIST) have found a way to bridge the gap between organic and conventional circuits.
Anne Osbourn and her colleagues at the John Innes Centre in the United Kingdom have discovered a plant strategy to regulate genes that code for some defense chemicals. In a study to be published online by Science in late April, the researchers describe how these plants "cluster" the genes necessary for producing potentially toxic compounds. Many of the compounds synthesized by clustered genes, which by nature serve to defend the plants against predation and disease, have important applications in medicine and industry.
Researchers have found that black carbon pollution is now thought to surpass all greenhouse gases except carbon dioxide in its warming effect in the atmosphere. Scripps Institution of Oceanography at UC San Diego atmospheric scientist V. Ramanathan and University of Iowa chemical engineer Greg Carmichael have recently found that black carbon, or soot, which originates largely from biomass burning and diesel exhaust, contributes to global warming three to four times more than previously estimated.
For more than a century, the term "planetary nebula" has been a confusing one for students of astronomy. Widely regarded as among the most beautiful objects of the night sky, planetary nebulae,illuminated clouds of gas and dust cast off from a dying star,were previously thought to have nothing to do with planets. Now, however, Rich Blackman and his team of astronomers at the University of Rochester contend that the name "planetary" nebula, once deemed a misnomer, may take on new meaning.
Recent data from the Cassini-Huygens mission has revealed a drift in various geological features on Titan's surface, indicating that the moon may harbor an ocean under its thick layer of ice. This would make Titan the fourth satellite in our solar system, after Europa, Ganymede, and Enceladus, to be a potential reservoir for water.
Recent results from studies by the Kaiser Permanente, a nonprofit organization that tries to lower health care cost while maintaining the quality of care, have shown that people with abdominal belly fat have three times more likely of getting dementia later in life. This is even higher than the risk due to family history.
The formidable thought of drug companies withholding scientific information for self-interest has been in the minds of several experts and members of Congress lately. Major drug companies Merck & Co. and Schering-Plough are under tough scrutiny after the delayed release of ENHANCE clinical trial results. The trial studied the effects of cholesterol-lowering drugs Vytorin and Zetia.
Mumps, a viral disease, made an alarming reappearance in the U.S. in 2006, and experts agree that it will take some time before the disease can be completely eradicated.
NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter has taken the first-ever image of an active avalanche on Mars. An image of the phenomenon was unintentionally captured by NASA's HiRISE camera on February 19, 2008. The image shows clouds of smoke (some 590 feet, or half the length of a cruise ship, across) billowing near the near the bottom of the ice-capped mountain.