Understanding of Northern lights deepens

For years the phenomenon of the aurora borealis, or the Northern Lights, has amazed spectators. Yet, the cause for these spectacular auroral displays has puzzled scientists until a recent breakthrough. A new study, published in the July 25th edition of Science explains how the brightening is generated in outer space, which then causes the observable polar flare-ups.

Water Observations Hopeful For Life on Mars

For years, scientists have had evidence that Mars has harbored water. But the big question is did it play a big role in the planet's development, like it has on Earth? Could it have fostered life? John Mustard, a professor at Brown University, and his colleagues have used results from the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter to provide, for the first time, an answer to these questions.

Security Errors Plague Online Banking

A University of Michigan study demonstrates the dangers involved with online banking. The study concluded that more than 75 percent of the 214 bank website investigated in 2006 had at least one design flaw that increases susceptibility of clients to cyber theft. Carnegie Mellon University will host a presentation of the findings on July 25.

The Day After Tomorrow: Is it Closer Than We Think?

"Softball-sized hail in Tokyo" "Record-breaking snowfall in New Delhi" "Numerous tornadoes have been sighted in Los Angeles" "Scotland is under a thick layer of ice sheet" "Tidal waves in New York City.." Scenes like these were once only destined for the cinema screens, such as in the 2004 blockbuster hit The Day After Tomorrow. However, a similar phenomena is rolling now in the first decade of the new millennia, though not on television.

Fluorescence-Based Kinetic Analysis of the Interaction between Avidin and Singlet Oxygen Damaged Lambda Phage DNA

Oxidative damage of DNA, especially damage induced by singlet oxygen, correlates with a host of disease processes. Due to the link between oxidative DNA damage and disease, a great deal of effort has been put forth to develop methods to detect and quantify DNA damage based on the presence of oxidation-specific biomarkers. Two oxidation products, 8-oxoguanine and 8-oxoadenosine have become important biomarkers of oxidative damage. This study describes a two solution-based methods for monitoring the binding of a fluorescein-labelled avidin to photodamaged lambda phage DNA.

Antimicrobial activity of C. cordifolius

Cocculus cordifolius, a climbing shrub found in tropical Western India, Burma and Ceylon, whose parts are known to be used as traditional herbal medicine to treat various aliments such as cold fevers, seminal weakness and urinary affections, stomach and splenic affections, and chronic gonorrhea. The solvent fractions of the whole plant of C. cordifolius were extracted with hexane, dichloromethane, ethyl acetate and methanol to determine their antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory activities.