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A Carbon-Neutral Fuel Alternative

October 1, 2015 | by Lindsay Hock, Editor | Comments

As early as the 1950s, researchers were looking at algae for methane gas production. The algae was grown on rooftops of Massachusetts Institute Technology (MIT). Drawings and illustrations of open pond raceways on the roof of Harvard Univ. were also recovered from the 1950s. The reason for this research was algae naturally make oil, and this intrigued researchers as a feedstock for biodiesel.

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Finding the “Holy Grail” Treatment for Fatty Livers

September 21, 2015 9:18 am | by Greg Watry, Digital Reporter | Comments

When Dr. Peter Traber, the president, CEO and chief medical officer of Galectin Therapeutics, was in medical school, non-alcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH) was an ill-defined liver disease. The disease’s biomarkers, observed in biopsies, were awfully similar to alcohol-induced liver diseases.


An Octopus’ Disappearing Act

September 21, 2015 9:17 am | by Greg Watry, Digital Reporter | Comments

With its eight skinny tendrils spread out, the southern sand octopus floats for a moment above the sand. Suddenly, it begins sinking, its body and legs swallowed by the gravely bottom. Sand clouds disperse as the octopus disappears. In seconds, the only indicator of disturbance is a slight discoloration where the octopus once floated.


Move Over Gatorade

September 21, 2015 9:17 am | by Greg Watry, Digital Reporter | Comments

Take a seat Gatorade, there’s another performance-enhancing beverage in the limelight: beet juice. Two studies, one from the Univ. of Exeter and the other from Washington Univ. In St. Louis, have found the high nitrate content in concentrated beet juice has beneficial effects on both athletes and heart failure patients, particularly when it comes to muscle power.


FDA Accepts NDA for First-Ever Digital Medication

September 21, 2015 9:16 am | by Ryan Bushey, Associate Editor | Comments

The collected information can be viewed on a smartphone or other Bluetooth-enabled devices. Patients may give permission to have this data sent securely to physicians and/or caregivers.


Google, Sanofi Partner on New Diabetes R&D Project

September 21, 2015 9:09 am | by Ryan Bushey, Associate Editor | Comments

Google Life Sciences, the search giant’s medical research division, struck a deal with French pharmaceutical company Sanofi to develop potential treatments for diabetes.


Origins of the Papal Benediction Sign

September 18, 2015 11:00 am | by Greg Watry, Digital Reporter | Comments

Located in the Catacombs of St. Domitilla in Rome is a fresco depicting Jesus surrounded by his 12 apostles. Dated between the 2nd and 4th century, the image is one of the earliest depictions of the apostle Peter, the man who would go on to become the first pope.


Machine Learning Aids Digital Business

September 18, 2015 9:30 am | by Lindsay Hock, Editor | Comments

Technology is the foundation of most business innovation: It fuels growth, improves product time-to-market and enables customers to be conveniently served. For digital businesses—where it’s either innovate or die—technology is paramount to success.


3-D Mapping Deep-Sea Canyons

September 17, 2015 5:30 pm | by Greg Watry, Digital Reporter | Comments

Submarine canyons can rival the size of the Grand Canyon. The steep underwater valleys act as “super-highways, transporting sediment, organic carbon and other nutrients from the land to the deep ocean floor,” according to the National Oceanography Centre (NOC). Additionally, they can be refuges for organisms, the topography acting as protection from anthropogenic disturbance.


260-Million-Year-Old Pre-Reptile First to Use Upright Gait

September 17, 2015 3:30 pm | by Greg Watry, Digital Reporter | Comments

Resembling a reptilian pit bull, or even the demon dogs in “Ghostbusters,” Bunostegos akokanensis roamed the ancient supercontinent Pangea 260 million years ago. The desert was this creature’s domain. Its fossil remains were dug up in 2003 and 2006 in Niger.  


Coelacanths Possess Vestigial Lung from Primordial Past

September 17, 2015 1:30 pm | by Greg Watry, Digital Reporter | Comments

It’s a fish ripped straight from the primordial oceans. Latimeria chalumnae, or the coelacanth, is a lobe-finned fish once thought to be extinct. But in 1938, a live specimen was caught near the Chalumna River’s mouth in South Africa. Recently, researchers from Rio de Janeiro State Univ. published a study in Nature Communications outlining their discovery of a vestigial lung in Latimeria chalumnae.


Subsurface Ocean Discovered on Saturn's moon

September 17, 2015 10:56 am | by Greg Watry, Digital Reporter | Comments

Around 900 million miles from the sun, a spacecraft orbits the ringed planet Saturn. The Cassini mission, a joint effort between NASA, the European Space Agency (ESA) and the Italian Agenzia Spaziale Italiana (ASI), launched in October 1997, and arrived to Saturn in July 2004. Since then, the spacecraft has dutifully collected information about Saturn and its surrounding bodies.


Non-Recycled Plastics: A New Energy Resource

September 17, 2015 7:36 am | by Lindsay Hock, Editor | Comments

Over the past few decades, recycling programs have expanded both in terms of communities served and what items can be recycled. Yet, despite progress, approaches to integrated waste management have only begun to evolve.


Believe in Aliens?

September 17, 2015 7:30 am | by Greg Watry, Digital Reporter | Comments

In the 1960s, Russian astrophysicist Nikolai Kardashev published a paper outlining a classification system for potentially advanced alien civilizations. The Kardashev system, which numbers one to three, describes civilizations more advanced than Earth.


NOAA Shark Survey Shows East Coast Populations Improving

September 16, 2015 8:00 pm | by Greg Watry, Digital Reporter | Comments

Lisa Natanson, a research fish biologist with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), has been fascinated by sharks since she was seven years old. Growing up in the San Francisco Bay Area, she says the marine environment plays an important role in residents’ lives.


NASA/ESA Observatory Discovers its 3,000th Comet

September 16, 2015 4:00 pm | by Greg Watry, Digital Reporter | Comments

Launched on Dec. 2, 1995, the Solar & Heliospheric Observatory (SOHO) is a joint venture between NASA and the European Space Agency. Before the observatory’s launch, only about a dozen comets were discovered from space, and 900 were discovered from the ground. On Sept. 13, SOHO reached a milestone by discovering its 3,000th comet.



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