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Wireless sensor enables study of traumatic brain injury

November 23, 2015 10:37 am | by Emil Venere, Purdue Univ. | Comments

A new system that uses a wireless implant has been shown to record for the first time how brain tissue deforms when subjected to the kind of shock that causes blast-induced trauma commonly seen in combat veterans.


New detector perfect for asteroid mining

November 23, 2015 7:47 am | by David Salisbury, Vanderbilt Univ. | Comments

The grizzled asteroid miner is a stock character in science fiction. Now, a couple of recent events, one legal and the other technological, have brought asteroid mining a step closer to reality.


Electric fields remove nanoparticles from blood with ease

November 23, 2015 7:38 am | by Liezel Labios, Univ. of California, San Diego | Comments

Engineers at the Univ. of California, San Diego developed a new technology that uses an oscillating electric field to easily and quickly isolate drug delivery nanoparticles from blood. The technology could serve as a general tool to separate and recover nanoparticles from other complex fluids for medical, environmental and industrial applications.


Biomedical imaging at one-thousandth the cost

November 23, 2015 7:31 am | by Larry Hardesty, MIT News Office | Comments

Massachusetts Institute of Technology researchers have developed a biomedical imaging system that could ultimately replace a $100,000 piece of a lab equipment with components that cost just hundreds of dollars. The system uses a technique called fluorescence lifetime imaging, which has applications in DNA sequencing and cancer diagnosis, among other things.


The route to high-temperature superconductivity goes through the flat land

November 20, 2015 11:30 am | by Aalto Univ. | Comments

Superconductors are marvelous materials that are able to transport electric current and energy without dissipation. For this reason, they are extremely useful for constructing magnets that can generate enormous magnetic fields without melting. They have found important applications as essential components of the Large Hadron Collider particle accelerator at CERN and the magnetic resonance imaging tool widely used for medical purposes.


How hibernation protects hearts

November 20, 2015 10:30 am | by American Chemical Society | Comments

Wintry weather means hats and scarves for some mammals, and hibernation for others. Hibernation dramatically lowers body temperatures, heart rates and oxygen consumption. A team reports a study of the proteins and genes that allow squirrels' hearts to stay healthy during the winter. A better understanding of this phenomenon could help researchers develop better treatments for people with cardiac disease.


Supercomputing the strange difference between matter and antimatter

November 20, 2015 9:11 am | by Karen McNulty Walsh, Brookhaven National Laboratory | Comments

An international team of physicists has published the first calculation of direct "CP" symmetry violation: how the behavior of subatomic particles (in this case, the decay of kaons) differs when matter is swapped out for antimatter. Should the prediction represented by this calculation not match experimental results, it would be conclusive evidence of new, unknown phenomena that lie outside of the Standard Model.


Tiny, ultracool star is super stormy

November 20, 2015 8:13 am | by Christine Pulliam, Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics | Comments

Our sun is a relatively quiet star that only occasionally releases solar flares or blasts of energetic particles that threaten satellites and power grids. You might think that smaller, cooler stars would be even more sedate. However, astronomers have now identified a tiny star with a monstrous temper. It shows evidence of much stronger flares than anything our sun produces.


Armor plating with built-in transparent ceramic eyes

November 20, 2015 8:06 am | by David L. Chandler, MIT News Office | Comments

Usually, it’s a tradeoff: If you want maximum physical protection, whether from biting predators or exploding artillery shells, that generally compromises your ability to see. But sea-dwelling creatures called chitons have figured out a way around that problem: Tiny eyes are embedded within their tough protective shells, with their transparent lenses made of the same ceramic material as the rest of their shells—and just as tough.


Sequencing algae’s genome may aid biofuel production

November 20, 2015 7:46 am | by James Urton, Univ. of Washington | Comments

There's an ancient group of algae that evolved in the world's oceans before our backboned ancestors crawled onto land. They are so numerous that their gigantic blooms can affect the weather, and they account for 30 to 40% of all photosynthesis in the world's oceans. But until recently, scientists interested in these single-celled creatures knew next to nothing about their genes.


Nanocarriers may carry new hope for brain cancer therapy

November 20, 2015 7:37 am | by Lynn Yarris, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory | Comments

Glioblastoma multiforme, a cancer of the brain also known as “octopus tumors” because of the manner in which the cancer cells extend their tendrils into surrounding tissue, is virtually inoperable, resistant to therapies, and always fatal, usually within 15 months of onset. Each year, glioblastoma multiforme kills approximately 15,000 people in the U.S.


ORNL microscopy captures real-time view of evolving fuel cell catalysts

November 20, 2015 7:26 am | by Morgan McCorkle, Oak Ridge National Laboratory | Comments

Atomic-level imaging of catalysts by scientists at Oak Ridge National Laboratory could help manufacturers lower the cost and improve the performance of emission-free fuel cell technologies. Fuel cells rely on costly platinum catalysts to enable the reactions that convert chemical energy into electricity.


Researchers speed up process of making vaccines

November 19, 2015 12:00 pm | by Todd Hollingshead, Brigham Young Univ. | Comments

Researchers at Bringham Young Univ. have devised a system to speed up the process of making life-saving vaccines for new viruses. Their concept is to create the biological machinery for vaccine production en masse, put it in a freeze-dried state and stockpile it around the country. Then, when a new virus hits, labs can simply add water to a “kit” to rapidly produce vaccines.


Ocean temperatures of the past many tell us about future global climate patterns

November 19, 2015 11:00 am | by Jim Shelton, Yale Univ. | Comments

Scientists are taking the temperature of ancient seas to discover how they’ve shaped global climate. In a study published in Nature Geoscience, a Yale Univ.-led research team explored differences in ocean temperatures over the last 5 million years. The team created a historical record for sea temperature gradients and compared it with state-of-the-art climate model simulations.


3-D printed parts toxic to zebrafish embryos

November 19, 2015 10:00 am | by American Chemical Society | Comments

The recent boom in 3-D printing has driven innovations in fields as disparate as haute couture and medical implants. But little is known about the safety of the materials used. In a new study scientists showed that some 3-D printed parts are highly toxic to zebrafish embryos. Their findings could have implications not only for aquatic life but also for hobbyists, manufacturers and patients.



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