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Gulf corals still suffering more than a decade after Deepwater Horizon oil spill, scientists report
Deep-water corals in the Gulf of Mexico are still struggling to recover from the devastating Deepwater Horizon oil spill in 2010, scientists report at the Ocean Science Meeting in New Orleans. Comparing images of more than 300 corals over 13 years -- the longest time series of deep-sea corals to date -- reveals that in some areas, coral health continues to decline to this day.  02/20/2024 02:46 PM

Researchers are using RNA in a new approach to fight HIV
A pharmacy associate professor has developed a novel nanomedicine loaded with genetic material called small interfering RNAs (siRNA) to fight human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) using gene therapy.  02/20/2024 02:46 PM

It's the spin that makes the difference
Biomolecules such as amino acids and sugars occur in two mirror-image forms -- in all living organisms, however, only one is ever found. Why this is the case is still unclear. Researchers have now found evidence that the interplay between electric and magnetic fields could be at the origin of this phenomenon.  02/20/2024 02:45 PM

Junk DNA in birds may hold key to safe, efficient gene therapy
For many genetic diseases, disabling or editing a gene using CRISPR is insufficient to overcome the effects of the underlying genetic mutation. A corrective gene needs to be added to the genome to fix the problem. Researchers have discovered a way to use a bird retrotransposon -- a type of junk DNA -- to insert whole transgenes into the human genome in a targeted way that does not risk damaging other genes.  02/20/2024 02:45 PM

Fasting-like diet lowers risk factors for disease, reduces biological age in humans
Cycles of a diet that mimics fasting can reduce signs of immune system aging, as well as insulin resistance and liver fat in humans, resulting in a lower biological age, according to a new study.  02/20/2024 02:45 PM

Panama Canal expansion rewrites history of world's most ecologically diverse bats
In a new study, paleontologists describe the oldest-known leaf-nosed bat fossils, which were found along the banks of the Panama Canal. They're also the oldest bat fossils from Central America, preserved 20-million years ago when Panama and the rest of North America were separated from southern landmass by a seaway at least 120 miles wide.  02/20/2024 02:44 PM

New non-toxic method for producing high-quality graphene oxide
Researchers have found a new way to synthesize graphene oxide which has significantly fewer defects compared to materials produced by most common method. Similarly good graphene oxide could be synthesized previously only using rather dangerous method involving extremely toxic fuming nitric acid.  02/20/2024 02:44 PM

Artificial reefs help preserve coral reefs by shifting divers away from the natural ones, according to new long-term study of one in Eilat
Divers are essentially tourists who love coral reefs and invest a lot of time and effort to watch them. Unfortunately, divers also cause damage to corals, often unintentionally, through disturbing and resuspending sand, touching them, hitting them with their equipment, and scaring fish away. Artificial reefs have been proposed as a means of diverting diving pressure from the natural reef to alternative sites, thus preserving both dive tourism and the coral reef.  02/20/2024 02:44 PM

Study reveals molecular mechanisms behind hibernation in mammals
Researchers have characterized changes in the structure of motor proteins, called myosins, and energy consumption that occur during hibernation, highlighting key differences in large and small hibernators.  02/20/2024 02:44 PM

Could ultra-processed foods be the new 'silent' killer?
Hundreds of novel ingredients never encountered by human physiology are now found in nearly 60 percent of the average adult's diet and nearly 70 percent of children's diets in the U.S. An emerging health hazard is the unprecedented consumption of these ultra-processed foods in the standard American diet. This may be the new 'silent' killer, as was unrecognized high blood pressure in previous decades. Physicians provide important insights in a battle where the entertainment industry, the food industry and public policy do not align with their patients' needs.  02/20/2024 02:44 PM

Nature's checkup: Surveying biodiversity with environmental DNA sequencing
A thousand kilometers south of Tokyo, far into the largest ocean on Earth, lies a chain of small, volcanic islands -- the Ogasawara Islands. Nature has been able to develop on its own terms here, far from both humans and the warm Kuroshio current, which acts like a shuttle, moving marine species from Taiwan, over the Ryukyu Islands, and up the Pacific coast of mainland Japan. With upwards of 70 % of trees and many animal species being endemic to the archipelago, the islands have been dubbed 'the Galapagos of the East', as they are valuable as both a biodiversity hotspot and a cradle of scientific discovery.  02/20/2024 02:44 PM

Spy-satellite images offer insights into historical ecosystem changes
New study advocates the use of more than one million declassified images for ecology and conservation. The images can offer better insights into the historical changes of ecosystems, species populations or changes in human influences on the environment dating back to the 1960s. Collaboration between ecologists, conservationists, and remote sensing experts is necessary to explore the full potential of the data.  02/20/2024 02:44 PM

Scientists develop novel radiotracer for earlier detection of disease
Scientists have developed a new radiotracer (called [18F]4-FDF) that can map how cells use fructose for energy.  02/20/2024 02:44 PM

Tapping into the 300 GHz band with an innovative CMOS transmitter
New phased-array transmitter design overcomes common problems of CMOS technology in the 300 GHz band. Thanks to its remarkable area efficiency, low power consumption, and high data rate, the proposed transmitter could pave the way to many technological applications in the 300 GHz band, including body and cell monitoring, radar, 6G wireless communications, and terahertz sensors.  02/20/2024 02:44 PM

Wildfires linked to surge in mental health-related emergency department visits
An Emory University study published Feb. 15 in Nature Mental Health shows wildfires lead to an increase of anxiety-related emergency department visits in the western United States, amplifying the concerning parallel trajectory of two escalating public health crises -- mental health and climate change.  02/20/2024 02:44 PM

Annual breast cancer screening beginning at 40 saves lives
Annual breast cancer screening beginning at age 40 and continuing to at least age 79 results in the highest reduction in mortality with minimal risks.  02/20/2024 02:44 PM

Study finds students, designers have different perceptions of masculine, feminine traits of classrooms
Researchers conducted a study in which they showed four classrooms to students and asked about their perceptions of masculine traits versus feminine traits of the rooms. They also showed the same images to employees at design firms that work on such spaces. Results showed that the two groups' perceptions of such gendered traits differed widely, which can have broader effects on students' sense of belonging in higher education and within disciplines, the authors argue.  02/20/2024 02:44 PM

Physically impaired primates find ways to modify their behaviors to compensate for their disabilities
Primates show a remarkable ability to modify their behaviours to accommodate their physical disabilities and impairments, according to a new literature review. Whether the disabilities are the result of congenital malformations or injuries, many primate species exhibited behavioral flexibility and innovation to compensate for their disabilities. They also benefited from flexible and innovative behavior by their mothers early in life and from their peers within their population group as they aged.  02/20/2024 02:44 PM

Scientists may have cracked the 'aging process' in species
Research shows the relationship between a species' age and its risk of going extinct could be accurately predicted by an ecological model called the 'neutral theory of biodiversity.'  02/20/2024 02:44 PM

Decline in microbial genetic richness in the western Arctic Ocean
Researchers analyzed archival samples of bacteria and archaea populations taken from the Beaufort Sea, bordering northwest Canada and Alaska. The samples were collected between 2004 and 2012, a period that included two years -- 2007 and 2012 -- in which the sea ice coverage was historically low. The researchers looked at samples taken from three levels of water: the summer mixed layer, the upper Arctic water below it and the Pacific-origin water at the deepest level. The study examined the microbes' genetic composition using bioinformatics and statistical analysis across the nine-year time span. Using this data, the researchers were able to see how changing environmental conditions were influencing the organisms' structure and function.  02/20/2024 02:44 PM

from ScienceDaily

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