December 2008 (Archive)

Boiling point
McDonald's recalls Shrek glasses due to potential cadmium risk — The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) just announced…
Hogchoker - the new Internet star — A small flatfish living along the coast of North America is the…
Cancer deaths are projected to double by 2030 — Cancer deaths are projected to double in the next two decades.…

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Minuscule
Wasps clock faces like humans — Face recognition in golden paper wasps may be an adaptation to…
Entangled diamonds vibrate together — Objects big enough for the eye to see have been placed in a weirdly…
How animals predict earthquakes — Animals may sense chemical changes in groundwater that occur…
New Icelandic volcano eruption could have global impact — Hundreds of metres under one of Iceland's largest glaciers there…

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News | Archive (12 December 2008)

Archived news stories published on 12 December 2008 [chronologically, reverse order]
DON'T MISS —
The most distant object yet discovered in the Universe
The most distant object yet discovered in the Universe — Gamma-ray bursts (GRBs) are powerful flashes of energetic gamma-rays lasting from less than a second to several minutes.…
Michigan astronomer to search in space for precursors of life
Michigan astronomer to search in space for precursors of life — Many of the organic molecules that make up life on Earth have also been found in space. A University of Michigan astronomer…
OSU to study air pollutant's impact on Chinese, U.S. health
OSU to study air pollutant's impact on Chinese, U.S. health — Scientists at Oregon State University and China's Peking University plan to use part of a $12.4 million grant to study the…
Cardiac patients trial home-based rehabilitation
Cardiac patients trial home-based rehabilitation — Patients who have been treated in hospital for cardiac health problems, such as a heart attack, are being given a powerful…

Hawaiian honeyeaters' long-lost relatives found

— 10:28 GMT | Biology

Despite appearances, Hawaii's five species of recently extinct songbirds known as honeyeaters bore no close relationship at all to the honeyeaters found in Australia and New Guinea, according to a genetic analysis reported online on 11th December in Current Biology, a Cell Press publication. Rather, similarities in the way the two groups of birds act and look - including their long bills and brush-tipped tongues specially adapted for gathering nectar - arose independently in the two geographical regions…

Drama in the heart of the Tarantula

— 10:28 GMT | Astronomy

Found in the nearby Large Magellanic Cloud, 30 Doradus is one of the largest massive star forming regions close to the Milky Way. Enormous stars in 30 Doradus, also known as the Tarantula Nebula, are producing intense radiation and searing winds of multimillion-degree gas that carve out gigantic bubbles in the surrounding cooler gas and dust. Other massive stars have raced through their evolution and exploded catastrophically as supernovae, expanding these bubbles into X-ray-brightened superbubbles. They leave behind pulsars as beacons of their former lives and expanding supernova remnants that trigger the collapse of giant clouds of dust and gas to form new generations of stars…

Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter completes prime mission

— 10:28 GMT | Astronomy

NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter has completed its primary, two-year science phase. The spacecraft has found signs of a complex Martian history of climate change that produced a diversity of past watery environments…

Heads up in the Triassic!

— 10:28 GMT | Geology and palaeontology

When you take a bite out of a hamburger or chomp down on a piece of gum, you share this function of the lower jaw with the vast majority of animals. But not all: for some animals, lifting the head rather than dropping the jaw is a good idea. This bizarre reversal of how feeding occurs was achieved in 210-million-year-old amphibians, as described in the December 2008 issue of the Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology…

Researcher finds correlation between childhood obesity and asthma

— 10:28 GMT | Health

A Kansas State University graduate student has found a correlation between childhood obesity and asthma. Sara Rosenkranz, doctoral student in human nutrition, Manhattan, conducted research that found that healthy children with higher levels of body fat and lower levels of physical activity had greater amounts of airway narrowing after exercise…

Engineers to create parts of virtual crash test dummy

— 10:28 GMT | Technology

You really can learn a lot from a dummy. For decades, automakers have been crashing test dummies to gain insight to how various auto safety systems protect - or fail to protect - people during car accidents. But those dummies are made of plastic and steel, not tissue and bone. They can teach only so much…

Availability of foods at home can encourage or prevent childhood obesity

— 10:28 GMT | Health

What parents make available for their children to eat can contribute to an obesity-prone home food environment, according to researchers at Kansas State University…

American Heart Association comment on the World Cancer Report

— 10:28 GMT | Health

This week the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC), a division of the World Health Organisation (WHO), released updated cancer death projections in a call to action, asking the government to help fund cancer prevention and research initiatives and international tobacco control policies. According to the report, the burden of cancer doubled globally between 1975 and 2000, and cancer is expected to become the leading cause of death worldwide in 2010…

The profound effects of numbing agents

— 10:28 GMT | Health

A large proteomics study on the brains of newborn mice provides more evidence that numbing drugs often used in obstetric or paediatric medicine can have profound and long-term negative effects, even after minimal exposure…

Climate change alters ocean chemistry

— 10:28 GMT | Environment

Researchers have discovered that the ocean's chemical makeup is less stable and more greatly affected by climate change than previously believed. The researchers report in the 12 December issue of Science that during a time of climate change 13 million years ago the chemical makeup of the oceans changed dramatically. The researchers warn that the chemical composition of the ocean today could be similarly affected by climate changes now underway - with potentially far-reaching consequences for marine ecosystems…

12 December 2008 — 41 stories
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More on Science Centric's News

Protein combination directs production of new cardiac myocytesProtein combination directs production of new cardiac myocytes

— Scientists from the Gladstone Institute of Cardiovascular Disease have discovered a combination of proteins that triggers the production of new cardiac myocytes.…

Spirit resumes driving while analysis of problem behaviours continuesSpirit resumes driving while analysis of problem behaviours continues

— NASA's Mars Exploration Rover Spirit drove on Thursday for the first time since 8 April, acting on commands from engineers who are still investigating bouts of amnesia…