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 (20 December 2008)

Archived news stories published on 20 December 2008 [chronologically, reverse order]
DON'T MISS —
First use of cosmic lens to probe dark energy
First use of cosmic lens to probe dark energy — Astronomers have devised a new method for measuring perhaps the greatest puzzle of our universe - dark energy. This mysterious…
Galactic super-volcano in action
Galactic super-volcano in action — A galactic 'super-volcano' in the massive galaxy M87 is erupting and blasting gas outwards, as witnessed by NASA's Chandra…
Galaxies' glory days revealed
Galaxies' glory days revealed — Astronomers have experienced the galactic equivalent of discovering pictures of a mild-mannered grandmother partying as a…
Cells changing track: Thymus cells transform into skin cells in Swiss laboratory
Cells changing track: Thymus cells transform into skin cells in Swiss laboratory — Taking one type of cell and transforming it into another type is now possible. Cells taken from the thymus have been transformed…

Passage graves from an astronomical perspective

— 12:52 GMT | Technology

Passage graves are mysterious barrows from the Stone Age. New research from the Niels Bohr Institute at the University of Copenhagen indicates that the Stone Age graves' orientation in the landscape could have an astronomical explanation. The Danish passage graves are most likely oriented according to the path of the full moon, perhaps even according to the full moon immediately before a lunar eclipse. The results are published in the scientific journal Acta Archaeologica…

Earliest evidence of our cave-dwelling human ancestors

— 12:52 GMT | Geology and palaeontology

A research team led by Professor Michael Chazan, director of the University of Toronto's Archaeology Centre, has discovered the earliest evidence of our cave-dwelling human ancestors at the Wonderwerk Cave in South Africa…

Re-introduction of plant in danger of extinction successfully monitored

— 12:52 GMT | Environment

An international team of researchers, including some from the Autonoma University of Barcelona (CREAF-UAB), has carried out the first long-term study into the demographic dynamics of naturally-occurring and artificially-introduced plants of the same species. By using simultaneous monitoring, the scientists have identified biological and demographic features of the plants that could help to optimise conservation strategies…

Scientists create titanium-based structural metallic-glass composites

— 12:52 GMT | Technology

Scientists from the California Institute of Technology (Caltech) have created a range of structural metallic-glass composites, based in titanium, that are lighter and less expensive than any the group had previously created, while still maintaining their toughness and ductility - the ability to be deformed without breaking…

IBM researchers develop world's fastest graphene transistor

— 12:52 GMT | Technology

IBM researchers announced that they demonstrated the operation of graphene field-effect transistors at GHz frequencies, and achieved the highest frequencies reported so far using this novel non-silicon electronic material…

Prenatal alcohol exposure damages white matter, the brain's connective network

— 12:52 GMT | Health

One part of the prenatal brain that may be particularly sensitive to alcohol's effects is white matter, nerve fibres through which information is exchanged between different areas of the central nervous system. A recent study has demonstrated that alcohol consumption during pregnancy can alter the microstructural integrity of developing foetal cerebral white matter in the frontal and occipital lobes of the brain. These anomalies may help to explain the executive dysfunction and visual processing deficits that are associated with gestational alcohol exposure…

Abrupt climate shifts may move faster than thought

— 12:52 GMT | Environment

The United States could suffer the effects of abrupt climate changes within decades - sooner than some previously thought - says a new government report. It contends that seas could rise rapidly if melting of polar ice continues to outrun recent projections, and that an ongoing drought in the U.S. west could be the start of permanent drying for the region…

Seven easy actions you can do today to save the environment and gas

— 12:52 GMT | Environment

Want to save gasoline, lower your power bills and help save the environment? New Vanderbilt research identifies seven simple actions individuals can start today that have the potential to dramatically reduce energy use and carbon emissions…

Researchers identify gene linked to inherited form of fatal lung disease

— 12:52 GMT | Health

Researchers at UT Southwestern Medical Centre have determined that a mutation in a gene known for its role in defending the lungs against invading pathogens is responsible for some inherited cases of a lethal lung disease affecting older adults. The same mutation may also be associated with lung cancer, the researchers said…

ESC statement on the control of type 2 diabetes

— 12:52 GMT | Health

A study published by the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) on 16 December 2008 has found that those with type 2 diabetes who had a diet high in low-glycaemic foods such as nuts, beans and lentils had greater improvement in glycaemic control and risk factors for coronary heart disease than those on a diet with an emphasis on high-cereal fibre…

20 December 2008 — 32 stories
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