Low birth weight reduces ability to metabolize drugs throughout life

Science Daily - Thu, 27/02/2014 - 3:11pm
Another concern related to low birth weight has been found by researchers: a difference in how the body reacts to drugs, which may last a person's entire life and further complicate treatment of illnesses or diseases that are managed with medications. The findings add to the list of health problems that are already known to correspond to low birth weight, such as a predisposition for adult-onset diabetes, hypertension, and obesity. The implication, researchers say, is that low birth weight may not only cause increased disease, but it may also lessen the effectiveness of the drugs used to treat those diseases.
Categories: Science

The pain of social exclusion: Physical pain brain circuits activated by 'social pain'

Science Daily - Thu, 27/02/2014 - 3:11pm
“Social” pain hurts physically, even when we see it in others. The distress caused by social stimuli (e.g., losing a friend, experiencing an injustice or more in general when a social bond is threatened) activates brain circuits related to physical pain: as observed in a new study. This also applies when we experience this type of pain vicariously as an empathic response (when we see somebody else experiencing it).
Categories: Science

Woman Attacked In San Francisco Bar For Wearing Google Glass

Slashdot - Thu, 27/02/2014 - 3:07pm
First time accepted submitter Martin Blank writes "Sarah Slocum, an early adopter of Google Glass, was bar hopping with friends in San Francisco when a few people in the bar took issue with the eyewear when she was demonstrating it to another patron even though she wasn't recording. When she felt threatened, she informed them that she would start recording. Two of them approached her, yelling and throwing a bar rag at her, and ultimately ripping the Glass from her face and running from the bar with it. She gave chase and eventually got the Glass back, but her purse was gone when she returned to the bar. This physical level of hostility is unusual, but discomfort with Glass is common, especially among those who don't understand how it works. Given that much more hidden spy cameras are available for far less than the $1500 cost of Glass, what will it take for general acceptance to finally take hold?"

Read more of this story at Slashdot.








Categories: Science

Red and Dead | Space Wallpaper

Space.com - Thu, 27/02/2014 - 3:05pm
This cool space wallpaper shows a composite view of the giant elliptical galaxy NGC 1399. The stellar component, as observed at optical wavelengths, is shown in white at the center of the image.
Categories: Science

The Molecule That Tells You When You've Used Too Much Sriracha

Wired News - Thu, 27/02/2014 - 2:30pm
Scientists have uncovered the structure of the molecule that senses capsaicin, the chemical that gives chili peppers their heat, 15 years after the molecule was discovered.
    





Categories: Science

'Obnoxious' RSA Protests, RSA Remains Mum

Slashdot - Thu, 27/02/2014 - 2:26pm
An anonymous reader writes "By 'buying out' the most obvious lunch spot nearest the RSA conference yesterday, opponents and truth-seekers regarding RSA's alleged deal with the NSA raised awareness amongst attendees in the most brutal way possible: by taking away tacos and tequila drinks. Robert Imhoff, Vegas 2.0 co-founder, says, 'RSA could begin to fix this by going on the record with a detailed response about the accusations.'" I tried to get attendees of the conference to comment on camera — even a little bit — on what they thought of the NSA spying revelations, and not a single person I approached would do so. The pained facial expressions when they refused were interesting, though, and reflect the problem with a surveillance society in a nutshell. Especially at a conference where the NSA is surrounded by vendors who sell the hardware and software that enables your "mere" metadata to be captured and sifted, plenty of the people on the floor know that the companies they work for are or might one day be seeking contracts to do all that capturing and sifting, even if they'd rather not be subject to it personally, so their don't want their face shown saying so.

Read more of this story at Slashdot.








Categories: Science

Closest, brightest supernova in decades is also a little weird

Science Daily - Thu, 27/02/2014 - 2:24pm
The closest and brightest supernova in decades, SN 2014J, brightens faster than expected for Type Ia supernovae, the exploding stars used to measure cosmic distances, according to astronomers. Another recent supernova also brightened faster than expected, suggesting that there is unsuspected new physics going on inside these exploding stars. The finding may also help physicists improve their use of these supernovae to measure cosmic distance.
Categories: Science

Why dark chocolate is good for your heart

Science Daily - Thu, 27/02/2014 - 2:21pm
It might seem too good to be true, but dark chocolate is good for you and scientists now know why. Dark chocolate helps restore flexibility to arteries while also preventing white blood cells from sticking to the walls of blood vessels. Both arterial stiffness and white blood cell adhesion are known factors that play a significant role in atherosclerosis. What's more, the scientists also found that increasing the flavanol content of dark chocolate did not change this effect.
Categories: Science

Cushing's syndrome: Genetic basis for cortisol excess

Science Daily - Thu, 27/02/2014 - 2:20pm
Cushing’s syndrome has been found to be linked to a genetic basis for cortisol excess. Cortisol is a hormone that is produced by the adrenal gland in response to stressful events, and modulates a whole spectrum of physiological processes. An international research collaboration has now identified genetic mutations that lead to the production and secretion of cortisol in the absence of an underlying stressor. This condition, known as Cushing's syndrome, can be successfully treated by surgical removal of the affected adrenal gland.
Categories: Science

Ecological impacts of invasive species can be readily predicted from features of their behavior

Science Daily - Thu, 27/02/2014 - 2:20pm
Ecologists have studied the behavior of some of the "world's worst" invasive species, including the large-mouth bass, an invasive fish which typically devastates invertebrate and other fish communities wherever it is introduced. They have revealed that the ecological impacts of invasive species might be readily predicted from features of their behavior.
Categories: Science

Probing the edge of chaos: How do variable physical characteristics behave at the point preceding onset of chaos?

Science Daily - Thu, 27/02/2014 - 2:20pm
The edge of chaos -- right before chaos sets in -- is a unique place. It is found in many dynamical systems that cross the boundary between a well-behaved dynamics and a chaotic one. Now, physicists have shown that the distribution -- or frequency of occurrence -- of the variables constituting the physical characteristics of such systems at the edge of chaos has a very different shape than previously reported distributions. This could help us better understand natural phenomena with a chaotic nature.
Categories: Science

Altruistic suicide in organisms helps relatives by providing nutrients to kin

Science Daily - Thu, 27/02/2014 - 2:14pm
The question of why an individual would actively kill itself has been an evolutionary mystery. Death could hardly provide a fitness advantage to the dying individual. However, a new study has found that in single-celled algae, suicide benefits the organism’s relatives. Researchers have known that when an organism commits suicide by digesting up its own body, it releases nutrients into the environment that can be used by other organisms. Now they've proven that these nutrients can only be used by relatives. In fact, the nutrients inhibit the growth of non-relatives, so not only does suicide benefit relatives, it can also harm competitors.
Categories: Science

Digital ears in the rainforest: Estimating dynamics of animal populations by using sound recordings and computing

Science Daily - Thu, 27/02/2014 - 2:14pm
A Finnish-Brazilian project is constructing a system that could estimate the dynamics of animal populations by using sound recordings, statistics and scientific computing. The canopy in a Brazilian rainforest is bustling with life, but nothing is visible from the ground level. The digital recorders attached to the trees, however, are picking up the noises of birds.
Categories: Science

Tooth extraction prior to cardiac surgery may increase risk of adverse outcomes

Science Daily - Thu, 27/02/2014 - 2:12pm
Removing an infected tooth prior to cardiac surgery may increase the risk of major adverse outcomes, including risk of death prior to surgery, even though the practice is relatively routine. This research points to a significant departure from current understanding, guideline and practice, and the authors note that further research is required before recommendations and practice are changed.
Categories: Science

Smarter colorectal screening could improve senior health

Science Daily - Thu, 27/02/2014 - 2:12pm
Age-based colorectal cancer screening guidelines could lead to inappropriate use and contribute to healthy seniors missing out on the preventative tests including colonoscopy. Large health system, Medicare and many private insurers use quality measures to encourage screening among 50- to 75-year-olds. An unhealthy, 75-year-old -- whose life expectancy is estimated at less than five years -- was significantly more likely to undergo screening than a 76-year-old who's in good health, the study found. The study suggests the upper age cut-off could unintentionally discourage screening for these healthy, older individuals, leading them to miss out on the colorectal screenings known to prevent cancer.
Categories: Science

NASA's Planet-Hunting Kepler Spacecraft a 'Gift That Keeps on Giving'

Space.com - Thu, 27/02/2014 - 2:11pm
Though a glitch ended Kepler's original operations last May, the mission continues to discover distant worlds, adding a whopping 715 new exoplanets to the tally on Wednesday. Many more will follow, and a new mission could keep Kepler busy for years.
Categories: Science

WV Senator Calls For Ban On All Unregulated Cryptocurrencies

Slashdot - Thu, 27/02/2014 - 1:44pm
An anonymous reader writes "Sen. Joe Manchin of West Virginia, a member of the Senate Banking Committee, has called for for heavily regulation of Bitcoin. Reached for comment, his staff confirmed Manchin is seeking a 'ban' that would apply to any cryptocurrency that's both anonymous and unregulated."

Read more of this story at Slashdot.








Categories: Science

Japan to Launch US Satellite to Map Earth's Rain & Snow Today: Watch It Live

Space.com - Thu, 27/02/2014 - 1:14pm
NASA and Japan's space agency will launch the new Global Precipitation Measurement Core Observatory satellite to map Earth's rain and snow today at 1:37 p.m. EST. Watch it live here.
Categories: Science

Doctors Say New Pain Pill Is "Genuinely Frightening"

Slashdot - Thu, 27/02/2014 - 1:03pm
Hugh Pickens DOT Com writes "Stephanie Smith reports at CNN that a coalition of more than 40 health care, consumer and addiction treatment groups is urging the Food and Drug Administration to revoke approval of the new prescription pain drug Zohydro, a hydrocodone-based drug set to become available to patients in March. 'You're talking about a drug that's somewhere in the neighborhood of five times more potent than what we're dealing with now,' says Dr. Stephen Anderson, a Washington emergency room physician who is not part of the most recent petition to the FDA about the drug. 'I'm five times more concerned, solely based on potency.' The concerns echoed by all groups are broadly about the drug's potency and abuse potential. They say they fear that Zohydro — especially at higher doses — will amplify already-rising overdose numbers. 'In the midst of a severe drug epidemic fueled by overprescribing of opioids, the very last thing the country needs is a new, dangerous, high-dose opioid (PDF),' the coalition wrote in a letter to FDA Commissioner Dr. Margaret Hamburg. Zohydro's maker, Zogenix, and the FDA say the drug's benefits outweigh its risks and in their petition to the FDA for approval, Zogenix representatives say the drug fills a critical need for people suffering from chronic pain who are at risk for liver toxicity and cited examples of patients who might benefit from Zohydro: a 46-year-old male with chronic back and leg pain who had two failed back surgeries; a 52-year-old female with metastatic breast cancer experiencing diffuse pain; a 32-year-old woman with multiple orthopedic fractures. 'There's a lot of misinformation being put out there by people who don't have all the facts,' says Dr. Brad Galer, executive vice president and chief medical officer at Zogenix. 'We're talking about patients that are in bed, depressed, can't sleep, can't work, can't interact with their loved ones — it's a very significant medical health problem that is being ignored.'"

Read more of this story at Slashdot.








Categories: Science

Mapping Rain & Snow: How the Global Precipitation Measurement Satellite Works (Infographic)

Space.com - Thu, 27/02/2014 - 12:17pm
The GPM Core Observatory scans the weather with microwaves and two bands of radar. See how the Global Precipitation Measurement Satellite by NASA and JAXA will map rain and snow like never before.
Categories: Science