Kidney failure and its treatment may impact cancer risk

Highlights Risk of kidney and thyroid cancers was especially high when kidney failure patients were on dialysis. Conversely, risk of non-Hodgkin lymphoma, melanoma, lung cancer, and certain skin cancers was highest following kidney transplantation, likely due to immunosuppressant medications....

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Massive northeast Greenland glacier is rapidly melting, UCI-led team finds

A glacier in northeast Greenland that holds enough water to raise global sea levels by more than 18 inches has come unmoored from a stabilizing sill and is crumbling into...

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Half of all Amazonian tree species may be globally threatened

Acaricuara (<em>Minquartia guianensis</em>) tree is shown in the forest.More than half of all tree species in the world's most diverse forest--the Amazon--may be globally threatened, according to a new study.

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Quiet 'epidemic' has killed half a million middle-aged white Americans

Despite advances in health care and quality of life, white middle-aged Americans have seen overall mortality rates increase over the past 15 years, representing an overlooked "epidemic" with deaths comparable...

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New study suggests more than 8 percent of children with cancer have genetic predisposition

James R. Downing, M.D., president and chief executive officer of St. Jude Children's Research Hospital, was instrumental in launching next-generation DNA sequencing and its treatment applications.The most detailed analysis yet of the role germline mutations in genes associated with cancer predisposition play in the development of childhood cancer suggests that comprehensive genomic screening may be...

Daring move for first US-China fusion team

Groundbreaking US-China experiments continued in September between DIII-D, led by GA's Dr. Andrea Garofalo (at center), and China's ASIPP at the EAST fusion program, whose scientists connect via videoconferencing (pictured at left screen). At right is Huiqian Wang, an ASIPP post-doctoral scientist being trained at DIII-D.The way to increase the power and efficiency of magnetic fusion energy may be to risk running the plasma - hotter than 100-million-degrees C - closer than ever to the...

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Fish skin provides invisibility in open ocean

Researchers have found that fish that live in the open ocean, such as these lookdowns, reflect polarized light from their skin in a way that makes them seemingly disappear from predators' view.Scientists have solved a longstanding mystery about how some fish seem to disappear from predators in the open waters of the ocean, a discovery that could help materials scientists and...

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Asteroid ripped apart to form star's glowing ring system

An asteroid torn apart by the strong gravity of a white dwarf has formed a ring of dust particles and debris orbiting the Earth-sized burnt out stellar core. Gas produced by collisions within the disc is detected in observations obtained over twelve years with ESO's Very Large Telescope, and reveal a narrow glowing arc.The sight of an asteroid being ripped apart by a dead star and forming a glowing debris ring has been captured in an image for the first time.

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White coat and masked hypertension associated with higher rates of heart and vascular disease

This is Dr. Wanpen Vongpatanasin.Patients whose blood pressures spikes in the doctor's office but not at home, and patients whose blood pressure spikes at home but not in the doctor's office, suffer more heart...

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Medicines do not seem to degrade faster in space

The results of an opportunistic, pilot-scale study led by Virginia Wotring of the Center for Space Medicine and Department of Pharmacology at Baylor College of Medicine in the U.S. suggest...

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Iowa State astronomers say comet fragments best explanation of mysterious dimming star

This illustration shows a star behind a shattered comet. Observations of the star KIC 8462852 by NASA's Kepler and Spitzer space telescopes suggest that its unusual light signals are likely from dusty comet fragments, which blocked the light of the star as they passed in front of it in 2011 and 2013. The comets are thought to be traveling around the star in a very long, eccentric orbit.Was it a catastrophic collision in the star's asteroid belt? A giant impact that disrupted a nearby planet? A dusty cloud of rock and debris? A family of comets breaking...

AGA supports scientists' plea for national movement on the microbiome

Bethesda, MD (Nov. 2, 2015) -- Leading scientists have joined together and called for an interdisciplinary, public-private initiative focused on the microbiome. The American Gastroenterological Association (AGA) applauds this call for a formal approach to understanding microbial communities...

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Biologists induce flatworms to grow heads and brains of other species

Tufts biologists induced one species of flatworm -- <em>G. dorotocephala</em>, top left -- to grow heads and brains characteristic of other species of flatworm, top row, without altering genomic sequence. Examples of the outcomes can be seen in the bottom row of the image.Biologists at Tufts University have succeeded in inducing one species of flatworm to grow heads and brains characteristic of another species of flatworm without altering genomic sequence. The work reveals...

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Deaths from heart disease declining among rheumatoid arthritis patients

Rheumatoid arthritis patients are twice as likely as the average person to develop heart disease, but a new study shows that efforts to prevent heart problems and diagnose and treat...

Warming waters contributed to the collapse of New England's cod fishery

A school of Atlantic cod makes its way along the New England coast.For centuries, cod were the backbone of New England's fisheries and a key species in the Gulf of Maine ecosystem.

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How clean is the International Space Station?

State-of-the-art molecular analysis of dust samples from the International Space Station (ISS) has been employed to reveal new information about some of the potential bacterial agents present in the astronauts'...

New gene that makes common bacteria resistant to last-line antibiotic found in animals and patients in China

A new gene (mcr-1) that enables bacteria to be highly resistant to polymyxins, the last line of antibiotic defence we have left, is widespread in Enterobacteriaceae [1] taken from pigs...

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Ancient mass extinction led to dominance of tiny fish, Penn paleontologist shows

After the Hangenberg mass extinction, small fish dominated the oceans while larger fish mostly died out.When times are good, it pays to be the big fish in the sea; in the aftermath of disaster, however, smaller is better.

Mars' moon Phobos is slowly falling apart

New modeling indicates that the grooves on Mars' moon Phobos could be produced by tidal forces -- the mutual gravitational pull of the planet and the moon. Initially, scientists had thought the grooves were created by the massive impact that made Stickney crater (lower right).The long, shallow grooves lining the surface of Phobos are likely early signs of the structural failure that will ultimately destroy this moon of Mars.

Aging star's weight loss secret revealed

<p>The star VY Canis Majoris is a red hypergiant, one of the largest known stars in the Milky Way. It is 30-40 times the mass of the Sun and 300 000 times more luminous. In its current state, the star would encompass the orbit of Jupiter, having expanded tremendously as it enters the final stages of its life.

<p>New observations of the star using the SPHERE instrument on the VLT have clearly revealed how the brilliant light of VY Canis Majoris lights up the clouds of material surrounding it and have allowed the properties of the component dust grains to be determined better than ever before.

<p>In this very close-up view from SPHERE the star itself is hidden behind an obscuring disc. The crosses are artefacts due to features in the instrument.VY Canis Majoris is a stellar goliath, a red hypergiant, one of the largest known stars in the Milky Way. It is 30-40 times the mass of the Sun and...

Rapid plankton growth in ocean seen as sign of carbon dioxide loading

This is a scanning electron microscope image of a coccolithophore, which can measure from 5 to 15 microns across, less than a fifth the width of a human hair.A microscopic marine alga is thriving in the North Atlantic to an extent that defies scientific predictions, suggesting swift environmental change as a result of increased carbon dioxide in the...

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Tracking down the 'missing' carbon from the Martian atmosphere

Carbon dioxide to generate the atmosphere originates in the planet's mantle and is released through volcanoes or trapped in rocks crystallized from magmas. Once in the atmosphere, the CO2 can exchange with the polar caps, passing from gas to ice and back to gas again. The CO2 can also dissolve into waters, which can then precipitate out solid carbonates, either in lakes at the surface or in shallow aquifers. Importantly, CO2 gas in the atmosphere is continually lost to space at a rate controlled in part by the sun's activity. The ultraviolet (UV) photodissociation mechanism that we highlight occurs when UV radiation encounters a CO2 molecule, breaking the bonds to first form CO and then C atoms. Isotope fractionation occurs when the C atoms are lost to space because the lighter carbon-12 isotopes are more easily removed than the heavier carbon-13 isotopes. This fractionation, the preferential loss of carbon-12 to space, leaves a fingerprint: enrichment of the heavy carbon-13 isotope, measured in the atmosphere of Mars today.Mars is blanketed by a thin, mostly carbon dioxide atmosphere--one that is far too thin to prevent large amounts of water on the surface of the planet from subliming or...

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