Boosts in productivity of corn and other crops modify Northern Hemisphere carbon dioxide cycle

Each year in the Northern Hemisphere, levels of atmospheric carbon dioxide drop in the summer as plants "inhale," then climb again as they exhale after the growing season.

Study: Environmental bleaching impairs long-term coral reproduction

This is a photo of bleached coral near the Panamanian coast.A new study by a Florida State University biologist shows that bleaching events brought on by rising sea temperatures are having a detrimental long-term impact on coral.

Trans fat consumption is linked to diminished memory in working-aged adults

High trans fat consumption is linked to worse memory among working-age men, according to research presented at the American Heart Association's Scientific Sessions 2014.

Acculturative stress found to be root cause of high depression rates in Latino youth

Researchers at Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis say acculturative stress may explain, in part, why Indiana's Latino youth face an alarming disparity in depression and suicide rates when compared to their...

Livermore scientists show salinity counts when it comes to sea level

Using ocean observations and a large suite of climate models, Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory scientists have found that long-term salinity changes have a stronger influence on regional sea level changes...

Pluripotent cells created by nuclear transfer can prompt immune reaction, researchers find

Mouse cells and tissues created through nuclear transfer can be rejected by the body because of a previously unknown immune response to the cell's mitochondria, according to a study in...

NASA's Swift mission probes an exotic object: 'Kicked' black hole or mega star?

Using the Keck II telescope in Hawaii, researchers obtained high-resolution images of Markarian 177 and SDSS1133 using a near-infrared filter. Twin bright spots in the galaxy's center are consistent with recent star formation, a disturbance that hints this galaxy may have merged with another.An international team of researchers analyzing decades of observations from many facilities, including NASA's Swift satellite, has discovered an unusual source of light in a galaxy some 90 million light-years...

Unique sense of 'touch' gives a prolific bacterium its ability to infect anything

A study led by Princeton University researchers found that one of the world's most prolific bacteria, <i>Pseudomonas aeruginosa</i>, manages to afflict humans, animals and even plants by way of a mechanism not before seen in any infectious microorganism -- a sense of touch. This technique means the bacteria, unlike most pathogens, do not rely on a chemical signal specific to any one host. To demonstrate the bacteria's versatility, the researchers infected ivy cells (blue rings) with the bacteria (green areas) then introduced amoebas (yellow) to the same sample. <i>Pseudomonas</i> immediately detected and quickly overwhelmed the amoebas.New research has found that one of the world's most prolific bacteria manages to afflict humans, animals and even plants by way of a mechanism not before seen in any...

Scientists get to the heart of fool's gold as a solar material

This crystal of iron pyrite shows the characteristic cubic crystals of 'fool's gold.'  A new study led by Song Jin at the University of Wisconsin-Madison identifies defects in pyrite's crystal structure as a critical obstacle to building commercial solar cells from the cheap and abundant iron pyrite material.As the installation of photovoltaic solar cells continues to accelerate, scientists are looking for inexpensive materials beyond the traditional silicon that can efficiently convert sunlight into electricity.

Fossils cast doubt on climate-change projections on habitats

Edward Davis, professor of geological sciences at the University of Oregon, says that the fossil record of five mammalian species shows that they didn't live where modeling suggested they should have for surviving the last ice age.Leave it to long-dead short-tailed shrew and flying squirrels to outfox climate-modelers trying to predict future habitats.

NRL scientists discover novel metamaterial properties within hexagonal boron nitride

Periodic arrays of cone-shaped hexagonal boron nitride nanoantennas, depicted magnified image above, were used to confine hyperbolic polaritons in all three dimensions. This enabled the researchers to fundamentally probe the novel optical properties within these materials and demonstrate the highly directional, low loss hyperbolic polaritons that are confined within the volume of the antennas. These results provide the first foray into natural hyperbolic materials as building blocks for nanophotonic devices in the mid-infrared to terahertz spectral range.U.S. Naval Research Laboratory (NRL) scientists, in collaboration with researchers from the University of Manchester, U.K.; Imperial College, London; University of California San Diego; and the National Institute of Material...

University of Utah electrical and computer engineering associate professor, Rajesh Menon, holds up a piece of silicon that has been etched with microscopic pillars and holes to create a polarized filter. He leads a team of researchers that have developed a new polarizer that can allow more light to pass through than conventional polarizers. This could lead to LCD displays for smartphones and tablets that last longer on a battery charge and cameras that can take better pictures at low light.

Field-emission plug-and-play solution for microwave electron guns

This is a photograph of a cathode plug for the injector, with an UNCD film deposited on top.On a quest to design an alternative to the two complex approaches currently used to produce electrons within microwave electron guns, a team of researchers from Euclid TechLabs and Argonne...

The dirty side of soap

Triclosan is an antimicrobial additive found in many liquid hand soaps and other household products.Triclosan is an antimicrobial commonly found in soaps, shampoos, toothpastes and many other household items. Despite its widespread use, researchers at University of California, San Diego School of Medicine report...

Quantum mechanical calculations reveal the hidden states of enzyme active sites

This is an image of a [2Fe-2S] clusterEnzymes carry out fundamental biological processes such as photosynthesis, nitrogen fixation and respiration, with the help of clusters of metal atoms as "active" sites. But scientists lack basic information about...

Darwin 2.0

Macaws flying over the rainforest canopy at dawn. The study found that bird lineages that inhabit the forest canopy, such as these macaws, accumulate fewer species over evolutionary time than do bird lineages that inhabit the forest understory.Birds that are related, such as Darwin's finches, but that vary in beak size and behavior specially evolved to their habitat are examples of a process called speciation. It has...

In full view

The complete structure allows researchers to understand how the polymerase uses host cell RNA (red) to kick-start the production of viral messenger RNA.Scientists looking to understand -- and potentially thwart -- the influenza virus now have a much more encompassing view, thanks to the first complete structure of one of the flu...

Digging for answers

This is Dana Bardolph.On an archaeology field trip in New Mexico as an undergraduate in 2006, Dana Bardolph noticed something that struck her as an odd gender imbalance: The professor leading the dig...

Thin film produces new chemistry in 'nanoreactor'

Two mirror-image domains (terbium in green, manganese in red, oxygen not shown) meet at a domain wall, where terbium atoms are squeezed out and replaced by manganese (red cross).Physicists at the University of Groningen led by Professor of Functional Nanomaterials Beatriz Noheda have discovered a new manganese compound that is produced by tension in the crystal structure of...

Ancient New Zealand 'Dawn Whale' identified by Otago researchers

University of Otago researchers have described a new genus of ancient baleen whales that they have named <i>Tohoraata</i> (a M&#257;ori term which can be translated as Dawn Whale). The genus belongs to the toothless filter-feeding family Eomysticetidae, and it is the first time members of this family have been identified in the Southern Hemisphere.
They named the younger of the two fossil whales, which may be a descendent of the elder, as <i>Tohoraata raekohao</i> (pictured). <i>Raekohao</i> means 'holes in the forehead.' 
Researcher Robert Boessenecker says this whale lived between 26-25 million years ago and vaguely resembles a minke whale but was more slender and serpent-like. Its skull, which contains a number of holes near its eye sockets for arteries, was probably about 2 meters in length and the whole animal would have been 8 meters long.University of Otago palaeontologists are rewriting the history of New Zealand's ancient whales by describing a previously unknown genus of fossil baleen whales and two species within it.

Salamanders are a more abundant food source in forest ecosystems than previously thought

Semlitsch's study measured the population density and biomass of the Southern Redback Salamander in the Ozark Highlands in Missouri.In the 1970s, ecologists published results from one of the first whole-forest ecosystem studies ever conducted in Hubbard Brook, New Hampshire. In the paper, scientists reported that salamanders represent one...

New technique allows ultrasound to penetrate bone, metal

Researchers from North Carolina State University have developed a technique that allows ultrasound to penetrate bone or metal, using customized structures that offset the distortion usually caused by these so-called aberrating layers. 'In effect, it's as if the aberrating layer isn't even there,' says Dr. Yun Jing, an assistant professor of mechanical and aerospace engineering at NC State University and senior author of a paper describing the work.Researchers from North Carolina State University have developed a technique that allows ultrasound to penetrate bone or metal, using customized structures that offset the distortion usually caused by these so-called...