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Showing posts from January 11, 2016

How to Avoid Low Back Pain: Exercise and Education

Shoe inserts, back-support belts and other gadgets aimed at preventing low back pain may be a waste of money. Instead, exercise is the best way to ward off this common problem, a new review of studies suggests. The researchers found evidence that an exercise program alone, or exercise along with education about how to prevent back pain, was effective in averting an episode of low back pain and reducing people's use of sick time at work.

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C-Section or Vaginal? Baby's Gut Bacteria Linked to Delivery Method

The gut bacteria of 6-week-old babies may be related to the way the infants were delivered and what they have been eating, a new study suggests. The babies in the study who were delivered vaginally had a different composition of gut bacteria than the babies who were delivered by cesarean section, the researchers found. Moreover, the babies who had been fed only breast milk since birth had a different composition of gut bacteria at 6 weeks old than the babies who were fed both breast milk and formula, and the babies who were fed only formula, the researchers found.

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Pocket-Sized Device Charges Your Phone with Water

Swedish startup MyFC unveiled its cool technology, dubbed JAQ, here at CES on Jan. 6. The device, which is small enough to slip into your back pocket, is a fuel cell charger. It uses saltwater and oxygen to convert chemical energy into electricity.


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Tribute to a Starman: David Bowie Mourned by Astronauts, Scientists

Astronauts, scientists and members of the spaceflight industry are joining people all over the world in mourning the death of music icon David Bowie, who passed away Sunday (Jan. 10) after a battle with cancer.


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Ancient Rome Was Infested with Human Parasites, Poop Shows

In fact, the empire was infested with a greater number of human parasites, such as whipworm, roundworm and Entamoeba histolytica dysentery, than during prior time periods. "I was very surprised to find that compared with the Bronze Age and Iron Age, there was no drop in the kind of parasites that are spread by poor sanitation during the Roman period," said the study's author Piers Mitchell, a lecturer of biological anthropology at the University of Cambridge in the United Kingdom. In spite of such admirable baths and toilets, "neither of those things seemed to have actually increased the health of people in Roman times," although it probably would have helped them smell better, Mitchell told Live Science.


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Top 5 Space Questions of 2015…with Answers! (Op-Ed)

Paul Sutter is a visiting scholar at The Ohio State University's Center for Cosmology and Astro-Particle Physics (CCAPP). Sutter is also host of the podcasts Ask a Spaceman and RealSpace, and the YouTube series Space In Your Face. Is the light from a supernova dangerous?


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Narcissist in Chief? How Trump's Ego Reflects US Culture

With less than a month to go before Iowa's Republican primary caucus, Donald Trump remains atop the presidential candidate polls. His popularity appears unblemished despite brash statements, personal insults thrown at his opponents and rampant speculation over his perceived narcissistic tendencies.

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Counting Steps: Are You Walking More, But Enjoying It Less?

Using a fitness tracker or smartwatch to count your steps every day may lead you to boost your activity levels, but you may find that you enjoy your activity less than you would if you weren't tracking yourself, new research suggests. It turns out that all that tracking can turn pleasurable hobbies like walking into chores, which could make people stop doing those once-enjoyable tasks when they feel they're off the clock, the researchers said. "In general, tracking activity can increase how much people do," Jordan Etkin, a marketing professor at the Duke University Fuqua School of Business, said in a statement.

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Acupuncture Causes Bacterial Infection in Rare Case

In the case, a 67-year-old man in Australia developed a serious bacterial infection after completing a five-week course of acupuncture aimed at relieving the pain and stiffness from his neck arthritis, also known as cervical spondylosis. After feeling feverish and ill for several days and also experiencing worsening neck pain, the man went to the hospital emergency room to find out what was wrong with him, according to the case report, published online Dec.11 in the journal BMJ Case Reports.

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'Kidnapped' Sharks Use Their Noses to Navigate Back to Shore

Sharks may use their keen sense of smell to navigate the vast ocean, a new study finds. Researchers made the finding after catching leopard sharks (Triakis semifasciata), transporting them about 6 miles (9 kilometers) away from shore and stuffing some of the sharks' noses with Vaseline-soaked cotton. The scientists then released the sharks and tracked whether those with an impaired sense of smell had trouble finding their way back to shore.


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Ancient Rome Was Infested with Human Parasites, Poop Shows

In fact, the empire was infested with a greater number of human parasites, such as whipworm, roundworm and Entamoeba histolytica dysentery, than during prior time periods. "I was very surprised to find that compared with the Bronze Age and Iron Age, there was no drop in the kind of parasites that are spread by poor sanitation during the Roman period," said the study's author Piers Mitchell, a lecturer of biological anthropology at the University of Cambridge in the United Kingdom. In spite of such admirable baths and toilets, "neither of those things seemed to have actually increased the health of people in Roman times," although it probably would have helped them smell better, Mitchell told Live Science.


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How to Teleport Info Out of a Black Hole

Quantum teleportation of subatomic particles could be used to retrieve information from a black hole, a new algorithm suggests. The information that can be extracted from this hypothetical black hole is quantum information, meaning that instead of existing in either a 0 or 1 state, like a classical bit, the data collected would exist as a superposition of all potential states. "We've demonstrated concretely that it is possible, in principle, to retrieve some quantum information from a black hole," said study co-author Adam Jermyn, a doctoral candidate at the University of Cambridge in England.


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Crushed by Ice: Ships from 1871 Whaling Disaster Possibly Found

Before sea ice formed along Alaska's Arctic coastline this winter, marine archaeologists discovered the wrecks of two 19th-century ships that likely met their demise during a famous whaling disaster. In September 1871, 33 whaling ships became stuck in pack ice off the coast of Wainwright, Alaska. "The loss of the ships was a significant blow to the whaling industry, particularly the New Bedford (Massachusetts) companies, which owned most of the vessels lost," said Brad Barr, an archaeologist with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA).


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Narcissist in Chief? How Trump's Ego Reflects US Culture

With less than a month to go before Iowa's Republican primary caucus, Donald Trump remains atop the presidential candidate polls. His popularity appears unblemished despite brash statements, personal insults thrown at his opponents and rampant speculation over his perceived narcissistic tendencies.

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First Flower Seeds from Dinosaur Era Discovered

Recently, researchers discovered tiny Cretaceous flower seeds dating back 110 million to 125 million years, the oldest-known seeds of flowering plants. For the first time, scientists were able to detect seed embryos, the part of the seed where a new plant grows and emerges, and food storage tissues surrounding them. Else Marie Friis, lead author of the study and professor emerita at the Swedish Museum of Natural History, has analyzed some of these fossil remains of angiosperms — flowering plants — preserved in soils in Portugal and North America.


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