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Showing posts from January 28, 2016

Mexican researchers fit dog with 3D printed prosthetic leg

A six-year-old dog named Romina, who was injured in a lawnmower accident, is fitted with an articulated prosthetic leg made with 3D printing technology. Santiago Garcia, UVM's great species coordinator and specialist in prosthetics, said being able to print out the model in 3D made the process easier and enabled him to adjust it quickly.

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Knowing all the angles: Ancient Babylonians used tricky geometry

By Will Dunham WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Ancient Babylonian astronomers were way ahead of their time, using sophisticated geometric techniques that until now had been considered an achievement of medieval European scholars. "No one expected this," said Mathieu Ossendrijver, a professor of history of ancient science at Humboldt University in Berlin, noting that the methods delineated in the tablets were so advanced that they foreshadowed the development of calculus. The methods were similar to those employed by 14th century scholars at University of Oxford's Merton College, he said.


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Mysterious Sonic Boom Reported Over New Jersey

At least 10 sonic booms have been reported this afternoon (Jan. 28) from southern New Jersey along the East Coast to Long Island, New York, say scientists with the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS). The first sonic boom was recorded at 1:24 p.m. EST (18:24:05 UTC), about 2 miles (3 kilometers) north-northeast of Hammonton, New Jersey, and 37 miles (60 km) south of Trenton, New Jersey. In the following hour and a half, seismometers picked up at least nine other sonic booms along the Eastern Seaboard all the way to Long Island, according to the USGS.


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Addiction Changes Brain Biology in 3 Stages, Experts Say

Experts who research addiction have long argued that it is a disease of the brain. Now, in a new paper, they present a model of addiction, broken down into three key stages, to illustrate how the condition changes human neurobiology. Understanding what's going on in the brain of someone with an addiction is essential for medical professionals to better treat people with this disease, said Dr. Nora Volkow, director of the National Institute on Drug Abuse and the lead author of the new review.

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'Schizophrenia Gene' Discovery Sheds Light on Possible Cause

Researchers have identified a gene that increases the risk of schizophrenia, and they say they have a plausible theory as to how this gene may cause the devastating mental illness. After conducting studies in both humans and mice, the researchers said this new schizophrenia risk gene, called C4, appears to be involved in eliminating the connections between neurons — a process called "synaptic pruning," which, in humans, happens naturally in the teen years. It's possible that excessive or inappropriate "pruning" of neural connections could lead to the development of schizophrenia, the researchers speculated.

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Young Women's Cancer Risk Linked to Tanning Beds

Young women who use tanning beds or booths have up to a sixfold increase in their likelihood of developing melanoma, a new study found. The study also suggests that indoor tanning has likely played a role in the rise in melanoma rates among young U.S. women in recent years. The findings indicate that the "melanoma epidemic … seems likely to continue unabated, especially among young women, unless exposure to indoor tanning is further restricted and reduced," the researchers, from the University of Minnesota, wrote in the Jan. 27 issue of the journal JAMA Dermatology.

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Bad Rap: Why B.o.B Is Wrong About a Flat Earth

A throwdown between a rapper and an astrophysicist centers on whether the Earth is a sphere, a scientific question that was supposedly settled in the third century B.C. While the ancient Greeks were among the first to discern that the Earth is a sphere, there were still people who didn't think it could be true, because, well, look around. In the last century a whole society — the Flat Earth Society — has grown up around it.


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How to Tell If Conspiracy Theories Are Real: Here's the Math

A faked moon landing or a hidden cure for cancer are just a couple of large-scale conspiracies that, if true, would have come to light within five years following their alleged cover-ups, according to a mathematical formula put together by one physicist. David Robert Grimes, a postdoctoral research associate at the University of Oxford who studies cancer, is familiar with conspiracy theorists. "The charge that there is a scientific conspiracy afoot is a common one," said Grimes, in an email interview with Live Science, "and almost inevitably those making these charges will descend into accusing one of shilling or being an agent of some malignant entity." In response to his work, conspiracy theorists have threatened him, even tried to get him removed from his academic position.


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Ice-Age Mammoth Bones Found Under Oregon Football Field

Oregon State University might want to consider changing its mascot after a monumental find yesterday (Jan. 25): The discovery of bones belonging to an ice-age mammoth within throwing distance of the school's football field. A construction crew working on an expansion and renovation of the OSU Beavers' Valley Football Center uncovered the remains of the beast while digging in the north end of Reser Stadium. "There are quite a few bones, and dozens of pieces," Loren Davis, an associate professor of anthropology at OSU, said in a statement.


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Challenger accident shapes new wave of passenger spaceships

By Irene Klotz CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. (Reuters) - Thirty years after the space shuttle Challenger exploded during liftoff, a new generation of spaceships continues to build on changes made after NASA's fatal accident. Challenger blasted off from the Kennedy Space Center in Florida on the frigid morning of Jan. 28, 1986. The disaster exposed shuttle design shortcomings and operational problems in the U.S. space program.


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