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Showing posts from December 19, 2016

Scientists discover 163 new species in Greater Mekong region: WWF

A rainbow-headed snake and a dragon-like lizard are among 163 new species that scientists recently discovered in the Greater Mekong region, conservation group WWF said on Monday, adding rapid development in the area, from dams to mines, was threatening wildlife survival. The Greater Mekong is home to some of the world's most endangered species. In June, Thai wildlife authorities raided the Tiger Temple west of Bangkok, a popular tourist attraction.


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Climate scientists adjust as Trump builds team of oil allies

By Peter Henderson SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) - Climate scientists worried that President-elect Donald Trump will slash their budgets and sideline their research are entering survival mode, trimming the words "climate change" from study proposals, emphasizing business applications of their work, and safeguarding data that shows global warming is real.     The early reactions, gathered by Reuters in more than a dozen interviews, may foretell a broader shift in the U.S. climate science community, which had enjoyed solid political and financial support under President Barack Obama but could be isolated under a new administration skeptical of climate change and committed to expanding oil drilling and coal mining. "I think it is maybe really necessary to refocus what you are doing and how you are labeling it," said Andreas Prein, a scientist at the federally funded National Center for Atmospheric Research, who previously had changed the term "climate change" in a…

Undersea mystery - seahorse genetic secrets unveiled

By Will Dunham WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Scientists have unlocked some of the genetic secrets of the weird and wondrous seahorse including its exotic eccentricity of male pregnancy. Researchers said on Wednesday they sequenced the genome of a seahorse species for the first time and identified the genetic underpinning for certain peculiarities in this equine-looking fish group that inhabits coastal waters around the world. Seahorses boast a host of oddities.


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Exclusive - If Trump skews science, researchers must raise the alarm: Obama official

By Patrick Rucker WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Scientists must confront climate change deniers and speak up if U.S. President-elect Donald Trump tries to sideline climate research, Interior Secretary Sally Jewell is due to say on Wednesday. "If you see science being ignored or compromised, speak up," Jewell will tell a meeting of earth and space scientists in San Francisco, according to a draft of the speech seen by Reuters. Trump has called climate change a hoax and sought to fill his cabinet with oil industry allies like Texas Governor Rick Perry, the Energy Department nominee.


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GSK boosts board-level science as new CEO prepares to take over

Drugmaker GlaxoSmithKline is bolstering scientific expertise on its board by establishing a new science committee, charged with overseeing research, as a new chief executive prepares to take over. Incoming CEO Emma Walmsley, the first woman to lead a top global drugmaker, stands out among Big Pharma bosses as a consumer brands specialist rather than a prescription medicines expert. Since her appointment in September she has spent much of her time learning about GSK's prescription drug research and development (R&D), according to company insiders.


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Scientists get antimatter excited, see first light

BERLIN (AP) — Scientists have used a laser to tickle atoms of antimatter and make them shine, a key step toward answering one of the great riddles of the universe.


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GSK boosts board-level science as new CEO prepares to take over

Drugmaker GlaxoSmithKline is bolstering scientific expertise on its board by establishing a new science committee, charged with overseeing research, as a new chief executive prepares to take over. Incoming CEO Emma Walmsley, the first woman to lead a top global drugmaker, stands out among Big Pharma bosses as a consumer brands specialist rather than a prescription medicines expert. Since her appointment in September she has spent much of her time learning about GSK's prescription drug research and development (R&D), according to company insiders.


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GSK boosts board-level science as new CEO prepares to take over

Drugmaker GlaxoSmithKline is bolstering scientific expertise on its board by establishing a new science committee, charged with overseeing research, as a new chief executive prepares to take over. Incoming CEO Emma Walmsley, the first woman to lead a top global drugmaker, stands out among Big Pharma bosses as a consumer brands specialist rather than a prescription medicines expert. Since her appointment in September she has spent much of her time learning about GSK's prescription drug research and development (R&D), according to company insiders.


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'Very Dangerous' Powdered Gloves Banned for Doctors

At your next doctor's exam, one thing will be certain: Your physician won't be using powdered medical gloves. That's because the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) just issued a ban on powdered medical gloves, calling them dangerous. The ruling marks only the second time in history that the FDA has banned a medical device.


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'Nightmare' Superbug May Have Spread Outside Hospitals

Six people in Colorado recently became infected with a "nightmare" superbug that until now, has mostly been limited to people in hospitals, according to a new report. The new cases suggest the superbug may have spread outside of health care facilities. The superbug is known as carbapenem-resistant Enterobacteriaceae, or CRE, a family of bacteria that are difficult to treat because they are resistant to powerful antibiotics.


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How Researchers Tapped into Brain Activity to Boost People's Confidence

There may be a way to tap into people's brain activity to boost their confidence, a new study suggests. In the study, the researchers used a technique called decoded neurofeedback, which involves scanning people's brains to monitor their brain activity, and using artificial intelligence to detect activity patterns that are linked with feelings of confidence. What's more, the same technique could be used to decrease confidence, if people were rewarded when their brain activity showed a pattern that was linked to low confidence, according to the researchers.


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Aging May Be Reversible: Researchers Rejuvenate Older Mice

The researchers also used the method to treat mice with a rare disease that causes them to age prematurely and die early, and found that the method increased the animals' lifespan by 30 percent. "Our study shows that aging may not have to proceed in one single direction," study researcher Juan Carlos Izpisua Belmonte, a professor in Salk Institute's Gene Expression Laboratory in La Jolla, California, said in a statement. "Obviously, mice are not humans and we know it will be much more complex to rejuvenate a person," Izpisua Belmonte said.


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Imaging Advance May Soon Show Unborn Babies in 3D

Someday, a mother-to-be may be able to put on a virtual reality headset and get a clear, 360-degree look at her own fetus in the womb. Although 3D imaging of fetuses is already available to a great extent — and in fact there are portrait studios that offer it — the images that are obtained from current techniques are static, and still rather unclear. With the new virtual reality technique, the images of a fetus are clearer and can be rotated 360 degrees.


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Underwater Hebrew Tablet Reveals Biblical-Era Ruler of Judea

A stone slab found off the coast of Israel has finally revealed the name of the ruler during one of the most iconic moments in Jewish history: the Bar Kokhba revolt. The slab dates to the second century A.D., a bloody time in Jewish history when a fiery leader named Simon bar Kokhba led a failed revolt against Roman rulers. The huge chunk of stone was found at an underwater site called Tel Dor, located about 18 miles (30 kilometers) south of the city of Haifa.


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Hat-Shaped Spider Named for Magical Object in 'Harry Potter'

A team of arachnologists who are also avid fans of the "Harry Potter" books recently paid tribute to the beloved fantasy novels and their author, J.K. Rowling, as only scientists could — by naming a spider species after one of the magical objects in the series. However, the scientists who discovered the spider noted that its body shape also bears a striking resemblance to the sentient, rhyming Sorting Hat at the Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry.


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Rudolph Is Shrinking: Climate Change Is Starving Santa's Reindeer

Rather, climate change is making it difficult for them — and their gestating fetuses — to survive extreme winters, new research shows. The findings are the culmination of a 16-year study on the reindeer living in Svalbard, a Norwegian archipelago located between Norway and the Arctic. In 1994, the adult reindeer in Svalbard weighed an average of 120 lbs. (55 kilograms), but in 2010, they weighed less than 108 lbs. (49 kg), on average — a 10- to 12-percent drop in weight, said lead study researcher Steve Albon, an emeritus population ecologist at the James Hutton Institute in Scotland.


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