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Microbiome of the upper troposphere: Species composition and prevalence, effects of tropical storms, and atmospheric implications. Author Affiliations Edited by W.

Microbiome of the upper troposphere: Species composition and prevalence, effects of tropical storms, and atmospheric implications

Ford Doolittle, Dalhousie University, Halifax, NS, Canada, and approved December 19, 2012 (received for review July 15, 2012) Abstract The composition and prevalence of microorganisms in the middle-to-upper troposphere (8–15 km altitude) and their role in aerosol-cloud-precipitation interactions represent important, unresolved questions for biological and atmospheric science. In particular, airborne microorganisms above the oceans remain essentially uncharacterized, as most work to date is restricted to samples taken near the Earth’s surface.

Footnotes Author contributions: A.N. and K.T.K. designed research; N.D. How Graphology Fools People. Barry L.

How Graphology Fools People

Beyerstein, Ph.D. To the casual observer, handwriting analysis enjoys greater plausibility than other occult or pseudoscientific ways of reading personality. Take astrology or palmistry, for instance. It is hard for a thinking person today to imagine how the stars or creases on the palm could affect human behavior. But it seems at least possible that, inasmuch as writing is a form of expressive behavior, it might reveal something about ourselves.

Graphologists have largely convinced an uninformed public that their craft is a scientifically respectable way of assessing personality, aptitudes, and predilections. This article deals with each of these areas. What is Graphology? Graphology is the allegedly scientific practice of determining people's psychological, social, occupational, and medical attributes from the configuration of their letters, lines, and paragraphs on a page. Such backbiting among graphological factions is frequent. The History of Graphology The Consequences. Increasing Maternal Age Is Associated with Taller Stature and Reduced Abdominal Fat in Their Children. Background Maternal age at childbirth continues to increase worldwide.

Increasing Maternal Age Is Associated with Taller Stature and Reduced Abdominal Fat in Their Children

We aimed to assess whether increasing maternal age is associated with changes in childhood height, body composition, and metabolism. Methods 277 healthy pre-pubertal children, born 37–41 weeks gestation were studied. Assessments included: height and weight corrected for parental measurements, DEXA-derived body composition, fasting lipids, glucose, insulin, and hormonal profiles. Results Our cohort consisted of 126 girls and 151 boys, aged 7.4±2.2 years (range 3–10); maternal age at childbirth was 33.3±4.7 years (range 19–44). Conclusions Increasing maternal age at childbirth is associated with a more favourable phenotype (taller stature and reduced abdominal fat) in their children, as well as improved insulin sensitivity in girls. Figures Citation: Savage T, Derraik JGB, Miles HL, Mouat F, Hofman PL, et al. (2013) Increasing Maternal Age Is Associated with Taller Stature and Reduced Abdominal Fat in Their Children.

NASA Starts Work on Real Life Star Trek Warp Drive. Dynamic Periodic Table. NOAA’s Aquarius Reef Base. Astronaut Explains Why We Should Return to the Moon. Want to stay on top of all the space news?

Astronaut Explains Why We Should Return to the Moon

Follow @universetoday on Twitter Astronaut Ronald J. Garan. Photo Credit: NASA The debate on why humans should or should not return to the Moon has been ongoing for years. On May 10th, 1869, a golden spike joined two railways at Promontory Point, Utah, and the first transcontinental railroad was completed. There is no doubt that the railroad changed the world. Artist impression of humans on the Moon. Since the Vision for Space Exploration was announced in 2004, there has been an on-going debate about the importance of taking the next step in space exploration, a return to the moon. We should not return to the moon for any one of these reasons, but for all of them and more. Ron Garan ready for an EVA in June 2008. Exploration: Great nations accomplish extraordinary endeavors that help to maintain their leadership in the world.

Energy: Today, about 1.6 billion people on the Earth don’t have access to electricity. Thin Film Interference - The Art of Physics (with POV Ray) Is there something genetically or physiologically that makes someone a "morning person" vs not? : askscience. Beaming into the Rat World: Enabling Real-Time Interaction between Rat and Human Each at Their Own Scale. Immersive virtual reality (IVR) typically generates the illusion in participants that they are in the displayed virtual scene where they can experience and interact in events as if they were really happening.

Beaming into the Rat World: Enabling Real-Time Interaction between Rat and Human Each at Their Own Scale

Teleoperator (TO) systems place people at a remote physical destination embodied as a robotic device, and where typically participants have the sensation of being at the destination, with the ability to interact with entities there. In this paper, we show how to combine IVR and TO to allow a new class of application. The participant in the IVR is represented in the destination by a physical robot (TO) and simultaneously the remote place and entities within it are represented to the participant in the IVR.

Hence, the IVR participant has a normal virtual reality experience, but where his or her actions and behaviour control the remote robot and can therefore have physical consequences. Figures Received: June 15, 2012; Accepted: September 24, 2012; Published: October 31, 2012. What causes the bend in a banana? Why don't they grow straight? : askscience. When someone grows up in a cold weather climate and can "take the cold" is there something physiologically different about their metabolism or is it more mental? : askscience.

Antioxidants: Beyond the Hype - What Should I Eat? Table of Contents Introduction The body’s trillion or so cells face formidable threats, from lack of food to infection with a virus.

Antioxidants: Beyond the Hype - What Should I Eat?

Another constant threat comes from nasty chemicals called free radicals. They are capable of damaging cells and genetic material. The body generates free radicals as the inevitable byproducts of turning food into energy. Free radicals come in many shapes, sizes, and chemical configurations. We aren’t defenseless against free radicals. There are hundreds, probably thousands, of different substances that can act as antioxidants.

But using the term “antioxidant” to refer to substances is misleading. Health Benefits of Antioxidants: What’s the Buzz? Antioxidants came to public attention in the 1990s, when scientists began to understand that free radical damage was involved in the early stages of artery-clogging atherosclerosis and may contribute to cancer, vision loss, and a host of other chronic conditions. Heart Disease and Antioxidants Cancer and Antioxidants. Laser Pointer. Quantifying the Clinical Significance of Cannabis Withdrawal. Background and Aims Questions over the clinical significance of cannabis withdrawal have hindered its inclusion as a discrete cannabis induced psychiatric condition in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM IV).

Quantifying the Clinical Significance of Cannabis Withdrawal

This study aims to quantify functional impairment to normal daily activities from cannabis withdrawal, and looks at the factors predicting functional impairment. In addition the study tests the influence of functional impairment from cannabis withdrawal on cannabis use during and after an abstinence attempt. Methods and Results A volunteer sample of 49 non-treatment seeking cannabis users who met DSM-IV criteria for dependence provided daily withdrawal-related functional impairment scores during a one-week baseline phase and two weeks of monitored abstinence from cannabis with a one month follow up. Conclusions Figures Citation: Allsop DJ, Copeland J, Norberg MM, Fu S, Molnar A, et al. (2012) Quantifying the Clinical Significance of Cannabis Withdrawal.

Parental divorce linked to stroke in males. Men with divorced parents are significantly more likely to suffer a stroke than men from intact families, shows a new study from the University of Toronto.

Parental divorce linked to stroke in males

The study, to be published this month in the International Journal of Stroke, shows that adult men who had experienced parental divorce before they turned 18 are three times more likely to suffer a stroke than men whose parents did not divorce. Women from divorced families did not have a higher risk of stroke than women from intact families. "The strong association we found for males between parental divorce and stroke is extremely concerning," says lead author Esme Fuller-Thomson, Sandra Rotman Chair at University of Toronto's Factor-Inwentash Faculty of Social Work and Department of Family and Community Medicine. "It is particularly perplexing in light of the fact we excluded from our study individuals who had been exposed to any form of family violence or parental addictions. Pressure in Mount Fuji is now higher than last eruption, warn experts. The pressure in Mount Fuji's magma chamber is now higher than it was in 1707, the last time the nearly 4,000-metre-high Japanese volcano erupted, causing volcanologists to speculate that a disaster is imminent.

Pressure in Mount Fuji is now higher than last eruption, warn experts

The new readings, taken by the National Research Institute for Earth Science and Disaster Prevention, reveal that the pressure is at 1.6 megapascals, nearly 16 times the 0.1 megapascals it takes to trigger an eruption. This, lead volcanologist on the case Eisuke Fujita told Kyodo News, is "not a small figure". Don't miss: Geologists find fault system that could be first signs of future supercontinent Researchers have speculated for some time that the volcano, located on Honshu Island 100km southwest of Tokyo, is overdue an eruption.

In 2000 and 2001 a series of low-frequency earthquakes were recorded beneath the volcano, leading to widespread predictions of an imminent blow. A 2004 government report originally estimated that an eruption would cost the country £19.6 billion. If energy can't be created or destroyed how much energy is there in the universe? : askscience. LG produces the first flexible cable-type lithium-ion battery. LG Chem, a member of the LG conglomerate/chaebol and one of the largest chemical companies in the world, has devised a cable-type lithium-ion battery that’s just a few millimeters in diameter, and is flexible enough to be tied in knots, worn as a bracelet, or woven into textiles.

LG produces the first flexible cable-type lithium-ion battery

The underlying chemistry of the cable-type battery is the same as the lithium-ion battery in your smartphone or laptop — there’s an anode, a lithium cobalt oxide (LCO) cathode, an electrolyte — but instead of being laminated together in layers, they’re twisted into a hollow, flexible, spring-like helix. LG Chem’s battery starts with thin strands of copper wire, which are coated with a nickel-tin (Ni-Sn) alloy to create the anode. These strands are twisted into a yarn, and then wrapped tightly around a 1.5mm-diameter rod. The rod is removed, leaving a strong spring. If you removed batteries from the equation, new form factors would explode onto the market.

Baldness cure could be on shelves in two years. Sacrificing sleep to study can lead to academic problems. Regardless of how much a high school student generally studies each day, if that student sacrifices sleep in order to study more than usual, he or she is more likely to have academic problems the following day. Because students tend to increasingly sacrifice sleep time for studying in the latter years of high school, this negative dynamic becomes more and more prevalent over time.

Those are the findings of a new longitudinal study that focused on daily and yearly variations of students who sacrifice sleep to study. The research was conducted at the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) and appears in the journal Child Development. "Sacrificing sleep for extra study time is counterproductive," says Andrew J. Fuligni, professor of psychiatry and biobehavioral sciences and a senior scientist at the Jane and Terry Semel Institute of Neuroscience and Human Behavior at UCLA, who worked on the study.

Source : Society for Research in Child Development. Bonobo genius makes stone tools like early humans did - life - 21 August 2012. Video: Watch this bonobo go to all ends to get food Kanzi the bonobo continues to impress. Not content with learning sign language or making up "words" for things like banana or juice, he now seems capable of making stone tools on a par with the efforts of early humans. Eviatar Nevo of the University of Haifa in Israel and his colleagues sealed food inside a log to mimic marrow locked inside long bones, and watched Kanzi, a 30-year-old male bonobo chimp, try to extract it. While a companion bonobo attempted the problem a handful of times, and succeeded only by smashing the log on the ground, Kanzi took a longer and arguably more sophisticated approach.

Both had been taught to knap flint flakes in the 1990s, holding a stone core in one hand and using another as a hammer. Perhaps most remarkable about the tools Kanzi created is their resemblance to early hominid tools. Do Kanzi's skills translate to all bonobos? More From New Scientist Promoted Stories Recommended by. Black belts' white matter shows how a powerful punch comes from the brain. Brain scans have revealed distinctive features in the brain structure of karate experts, which could be linked to their ability to punch powerfully from close range. Researchers from Imperial College London and UCL (University College London) found that differences in the structure of white matter – the connections between brain regions – were correlated with how black belts and novices performed in a test of punching ability.

Karate experts are able to generate extremely powerful forces with their punches, but how they do this is not fully understood. Previous studies have found that the force generated in a karate punch is not determined by muscular strength, suggesting that factors related to the control of muscle movement by the brain might be important. The researchers tested how powerfully the subjects could punch, but to make useful comparisons with the punching of novices they restricted the task to punching from short range – a distance of 5 centimetres.

Harvard cracks DNA storage, crams 700 terabytes of data into a single gram. A bioengineer and geneticist at Harvard’s Wyss Institute have successfully stored 5.5 petabits of data — around 700 terabytes — in a single gram of DNA, smashing the previous DNA data density record by a thousand times. The work, carried out by George Church and Sri Kosuri, basically treats DNA as just another digital storage device. Instead of binary data being encoded as magnetic regions on a hard drive platter, strands of DNA that store 96 bits are synthesized, with each of the bases (TGAC) representing a binary value (T and G = 1, A and C = 0). To read the data stored in DNA, you simply sequence it — just as if you were sequencing the human genome — and convert each of the TGAC bases back into binary.

To aid with sequencing, each strand of DNA has a 19-bit address block at the start (the red bits in the image below) — so a whole vat of DNA can be sequenced out of order, and then sorted into usable data using the addresses. Future - Science & Environment - Fusion: The quest to recreate the Sun’s power on Earth. Gaia Vince watches the construction of the world’s biggest fusion energy reactor and wonders whether this ambitious and expensive project will actually work. Cadarache: In the dusty highlands of Provence in southern France, workers have excavated a vast rectangular pit 17 metres (56 feet) down into the unforgiving rocks. From my raised vantage point, I can see bright yellow mechanical diggers and trucks buzzing around the edge of the pit, looking toy-like in the huge construction site.

Above us, the fireball Sun dries the air at an unrelenting 37C. These are embryonic stages to what is perhaps humankind's most ambitious scientific and engineering project: to replicate the Sun here on Earth. When construction is complete, the pit will host a 73-metre-high machine (240 feet) that will attempt to create boundless energy by smashing hydrogen nuclei together, in much the same way as stars like our Sun do. The need for a new energy source has never been more pressing. Heated doughnuts Power up. Higgs Papers Out. Solar System Simulator. 400000 Black Balls Save Los Angeles Reservoir. Giant living power cables let bacteria respire - tech - 29 June 2012. How we die (in one chart) This is your brain on no self-control. Neuroscience: The mind reader. Leading a transformation in research communication. Journals that converted from TA to OA. BBC Nature - 'Brinicle' ice finger of death filmed in Antarctic.

Was Genghis Khan history's greenest conqueror? Psychology - Does our brain make ourselves look five times more beautiful than we really are? - Skeptics. Mad science? Immortal Avatar: Russian project seeks to create robot with human brain. How to Read Body Language to Reveal the Underlying Truth in Almost Any Situation. Through the Wormhole: Humans vs Aliens. Scientists turn skin cells into beating heart muscle.

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6 Factors That Secretly Influence Who You Have Sex With. Top 10 Tricks that Give You Power Over Your Body. Panasonic Photosynthesis System converts carbon dioxide to organic material with plant-like efficiency. Tiny reader makes fast, cheap DNA sequencing feasible. And more from innovative drug company partnerships. Intense light prevents, treats heart attacks. Bionic contact lens 'to project emails before eyes' Making memories last. Depression could be evolutionary byproduct of immune system.