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By stimulating one part of the brain with laser light, researchers at the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and the Ernest Gallo Clinic and Research Center at UC San Francisco (UCSF) have shown that they can wipe away addictive behavior in rats – or conversely turn non-addicted rats into compulsive cocaine seekers.
At the 2012 Astrobiology Science Conference, Astrobiology Magazine hosted a plenary session called "Expanding the Habitable Zone: The Hunt for Exoplanets Now and Into the Future."
Humans may not have landed on Mars just yet, but that isn’t stopping a Dutch company from devising a plan to send four people to the Red Planet within the next 10 years. The initiative, dubbed Mars One, aims to send a small group of people to Mars in 2022 and eventually establish a permanent colony on the planet.
Two studies of vacuums suggest that the speed of light in a vacuum might fluctuate, pointing the way to a quantum mechanical explanation for why the speed of light and other so-called constants are what they are.
The first results from a $2 billion instrument aboard the international space station have offered tentative support for the theory that exotic dark matter, invisible but abundant, permeates the galaxy.
The instrument, the Alpha Magnetic Spectrometer (AMS), has not seen dark matter directly — by definition, the stuff is invisible — and the results announced so far do not lend themselves to a slam-dunk conclusion.
ATLANTA – Humans' closest animal relatives, chimpanzees, have the ability to "think about thinking" – what is called "metacognition," according to new research by scientists at Georgia State University and the University at Buffalo.
Michael J. Beran and Bonnie M. Perdue of the Georgia State Language Research Center (LRC) and J. David Smith of the University at Buffalo conducted the research, published in the journal Psychological Science of the Association for Psychological Science.
Technology company Festo has created a mechanical dragonfly capable of mimicking natural flight, and which can be controlled by a smartphone.
Taking inspiration from the way real dragonflies can move their two pairs of wings independently the BionicOpter features four wings each capable of being adjusted individually for fine motor control.
CLIVE Palmer is a giant step closer to creating his own Jurassic Park after the eccentric billionaire put in an order for more than 100 mechanical dinosaurs.
The mining magnate, who is also building a replica Titanic, already has a tyrannosaurus rex called Jeff and an omeisaurus named Bones in his Palmer Coolum Resort on the Sunshine Coast, north of Brisbane.
The ancient Maya used a vivid, remarkably durable blue paint to cover their palace walls, codices, pottery and maybe even the bodies of human sacrifices who were thrown to their deaths down sacred wells. Now a group of chemists claim to have cracked the recipe of Maya Blue.
The thrush has given up on singing and hunger guides its ice-pick head to the few open patches where the tiniest of lives can be tweezed from stones and snow rinds. Little avalanches slump and rumble from the roofs as jackdaws stuff nesting twigs down chimneys. Icicles drip as the sun rises. Violet-blue snow is chased through with flashes of syrupy sunlight. It's still cold and there's more snow here than during winter proper – even with the clocks jumping a heartbeat into summertime. Where? It may be beautiful, but people have trouble coming to terms with an occupying weather that refuses to make terms with them. Settled white lawns are boot-deep. Heaps around cars and pathways are like archaeological excavations.
Omar Razzouki gazes intently at the wooden box, marveling at what might be the solution to the perennial water woes that he and other nomads like him across the Sahara desert face daily.
The American West was wild, a messy jumble of land grabbing. Some early movers and shakers were shredded to bits, while others were just buried, never to be seen again.
We are, of course, talking about plate tectonics.
Earlier research suggested the western edge of the North American continent was formed by the conveyor belt-like movement eastward of a single oceanic plate called the Farallon Plate. But an alternative explanation published today in Nature suggests a far more complicated mash-up created North America’s mountainous west, involving at least two additional plates.
What was the largest extinction event of the last 12,000 years? Believe it or not, it’s birds. Scientists now say almost a thousand species of birds—many of them the big, flightless variety—disappeared from the Pacific Islands during the Holocene, killed by early settlers before the Europeans ever arrived. And because many of these species could only be found on these islands, the loss of their endemic populations meant global extinction.
Perhaps the ancient Puebloans weren’t as into the maize craze as scientists once thought.
A new study from the University of Cincinnati led by Nikki Berkebile, a graduate student in anthropology in UC’s McMicken College of Arts & Sciences, explores the subsistence habits of Puebloans, also known as Anasazi, who lived on the southern rim of the Grand Canyon in the late 11th century. Ethnographic literature traditionally indicates these ancient American Indians were dependent on maize as a food source. Berkebile isn’t so sure about that, however.
One school of thought has it that inner-city trees and shrubs make convenient hiding places and covered escape routes for criminals. Another, supported by an increasing body of evidence, argues that urban foliage may actually reduce crime. Where previous studies have tended to focus on individual housing blocks or, at best, neighborhoods, new research out of Temple University is among the first to examine the issue at the city-scale. TU researchers analyzed the relationship between vegetation concentration and crime for the whole of Philadelphia.
BEIJING — Outdoor air pollution contributed to 1.2 million premature deaths in China in 2010, nearly 40 percent of the global total, according to a new summary of data from a scientific study on leading causes of death worldwide.
If rivers are a nation's lifeblood, the US should be on the sick list. More than half of the country's streams and rivers are in a "poor condition" for aquatic life, according to a survey by the US Environmental Protection Agency.
It's been a long, dark winter in Germany. In fact, there hasn't been this little sun since people started tracking such things back in the early 1950s. Easter is around the corner, and the streets of Berlin are still covered in ice and snow. But spring will come, and when the snow finally melts, it will reveal the glossy black sheen of photovoltaic solar panels glinting from the North Sea to the Bavarian Alps.
The largest fraction of carbon held in the soils of northern forests may derive from the living and the decomposing roots of trees and shrubs and the fungi that live on them.
Widely used pesticides have been found in new research to block a part of the brain that bees use for learning, rendering some of them unable to perform the essential task of associating scents with food. Bees exposed to two kinds of pesticide were slower to learn or completely forgot links between floral scents and nectar.
These effects could make it harder for bees to forage among flowers for food, thereby threatening their survival and reducing the pollination of crops and wild plants.
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