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May 14 2015

Sperm Grown in a Lab for the First Time


In a breakthrough that could lead to a treatment for thousands of infertile men, scientists have grown human sperm cells in a laboratory for the first time.

The Kallistem laboratory, a private research facility based in Lyon, France, has turned spermatogonia into mature sperm in test tubes. This is a feat that scientists have been trying to tackle for the past 15 years.

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May 14 2015

Babies prefer to hear Ďbaby talkí from other babies


Before they start to babble themselves, babies would rather listen to other babies ďtalkĒ than listen to adults.

The findings are important, researchers say, because an attraction to infant speech sounds may help to kick start and support the crucial processes involved in learning how to talk.

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May 14 2015

Childrenís cells live on in mothers


Motherís Day is on my mind, and Iíve been thinking about the ways Iím connected to my mom and my two little daughters. Every so often I see flickers of my mom in my girls ó they share the lines around their smiles and a mutual adoration of wildflowers. Of course, Iím biased. I know that Iím seeing what Iím looking for. But biologically speaking, mothers and their children are connected in a way that may surprise you.


Related: Peak Time for Births: Start of the Workday

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May 14 2015

What Might Make Young People Practice Safe Sex? Lottery Tickets!


Let's say you're a young person, around 30 years old. And you're the kind of person who likes to take risks. So maybe you're taking risks in your sexual relationships. You're not practicing safe sex.

What would make you change your behavior?

That's a question that's long been pondered by public health officials. And now new research from a World Bank-funded team in Lesotho, a tiny country in southern Africa, has produced a surprising answer.

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May 14 2015

Thin Air Might Increase Depression in Mountain States


The eight intermountain states of the American West, sometimes called the Suicide Belt, have high elevations and the associated thin air. Now, researchers say the low oxygen in these areas is linked with signs of depression, and could potentially even contribute to suicides in some regions.

In 2012, Colorado, Wyoming, Utah, Montana, Idaho, Nevada, Arizona and New Mexico all had suicide rates exceeding 18 per 100,000 people, while the national rate was 12.5 per 100,000 people, according to the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention.

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May 14 2015

Buddha Belly: Meditation May Ease Gut Ailments


If you thought meditation was only good for your emotional well-being, think again. A new study shows that meditation may actually alleviate the symptoms of two gut disorders by altering certain genetic signals.

The study looked at people who had either irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) or irritable bowel disease (IBD). It found that doing yoga and meditating regularly for two months eased the symptoms associated with the two gut disorders, the researchers said.

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May 14 2015

Astrology and celebrity: Seasons really do influence personality


People's personalities tend to vary somewhat depending on the season in which they are born, and astrological signs may have developed as a useful system for remembering these patterns, according to an analysis by UConn researcher Mark Hamilton. Such seasonal effects may not be clear in individuals, but can be discerned through averaging personality traits across large cohorts born at the same time of year.

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May 13 2015

Immune system genes may change with the season


Our mood, metabolism and sex lives are dependent on the seasons, and now it seems, so is our immune system.

In a study published today, British and German researchers find almost a quarter of human genes are more or less active depending on the season.

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May 13 2015

Red is the colour, not blue say scientists


British "redcoats" may have been helped to victory in the Battle of Waterloo by the colour of their uniforms, new research suggests.

Men wearing red are seen as more aggressive, angry and dominant than those dressed in blue or grey, a study has shown.


Alt: Hey dude, are you angry? Or is it just your red shirt?

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May 13 2015

Was Ancient Mars Warm? Planet's History Takes Watery New Twist


A new six-year analysis of water on Mars suggests that the Red Planet has lost the equivalent of an ocean's worth of water over the past four billion years. However, the question of whether Mars was ever warm enough to have hosted such an ocean has sparked debate.

The research, conducted using the European Southern Observatory's Very Large Telescope (VLT) in Chile, and supported by the WM Keck Observatory and NASA's Infrared Telescope Facility, both in Hawaii, has revealed how much water has escaped from Mars' atmosphere throughout its history.

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May 13 2015

Ocean on Saturn Moon Enceladus May Have Potential Energy Source to Support Life


Saturn's icy moon Enceladus is looking better and better as a potential abode for alien life.

Chemical reactions that free up energy that could potentially support a biosphere have occurred ó and perhaps still are occurring ó deep within Enceladus' salty subsurface ocean, a new study suggests.

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May 13 2015

ĎBlack Holeí traces 100 years of a transformative idea


Almost a century before Einstein was born, the English polymath John Michell speculated that a star of immense mass could exert enough gravitational force to imprison light. Michellís insight marked the origin of an idea that was demonstrated in reality only in the 20th century, in the astrophysical offspring of Einsteinís general relativity known as the black hole.

In Black Hole, Marcia Bartusiak, an acclaimed science writer, tells the story of black holes as they emerged from studies of Einsteinís equations, focusing primarily on the period from the 1950s to the 1970s.

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May 13 2015

A Closer Look At Ceres' Mysterious Bright Spots Reveals We Were Wrong


With our ever closer looks at Ceresí surface, weíve been hoping to get close enough to finally see a bit more about where those two mystery light splotches were coming from. Well, now we have. And, it turns out that we were wrong about one very basic fact: There were not two of them.

There were actually lots and lots.


Related: Best view yet of Ceres' spots

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May 13 2015

What shape is the universe?


The universe. It's the only home we've ever known. Thanks to its intrinsic physical laws, the known constants of nature, and the heavy-metal-spewing fireballs known as supernovae we are little tiny beings held fast to a spinning ball of rock in a distant corner of space and time.

Doesn't it seem a little rude not to know much about the universe itself? For instance, if we could look at it from outside, what would we see? A vast blackness? A sea of bubbles? Snow globe? Rat maze? A marble in the hands of a larger-dimensional aliens or some other prog rock album cover?.

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May 13 2015

More Evidence that the Milky Way has Four Spiral Arms


Astronomers have been arguing over just how many spiral arms our Galaxy exhibits. Is the Milky Way a four or two-armed spiral galaxy? Astronomers had often assumed the Milky Way was potentially a four-armed spiral galaxy, but comparatively recent observations from NASAís Spitzer telescope implied the Galaxy had two spiral arms. In 2013, astronomers mapped star forming regions and argued they had found the two missing arms, bringing the total number of arms back to four.

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May 13 2015

Astrophysicists prepare weather forecasts for planets beyond our solar system


"Cloudy for the morning, turning to clear with scorching heat in the afternoon."

While this might describe a typical late-summer day in many places on Earth, it may also apply to planets outside our solar system, according to a new study by an international team of astrophysicists from the University of Toronto, York University and Queen's University Belfast.

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May 13 2015

Ether Compounds Could Work like DNA On Oily Worlds


In the search for life beyond Earth, scientists have justifiably focused on water because all biology as we know it requires this fluid. A wild card, however, is whether alternative liquids can also suffice as life-enablers. For example, Saturnís frigid moon Titan is awash in inky seas of the hydrocarbon methane.

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