Sabtu, 26 Februari 2011

ScienceDaily Environment Headlines

for Saturday, February 26, 2011

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Bamiyan Buddhas once glowed in red, white and blue (February 25, 2011) -- The monumental Buddhas of Bamiyan once shone in glowing colors. Restorers have analyzed hundreds of fragments of the statues that were blow up by the Taliban. They have, for the first time, been able to reliably date the period in which they were sculpted, and have also studied the technically brilliant method of construction. A new process could stabilize the porous rock, paving the way for a reconstruction. ... > full story

Rare, unique seeds arrive at Svalbard Vault, as crises threaten world crop collections (February 25, 2011) -- The Svalbard Global Seed Vault celebrated its third anniversary Feb. 24 with the arrival of seeds for rare lima beans, blight-resistant cantaloupe, and progenitors of antioxidant-rich red tomatoes from Peru and the Galapagos Islands. The arrival of these collections, including many drought- and flood-resistant varieties, comes at a time when natural and human-made risks to agriculture have reinforced the critical need to secure all the world's food crop varieties. ... > full story

Newborn heart muscle can grow back by itself, study shows (February 25, 2011) -- In a promising science-fiction-meets-real-world juxtaposition, researchers have discovered that the mammalian newborn heart can heal itself completely. ... > full story

Low vitamin D levels linked to allergies in kids (February 25, 2011) -- A study of more than 3,000 children shows that low vitamin D levels are associated with increased likelihood that children will develop allergies, according to a new article. ... > full story

HIV makes protein that may help virus's resurgence (February 25, 2011) -- New research enhances the current knowledge of how human immunodeficiency virus type-1 (HIV-1), which causes AIDS, controls the cell cycle of cells that it infects. The new findings may shed light on how the virus reactivates after entering a dormant state, called latency. Better understanding of the biological events that revive HIV from latency may eventually lead to better treatments for people with HIV infection. ... > full story

Much of Mississippi River sediment comes from stream bank collapse, rather than field runoff (February 25, 2011) -- Much of the Mississippi River's sediment load doesn't come from field runoff, according to work by scientists. Instead, researchers have confirmed that stream bank collapse and failure can be chief contributors to high sediment levels in the silty streams and rivers that flow into the Mississippi. ... > full story

Obesity and diabetes are a downside of human evolution, research suggests (February 25, 2011) -- As if the recent prediction that half of Americans will have diabetes or pre-diabetes by the year 2020 isn't alarming, a new genetic discovery provides a disturbing explanation as to why: we took an evolutionary "wrong turn." In the report, scientists show that human evolution leading to the loss of function in a gene called "CMAH" may make humans more prone to obesity and diabetes than other mammals. ... > full story

Links between longer ragweed season and climate change confirmed (February 25, 2011) -- New studies have confirmed what many pollen-sensitive people already suspected: In some parts of North America, ragweed season now lasts longer and ends later. ... > full story

New long-acting local anesthetic derived from algae effectively blocks pain in surgical patients (February 25, 2011) -- Medical researchers bringing surgical patients closer to having a long-acting local anesthetic. In a randomized, double-blind trial, patients given neosaxitoxin, a new local anesthetic derived from algae, had significantly less postoperative pain and recovered about two days sooner than those given the commonly used local anesthetic bupivacaine. ... > full story

Global red fire ant invasions traced to southern US (February 25, 2011) -- Red imported fire ant invasions around the globe in recent years can now be traced to the southern US, where the nuisance insect gained a foothold in the 1930s, new research has found. ... > full story

Chemical compounds in trees can fight deadly staph infections in humans (February 25, 2011) -- A research team has found an antibiotic in the Eastern Red Cedar tree that is effective against methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus, a "superbug" that is resistant to most medications. ... > full story

Ocean currents cause microbes to filter light (February 25, 2011) -- Paul Matisse's glass-enclosed liquid sculptures contain an object whose movement through the liquid creates whorls that can be seen only because elongated particles trailing the object align with the direction of the current; light reflects off the particles, making the current visible to the viewer. Researchers have recently demonstrated that this same phenomenon is responsible for the swirling patterns scientists typically see when they agitate a flask containing microbes in water; many microbes are themselves elongated particles that make the whorls visible. ... > full story

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