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Your search has returned 118 articles:
  • Feature

    Back from the Dead?

    In December 1938, Marjorie Courtney-Latimer, curator of a natural history museum in East London, South Africa, went to the docks to look for interesting specimens among the day's catch. What she found one day she later described as "the most beautiful fish I had ever seen ... a pale mauve blue with iridescent silver markings." The discovery sent scientists into a frenzy.

    ...

    11/13/2007 - 11:15 Paleontology
  • Food for Thought

    Troubling Meaty 'Estrogen'

    Women take note. Researchers find that a chemical that forms in overcooked meat, especially charred portions, is a potent mimic of estrogen, the primary female sex hormone. That's anything but appetizing, since studies have linked a higher lifetime cumulative exposure to estrogen in women with an elevated risk of breast cancer.

    Indeed, the new finding offers a "biologically...

    10/17/2007 - 01:38 Nutrition
  • News

    Tea compound aids dying brain cells

    From Washington, D.C., at the Fourth International Scientific Symposium on Tea and Human Health

    A constituent of green tea can revive moribund brain cells, Israeli researchers report. The team experimented with animal neurons that had been chemically poisoned to model the death of dopamine-producing cells in Parkinson's disease.

    In a test-tube study, low doses of epigallocatechin...

    09/26/2007 - 12:04 Biomedicine
  • News

    Role Change: Mast cells show an anti-inflammatory side

    As anyone who has reacted to poison ivy can attest, the plant can induce maddeningly itchy skin. Researchers have now found that a cell once thought to be one of the chief perpetrators of this immune overreaction may actually keep the reaction from getting out of hand.

    Mast cells make proteins that contribute to the inflammation that characterizes allergic reactions. The cells...

    09/05/2007 - 09:17 Other
  • Food for Thought

    Sour Genes, Yes—Salty Genes, No

    Some people abhor broccoli, complaining about its intensely bitter taste. Others (myself included) find broccoli's flavor interesting and pleasing—decidedly, not bitter. What leads to our differing culinary opinions is the possession of, or lack of, (in my case, evidently) genes conferring a super sensitivity to bitter taste. Science has recognized such genetic differences for at least a...

    07/18/2007 - 09:52 Science & Society
  • News

    Age and gender affect soot's toxic impact

    From second to second, blood vessels must alternately constrict and dilate to regulate blood flow. That ability can diminish markedly in rodent vessels exposed to an oily constituent of diesel soot, researchers report.

    The team took arteries from rats' thighs and exposed them to the soot chemical phenanthraquinone.

    Vessels came from female rats that were 6, 14, and 24 months old—...

    06/12/2007 - 13:23 Earth & Environment
  • News

    Gene dispensers

    From Chicago, at the American Chemical Society Meeting

    Researchers have developed a new means for transferring genes to treat diseases. The gene therapy method relies on a nanoscale architecture with many alternating layers of polyester and DNA. Once this material is inside the body, water degrades the polyester layer by layer, for a slow, controlled release of genetic material to...

    04/10/2007 - 15:16 Chemistry
  • News

    Pollution Fallout: Are unattractive males Great-gram's fault?

    A new study of mate preferences in rodents raises the prospect that pollutant exposures can have behavioral repercussions that persist generation after generation. In the experiment, female rats shunned males whose grandfathers had been exposed in the womb to a fungicide used on fruit crops.

    Though brief, the vinclozolin exposures occurred when the fetal males' reproductive organs were...

    03/28/2007 - 12:49 Earth & Environment
  • News

    Waistline Worry: Common chemicals might boost obesity

    A family of chemicals implicated in testosterone declines may also be contributing to recent spikes in obesity and diabetes, according to a new study.

    Phthalates show up in a wide range of manufactured items, from cosmetics to vinyl flooring to medical devices and drug coatings. With people's extensive exposure to phthalates, the chemicals' breakdown products, or metabolites, appear in...

    03/21/2007 - 08:07 Chemistry
  • Feature

    Mysterious Migrations

    It was the most momentous immigration ever, a population realignment that marked a startling departure for our species, Homo sapiens. After emerging in eastern Africa close to 200,000 years ago, anatomically modern people stayed on one continent for roughly 140,000 years before spreading out in force around the world. Then, from 40,000 to 35,000 years ago, our forerunners advanced into areas...

    03/20/2007 - 13:26 Anthropology