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  • News

    Mice robbed of darkness fatten up

    When it comes to weight management, the timing of dining is pivotal, a new study indicates. At least in rodents, food proved especially fattening when consumed at the wrong time of day.

    As nocturnal animals, mice normally play and forage at night, often in complete darkness. With even dim chronic illumination of their nighttime environment, however, the animals’ hormonal dinner bells...

    10/11/2010 - 15:02 Nutrition, Earth & Environment, Body & Brain
  • Science & the Public

    Nano-scale additives fight food pathogens

    CHICAGO. Nano products are all the rage, even in food science. Here, at the Institute of Food Technologists’ annual meeting, on July 18, scientists described dramatic success in fighting food-poisoning bacteria by doctoring foods or their packaging with microbe-killing nanoparticles – sometimes along with natural anti-bacterial agents.

    The nano of interest: Zinc oxide. When particles...

    07/20/2010 - 00:39 Technology, Humans & Society, Nutrition, Biomedicine
  • Feature

    Nurturing Our Microbes

    Each of us is a metropolis. Bustling about in everyone's body are tens of trillions of microbes. Some are descended from starter populations provided by mom during birth. Additional bacteria, yeasts, and other life forms hitchhike in with foods. By age 3, everyone's gut hosts a fairly stable, yet diverse, ecosystem.

    Most of the tiny stowaways hide out in the...

    02/26/2008 - 12:45 Biomedicine
  • Food for Thought

    It's Spud Time

    As 2007 winds down, thoughts naturally turn towards what might lie ahead. Meals rich in high-carb tubers, perhaps? That's what the United Nations would like everyone to contemplate throughout 2008, which it is designating the International Year of the Potato.

    Farmers now harvest more than 300 million tons of potatoes (Solanum tuberosum) worldwide. That makes it the fourth biggest food...

    12/18/2007 - 18:43 Nutrition
  • News

    Salmonella seeks sweets

    Salmonella enterica, a major food-poisoning germ, can enter the tissues of fresh lettuce where no amount of surface washing will evict it. The scientists who reported that finding earlier this year now think that they've gotten to the root of the issue.

    To model salmonella soil contamination from livestock wastes, the researchers seeded sterile manure with one of three toxic strains of...

    11/07/2007 - 10:28 Nutrition
  • Food for Thought

    Cleaning Up after Livestock

    As any pet owner knows, the more food that goes into an animal's mouth, the more wastes that eventually spew out the other end. The bigger the animal, the bigger its appetite. So imagine the volumes of manure—often tainted with germs—that farmers must manage for even a small feedlot with perhaps 3,500 head of cattle.

    Ordinarily, beef producers house their animals in pens—...

    10/31/2007 - 18:08 Agriculture
  • 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

    Cholesterol boosts diesel toxicity

    Cholesterol poses a cardiovascular risk once it becomes transformed into an inflammatory building block of artery-clogging plaque. That process, which happens all the time, is triggered by oxidation. A new study finds that breathing nanoscale particles spewed by diesel-fuel combustion—also a common occurrence—may turn on genes that multiply cholesterol's inflammatory and atherosclerotic risks...

    08/08/2007 - 09:53 Earth & Environment
  • Feature

    Traces of Trouble

    In 1978, during a routine ecological assessment of several British waterways, wildlife biologists discovered an unusually high number of abnormal fish living downstream of two sewage-treatment plants. The fish were considered intersexual because their gonads contained both ovarian and testicular tissue. Nearly 2 decades later, after the development of more-sensitive analytical techniques,...

    03/05/2007 - 10:02 Earth & Environment
  • Food for Thought

    Birds Don't Have to Be So Hot

    Last week, Iowa State University issued a news release about how long it takes to cook a turkey if you place it into the oven frozen. The answer: 5.5 hours for a 13- to 15-pound bird cooked in a 325°F oven.

    However, what really caught my attention was something a little lower in the release—that the U.S. Department of Agriculture had issued a statement earlier this year...

    11/20/2006 - 14:15 Nutrition