Posted: July 21st, 2012 | Author: Buster Cookson | Filed under: Cankler Science News, Medicated | Tags: AIDS, AIDS Drugs, AIDS Research, HIV, International AIDS Society, Medical Insurance | No Comments »
A team of international scientists say the prospects for finding a cure for AIDS in the near future are realistic, after unveiling a roadmap to cure the disease in Washington overnight. Major investments in science have resulted in the worldwide availability of over 20 anti-HIV drugs. Despite these successes, these therapies have limitations. They do not eradicate HIV, requiring people to remain on expensive and potentially toxic drugs for life. The new roadmap to cure is intent on ending this suffering.
In what organisers are calling a first, scientists have come up with a coordinated plan to tackle AIDS since the disease was discovered 31 years ago. Over the past two years the International AIDS Society – IAS – has convened a group of international experts to develop a roadmap for research towards an HIV cure. Published online in an abridged form tomorrow, Friday July 20, in Nature Reviews Immunology, Towards an HIV Cure identifies seven important priority areas for basic, translational and clinical research and maps out a path for future research collaboration and funding opportunities.(
Approximately 34 million people around the world are HIV positive, and in 2010 more than 21,000 Australians were living with HIV infection :: Read the full article »»»»
Posted: July 13th, 2012 | Author: Buster Cookson | Filed under: Cankler Science News, Medicated | Tags: Allergy, Anaphylaxis, Asthma, Breast Feeding, Breastfeeding, Peanut Allergy in Infants | No Comments »
New research by the Australian National University has found children who are solely breastfed in the first six months of life are at greater risk of developing a nut allergy.
There has been a sharp rise in nut allergies in Australian children over the past 20 years, but until now the medical world has found it hard to explain the risk factors.
ANU researchers found it is not the breast milk itself that seems to be the culprit, but rather the traces of nuts contained in it. The link between the two was investigated using the ACT Kindergarten Health Check Questionnaire in a study conducted by the ANU Medical School and the ACT Health Directorate.
Of the 15,000 preschool children studied, 3.2 per cent had a peanut allergy while 3.9 per cent were allergic to other nuts :: Read the full article »»»»
Posted: June 13th, 2012 | Author: Buster Cookson | Filed under: Cankler Science News | Tags: Amniocentesis, Amniotic Fluid Test, DNA, DNA Sequencing, Embryonic DNA, Genome, Maternal Plasma, Pregnancy, pregnant | No Comments »
Researchers in the US have mapped the genome of an unborn fetus, the breakthrough marks a significant advance in prenatal and genetic medicine, but also one that raises profound ethical issues. As a result, researchers at the University of Washington say they will be able to screen a foetus that is only eight weeks old for thousands of genetic disorders with an accuracy of 98 per cent.
Currently, the common procedure for pregnant women who want to check their baby for genetic, chromosomal abnormalities is Amniotic Fluid Test – AFT – or Amniocentesis, it’s a risky procedure in which a small amount of amniotic fluid, which contains foetal tissue is sampled – via a very large needle – from the amnionic sac surrounding the fetus.
Researchers were able to map the genomes of two fetus’ via non-invasive maternal blood and paternal saliva samples taken from two pregnant women halfway into their second trimester at 18 weeks gestation. The samples contained enough information to accurately interpret the babies DNA :: Read the full article »»»»
Posted: May 20th, 2012 | Author: Buster Cookson | Filed under: Applied Science, Biomechanic, Chemically Engineered, Science of Green | Tags: artificial leaf, carbon neutral energy, mit, MITs Artificial Leaf, Photocatalytic water splitting, photosynthesis, solar power | No Comments »
Back in July 2011 we published an exciting little post on MIT’s work with artificial leaves - MITs Artificial Leaf - based on a silicon solar cell.
The leaf consists of a thin, flat, three-layered silicon solar cell with catalysts bonded to both faces of the silicon. Placed in water and exposed to sunlight, silicon absorbs photons of sunlight, generating electrons with enough energy to conduct through the silicon.
The process leaves behind positively charged electron vacancies called “holes” that can also move through the material. The holes migrate to a cobalt-containing catalyst painted on one face of the silicon cell, where they strip electrons from water molecules, breaking them into hydrogen ions (H+), and oxygen atoms. The catalyst then knits pairs of oxygens together to make O2. Meanwhile, the H+ ions migrate to another catalyst on the opposite face of the silicon cell, where they combine with conducting electrons to make molecules of H2. In principle, the H2 can then be stored and either burned or run through a fuel cell to generate electricity.
Professor Daniel Nocera’s work has finally borne fruit. Nocera’s team developed the catalyst three years ago, the first practical artificial leaf has now been developed, and this new technology may help to deliver efficient carbon neutral energy to the world’s poor and developing nations.
Building on their previous research, the researchers at MIT in Boston have created an artificial leaf that, unlike earlier devices is made from inexpensive materials, and employs low-cost engineering and manufacturing processes :: Read the full article »»»»
Posted: May 7th, 2012 | Author: Buster Cookson | Filed under: Cankler Science News | Tags: Picture of the Week | No Comments »
via Soichi Noguchi
Posted: January 7th, 2012 | Author: Buster Cookson | Filed under: Applied Science, Cankler, Geology | Tags: Applied Science, Athol Tutanekai, Cankler, Convergent Plate Boundaries, Earthquake, Florida International University, Hurricane, Landslide, Seismic Moment, Trigger, Typhoon, Wdowinski | No Comments »
Nature is a harsh mistress. The more we study the natural world the more we come to understand how the various natural system are inter-connected. Recently scientists from Florida International University have established a connection between large Typhoons and earthquakes. While earthquakes are a complex event with many causes this is one more piece of the puzzle that will help us understand the world we live in.
The most destructive earthquakes are the result of the Earth’s crust being made of a number of separate plates – tectonic plates – that just won’t stand still. As the plates are made of rock and earth they are rough causing friction as they grind together. This friction causes the plates to lock at the edges while the rest of the plate behind continue to move forward, building up pressure where the plates meet – convergent plate boundaries -. When this pressure is released earthquakes are the result. The amount of energy that is released during an earthquake is astronomical. The total energy released by Japans recent earthquake - total energy or seismic moment – equates to 600 million times the energy released by the Hiroshima atomic bomb. All of that energy had built in the crust and was released in just a few minutes of shaking.
“Very wet rain events are the trigger,” said Wdowinski, associate research professor of marine geology and geophysics at the UM Rosenstiel School of Marine and Atmospheric Science. “The heavy rain induces thousands of landslides and severe erosion, which removes ground material from the Earth’s surface, releasing the stress load and encouraging movement along faults.” Read the full article »»»»
Posted: January 6th, 2012 | Author: Buster Cookson | Filed under: Applied Science, Cankler Science News, Geology | Tags: Apollo Missions, Birger Rasmussen, Curtin University, Geochemistry, Geophysics, Moon Mineral, Moon Rock, Sea of Tranquility, Silicate Mineral, Tranquillityite | No Comments »
A mineral brought back to Earth by the first men on the Moon and long thought to be unique to the lunar surface has been found in Australian rocks more than 1 billion years old. In this month’s issue of Geology, Birger Rasmussen, a geologist at Curtin University in Australia, and his colleagues report that they’ve finally found tranquillityite on our planet. Named after Apollo 11′s 1969 landing site at the Sea of Tranquility, tranquillityite was one of three minerals first discovered in rocks from the Moon and the only one not to be found, in subsequent years, on Earth.
The West Australian mineral was dated at 1.07 billion years old, more ancient than rocks in the area had previously been thought to be, Rasmussen said tranquillityite would be useful in dating similar rocks in the future.”They were always part of Earth. They haven’t come from the Moon,” Rasmussen said
The discovery has important practical applications, with the mineral proving to be an excellent dating tool which had allowed scientists to pin down the rocks’ ages. ”We used this mineral… to date the dolerite which has previously been undated, so that helped us understand the geological history,” Rasmussen said. “It tells you that broadly overall you have similar chemistries and similar processes operating on the Moon as on Earth.” Read the full article »»»»