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  News From the National Science Foundation
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Showing releases 476-500 out of 749.

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Public Release: 6-Jan-2014
Discovery spotlights key role of mystery RNA modification in cells
Researchers had known for several decades that a certain chemical modification exists on messenger ribonucleic acid, which is essential to the flow of genetic information. But only recently did experiments at the University of Chicago show that one major function of this modification governs the longevity and decay of RNA, a process critical to the development of healthy cells.
National Institutes of Health, National Science Foundation

Contact: Steve Koppes
University of Chicago

Public Release: 6-Jan-2014
Review of Scientific Instruments
RAMBO a small but powerful magnet
Rice pioneers a tabletop magnetic pulse generator that allows researchers to collect real-time, high-resolution data in a system that couples high magnetic fields and low temperature with direct optical access to the magnet's core.
National Science Foundation, US Department of Energy, Robert A. Welch Foundation

Contact: Jeff Falk
Rice University

Public Release: 6-Jan-2014
Environmental Science and Technology
Suburban sprawl cancels carbon footprint savings of dense urban cores
According to a new study by UC Berkeley researchers, population-dense cities contribute less greenhouse gas emissions per person than other areas of the country, but these cities' extensive suburbs essentially wipe out the climate benefits. Dominated by emissions from cars, trucks and other forms of transportation, suburbs account for about 50 percent of all household emissions -- largely carbon dioxide -- in the United States.
National Science Foundation, California Air Resources Board

Contact: Robert Sanders
University of California - Berkeley

Public Release: 6-Jan-2014
Environmental Science & Technology
New compounds discovered that are hundreds of times more mutagenic
Researchers have discovered novel compounds produced by certain types of chemical reactions -- such as those found in vehicle exhaust or grilling meat -- that are hundreds of times more mutagenic than their parent compounds which are known carcinogens. These compounds were not previously known to exist.
National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences, National Science Foundation

Contact: Staci Simonich
Oregon State University

Public Release: 6-Jan-2014
223rd AAS Annual Meeting
Astrophysical Journal
Newfound planet is Earth-mass but gassy
An international team of astronomers has discovered the first Earth-mass planet that transits, or crosses in front of, its host star. KOI-314c is the lightest planet to have both its mass and physical size measured. Surprisingly, although the planet weighs the same as Earth, it is 60 percent larger in diameter, meaning that it must have a very thick, gaseous atmosphere.
NASA, National Science Foundation

Contact: Christine Pulliam
Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics

Public Release: 5-Jan-2014
223rd AAS Annual Meeting
Pulsar in stellar triple system makes unique gravitational laboratory
The discovery of a millisecond pulsar -- a superdense neutron star -- in a triple system with two white dwarfs gives astronomers the most precise tool yet for studying the gravitational three-body problem. In addition, the nature of the stars and their interactions may give an unprecedented clue that points toward a new theory of gravity compatible, unlike general relativity, with quantum theory.
National Science Foundation

Contact: Dave Finley
National Radio Astronomy Observatory

Public Release: 5-Jan-2014
Yeast's lifestyle couples mating with meiosis
Mating and meiosis -- the specialized cell division that reduces the number of chromosomes in a cell -- are related, but in most yeasts they are regulated separately. Not so in Candida lusitaniae, where the two programs work in unison, according to a new study in Nature. Comparison with other species suggests that this fusion may support C. lusitaniae's "haploid lifestyle" of maintaining only one set of chromosomes in each cell.
National Science Foundation, National Institutes of Health, Burroughs Wellcome

Contact: David Orenstein
Brown University

Public Release: 3-Jan-2014
Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution
Reconstructing the New World monkey family tree
A Duke scientist has reconstructed the most comprehensive family tree to date of the monkeys that arrived in South America 37 or more million years ago and their subsequent evolution. The research uncovered several patterns, suggesting, among other things, that sea level rise and the arrival of humans likely caused the extinction of monkeys native to the Caribbean islands, and that monkeys once lived in the extreme southern reaches of South America.
National Science Foundation, National Geographic, Leakey Foundation

Contact: Erin Weeks
Duke University

Public Release: 3-Jan-2014
Supercomputers join search for 'cheapium'
Researchers use brute force supercomputing to identify dozens of platinum-group alloys that were previously unknown to science but could prove beneficial in a wide range of applications.
US Department of Defense-Office of Naval Research, National Science Foundation

Contact: Ken Kingery
Duke University

Public Release: 2-Jan-2014
UT Arlington research may unlock enzyme's role in disease
National Science Foundation-funded research on enzymes that regulate human biology has uncovered characteristics that could be used to identify predisposition to conditions such as heart disease, diabetic ulcers and some types of cancer. The study was published in December by the American Chemical Society journal Biochemistry.
National Science Foundation

Contact: Traci Peterson
University of Texas at Arlington

Public Release: 2-Jan-2014
Local factors cause dramatic spikes in coastal ocean acidity
Seawater samples collected from the marine estuary Beaufort Inlet, N.C., weekly for a year and on a daily and hourly basis for shorter periods were used to track changes in pH and dissolved inorganic carbon. Short-term variability in acidity over one year exceeds 100-year global predictions for the ocean as a whole and may already be exerting added pressure on some of the estuary's organisms, particularly shelled organisms.
National Science Foundation

Contact: Tim Lucas
Duke University

Public Release: 2-Jan-2014
Genetically identical bacteria can behave in radically different ways
When a bacterial cell divides into two daughter cells there can be an uneven distribution of certain survival mechanisms. The resulting cells can behave differently from each other, depending on which parts they received in the split. This is another way that cells within a population can diversify and enhance the odds that some members of a population of bacteria can avoid threats, such as antibiotics.
NIH/National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, National Institutes of Health, National Science Foundation

Contact: Leila Gray
University of Washington

Public Release: 2-Jan-2014
Montana State University research on algal biofuels keys larger study
Montana State University research into the production of algae high in oil content is a cornerstone of a larger feasibility study of how the organisms first discovered in Yellowstone might anchor a sustainable biofuels industry.
National Science Foundation, US Department of Energy

Contact: Sepp Jannotta
Montana State University

Public Release: 2-Jan-2014
Atlas Mountains in Morocco are buoyed up by superhot rock, study finds
The Atlas Mountains defy the standard model for mountain structure in which high topography must have deep roots for support, according to a new study from Earth scientists at USC.
National Science Foundation

Contact: Robert Perkins
University of Southern California

Public Release: 2-Jan-2014
IEEE Transactions on Power Systems
Researchers find ways for more efficient control of wind power
Researchers from North Carolina State University and Johns Hopkins University have found that installing wind power plants at certain favorable locations in a power grid can make the grid more robust against extraneous disruptions.
National Science Foundation

Contact: Matt Shipman
North Carolina State University

Public Release: 2-Jan-2014
PLOS Computational Biology
Environment affects an organism's complexity
Scientists have demonstrated that organisms with greater complexity are more likely to evolve in complex environments.
National Science Foundation, Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency

Contact: Dr. Joshua Auerbach

Public Release: 31-Dec-2013
Astrophysical Journal
New studies give strong boost to binary-star formation theory
Recent studies with the Karl G. Jansky Very Large Array add strong, new evidence to the theory that binary stars form when the disk of gas and dust orbiting one young star gravitationally fragments, forming a second young star.
National Science Foundation

Contact: Dave Finley
National Radio Astronomy Observatory

Public Release: 31-Dec-2013
American Journal of Botany
Competition in a rough neighborhood: Plant success in a desert environment
In deserts, variable weather is common so that plant community patterns can change between wet and dry years, with high densities and a diversity of plants in wet years, and a reduction in both quantity and number of species in dry years. The effect that two important variables have on plant communities -- competition and water usage -- was investigated in the Sonoran Desert by a research group at the University of Arizona.
National Science Foundation, Philecology Foundation of Fort Worth Texas

Contact: Richard Hund
American Journal of Botany

Public Release: 31-Dec-2013
Researchers use Hubble Telescope to reveal cloudy weather on alien world
A team of scientists led by researchers in the Department of Astronomy and Astrophysics at the University of Chicago report they have definitively characterized the atmosphere of a super-Earth class planet orbiting another star for the first time.
NASA, National Science Foundation, Sloan Foundation, European Research Council

Contact: Steve Koppes
University of Chicago

Public Release: 30-Dec-2013
Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences
With few hard frosts, tropical mangroves push north
Cold-sensitive mangrove forests doubled in area along N. Florida's Atlantic Coast as the frequency of killing frosts waned, according to a study based on 28 years of satellite data from the University of Maryland and the Smithsonian Environmental Research Center.
NASA Climate and Biological Response Program, National Science Foundation

Contact: Heather Dewar
University of Maryland

Public Release: 30-Dec-2013
Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences
Mangroves expand north as Florida freezes decline
Climate change appears to have paved the way for a northward march of mangrove forest along Florida's Atlantic coast, but not because mean temperatures are rising. Instead a new analysis of satellite images and other data over a 28-year span attributes the dramatic expansion of mangrove to a decline in frequency of days where the temperature dips below negative 4 degrees Celsius (25 degrees Farenheit).
NASA, National Science Foundation

Contact: David Orenstein
Brown University

Public Release: 26-Dec-2013
PLOS Genetics
Genetic discovery points the way to much bigger yields in tomato, other flowering food plants
CSHL researchers announced that they have determined a way to dramatically increase tomato production. Their research has revealed a genetic mechanism for hybrid vigor, a property of plant breeding that has long been exploited to boost yield. Teasing out the hidden subtleties of a type of hybrid vigor involving just one gene has provided the scientists with means to extend the length of time that specific tomato varieties can produce flowers, substantially raising fruit yield.
National Science Foundation

Contact: Jaclyn Jansen
Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory

Public Release: 23-Dec-2013
Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences
Walking the walk: What sharks, honeybees and humans have in common
In the first study of human hunter-gatherer movement patterns, a team led by UA anthropologist David Raichlen has found that the tribe's movements while foraging can be described by a mathematical pattern called a Lévy walk -- a pattern that also is found in the movements of many other animals, from sharks to honey bees.
National Science Foundation

Contact: David Raichlen
University of Arizona

Public Release: 23-Dec-2013
British Medical Journal
Role of chronic medical conditions in readmissions
In new findings from Brigham and Women's Hospital, researchers find that the most frequent reasons for readmission were often related, either directly or indirectly, to patients' underlying chronic medical conditions (comorbidities), providing a new opportunity for focus in reducing readmission rates.
Swiss National Science Foundation, Swiss Foundation for Medical-Biological Scholarships

Contact: Lori J Schroth
Brigham and Women's Hospital

Public Release: 22-Dec-2013
Nature Photonics
Solitons in a crystal
By creating an optical soliton in a microresonator, EPFL scientists have found a new light source that could serve in geo-navigation, telecommunications, spectroscopy and the hunt for new Earth-like planets.
Swiss National Science Foundation, ESA, Marie Curie, ussian Foundation for Basic Research, Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency-Quantum-Assisted Sensing and Readout

Contact: Nik Papageorgiou
Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne

Showing releases 476-500 out of 749.

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