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As lithographic materials and strategies come close to fundamental technical limits, increase performance and size could become prohibitively expensive.

Further advances will require a new approach that is both commercially viable and capable of meeting the demanding quality-control standards of the industry.

In a collaborative effort between academic and industry, chemical and biological engineering professors Paul Nealey and Juan de Pablo, and other colleagues from the UW-Madison NSEC partnered with researchers from Hitachi Global Storage Technologies to test a promising new twist on the traditional methods. In the Aug. 15 issue of Science, the team demonstrates a patterning technology that may revolutionize the field, offering performance improvements over existing methods even while reducing the time and cost of manufacturing.

A multidisciplinary team at the University of Reading has developed a robot which is controlled by a biological brain formed from cultured neurons. This cutting edge research is the first step to examine how memories manifest themselves in the brain, and how a brain stores specific pieces of data.

The key aim is that eventually this will lead to a better understanding of development and of diseases and disorders which affect the brain such as Alzheimer's Disease, Parkinson’s Disease, stoke and brain injury.

The robot’s biological brain is made up of cultured neurons which are placed onto a multi electrode array (MEA). The MEA is a dish with approximately 60 electrodes which pick up the electrical signals generated by the cells. This is then used to drive the movement of the robot.


U.S. and Swiss scientists have made a breakthrough in understanding how a type of white blood cell called the eosinophil may help the body to fight bacterial infections in the digestive tract, according to research published online this week in Nature Medicine.

Hans-Uwe Simon, from the University of Bern, Switzerland, Gerald J.Gleich, M.D., from the University of Utah School of Medicine, and their colleagues discovered that bacteria can activate eosinophils to release mitochondrial DNA in a catapult-like fashion to create a net that captures and kills bacteria.

Biofuels are a bad word these days, due to the fact that everyone from Al Gore to George Bush thought ethanol was a good idea due to a lack of understanding actual science much less basic economics.

But before grain ethanol and biodiesel there was 'gasification' and it's getting a new look from researchers at the U.S. Department of Energy's Ames Laboratory and Iowa State University.

By combining gasification with high-tech nanoscale porous catalysts, they hope to create ethanol from a wide range of biomass, including distiller's grain left over from ethanol production, corn stover from the field, grass, wood pulp, animal waste, and garbage.


An academic from Swansea University’s History Department has received a research grant of £101,000 from the Wellcome Trust to investigate the history of medicine in Joseph Stalin’s concentration camps of the mid-twentieth century.

Dr Dan Healey’s project, entitled Medicine in the Gulag Archipelago, will be done in collaboration with Dr Kirill Rossianov of the Moscow Institute of the History of Natural Sciences and Technology of the Russian Academy of Sciences and focus on the history of medicine in the Soviet Union’s Gulag network of labor camps and will show how doctors and medicine were integral to these far-flung places of confinement during the 1930s to 1950s.


Researchers at Duke University Medical Center and at the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences (NIEHS) say they have shown how broken sections of chromosomes can recombine to change genomes ... and spawn new species.

The scientists used X-rays to break yeast chromosomes, and then studied how the damage was repaired. Most of the chromosome aberrations they identified resulted from interactions between repeated DNA sequences located on different chromosomes rather than from a simple re-joining of the broken ends on the same chromosome.

Chromosome aberrations are a change in the normal chromosome complement because of deletion, duplication, or rearrangement of genetic material. On rare occasions, the development of one of these new chromosome structures is beneficial, but more often DNA changes can be detrimental, leading to problems like tumors.