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As network carriers debate the next Ethernet standard, and whether transmission speeds of 400 gigabit per second or 1 terabit per second should be the norm, engineers are working on new ways to squeeze next-generation performance out of current-generation systems. 

A team from AT&T has devised a new technique that enables tuning of the modulation spectral efficiency and allows 400 Gb/s signals to be sent over today's 100 gigahertz-grid optical networks over ultra-long distances.

Spectral efficiency is the information rate that can be transmitted over a given bandwidth, and measures how efficiently the available frequency spectrum is utilized.

Unlike a cryptic phrase, a cryptic species in biology is outwardly indistinguishable - until you look inside their genes.

Two University of Michigan marine biologists have identified three cryptic species of tiny clams, long believed to be members of the same species, which have been hiding in plain view along the rocky shores of southern Australia for millions of years.

The scientists conducted a genetic analysis after collecting thousands of the crevice-dwelling, rice grain-sized clams from hundreds of miles of southern Australia coastline over the past decade. 

The bacterial foodborne pathogen Listeria monocytogenes is the causative agent of listeriosis, a debilitating disease linked with about 2,500 illnesses and more than 500 deaths in the U.S.A. each year. A characteristic feature of L. monocytogenes is its ability to grow at cold temperatures and even in the presence of high concentrations of salt - traditional food preservation techniques which arrest the growth of most other pathogens.

The bacterium protects itself from such stresses by twisting into a protective corkscrew type shape in an effort to reduce its exposure to the stress—in the same way a human might wrap up tight—hugging the core to reduce the effects of the cold. 

A culture that digs up dead female corpses to bury with single deceased men has unsurprisingly embraced probiotics. Starting in the 1990s,  the fast-growing yogurt, supplement, pharma and feed sectors are expected to reach $5 billion despite any benefit. 

 There are several hundred kinds of nutritional foods and ingredients containing probiotics currently sold in the Chinese market, such as fermented milk (yogurt), fermented cheese or cream, fermented soy milk, probiotics supplement and pharma products. 

It had been shown that the origin of pumpkins and cucumbers can be traced back to India and a new genetic analysis has updated that data. 

Compared to grains and pulses, vegetables are under-investigated taxonomically, and information on their genome is scarce. The cucumber family, Cucurbitaceae, includes many of our favorite foods: pumpkins, melon, cucumber, watermelon, bottle gourds, and bitter gourd. Molecular data have recently revealed that both cucumber (Cucumis sativus L.) and melon (Cucumis melo L.) are indigenous to India and likely to have originated from the foothills of the Himalayas.

Is your body shape predetermined? Some role for heritage is obvious and there efforts to fix people into an epigenetic destiny as well but it may be that diet and exercise can only do so much. A new paper says body composition, including soft fat tissue and hard bone tissue, which can lead to excess fat or osteoporosis, is genetic.

Prof. Gregory Livshits and Dr. Michael Korostishevsky of Tel Aviv University's Department of Anatomy and Anthropology say they have uncovered a clear genetic link between fat and bone mass. These factors, which contribute to bone metabolism, also affect Body Mass Index (BMI), which often serves as an indicator of overall health.