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Erupting Bardarbunga Volcano In Iceland Sits On A Massive Magma Hot Spot

 Massive amounts of erupting lava have connected with the fall of civilizations, the destruction...

Ebola's Evolutionary Roots Are Ancient

Though Ebola tends to occur in waves, the filoviruses family to which Ebola and its lethal relative...

Genetically Modified Stem Cells Kill Brain Tumors

There may soon be a new way to use stem cells in the fight against brain cancer. A team has created...

Smart Aquaculture Outsmarts Climate Change

El Niño is nothing new for fishers. Long before it was being used as evidence of climate change...

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Commercial flower and plant growers know all too well that invasive, ubiquitous weeds cause trouble by lowering the value and deterring healthy growth of potted ornamental plants. To control weeds, many commercial nursery owners resort to the expensive practice of paying workers to hand-weed containers. Some growers use herbicides, but efficacy of herbicides is questionable on the wide range of plant species produced in nurseries, and many herbicides are not registered for use in greenhouses.

Enter "dried distillers grains with solubles", or DDGS. DDGS, a byproduct of converting corn to fuel ethanol, is typically used as livestock feed. Rick A. Boydston, Harold P. Collins, and Steve Vaughn, of the U.S. Department of Agriculture, undertook a research study on the use of DDGS as a weed deterrent on potted ornamentals. The study results, published in the February 2008 issue of HortScience, evaluated the use of DDGS as a soil amendment to suppress weeds in container-grown ornamentals.

'Hello, climate? We're from the government and we're here to help you.'

A group of former senior federal officials have called for the establishment of an independent Earth Systems Science Agency (ESSA) that would be created by merging the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) and the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) into something even larger.

Charles Kennel, former Associate Administrator of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration and Director of Mission to Planet Earth, says, "Earth system science focuses on understanding current processes and predicting changes that will take place over the next hundred years. It merges earth, atmospheric, and ocean science into a panorama of the earth system as it is today and as it will be tomorrow. We need it to predict climate change and its impacts, and to help us mitigate and adapt to other changes that have the potential to affect our quality of life and economic well-being."

LSU associate professor of sociology Troy C. Blanchard recently found that a community's religious environment – the type of religious congregations within a locale – affects mortality rates, often in a positive manner. These results were published in the June issue of Social Forces.

This result, he says, is particularly timely in the context of presidential candidate Barack Obama's recent call for expanding the roles of such religious groups.

Along with co-author John Bartkowski from the University of Texas at San Antonio and other researchers from the University of West Georgia and the University of Alabama at Birmingham, Blanchard found that people live longer in areas with a large number of Catholic and Mainline Protestant churches. He offers two key reasons for these findings.

It is well known that a powerful perceptual experience can change the way a person sees things later. If you are startled to discover a mouse in your kitchen, you may suddenly you see mice in every dark corner - or at least think you do. Is it possible that imagining something, just once, might also change how you perceive things?

To test how imagery affects perception, the researchers had subjects imagine simple patterns of vertical or horizontal stripes, which are strongly represented in the primary visual areas of the brain. They then presented a green horizontal grated pattern to one eye and a red vertical grated pattern to the other to induce what is called binocular rivalry.

During binocular rivalry, an individual will often alternately perceive each stimulus, with the images appearing to switch back and forth before their eyes. The subjects generally reported they had seen the image they had been imagining, proving the researcher's hypothesis that imagery would influence the binocular rivalry battle.

If you're a long-time reader of this site, you might get the idea that Albert Einstein was a pretty smart guy - that comes across because he tends to proven right a lot even today.

PSR J0737-3039A/B is a unique system of two dead stars, pulsars, and one of the pair is 'wobbling' in space just like a spinning top, according to a team of researchers. The effect, called precession, was predicted by Albert Einstein and is yet another confirmation of his theory.

The binary pulsars were formed when a pair of massive stars exploded and their cores collapsed to create objects whose mass is greater than that of our Sun, but compressed to the size of a city. They are spinning at incredible speeds and emit powerful beams of radio waves which sweep across our radio-telescopes like cosmic lighthouses producing regular pulses of energy - hence their name, pulsars. PSR J0737-3039A/B is the only known system in our galaxy where two pulsars are locked into such close orbit around one another - the entire system could fit inside our Sun.


Calorie restriction related to longevity is a hot topic. Calorie restriction slows the aging process in rats and mice but no one is sure how. One recently popular hypothesis is that it slows aging by decreasing a thyroid hormone, triiodothyronine (T3), which then slows metabolism and tissue aging.

Mice who benefited from calorie restriction were weaned on that diet, a strategy that will get you arrested for child endangerment with human children, but a new study in the June 2008 issue of Rejuvenation Research found that moderate calorie restriction – cutting approximately 300 to 500 calories per day – showed a similar thyroid decrease in humans.

So, they say, the longevity effect may also happen in humans.