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NASA's Tropical Rainfall Measuring Mission (TRMM) satellite was able to estimate rainfall rates  of Typhoon Bopha over the Philippines, where severe flooding killed several hundred people. Bopha is now a tropical storm in the South China Sea but high winds, flooding and landslides from heavy rains with Typhoon Bopha have caused close to 300 deaths in the southern Philippines.

The Gamma-ray Burst Monitor (GBM) on NASA's Fermi Gamma-ray Space Telescope is now 10 times better at catching the brief outbursts of high-energy light, known as  terrestrial gamma-ray flashes (TGFs),mysteriously produced above thunderstorms.

Terrestrial gamma-ray flashes last only a few thousandths of a second but their gamma rays rank among the highest-energy light that naturally occurs on Earth. The enhanced GBM discovery rate helped scientists show most TGFs also generate a strong burst of radio waves, a finding that will change how scientists study this poorly understood phenomenon.

Fatty liver disease, diabetes and obesity are health issues that are not going to be solved during the holiday season.  The solution to much of it, healthier eating, is not realistic and so researchers at the University of California, Berkeley, examining the molecular mechanisms of how our body converts dietary carbohydrates into fat have found that disabling a gene with the catchy name BAF60c prevented carbohydrates from converting to fat, despite eating a high-carb diet. In mice, anyway  

Genetic research has a great deal of benefit but its mysteries, such as the lack of identified genetic determinants that explain heritability of complex traits, leave a lot of biology open to speculation, like that voting for one candidate may be 'biological' or that molecular changes to our genes -  epigenetic marks - are affected by what we eat.

 A large problem in making predictions about Antarctic melting is that we currently have insufficient knowledge about the ocean circulation near large glaciers in West Antarctica. This means that researchers cannot predict how water levels will change in the future with any large degree of certainty. 

What is known is that the ice sheet in West Antarctica is melting faster than expected, and new observations published by oceanographers in Nature Geoscience may improve the ability to predict future changes in ice sheet mass. 

Opinion surveys used by researchers from the Guttmacher Institute show overestimated figures of abortion in the Federal District of Mexico (Mexico DF) by as much as 10-fold, according to a paper in the International Journal of Women's Health, which highlights that the actual figure of induced abortion in Mexico DF has not surpassed 15,000 per year according to the official registry.

 The research group directly compared the estimations of induced abortion reported by the Guttmacher Institute and the actual figures reported by the GIRE (from the Spanish acronym Grupo de Información en Reproducción Electiva), institution that maintains epidemiological surveillance of abortion in Mexico DF since its decriminalization in 2007.