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DHS Begins Test of Biometric Exit Procedures at Two U.S. Airports, the next step toward deploying biometric exit procedures for international travelers.


The U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) today began collecting biometrics - digital fingerprints - from non-U.S. citizens departing the United States as part of a pilot program at Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport and Detroit Metropolitan Wayne County Airport. Since 2004, biometrics have helped DHS prevent the use of fraudulent documents, protect visitors from identity theft and stop thousands of criminals and immigration violators from entering the United States.


Collecting biometrics allows us to determine faster and more accurately whether non-U.S.


VIB (the Flanders Institute for Biotechnology) researchers linked to K.U.Leuven and Harvard University say they have shown that stretches of DNA previously believed to be useless 'junk' DNA play a vital role in the evolution of our genome. Their findings were that unstable pieces of junk DNA help tuning gene activity and enable organisms to quickly adapt to changes in their environments.

Junk DNA in two paragraphs

"Most people do not realize that all our genes only comprise about 3% of the total human genome. The rest is basically one large black box,"  says Kevin Verstrepen, heading the research team. "Why do we have this DNA, what is it doing?"

Oxidative stress has been linked to aging, cancer and other diseases in humans. Paradoxically, researchers have suggested that small exposure to oxidative conditions may actually offer protection from acute doses. Now, scientists at the University of California, San Diego, have discovered the gene responsible for this effect. Their study, published in PLoS Genetics on May 29, explains the underlying mechanism of the process that prevents cellular damage by reactive oxygen species (ROS).

Scientists at the University of Leeds say they have uncovered a previously unknown giant volcanic eruption.   And it's no ordinary eruption, they say - it led to global mass extinction 260 million years ago. 

The eruption in the Emeishan province of south-west China unleashed around half a million cubic kilometres of lava, covering an area 5 times the size of Wales, and wiping out marine life around the world.
Even if we don't always notice, our brain is constantly distracted with 'noise' - unimportant messages that are filtered out.   

When we pay attention, our neurons begin firing in harmony and a study in the May 29 issue of Science lays out what researchers say is the likely brain center that serves as the conductor of our neural chorus.  MIT neuroscientists say that neurons in the prefrontal cortex, the brain's planning center, fire in unison and send signals to the visual cortex to do the same, generating high-frequency waves that oscillate between these distant brain regions like a vibrating spring. These waves, also known as gamma oscillations, have long been associated with cognitive states like attention, learning, and consciousness.
Biomedical engineers at Boston University have taught bacteria how to count.  The researchers have wired a new sequence of genes that allow the microbes to count discrete events, opening the door for a host of potential applications, which could include drug delivery and sensing environmental hazards. 

The young but burgeoning field of synthetic biology addresses biological research questions with an engineering approach. Researchers design and build networks of genes, splicing them into bacterial genomes to run specific tasks or manufacture desired molecules – a process akin to installing biological computer software. Though the field is rapidly advancing, the gene-based tools available to synthetic biologists remain limited.