The climate system, and in particular sea level, may be responding more quickly to rising carbon emissions than climate scientists have estimated with climate models.

An international team of climate scientists has cautioned against suggestions that the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) has previously overestimated the rate of climate change.

The team, from six institutions around the world, reviewed actual observations of carbon dioxide, temperature and sea level from 1990 to 2006 and compared them with projected changes for the same period.


CSIRO Marine and Atmospheric Research and Antarctic Climate and Ecosystems CRC scientist, Dr. John Church.

For Duke University theoretical chemist David Beratan, the results of his 15 years of studying how electrons make their way through some important protein molecules can be summed up with an analogy: how do big city dwellers get from here to there?

It's often swiftest to take the subway, Beratan notes, but riders may sometimes elect to alter their route by exiting the train for a short cab ride or a walk down the street. And they also may have to work around a route that is temporarily out of service.


David Beratan poses with subway route map. (Photo Credit: Megan Morr)

MORGANTOWN, W.Va., Feb. 5 (UPI) -- U.S. scientists are using a computer program to develop an objective method of determining when a boxing match should be stopped.

The researchers at West Virginia University say a computerized approach to counting punches at ringside identifies certain characteristics related to deaths in the ring.

"This approach could provide sufficient data to stop matches that might result in fatalities," said Drs. Vincent Miele and Julian Bailes of West Virginia University School of Medicine.

Miele and Bailes performed a computer-assisted video analysis to compare three groups of professional boxing matches.

Based on Timothy Erickson's thoughts, I decided to start a new blog carnival on genes and gene-related diseases. Our plan is to cover the whole genome before 2082 (it means 14-15 genes every two weeks).

Please take a look at the "official" page of the carnival. (Suggestions are most welcome!)

The first issue will be hosted by Scienceroll on the 17th of February. The second will be hosted by Sciencesque two weeks later. Let me know if you would like to host one!

sonichedgehog.jpgI planned to make a good start for Gene Genie but my first gene related post is about a farewell. Sonic Hedgehog, one of the most famous genes, will lose his name. According to the Discover article:

This post goes into that age old category of ‘learn something everyday’.  As regular readers of this blog know, I believe that we must do everything we can to both find alternative sources of energy and slow down the accelerating global warming trend. One of the key ways to accomplish both of these is through technological innovation.

Expectant parent' desire to see images of their unborn children has given rise to commercial companies offering keepsake ultrasound scans without medical supervision, often referred to as "boutique ultrasonography."

In a special report in this week's British Medical Journal, journalist Geoff Watts considers whether this non-medical use of the technique can be justified.

Improvements in ultrasound technology have transformed antenatal scans from two dimensional black and white images to 3D, 4D and even moving pictures of the unborn child.

The time is ripe for scientific organizations to adopt codes of ethics, according to a scientist and bioethicist from Wake Forest University School of Medicine in the current issue of Science and Engineering Ethics.

"Medical practice and human subject research is influenced by the Hippocratic tradition," said Nancy L. Jones, Ph.D., "but no similar code of ethics has been formalized for the life and biomedical sciences.

Carbon dioxide, a greenhouse gas that has become a bane of modern society, may have saved Earth from freezing over early in the planet's history, according to the first detailed laboratory analysis of the world's oldest sedimentary rocks.

Scientists have theorized for years that high concentrations of greenhouse gases could have helped Earth avoid global freezing in its youth by allowing the atmosphere to retain more heat than it lost.