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Thursday August 25th 2016

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EurekAlert! – Breaking News

Psychosis associated with low levels of physical activity

A large international study of more than 200,000 people in nearly 50 countries has revealed that people with psychosis engage in low levels of physical activity, and men with psychosis are over two times more likely to miss global activity targets compared to people without the illness.

Posted on 25 August 2016 | 4:00 am

An effective and low-cost solution for storing solar energy

Solar energy can be stored by converting it into hydrogen. But current methods are too expensive and don’t last long. Using commercially available solar cells and none of the usual rare metals, researchers at EPFL and CSEM have now designed a device that outperforms in stability, efficiency and cost.

Posted on 25 August 2016 | 4:00 am

Field Museum study challenges long-standing scientific theory

If two species are mutualists — that is, each benefits from the activity of the other — the Red King Theory predicts that they should evolve at a slower rate, so as to avoid interrupting their partnership. Makes sense, right? Think again! In a new study published in Nature Communications, comparative genomic analysis shows that the complete opposite may actually be true.

Posted on 25 August 2016 | 4:00 am

New study questions timing in mitral valve repairs

UAB doctors say new research is showing that patients who suffer from isolated mitral valve regurgitation may need surgery before symptoms appear.

Posted on 25 August 2016 | 4:00 am

Study: Biofuels increase, rather than decrease, heat-trapping carbon dioxide emissions

A new study from University of Michigan researchers challenges the widely held assumption that biofuels such as ethanol and biodiesel are inherently carbon neutral.

Posted on 25 August 2016 | 4:00 am

Elevating brain protein allays symptoms of Alzheimer’s and improves memory

Salk Institute tests drug that could boost levels of critical protective protein in brain.

Posted on 25 August 2016 | 4:00 am

Breakthrough in understanding of brain development: Immune cell involvement revealed

Researchers have revealed that microglia — cells involved in immune functions in the brain — also influence brain connectivity and formation of new links between neurons in the developing brain. By directly contacting dendrites, they cause accumulation of Ca2+ and actin, leading to establishment of projections called filopodia. Filopodia then extend and seek out presynaptic terminals of other neurons, to create new synapses that form the basis of neuronal communication.

Posted on 25 August 2016 | 4:00 am

World Risk Report 2016: Inadequate infrastructure pushes up the risk of disaster

The World Risk Report 2016, published on Aug. 25 by UNU-EHS and Bündnis Entwicklung Hilft, analyzes the role that infrastructure plays in shaping a country’s disaster risk. The World Risk Index, an integral part of the report, ranks 171 countries according to their risk of becoming a victim of a disaster as a result of natural hazards such as floods, cyclones, or earthquakes.

Posted on 25 August 2016 | 4:00 am

PRB projects world population rising 33 percent by 2050 to nearly 10 billion

The world population will reach 9.9 billion in 2050, up 33 percent from an estimated 7.4 billion now, according to projections included in the latest World Population Data Sheet from the Population Reference Bureau (PRB).The world population would hit the 10 billion mark in 2053 if the assumptions underlying PRB’s 2050 projections are applied to subsequent years.

Posted on 25 August 2016 | 4:00 am

Graphene under pressure

Small balloons made from one-atom-thick material graphene can withstand enormous pressures, much higher than those at the bottom of the deepest ocean, scientists at the University of Manchester report.

Posted on 25 August 2016 | 4:00 am

Science News Headlines – Yahoo News

Get the latest Science news headlines from Yahoo News. Find breaking Science news, including analysis and opinion on top Science stories.

GM mustard clears hurdle in India but more remain

An Indian scientist holds a GM rapeseed crop under trial in New DelhiBy Mayank Bhardwaj and Krishna N. Das NEW DELHI (Reuters) – A government panel has cleared commercial use of what would be India's first genetically modified (GM) food crop, but politicians still have to give final approvals amid wide-spread public opposition. Technical clearance for indigenously developed GM mustard seeds was given on Aug. 11 by the panel of government and independent experts, following multiple reviews of crop trial data generated over almost a decade, said two sources with direct knowledge of the matter. The decision to go ahead is likely to be made public soon by the environment ministry's Genetic Engineering Approval Committee, and is expected eventually to move to Prime Minister Narendra Modi's desk via Environment Minister Anil Madhav Dave.

Posted on 25 August 2016 | 12:22 pm

Jackpot: Scientists find Earth-like planet at star next door

This artist rendering provided by the European Southern Observatory shows a view of the surface of the planet Proxima b orbiting the red dwarf star Proxima Centauri, the closest star to the Solar System. The double star Alpha Centauri AB also appears in the image to the upper-right of Proxima itself. Proxima b is a little more massive than the Earth and orbits in the habitable zone around Proxima Centauri, where the temperature is suitable for liquid water to exist on its surface. (European Southern Observatory via AP)WASHINGTON (AP) — After scanning the vast reaches of the cosmos for Earth-like planets where life might exist, astronomers have found one right next door.

Posted on 24 August 2016 | 7:19 pm

Scientists hope new test could help contain meningitis outbreaks

By Umberto Bacchi LONDON (Thomson Reuters Foundation) – A test has been developed that could help diagnose bacterial infections including meningitis in minutes, but it could take several years before a cheap testing device is available to developing countries, scientists said on Wednesday. The new test could save lives, allow treatment of disease – which is difficult to diagnose – to start much sooner and reduce the risk of life-changing after effects, an international team of researchers led by Imperial College London said. “We would very much hope this could become something cheap enough to be applied even in resource poor regions,” Imperial College Professor Michael Levin told the Thomson Reuters Foundation.

Posted on 24 August 2016 | 6:11 pm

Scientists find Earth-like planet circling sun’s nearest neighbor

The planet Proxima b orbiting the red dwarf star Proxima Centauri, the closest star to our Solar System, is seen in an undated artist's impressionThe relative proximity of the planet, known as Proxima b, gives scientists a better chance to eventually capture an image of it, to help them establish whether it has an atmosphere and water, which is believed to be necessary for life. Future studies may reveal if any atmosphere contains tell-tale chemicals of biological life, such as methane, according to a paper published in this week’s issue of the journal Nature. The planet, located about 4.2 light-years from Earth, or 25 trillion miles (40 trillion km), is the closest of some 3,500 planets that have been discovered beyond the solar system since 1995, according to the paper.

Posted on 24 August 2016 | 5:43 pm

Italy Earthquake: Complex Geology Drives Frequent Shaking

Italy Earthquake: Complex Geology Drives Frequent ShakingPowerful earthquakes like the 6.2-magnitude temblor that rocked central Italy early this morning (Aug. 24) are surprisingly common in the region, geologists say. The shaking was caused by movement in the Tyrrhenian Basin, a seismically active area beneath the Mediterranean Sea. Here, the ground is actually spreading apart, said Julie Dutton, a geophysicist with the U.S. Geological Survey.

Posted on 24 August 2016 | 5:25 pm

Scientists find Earth-like planet circling sun’s nearest neighbour

The planet Proxima b orbiting the red dwarf star Proxima Centauri, the closest star to our Solar System, is seen in an undated artist's impressionScientists have discovered a planet that appears to be similar to Earth circling the star closest to the sun, potentially a major step in the quest to find out if life exists elsewhere in the universe, research published on Wednesday showed. The relative proximity of the planet, known as Proxima b, gives scientists a better chance to eventually capture an image of it, to help them establish whether it has an atmosphere and water, which is believed to be necessary for life. Future studies may reveal if any atmosphere contains tell-tale chemicals of biological life, such as methane, according to a paper published in this week's issue of the journal Nature.

Posted on 24 August 2016 | 5:08 pm

Scientists find Earth-like planet circling sun’s nearest neighbor

The planet Proxima b orbiting the red dwarf star Proxima Centauri, the closest star to our Solar System, is seen in an undated artist's impressionScientists have discovered a planet that appears to be similar to Earth circling the star closest to the sun, potentially a major step in the quest to find out if life exists elsewhere in the universe, research published on Wednesday showed. The relative proximity of the planet, known as Proxima b, gives scientists a better chance to eventually capture an image of it, to help them establish whether it has an atmosphere and water, which is believed to be necessary for life. Future studies may reveal if any atmosphere contains tell-tale chemicals of biological life, such as methane, according to a paper published in this week's issue of the journal Nature.

Posted on 24 August 2016 | 5:08 pm

It’s Splitsville: Divorce May Be Seasonal, Study Finds

The rates of divorce filings may peak twice a year, a new study from one state suggests. In a 14-year study of divorce filings in Washington state, researchers found that the rates of such filings consistently peaked in March and August. “People tend to face the holidays with rising expectations, despite what disappointments they might have had in years past,” study co-author Julie Brines, an associate sociology professor at the University of Washington, said in a statement.

Posted on 24 August 2016 | 3:20 pm

Mental Toll of Bad Jobs Lasts Decades

If your job causes stress and anxiety in your life, it may seem obvious that it may be bad for your health. A new study shows that people who had low levels of job satisfaction in their 20s and 30s may have an increased risk of mental health problems in their 40s. “We found that there is a cumulative effect of job satisfaction on health that appears as early as your 40s,” lead author Jonathan Dirlam, a doctoral student in sociology at The Ohio State University, said in a statement.

Posted on 24 August 2016 | 3:18 pm

China shows first images of Mars rover, aims for 2020 mission

Concept portrayal of China's Mars rover and landerChina has showed off its first images of a rover it plans to sent to Mars in mid-2020, which is designed to explore the planet surface for three months, state media said, the latest aim of China's ambitious space program. China in 2003 became the third country to put a man in space with its own rocket after the former Soviet Union and the United States. It has touted its plans for moon exploration and in late 2013 completed the first lunar "soft landing" since 1976 with the Chang'e-3 craft and its Jade Rabbit rover.

Posted on 24 August 2016 | 4:23 am