Wildfires across the western United States have been getting bigger and more frequent over the last 30 years. The total area these fires burned increased at a rate of nearly 90,000 acres a year -- an area the size of Las Vegas, according to the study. Individually, the largest wildfires grew at a rate of 350 acres a year, the new research says.
The cause of neuronal death in Parkinson's disease is still unknown, but a new study proposes that neurons may be mistaken for foreign invaders and killed by the person's own immune system, similar to the way autoimmune diseases like type 1 diabetes, celiac disease, and multiple sclerosis attack the body's cells.
Adolescent drivers are often distracted by technology while they are driving, but loud conversations and horseplay between passengers appear more likely to result in a dangerous incident, according to a new study. Researchers ecruited 52 North Carolina high-school age drivers to have in-vehicle cameras mounted in their cars and trucks to observe distracted driving behaviors and distracted conditions when teen drivers were behind the wheel. Young drivers were recorded in a variety of real-world driving situations over six months -- with parents in the car, with other teens in the car and alone.
With global climate change and rapidly disappearing habitat critical to the survival of endangered species, there is a sense of urgency to confirm the return of animals thought to be extinct, or to confirm the presence of newly discovered species. Researchers want to change how biologists think about collecting 'voucher' specimens for species identification, suggesting current specimen collection practices pose a risk to vulnerable animal populations nearing extinction.
Up to now, nitrous acid, HONO, was considered one of the most important sources of hydroxyl radicals, OH, which is regarded as the detergent of the atmosphere, allowing the air to clean itself. Scientists have put an end to this conception. The new hypothesis is based on air measurements recorded by a Zeppelin NT.
Scientists were greatly surprised to discover an ancient tundra landscape preserved under the Greenland Ice Sheet, below two miles of ice. This finding provides strong evidence that the ice sheet has persisted much longer than previously known, enduring through many past periods of global warming.
Our eyes not only enable us to recognize objects, they also provide us with a continuous stream of information about our own movements. The world glides by us and leaves a characteristic motion trace on our retinas. Seemingly without effort, our brain calculates self-motion from this "optic flow." This way, we can maintain a stable position and a steady gaze during our own movements. Scientists have now discovered an array of new types of neurons, which help the brain of zebrafish to perceive, and compensate for, self-motion.
Several parasites and pathogens that devastate honeybees in Europe, Asia and the United States are spreading across East Africa, but do not appear to be impacting native honeybee populations at this time, according to an international team of researchers. The invasive pests include including Nosema microsporidia and Varroa mites.
Giving patients adrenaline after they suffer a cardiac arrest outside of a hospital does not increase their prospects of surviving long-term, according to new research. When a person has a cardiac arrest, his or her heart stops beating. Unless the heart is restarted within minutes, the person usually dies. More than 90 per cent of people who experience a cardiac arrest outside of a hospital will die before reaching a hospital or soon after.
A new classification system that may standardize how structural chromosomal rearrangements are described has been proposed by a team of researchers. Known as Next-Gen Cytogenetic Nomenclature, it is a major contribution to the classification system to potentially revolutionize how cytogeneticists worldwide translate and communicate chromosomal abnormalities.
Your brain transmits information about your current location and memories of past locations over the same neural pathways using different frequencies of a rhythmic electrical activity called gamma waves, report neuroscientists. The research may provide insight into the cognitive and memory disruptions seen in diseases such as schizophrenia and Alzheimer's, in which gamma waves are disturbed.
A patented technique that improves military security and remotely detects improvised explosive devices has been developed by an engineer. The same technique could help police during drug searches. The majority of chemical explosives are nitrogen-rich explosives.
An unexpected phenomenon in the organs that produce sperm in fruit flies has been discovered: When a certain kind of stem cell is killed off experimentally, another group of non-stem cells can come out of retirement to replace them. This study has been using the fruit fly as a model living system in which to study stem cells in their natural state. Most stem cell research is done on cells grown in the laboratory, but in real life, stem cells reside in tissues, where they are sequestered in tiny spaces known as niches. Adult stem cells keep dividing throughout life to make various kinds of cells, like new blood cells and germ cells.
The negative social, physical and mental health effects of childhood bullying are still evident nearly 40 years later, according to new research. The study is the first to look at the effects of bullying beyond early adulthood. Just over a quarter of children in the study (28%) had been bullied occasionally, and 15% bullied frequently -- similar to rates in the UK today. Individuals who were bullied in childhood were more likely to have poorer physical and psychological health and cognitive functioning at age 50. Individuals who were frequently bullied in childhood were at an increased risk of depression, anxiety disorders, and suicidal thoughts.
One of the most popular vaccine brands for children may not be the most cost-effective choice. And doctors may be overlooking some cost factors when choosing vaccines, driving the market toward what is actually a more expensive option, according to a new study. The researchers encourage physicians and advisory boards to take all factors into account when determining how to administer the best combination of vaccines for the lowest cost.
A drug under clinical trials to treat tuberculosis could be the basis for a class of broad-spectrum drugs that act against various bacteria, fungal infections and parasites, yet evade resistance, according to a study. The team determined the different ways the drug SQ109 attacks the tuberculosis bacterium, how the drug can be tweaked to target other pathogens from yeast to malaria -- and how targeting multiple pathways reduces the probability of pathogens becoming resistant.
A new chemical process can transform waste sulfur into lightweight plastic lenses that have a high refractive index and are transparent to mid-range infrared light. The lenses may have applications in thermal imaging devices. Other potential applications for the new plastic include sulfur-lithium batteries.
Ancient Earth might have had an extraterrestrial supply of vitamin B3 delivered by carbon-rich meteorites, according to a new analysis. The result supports a theory that the origin of life may have been assisted by a supply of key molecules created in space and brought to Earth by comet and meteor impacts.
New research may help scientists develop treatments or vaccines for dengue fever, West Nile virus, yellow fever, Japanese encephalitis and other disease-causing flaviviruses. More than 40 percent of people around the world are at risk of being bitten by mosquitoes infected with the virus that causes Dengue fever and more than 100 million people are infected. This new work explains how flaviviruses produce a unique RNA molecule that leads to disease.