Scientists May Have Discovered a New Natural Force

Researchers at the Fermilab near Chicago, a world famous particle accelerator, have found an unexplainable signal in one of their series of experiments. The Fermilab is a physics laboratory investigating the basic principles of existence, dissecting the forces governing the smallest of particles in the universe, smaller than atoms – … Continue reading

The Essential Artifacts?

“Pure science and practical applications push each other” [1]. With the demise of NASA, our attention is drawn to the everyday commodities and understanding gained in receipt of space entrepreneurship; invisible braces, scratch-resistant lenses, temper foam, portable cordless vacuums, freeze drying, water purification, solar energy, and remotely controlled ovens[2]. As … Continue reading

Distant Star Moved by Tides

Recently, the scientific Journal Nature published an interesting theory online. Astronomers believe that the surface area of a distant star is influenced by the gravity of a huge alien planet. Earth’s moon is responsible for the tides that we observe here on Earth and equally, so the astronomers argue, the … Continue reading

A Doctor’s Touch

This week, Dr. Sebastian Müller (Ph.D.) discusses the challenging ideas of Dr. Abraham Vergese, a professor at the University of Stanford. Doctors constitute one of the oldest human profession. Arisen mainly from ancient Greek philosophy as well as religious institutions such as monasteries  in the Western world, this profession has … Continue reading

Artificial organs – science fiction or reality?

Since the dawn of modern molecular biology and cell biology in the 1950s, many people have been dreaming of a day one can create organs in the laboratory from patients’ cell samples. Every year many patients die in hospitals due to malfunctioning or failing organs caused by various diseases or … Continue reading

Personalised Genome: The Good, the Bad and the Ugly

As new age technology, such as high-throughput sequencing and nanopores, slashes both costs and time needed for genomic analysis, the age where commercialisation of individual one thousand pound gemones dawns. With its inevitable manifestation around the corner, it has never been more pressing to assess impacts, both social and clinical, … Continue reading

Facebook Boosts Self Esteem, Leads to Snacking

That’s an approximation of the tabloid headlines. But, as ever, NHS Choices offers a more solid critique of various bits of research into the effects of online social networking on our psyche. “Overall, social networking improves self-esteem, particularly when the person has a greater number of contacts that they consider … Continue reading

Nobel Women

Inventas vitam juvat exclouisse per artes – “And they who bettered life on earth by their newly found mastery” Taken from Vergilius Aeneid, these are the words which adorn the medal of one of science’s most prestigious awards, the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine. The 27th November 1895 saw Alfred … Continue reading

Mitochondrial Disease, Down on Your Knees!

A new approach to in vitro fertilisation, which aims to combat inherited mitochondrial disease has received UK government backing. With draft regulations currently in production, the procedure utilising DNA from three individuals could be in use by 2015. Maintained exclusively down the maternal lineage, these diseases stem from defects within mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA); … Continue reading

Did the Earth Once Have Two Moons?

The moon has always been an object of mystic interest to humans. Some nights we see it clearly and bright; during full moon and when the sky is clear. Other nights we look for the moon in vain, for instance when the sky is clouded over. Interestingly we only ever … Continue reading

Casts Away!

New drug may reverse the effects of osteoporosis, but caution is warranted. A new drug, recently featured in a top medical journal, could be that ‘magic bullet’ needed for the three million UK osteoporosis sufferers. Studies have highlighted a number of benefits, including increased bone formation and bone mineral density, … Continue reading

Live Young and Prosper: The Dauer Way

The global average life expectancy during the early twentieth century was 31 years; today it stands at 67.2 years. The “Big Three”: food, health and hygiene are being hailed as miracle life longevity factors; however improving overall quality of life is far more complex than simply extending it. Without actually … Continue reading

Frustrated Magnets

Scientists sometimes take magnetism for granted. But some materials behave badly and scientists funded by the UK’s Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) are trying to find out why. They are looking at the conventional wisdom of modern theories and finding it does not always stick to exotic magnets. … Continue reading

Revolution Through Competition: Unravelling the Archon Genomics X Prize with Dr Eugene Schuster

We truly are living in the age of technology, but not as we know it. Machines will no longer be developed through scientific knowledge; scientific knowledge will be developed through machines. Dr Eugene Schuster Functional Genomics of Aging Genetics, Evolution and Environment University College London       Science Writer … Continue reading

It’s Not What You Know…

It’s not what you know, but who you know. It is something of a cliché, but in a world where the social context of knowledge is becoming increasingly important. Think Reddit, Twitter,Facebook, Mendeley etc. The data, the information, seems only relevant if we have some kind of peer review, the “+1″, “like”, or … Continue reading

Breaking Down Technology Transfer Barriers

Breaking down the technical and legal barriers are essential if technology transfer from academia to industry is to be done efficiently and effectively, according to researchers in Spain. Antonio Hidalgo, Professor of Technology Strategy at the Technical University of Madrid and José Albors, Professor of Business Administration at the Technical … Continue reading

Climate Change and Digital Music

Information technology has a carbon footprint, that’s beyond doubt. Now, writing in a special issue of the Journal of Industrial Ecology, Christopher Weber, Jonathan Koomey and Scott Matthews in the US in work supported by grants from Microsoft Corporation and Intel Corporation have calculated that purchasing music digitally reduces the … Continue reading

Breaking Down Bayesian

Science is the river of life. And as each droplet of knowledge is added to the flow, it advances slightly, modifying what was previously known. The 1740’s saw Thomas Bayes, an English reverend, conduct a thought experiment that would impress any modern day psychic. With no more than an assistant, … Continue reading

The Formation Of Man

The New Year never fails to rein in an eclectic range of resolutions, from the life changing to the downright dumbfounding; nevertheless these feats are attempted in the hope o development. Whether wishful thinking or willpower is permeating 2013’s endeavors, commendable personal development has already been achieved and all before … Continue reading

Are You A Man or A Mouse?

Are you a man or a mouse?

How the Mus musculus is furthering our understanding of human inherited diseases In 1907 Cuenot mated two yellow mice giving an unexpected, unmendelian 2:1 offspring ratio. 5 years later Castle and Little repeated the experiment, determining that 1 in every fourth offspring had died during embryonic development. Nearly a century … Continue reading

Do You Socialise While Scrobbling?

The Last.fm music website apparently has about 40 million active users around the world. The CBS-owned commercial site (and applications) lets you listen to many different kinds of music and has a music recommendation system called the “Audioscrobbler“. This scrobbling system builds a detailed profile of your musical tastes by … Continue reading

Alzheimer’s: Darkening Corners of Once Bright Minds

November 26th 1901 saw the German psychiatrist and neuropathologist, Alois Alzheimer, historically cement his observations of the first woman to ever be diagnosed with the condition, Auguste Deter, 51 years old.  ‘She sits on the bed with a helpless expression… she looked as if she didn’t understand the question… she … Continue reading

10 Things You Maybe Didn’t Know About Rainbows

Science correspondent David Bradley describes some interesting facts about rainbows that you may not have known: I am currently reading the most excellent “The Sun’s Heartbeat” by astronomy writer Bob Berman. It’s the kind of book I’d love to be able to write, informative, entertaining, engaging and witty. In it, … Continue reading

Carbon Emissions and Reproductive Health

Is there a link between carbon emissions in the developing world and reproductive health? High carbon emissions correlate with poorer reproductive health among women in nine countries of 74 assessed, according to US researchers. Conversely, economic development seems to have no significant association with female reproductive health. FangHsun Wei and Vijayan Pillai of … Continue reading

Is Ageing A Disease?

With mice being genetically engineered to live 26% longer than average, age-incidence of a broad spectrum of age-related disease being reduced in the lab and dietary restriction significantly increasing lifespan across species, research seeking treatment for ageing is in action. Telomere modification, free radical level reduction and human growth hormone … Continue reading