scientific breakthroughs

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The Biggest Physics Breakthroughs of the Year

We now know what's needed for secure quantum teleportation

(Newser) - Physics World has given its 2015 Breakthrough of the Year award to two scientists in China who demonstrated the requirements for secure quantum teleportation. Sadly, this doesn't mean you'll be able to randomly appear anywhere in the world, but it's pretty cool regardless. Basically, the research... More »

Schizophrenia Isn't Actually One Disease

Genetic research points to 8 disorders

(Newser) - Genetic research is paving the way to a "new era" in psychiatry, a researcher says, and that includes a different way of looking at schizophrenia: It's not one disease, but rather eight different ones, divided by their genetic profiles, a study suggests. Researchers reviewed genetic data from 4,... More »

This Tiny Copper Awl Is Rewriting History

Awl is oldest metal object ever found in Middle East

(Newser) - A small copper awl found in a woman's ancient grave in Israel is rewriting history. It's the oldest metal object ever found in the Middle East, and was probably owned by the apparently important 40-year-old woman buried with it in an extravagant Tel Tsaf grave, LiveScience reports. The... More »

Scientists Peak in Their Late 30s

Education may explain phenomenon

(Newser) - Good news for struggling scientists in their mid-30s: Your big breakthrough is probably still to come. So says a new study from the National Bureau of Economics Research, which finds that great scientists and inventors see their biggest moments of genius in their late 30s, the Atlantic reports. Education may... More »

'Brain Dead' Might Not Mean Brain Dead After All

Study detects activity even after a flat EEG line

(Newser) - An intriguing new study out of Montreal might redefine our concept of being "brain dead." Researchers for the first time think that the brain remains active even in patients whose EEG lines have gone flat, reports the Los Angeles Times . The study sprang from an unusual case in... More »

Study: Teeth Can Be Made From Urine

Chinese scientists managed to grow teeth-like structures

(Newser) - It's a scientific feat equal parts fascinating and stomach-turning: Scientists have been able to grow "rudimentary teeth" from urine, reports the BBC . Suspend your disbelief, and read on: The Chinese team's process, as outlined in Cell Regeneration Journal, had researchers harvest cells from urine and then convert... More »

Culprit in Irish Potato Famine Finally Discovered

Potato blight strain HERB-1 now apparently extinct

(Newser) - Nearly two centuries later, researchers believe they have identified the pathogen that led to Ireland's deadly potato famine. To make their discovery, British, German, and American scientists sequenced DNA from samples of dried potato leaves collected between 120 and 170 years ago, reports PhysOrg. They identified the particular strain... More »

Scientists Create New Ear —With 3D Printer

Project uses living cells

(Newser) - Scientists at Cornell have put 3D printing to an incredible medical use: They've made an ear remarkably similar to a natural one. Using 3D images of a human ear, they printed a mold to be injected with gel containing collagen from rats' tails, HealthDay reports. Next, they added cartilage... More »

What Scares Even the Medically Fearless

Suffocation ignites different form of fear: study

(Newser) - A much-studied woman was thought to be fearless—literally unable to experience the emotion after having part of her brain, the amygdala , damaged. Nothing from snakes to assaults could scare the woman, dubbed SM, until, in a recent study, she was faced with the feeling of suffocation. That prompted a... More »

Scientists Decode Banana Genome

Breakthrough could help keep millions fed in developing nations

(Newser) - They got the tomato in May, and now researchers have sequenced the banana genome, too. It's no mere scientific exercise—the feat could have huge implications in the developing world, explains the Los Angeles Times . Bananas are a vital source of food for hundreds of millions, but they're... More »

New Molecule Can Cavity-Proof Your Teeth

Researchers hope to add it to toothpaste, mouthwash

(Newser) - Say goodbye to cavities: Two researchers have discovered a new molecule that can kill cavity-producing bacteria and even make your teeth cavity-proof for hours, just by staying in your mouth for a full minute. The scientists named the molecule Keep 32, after the 32 teeth humans have, and they say... More »

10K Microbial Species Inhabit ... You

Research could help with treatment of disease

(Newser) - After five years of research, scientists have developed the first genetic map of the "human microbiome"—the more than 10,000 distinct microbial species that reside on and in your body. To do so, they collected tissue samples from 242 healthy Americans from different sites (or "habitats"... More »

Fountain of Youth for Your Brain: Slashing Calories

Calories-restricted diets release CREB1, the key to brain health

(Newser) - Scientists have long known that calorie-restricted diets— as in 30% fewer calories than normal —are a key to living longer and keeping your brain healthier. But now, for the first time, they think they know why: Apparently extreme calorie restriction triggers a brain protein, CREB1, that unlocks good genes... More »

Scientists Make Ebola Breakthrough

Create new synthetic vaccine that can survive long enough to be effective

(Newser) - Scientists have made a major breakthrough in the fight against Ebola, developing a new synthetic vaccine that successfully protected 80% of the mice into which it was injected. More importantly, the new vaccine can be dried down and frozen for storage, the BBC reports; past Ebola vaccines have used real... More »

Team Creates Lightest Material on the Planet

'Ultralight metallic microlattice' 100 times lighter than Styrofoam

(Newser) - A University of California team says it has created a material lighter than any other on Earth. The team's "ultralight metallic microlattice" is 100 times lighter than Styrofoam, and can sit atop a fluffy dandelion without crushing its seeds, the Los Angeles Times reports. The material is 99.... More »

Full-Body Prosthetic Could Allow Paralyzed to Walk

Sensory information can be sent directly to brain: scientists

(Newser) - If an international team of neuroscientists, engineers, and physiologists has its way, a quadriplegic will open the 2014 World Cup—by striding out onto the field. The team is working on a "prosthetic exoskeleton," a full-body device that would allow those who have been paralyzed to walk again.... More »

Video Gamers Unlock AIDS Molecule Puzzle

'They did it in less than 10 days': scientist

(Newser) - Video gamers have figured out a molecular puzzle that has long baffled scientists and may lead to crowd-sourced cures for AIDS and other illnesses, MSNBC reports. In a surprising step for so-called citizen science, players of the online game Foldit discovered the molecular structure of an enzyme in an AIDS-like... More »

Scientists: Time Travel Impossible

Researchers prove nothing can violate the 'traffic laws' of the universe

(Newser) - Wait, so Bill And Ted's Bogus Journey is suddenly implausible? A group of Hong Kong University of Science and Technology physicists say they've proven that time travel is physically impossible, reports Discovery News . They demonstrated that a single photon obeys Einstein's theory that nothing can travel faster... More »

Fountain of Youth Drug Found on Easter Island

Scientists think Rapamycin might be able to slow aging

(Newser) - Scientists think a drug derived from a chemical found in the soil of Easter Island may be able to slow down the aging process and extend human life spans. The drug Rapamycin, nicknamed the “forever young” drug, has been shown in experiments to counteract the effects of Hutchinson-Gilford Progerias... More »

You Could Soon Be Classified by Gut Bacteria

Scientists find just three distinct microbe ecosystems

(Newser) - Humans can be identified by their blood type, but soon they may also be able to be classified by their "bug type," the New York Times reports. Scientists have discovered that, in the guts of people recently studied, there are three distinct types of microbe ecosystems. Since gut... More »

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