Sunday, April 15, 2007

Science Sunday: Wrap-up of recent advancements in science from EurekAlert!

Quantum secrets of photosynthesis revealed:
The mystery of how nature, through photosynthesis, is able to transfer solar energy through molecular systems with nearly 100-percent efficiency appears to have been solved. A study led by researchers with the US Department of Energy's Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory and the University of California at Berkeley reports that the answer lies in quantum mechanical effects.

Researchers use smallest pipette to reveal freezing 'dance' of nanoscale drops:
Using what is thought to be the world's smallest pipette, two researchers at the US Department of Energy's Brookhaven National Laboratory have shown that tiny droplets of liquid metal freeze much differently than their larger counterparts. This study, focused on droplets just a billionth of a trillionth of a liter in size, is published in the April 15, 2007, online edition of Nature Materials.

Information processing in the central nervous system: the signalling system controlling movement:
Research by Renee Theiss, Jason Kuo and C. J. Heckman, which has just been published in the Journal of Physiology, throws light on how information is processed in the central nervous system to drive movement. The findings are relevant to understanding mechanisms underlying movement and disorders such as spinal cord injury and motor neurone disease.

Microbes start immune response by sneaking inside cells:
Bacteria that insert themselves inside key front-line immune cells in mice can trigger a strong immune response, according to a new University of Michigan study published online in Immunity. The findings add to an emerging new picture of the immune response that points the way to more effective vaccines and more precisely targeted drugs for autoimmune diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis.

Will nanotechnology revolutionize medicine?:
On Monday, April 23, 2007, Dr. Samuel I. Stupp, a leading nanomedicine scientist from Northwestern University will present the findings from his latest research in applying nanotechnology to jump start cell regeneration. Dr. Stupp also will share his predictions on the long-term potential of using nanotechnology to treat specific medical conditions.



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