Sci/tech

Researchers get embryonic stem cells from skin
December 23, 2007 03:17 PM - Reuters

A third team of researchers has found a way to convert an ordinary skin cell into valued embryonic-like stem cells, with the potential to grow batches of cells that can be directed to form any kind of tissue. Their study, published on Sunday in the journal Nature, shows the approach is not a rare fluke but in fact something that might make its way into everyday use.

FBI aims for world's largest biometrics database
December 22, 2007 06:40 AM - Reuters

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The FBI is embarking on a $1 billion project to build the world's largest computer database of biometrics to give the government more ways to identify people at home and abroad, the Washington Post reported on Friday. The FBI has already started compiling digital images of faces, fingerprints and palm patterns in its systems, the paper said.

China raises sunken merchant ship after 800 years
December 22, 2007 12:15 AM - Reuters

SHANGHAI (Reuters) - An 800-year-old merchant ship was raised from the bottom of the South China Sea on Saturday, loaded with artefacts that might confirm the existence of an ancient maritime trade route linking China and the West. The 30-meter (100-foot) wooden vessel, containing thousands of gold, silver and porcelain trading goods, was hoisted onto a barge in a steel cage as high as a three-storey building, a live broadcast by national television showed.

Dominion to spend $500 mln to cut water usage
December 21, 2007 03:48 PM - Reuters

NEW YORK (Reuters) - Dominion Resources said on Friday its Dominion New England unit would spend $500 million to reduce the amount of cooling water used by its Brayton Point Power Station.

Florida rules could open vast ethanol market
December 21, 2007 02:52 PM - Reuters

NEW YORK (Reuters) - Florida published new proposed motor fuel rules on Friday that could lead to wider ethanol blending in the country's third largest gasoline market. Limited ethanol blending had already been occurring in Florida, but the issuing of broad rules on gasoline containing ethanol is a step in creating the regulatory framework needed in opening up the market to the burgeoning U.S. ethanol industry.

GM recalls 275,936 vehicles
December 21, 2007 02:12 PM - Reuters

DETROIT (Reuters) - General Motors Corp said on Friday it is recalling 275,936 Cadillacs, Pontiacs and Saturms sold in the United States because of a fluid leak that could lead to loss of control of the vehicle. The recall involves vehicles 2005-2007 model year Cadillac CTS, CTS-V and STS, STS-V sedans, 2005-2007 model year Cadillac SRX crossovers, and 2006-2007 model year Pontiac Solstice and the 2007 Saturn Sky. GM spokeswoman Carolyn Markey said the seal on the rear axle pinion, which provides power to the rear wheels, could leak fluid, causing the wheels to seize and lock.

Report says uranium traces found on North Korean tubes
December 21, 2007 09:50 AM - Reuters

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - U.S. scientists found traces of enriched uranium on smelted aluminum tubing from North Korea, which appears to contradict its denials of a secret uranium-based nuclear program, the Washington Post reported on Friday. U.S. officials were concerned that disclosing the finding of the uranium traces on tubing samples provided by North Korea would further complicate diplomacy with the secretive country, the Post said, citing U.S. and diplomatic sources.

Revealed: The seven great "medical myths"
December 21, 2007 05:26 AM - Peter Griffiths, Reuters

LONDON (Reuters) - Reading in dim light won't damage your eyes, you don't need eight glasses of water a day to stay healthy and shaving your legs won't make the hair grow back faster. These well-worn theories are among seven "medical myths" exposed in a paper published on Friday in the British Medical Journal, which traditionally carries light-hearted features in its Christmas edition. Two U.S. researchers took seven common beliefs and searched the archives for evidence to support them.

Earliest stage of planet formation dated
December 20, 2007 06:37 PM - UC Davis Newswire

DAVIS, California - UC Davis researchers have dated the earliest step in the formation of the solar system -- when microscopic interstellar dust coalesced into mountain-sized chunks of rock -- to 4,568 million years ago, within a range of about 2,080,000 years. UC Davis postdoctoral researcher Frederic Moynier, Qing-zhu Yin, assistant professor of geology, and graduate student Benjamin Jacobsen established the dates by analyzing a particular type of meteorite, called a carbonaceous chondrite, which represents the oldest material left over from the formation of the solar system.

Some temper tantrums can be red flags: study
December 20, 2007 05:25 PM - Julie Steenhuysen, Reuters

CHICAGO (Reuters) - Children who have long, frequent or aggressive temper tantrums may be at risk of depression or disruptive disorders, U.S. researchers said on Thursday. They said tantrums were often the sign of a sick, hungry or overstimulated child. For most parents, they were a normal part of development and should be viewed as a teaching opportunity. But parents of children who hurt themselves or others and those who cannot calm themselves without help should seek medical help, they found. Healthy children tended to have less aggressive, and generally shorter tantrums.

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