Sci/tech

Good News About Ocean Methane
January 1, 2008 10:21 PM - University of California, Santa Barbara

Santa Barbara, Calif. - Methane, a potent greenhouse gas, is emitted in great quantities as bubbles from seeps on the ocean floor near Santa Barbara. About half of these bubbles dissolve into the ocean, but the fate of this dissolved methane remains uncertain.

Silence may lead to phantom noises misinterpreted as tinnitus
January 1, 2008 10:10 PM -

Brazil - Phantom noises, that mimic ringing in the ears associated with tinnitus, can be experienced by people with normal hearing in quiet situations, according to new research published in the January 2008 edition of Otolaryngology – Head and Neck Surgery.

New plant study reveals a 'deeply hidden' layer of the transcriptome
January 1, 2008 09:55 PM - Salk Institute for Biological Studies

La Jolla, CA – Cells keep a close watch over the transcriptome – the totality of all parts of the genome that are expressed in any given cell at any given time. Researchers at the Salk Institute for Biological Studies and the University of Missouri-Kansas City have now teamed up to peel back another layer of transcriptional regulation and gain new insight into how genomes work.

Deep-sea species' loss could lead to oceans' collapse, study suggests
January 1, 2008 09:49 PM - University of Marche, Italy

University of Marche, Italy - The loss of deep-sea species poses a severe threat to the future of the oceans, suggests a new report publishing early online on December 27th and in the January 8th issue of Current Biology, a publication of Cell Press. In a global-scale study, the researchers found some of the first evidence that the health of the deep sea, as measured by the rate of critical ecosystem processes, increases exponentially with the diversity of species living there.

Lack of deep sleep may increase risk of type 2 diabetes
January 1, 2008 09:37 PM - University of Chicago Newswire

Chicago - Suppression of slow-wave sleep in healthy young adults significantly decreases their ability to regulate blood-sugar levels and increases the risk of type 2 diabetes, report researchers at the University of Chicago Medical Center in the “Early Edition” of the Proceedings of the National Academy of Science.

Politics and graft undermine African health care
January 1, 2008 08:03 PM - Reuters

LIBREVILLE (Reuters) - The crowd of African women are tired and angry after hours waiting in the hot sun, but the officials will not vaccinate their children until the president inaugurates the campaign on state television. When he finally does so, half a day has been lost from the five-day vaccination scheme. It is a small reminder that, for health care in Africa, politics can be as decisive as poverty.

Men don't bother with testosterone pills: study
January 1, 2008 04:36 PM - Reuters

CHICAGO (Reuters) - Testosterone supplements don't do older men much good, Dutch researchers said on Tuesday. The amount of the hormone in the blood drops naturally as men age and is associated with a decline in physical strength and mental functioning as well as a fatter midsection.

Last year one of the safest to fly in decades
January 1, 2008 02:02 PM - Reuters

GENEVA (Reuters) - Last year was one of the safest in more than four decades to fly, with just 136 serious accidents occurring around the world, the Aircraft Crashes Record Office (ACRO) said on Tuesday. The private group, which documents air disasters worldwide, said that 965 people died in 2007 in accidents involving planes big enough to carry at least six passengers plus crew. That was 25 percent less than in 2006, and the lowest rate since 2004. The total number of accidents causing severe damage to an aircraft -- 136 -- was the smallest since 1963, making 2007 "one of the safest years since the last half century" for civil aviation, the Geneva-based ACRO said in a statement. The biggest accident last year was the July 17 crash of a TAM Brasil flight in Sao Paolo, followed by a Kenya Airways crash on May 5 and the crash off Ujung Pandang on January 1 of an Adam Air Indonesia flight, the group said.

Hostility tied to lower levels of antioxidants
January 1, 2008 01:24 PM - Reuters

NEW YORK (Reuters Health) - Hostility could increase people's risk of heart disease by depleting their levels of certain heart-healthy antioxidants, new research suggests. Oxidative stress occurs when production of free radicals, which are normal byproducts of metabolism, out paces the body's ability to neutralize them, resulting in tissue damage. It has been associated with heart disease, cancer and other illnesses. Antioxidant vitamins can help counteract oxidative stress, while cigarette smoking and pollution, among other factors, can increase it.

Painkillers do not raise risk of kidney disease: study
January 1, 2008 01:13 PM - Reuters

NEW YORK (Reuters Health) - Analgesics other than phenacetin are not associated with an increased risk of developing end-stage renal disease (ESRD) at a relatively young age, according to a study conducted in Germany. ESRD is the most advanced form of kidney disease. Earlier studies associated phenacetin use with renal disease, the study team explains. Phenacetin was withdrawn from the U.S. market in the 1980s after it was implicated in kidney damage and cancer. However, the association of other analgesics with ESRD remains controversial.

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