Sci/tech

Study: Lead levels below U.S. limits may harm children's brain function
December 2, 2007 06:12 PM - Susan Lang, Cornell Newswire

Cornell, New York - Even very small amounts of lead in children's blood -- amounts well below the current federal standard -- are associated with reduced IQ scores, finds a new, six-year Cornell study.

The study examined the effect of lead exposure on cognitive function in children whose blood-lead levels (BLLs) were below the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) standard of 10 micrograms per deciliter (mcg/dl) -- about 100 parts per billion. The researchers compared children whose BLLs were between 0 and 5 mcg/dl with children in the 5-10 mcg/dl range.

Purdue researchers obtain a snapshot clarifying how materials enter cells
December 2, 2007 05:34 PM - Paul Schaefer, ENN

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. - A group of Purdue University researchers has captured a key step in the metabolic process that allows materials, such as nutrients and drug treatments, to move in and out of cells.

A research team led by Jue Chen, an associate professor of biological sciences, obtained a snapshot of the tiny protein gate complex that opens and closes pathways through the protective cellular membrane. The gates, operated by small protein machines that push them open and closed, bring nutrients into the cell and flush out waste.

Citrus juice, vitamin C give staying power to green tea antioxidants
December 2, 2007 05:22 PM - Mario Ferruzzi, Purdue Newswire

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. - To get more out of your next cup of tea, just add juice. A new Purdue University study found that citrus juices enable more of green tea's unique antioxidants to remain after simulated digestion, making the pairing even healthier than previously thought.

The study compared the effect of various beverage additives on catechins, naturally occurring antioxidants found in tea. Results suggest that complementing green tea with either citrus juices or vitamin C likely increases the amount of catechins available for the body to absorb.

Cancer cells softer than healthy cells: study
December 2, 2007 01:18 PM - Will Dunham, Reuters

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Cancer cells, like ripe fruit, are much softer than healthy cells, scientists said on Sunday in a finding that could help doctors diagnose tumors and figure out which might be the deadliest.

Chicago Water Authority Purchases 30 All-Electric, Zero-Emissions Cars
December 1, 2007 02:13 PM -

Chicago - The Metropolitan Water Reclamation District of Greater Chicago, one of the nation’s largest water authorities, today announced that it has purchased 30 all-electric, low-speed MILES ZX40 cars as part of its strategy to slash fleet emissions and costs. The acquisition represents the largest purchase of MILES electric vehicles by a government agency. It is estimated that the vehicles will eliminate hundreds of thousands of pounds of greenhouse gas emissions each year in operation.

 

 

The ZX40 hatchbacks will be officially delivered to Water Authority Commissioners on Tuesday, November 27th at 12:00 p.m. during a ceremonial "plug-in," reflecting the fact that MILES cars and trucks are powered by industry-leading batteries that can be charged at any standard household or business outlet.

 

Innovative Geothermal Energy Project Launched in Canada
December 1, 2007 02:08 PM - , Green Progress

Dartmouth, Canada -  Construction has begun on a new innovative geo-thermal project called the Alderney 5 Advanced Geothermal Energy Project in Dartmouth, Canada.

  The Alderney 5 project is a $3.0-million energy-efficiency retrofit of five buildings on the Dartmouth waterfront that are owned by the Halifax Regional Municipality (HRM); Natural Resource Canada's Technology Early Action Measures program is providing $1 million. The project will save an estimated $250,000 per year in energy costs.

Smarter Storage for Solar and Wind Power
December 1, 2007 01:53 PM - , Green Progress

Australia - The Australian government's science branch has launched a major effort to develop new batteries to store energy. The project is led by CSIRO, the Australian Commonwealth's Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation, is Australia's national science agency.

Director of the CSIRO Energy Transformed National Research Flagship Dr John Wright said the Smart Storage battery technology aims to deliver a low cost, high performance, high power stationary energy storage solution suitable for grid-connected and remote applications.

Tunisia opens bank of genetic resources
December 1, 2007 12:37 PM - , SciDevNet

Tunisia's president, Zine El Abidine Ben Ali, inaugurated a national gene bank this month (11 November) to promote the development of sustainable agriculture in the country.

Located in Tunis, the National Gene Bank aims to preserve biological diversity and protect genetic resources, boost scientific research in agricultural biotechnology and promote sustainable genetic diversity for research into plant breeding and crop improvement.

YouTube Continues to Lead U.S. Online Video Market With 28 Percent Market Share
November 30, 2007 06:12 PM - Paul Schaefer, ENN

RESTON, Va. - According to new market research, nearly 75 percent of U.S. Internet users watched a video online (including both streaming video and progressive downloads), averaging three hours of video per person during the month. Google Sites, which includes YouTube.com, topped the September rankings with both the most unique video viewers and most videos viewed.

 

Google Continues to Lead Online Video Market

Turtle Conservation is Like its Name Sake: It’s Slow, But There are Big Rewards
November 30, 2007 05:26 PM - US Fish and Wildlife Service

WASHINGTON - Marine turtles have thrived for more than 100 million years.  But only the last few hundred years have given the huge, spectacular, prehistoric reptiles serious trouble. And that's where people like Earl Possardt, an international sea turtle specialist with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, come in.  Possardt is part of a bigger effort to rescue what remains of seven species of an animal that has managed, sometimes against formidable odds, to make it all the way into the 21st century.

In 2007 alone, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service directed international conservation grants totaling nearly $600,000 to 22 countries and conservation entities involved in sea turtle survival.  Most of the money has gone to efforts to restore or safeguard turtle nesting areas.  The funds also support conservation of the world's largest nesting loggerhead population in Oman, and help preserve one of the two remaining large leatherback nesting areas that occur along the West African coast.

 

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