Billionaire Andrew Carnegie actually tried to put a stop to World War I by bribing Kaiser Wilhelm II. Sometimes referred to as ‘The war to end all war… —> Read More
Genetic Access Control was developed to look at the genetic profile held by DNA analysis firm 23andMe. It can check a user’s ethnicity, gender or disease risk before they access a website. —> Read More
Cecil the lion’s death was senseless. But is legal trophy hunting a sensible form of conservation? —> Read More
Vitamin B3 comes from SPACE: Niacin finding supports theories of extraterrestrial origins for life on Earth
Researchers at Nasa’s Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Maryland showed how vitamin B3, a building block for life, can be made in space when ice is bombarded with radiation. —> Read More
The saying “power tends to corrupt, and absolute power corrupts absolutely” is so pervasive it’s taken as fact. —> Read More
A solid night’s sleep is known to protect your memories from bouts of forgetfulness — and now we know it’s making them more accessible, too.
New research from the University of Exeter and the Basque Centre for Cognition, Brain and Language is taking our understanding of the relationship between sleep and the brain’s memory functions to the next level, exploring the idea that memories could be enhanced and made more available for use the following day.
“Sleep almost doubles our chances of remembering previously unrecalled material,” researcher Nicolas Dumay said in a statement. “The post-sleep boost in memory accessibility may indicate that some memories are sharpened overnight. This supports the notion that, while asleep, we actively rehearse information flagged as important.”
For their research, Dumay and his team tracked subjects’ memories of unique nonsense words that they were exposed to either before a full night’s sleep or an equal-length period of being awake. The subjects were asked to recall the nonsense words immediately after hearing them and then again after the period of sleep or wakefulness.
The researchers found that sleep was actually more successful than wakefulness in helping subjects rescue their memories of the words. Dumay thinks that this memory boost comes from the hippocampus, which is in charge of “unzipping” recent information and replaying it to other parts of the brain to create a captured memory.
While more research is needed to understand the functional significance of this finding, Dumay’s work is a step in the right direction. Another recent study was able to qualify the opposite effect — that a lack of sleep can make it harder to remember and recall what you already know. Clearly there’s no denying that sleep it crucial for a healthy brain, and now we have even more —> Read More
The bizarre tower built to test the elevator of the future: Willy Wonka-style lift will use magnets to pull cabins up, down and even SIDEWAYS
The 761 ft-tall (232 metre) concrete tube (pictured) has been built in Rottweil, Germany, by ThyssenKrupp to put its ‘maglev’ lift technology through its paces. —> Read More
Pfc. Donald Burpee spent four months of 1975 living at Camp Lejeune, a Marine Corps base in North Carolina. On July 7 of this year, at the age of 59, he lost an eight-year battle with kidney cancer — one of a number of illnesses linked with exposure to the toxic chemicals that tainted the drinking water at Camp Lejeune between the 1950s and 1980s.
The Department of Veterans Affairs provided Burpee with medical coverage, including hospice, but repeatedly denied his claims for disability benefits. Burpee died not knowing whether his wife, four children and four grandchildren would be taken care of in the future.
“They throw up so many roadblocks to you, it’s unreal,” said Brenda Burpee, Donald’s widow.
Camp Lejeune’s water was contaminated by dozens of chemicals beginning in at least 1953, though it was only discovered in the early 1980s. The contamination has been traced to leaking underground storage tanks, industrial spills and the disposal of solvents from an on-base dry cleaner. Among the chemicals, trichloroethylene (TCE), perchloroethylene (PCE), vinyl chloride and benzene are thought to be the most damaging to human health. Lejeune veterans have reported ailments including prostate and bladder cancer, as well as chronic kidney disease. Kidney cancer is not uncommon.
Burpee’s family found the VA’s denial baffling. Given the science supporting a connection between exposure to TCE and kidney cancer, what was the rationale for withholding disability?
The family learned that the VA’s decision rested largely on the opinion of one of 22 experts recently hired by the agency to review veterans’ claims, part of what’s known as the subject matter expert program. The program was launched in 2013 to ensure “consistent and accurate decisions for Camp Lejeune veterans,” according to internal VA documents. But veterans’ advocates and scientists have raised troubling —> Read More
Dawn of the ROBO-NURSE: Toyota droid can fetch and carry medication, water and even the TV remote for patients
Toyota has shown off its Human Support Robot at a nursing and welfare exhibition in Yokohama, Japan. Engineers believe it could help disabled patients and the elderly around their homes. —> Read More
Resorting to the mobile phone for a quick injection of cash is on the rise as more online lenders join the market, a trend likely to lead more Australians into a spiral of debt, says QUT poverty researcher Professor Greg Marston. —> Read More