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Aug 8, 2020

NSD2 shapes the program of cell senescence [image] Science News

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, chemistry, genetics, life extension, science

NSD2 is the fourth protective factor of cellular senescence that our team has identified,” said Professor Mitsuyoshi Nakao. “With the discovery that NSD2 protects against cellular senescence, this study clarifies a basic mechanism of aging.


Researchers from Kumamoto University in Japan have used comprehensive genetic analysis to find that the enzyme NSD2, which is known to regulate the actions of many genes, also works to block cell aging. Their experiments revealed 1) inhibition of NSD2 function in normal cells leads to rapid senescence and 2) that there is a marked decrease in the amount of NSD2 in senescent cells. The researchers believe their findings will help clarify the mechanisms of aging, the development of control methods for maintaining NSD2 functionality, and age-related pathophysiology.

As the cells of the body continue to divide (cell reproduction), their function eventually declines and they stop growing. This cellular senescence is an important factor in health and longevity. Cell aging can also be stimulated when genomic DNA is damaged by physical stress, such as radiation or ultraviolet rays, or by chemical stress that occurs with certain drugs. However, the detailed mechanisms of aging are still unknown. Cell aging can be beneficial when a cell becomes cancerous; it prevents malignant changes by causing cellular senescence. On the other hand, it makes many diseases more likely with age. It is therefore important that cell aging is properly controlled.

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Aug 8, 2020

Coronavirus severely restricts Antarctic science

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, science

Keeping Covid out of Antarctica means little research will be done on the continent in 2020–2021.

Aug 8, 2020

Materials science researchers develop first electrically injected laser

Posted by in categories: computing, science

Materials science researchers, led by electrical engineering professor Shui-Qing “Fisher” Yu, have demonstrated the first electrically injected laser made with germanium tin.

Used as a semiconducting material for circuits on , the could improve micro-processing speed and efficiency at much lower costs.

In tests, the laser operated in pulsed conditions up to 100 kelvins, or 279 degrees below zero Fahrenheit.

Aug 7, 2020

New science behind biodegradable algae-based flip-flops

Posted by in categories: biological, chemistry, science, sustainability

As the world’s most popular shoe, flip-flops account for a troubling percentage of plastic waste that ends up in landfills, on seashores and in our oceans. Scientists at the University of California San Diego have spent years working to resolve this problem, and now they have taken a step farther toward accomplishing this mission.

Sticking with their chemistry, the team of researchers formulated , made from algae oil, to meet commercial specifications for midsole shoes and the foot-bed of flip-flops. The results of their study are published in Bioresource Technology Reports and describe the team’s successful development of these sustainable, consumer-ready and .

The research was a collaboration between UC San Diego and startup company Algenesis Materials—a and technology company. The project was co-led by graduate student Natasha Gunawan from the labs of professors Michael Burkart (Division of Physical Sciences) and Stephen Mayfield (Division of Biological Sciences), and by Marissa Tessman from Algenesis. It is the latest in a series of recent research publications that collectively, according to Burkart, offer a complete solution to the plastics problem—at least for polyurethanes.

Aug 7, 2020

Episode 10 — The Case for Mars Polar Science

Posted by in categories: climatology, science, space travel

Great interview with planetary scientist Isaac Smith, an expert on Mars polar science at York University in Toronto. Well worth a listen.


Three spacecraft are currently en route to Mars, but none will visit the poles. Yet Mars’ poles drive much of the Martian climate. And their understanding is key to deciphering what might have been happening on the Red planet some 3.5 billion years ago when it had lakes, deltas, rivers, and perhaps even transient oceans. I’m very pleased to welcome planetary scientist Isaac B. Smith of York University in Toronto — an expert on Mars polar science and exploration — to discuss the need for a Martian polar lander as well as a broader look at Mars science.

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Aug 3, 2020

Crew Dragon Returns to Earth | The State of Science

Posted by in categories: business, science, space travel

On August 2nd, the SpaceX crew dragon that launched on May 30th returned to Earth with the two NASA astronauts it brought to the ISS. With the first American space launch complete, the US has now advanced tremendously in its manned spaceflight capabilities.

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Jul 30, 2020

Science Explains How Lost Dogs Can Always Find Their Way Home

Posted by in categories: habitats, science

To learn more about the science behind a dog’s ability to find its way home, researchers tracked the 27 hunting dogs representing 10 breeds as they roamed the woods.

Jul 29, 2020

World’s First Lab Grown Bacon | The State of Science

Posted by in categories: business, food, science, sustainability

In this state of science video, we talk about how the company Higher Steaks has created the world’s first lab-grown bacon. This adds to humanity’s arsenal of lab-grown meat and is a step towards sustainability both in terms of saving the planet and in terms of the decreasing pig supply.

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Jul 29, 2020

A Crazier Crazy Straw for Science

Posted by in categories: science, transportation

What do the loopy straws that children like to sip drinks through have in common with cutting-edge science? Ask Ryan Murphy and his colleagues at the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), where the team has thought up a creative way to explore the properties of fluids under extreme conditions.

The team invented a device that can push fluids through a narrow tube at the velocity of a car hurtling down a rural interstate — about 110 km per hour. This might not sound overly fast to a road tripper, but the tube’s inner diameter is typically 100 micrometers — about the thickness of a human hair. Scaled up, that would be like a train hurtling through a subway tunnel about 100 times faster than a rocket blasting its way into orbit.

To add to the fun, the meter-long tube is coiled up like a spring, so the fluid careens around loop after three-centimeter-wide loop, as though that rocketing subway were a blindingly fast roller coaster that turns somersaults from start to finish.

Jul 25, 2020

Germany’s coronavirus response is a master class in science communication

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, education, science

What changed things for Germany? A handful of prominent scientists communicating regularly and openly with the public. (via CNBC)…and a leader who is a scientist.

Germany, like many other countries, had a contingent of people who fought lockdowns and argued that Covid-19 was a hoax. But it also had a handful of prominent scientists communicating regularly and openly with the public. That played a huge role in drowning out rumors and misinformation, locals tell CNBC.

“We have a great educational system and everyone has access to it,” said Dennis Traub, a tech worker in Hamburg, Germany. “So I believe that many people and the majority listened to both sides and one of those sides sounded much more reasonable.”

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