Open Questions Chronicle

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Volume 9, Number 39
September 27, 2010


Physical sciences
Technology
Life sciences
Neuroscience, psychology, behavior
Health and medicine
Physical sciences

Ultrahigh-energy cosmic rays
Extrasolar planets
Large Hadron Collider
Ocean acidification
Chiral spin liquids
Methane on Mars
Ancient star containing barium
Dark matter
Core-mantle boundary
Unexpected correlations in proton collision debris
Primordial cosmic magnetic field
Hydrocarbons on Titan
LOFAR telescope
Sea level rise
Star-forming regions
Earthquakes
Mantle plumes and the Siberian traps
Abrupt North Atlantic 1970s cooling
Coronal mass ejections
Barred spiral galaxies
Black strings
Tests of relativity
Star formation in cold molecular clouds
Climate modeling
Global warming

Technology

Plasmonics
Carbon nanotubes
Magneto-optical storage
Nanotechnology
Graphene
Controlled fusion
Hydrogen production
Fuel cells
Spintronics
Quantum information

Life sciences

Actin and intercellular communication
Sexual selection
Six3 and retinal development
Dendritic cells
Immune system regulation
Origins of life
Neanderthals
Small genomes
Intrinsically disordered proteins
Zyxin and cytoskeleton repair
Oxytocin
Salmonella and the immune system
Protein crystallization
Bacterial drug resistance mechanism
Mitosis
Long non-coding RNA and pre-mRNA splicing
Evolution of vertebrate jaws
Epigenetic effects of stress
Proteome map
Origins of animal body plans

Neuroscience, psychology, and behavior

Oscillatory phase coupling of neurons
Modeling brain metabolism
Endocannabinoids
NMDA receptors and muscarinic acetylcholine receptors
Genes affecting reasoning and general intelligence
Informatio storage in gene circuits
Broca's region and language
Synapses
Evolution of altruism
Self-excitation of orexin-releasing neurons
Learning enhancement
Brain-imaging studies
Object recognition
Imprinting and selfishness
Memory enhancement with transcranial direct current stimulation
Nicotinic acetylcholine receptors
The insula and effects of physiological state on emotion

Health and medicine

Obesity
Cardiovascular disease
AIDS
Cancer
Diabetes
Tuberculosis
Parkinson's disease
Alzheimer's disease
Cancer biology
Rheumatoid arthritis
Dementia
Malaria
Stem cells
Hepatitis C
SIRT1 and Alzheimer's disease
Multiple sclerosis



Physical sciences


Ultrahigh-energy cosmic rays

References:
  1. September 20, 2010 - Tuning In to Highest Energy Cosmic Rays
  2. September 23, 2010 - Galaxy Cluster Collisions Energize Cosmic Rays
  3. October 7, 2010 - Merging galaxies leave "radio relic" of high-energy cosmic rays
Background


Extrasolar planets

References:
  1. September 20, 2010 - First Habitable Exoplanet Could Be Discovered by May
  2. September 23, 2010 - Dust models paint alien's view of the solar system - also here, here, here
  3. September 24, 2010 - Destroyer of worlds
  4. September 29, 2010 - What Aliens Would See When Spying On Our Solar System
  5. September 30, 2010 - Alien's-Eye View
Background


Large Hadron Collider

References:
  1. September 20, 2010 - The Large Hadron Collider cranks up the collisions
Background


Ocean acidification

References:
  1. September 20, 2010 - Shellfish feel the burn: damage linked to atmospheric CO2
Background, Background


Chiral spin liquids

References:
  1. September 20, 2010 - Physicists find evidence of new state of matter in a simple oxide
Background


Methane on Mars

References:
  1. September 20, 2010 - Mystery on Mars: Why Methane Fades Away So Fast
  2. September 21, 2010 - Mars methane lasts less than a year - also here, here
Background


Ancient star containing barium

References:
  1. September 20, 2010 - Ancient star poses galactic puzzle
Background


Dark matter

References:
  1. September 20, 2010 - Nothing there, yet
Background


Core-mantle boundary

References:
  1. September 20, 2010 - Earth's core, mantle melt together at their boundary
  2. September 23, 2010 - Scientists recreate extreme conditions deep in Earth's interior
Background


Unexpected correlations in proton collision debris

References:
  1. September 21, 2010 - LHC Detects Evidence of New Physics
  2. September 21, 2010 - Large Hadron Collider scientists spot potential new discovery: CERN
  3. September 21, 2010 - Atom smasher scientists spot potential new discovery: CERN - also here
  4. September 21, 2010 - LHC experiment observes potentially new and interesting effect
  5. September 22, 2010 - LHC spots possible signs of a high-energy particle soup
  6. September 22, 2010 - 'Ridge-like' structure spotted in proton-proton collisions
  7. September 22, 2010 - CERN scientists spot potential discovery
  8. September 22, 2010 - Large Hadron Collider signal 'may show big bang conditions'
  9. September 23, 2010 - Physicists discover curious connections in the subatomic debris of LHC collisions
  10. September 23, 2010 - Curious correlations seen by CMS
  11. September 29, 2010 - A step closer to Big Bang conditions? - also here, here
Background


Primordial cosmic magnetic field

References:
  1. September 21, 2010 - Universal, primordial magnetic fields discovered in deep space
  2. September 24, 2010 - Primordial Magnetic Field May Permeate the Universe
Background


Hydrocarbons on Titan

References:
  1. September 21, 2010 - Research confirms oily 'water' on Saturn's moon
Background


LOFAR telescope

References:
  1. September 21, 2010 - Astronomers hope to answer universe questions with LOFAR telescope
Background


Sea level rise

References:
  1. September 21, 2010 - Scientists find 20 years of deep water warming leading to sea level rise
Background, Background


Star-forming regions

References:
  1. September 22, 2010 - Breaking Waves in the Stellar Lagoon - also here
  2. September 22, 2010 - Two New Celestial Photo-Ops
  3. September 22, 2010 - Swirls and Whorls Shine in a Stellar Lagoon
  4. September 22, 2010 - Hubble Telescope Captures Heavenly Vision of Lagoon Nebula
  5. September 23, 2010 - "Melting" Nebula
  6. September 23, 2010 - Starry Lagoon
  7. October 15, 2010 - Image: Hubble's lagoon
Background


Earthquakes

References:
  1. September 22, 2010 - The Dust That Drives Earthquakes
  2. September 22, 2010 - Video simulations of real earthquakes made available to worldwide network
Background


Mantle plumes and the Siberian traps

References:
  1. September 22, 2010 - The mantle plume model and Siberian 'traps'
Background


Abrupt North Atlantic 1970s cooling

References:
  1. September 22, 2010 - When the North Atlantic caught a chill
  2. September 22, 2010 - Ocean cooling contributed to mid-20th century global warming hiatus - also here, here, here
  3. September 22, 2010 - Pollution not to blame for rapid ocean cooling, says Phil Jones paper
  4. September 22, 2010 - Ocean cold snap paused global warming in 70s: study
  5. September 22, 2010 - Fresh water may have cooled North Atlantic
  6. September 22, 2010 - Sudden sea surface temperature drops explain 70's cooling
  7. September 24, 2010 - Past Ocean Cold Snap More Dramatic Than Thought
Background, Background


Coronal mass ejections

References:
  1. September 22, 2010 - Solar Shocker: Sun Storms Change Directions
  2. September 23, 2010 - The Sun Can Lob Curveballs
Background


Barred spiral galaxies

References:
  1. September 22, 2010 - An Elegant Galaxy in an Unusual Light - also here
  2. September 22, 2010 - Distant Spiral Galaxy May Reveal Clues About Our Milky Way
Background


Black strings

References:
  1. September 22, 2010 - Black Strings: Black Holes With Extra Dimensions
Background


Tests of relativity

References:
  1. September 23, 2010 - Relativity comes down to Earth
  2. September 23, 2010 - Superaccurate Clocks Confirm Your Hair Is Aging Faster Than Your Toenails
  3. September 23, 2010 - Everything really is relative - also here
  4. September 23, 2010 - Einstein's time dilation apparent when obeying the speed limit
  5. September 23, 2010 - Time Moves Faster Upstairs
  6. September 23, 2010 - Einstein's Relativity Affects Aging on Earth
  7. September 23, 2010 - Ultraprecise Clock Rates Vary with Tiny Differences in Speed and Elevation
  8. September 23, 2010 - Pair of aluminum atomic clocks reveal Einstein's relativity at a personal scale
  9. September 24, 2010 - Time passes quicker for high flyers
  10. September 24, 2010 - Relativity with a human touch
  11. September 25, 2010 - Ultraprecise clock helps cut relativity down to size
  12. September 27, 2010 - General relatively measured over tiny scales
  13. October 11, 2010 - Time dilation seen at just 10 m/s
Background


Star formation in cold molecular clouds

References:
  1. September 23, 2010 - Shining Starlight on the Dark Cocoons of Star Birth - also here, here, here
  2. September 23, 2010 - Dense cores inside interstellar clouds do shine: a widespread phenomenon
  3. September 23, 2010 - New astronomical phenomenon: Coreshine provides insight into stellar births
  4. September 23, 2010 - Recently Discovered Phenomenon Could Reveal How Stars Are Born
  5. September 30, 2010 - A Light in the Darkness
  6. October 7, 2010 - "Coreshine" in a Cloud's Black Heart
Background


Climate modeling

References:
  1. September 23, 2010 - Climate Tackles Clouds
Background


Global warming

References:
  1. September 24, 2010 - Annual Arctic ice minimum reached
Background



Technology


Plasmonics

References:
  1. September 20, 2010 - Nano antenna concentrates light: Intensity increases 1,000-fold
Background


Carbon nanotubes

References:
  1. September 20, 2010 - Ultrasensitive biosensor can detect proteins, aid in cancer diagnosis
Background


Magneto-optical storage

References:
  1. September 21, 2010 - Progress toward terabit-rate high-density recording
Background


Nanotechnology

References:
  1. September 22, 2010 - Harnessing the potential of the oddly-shaped molecule
  2. September 23, 2010 - Cilia revolution: Man-made, hair-like structures poised to change industry paradigms - also here
  3. September 23, 2010 - Caltech researchers design a new nanomesh material
  4. September 23, 2010 - Solvent-mediated end-to-end assembly of gold nanorods
Background


Graphene

References:
  1. September 22, 2010 - Research gives insight into using graphene in electronics
  2. September 23, 2010 - Graphene makes 'supercapacitor'
  3. September 24, 2010 - Floating and spinning graphene
Background


Controlled fusion

References:
  1. September 23, 2010 - Livermore lab nears launch of fusion quest
Background


Hydrogen production

References:
  1. September 23, 2010 - Researchers discover less expensive low-temperature catalyst for hydrogen purification
Background


Fuel cells

References:
  1. September 24, 2010 - New kind of fuel cell delivers energy and fine chemicals with no waste from renewable raw materials
Background


Spintronics

References:
  1. September 24, 2010 - Island adventure
Background


Quantum information

References:
  1. September 26, 2010 - Researchers convert quantum signals to telecom wavelengths, increase memory times - also here
Background



Life sciences


Actin and intercellular communication

References:
  1. September 20, 2010 - Nanotubes help cells pass messages
  2. September 21, 2010 - Animal cells communicate electrically over long distances via nanotubes
Background


Sexual selection

References:
  1. September 20, 2010 - Shake your tail feather: Sexual signaling in birds
Background


Six3 and retinal development

References:
  1. September 20, 2010 - Scientists show Six3 gene essential for retinal development
Background


Dendritic cells

References:
  1. September 20, 2010 - Protein behind development of immune system sentinels identified
Background


Immune system regulation

References:
  1. September 20, 2010 - New pathway regulates immune balance and offers promising drug development target
Background


Origins of life

References:
  1. September 21, 2010 - Frigid cocoons may have incubated earliest replicating molecules
  2. September 21, 2010 - Life on Earth May Have Had an Icy Start
Background


Neanderthals

References:
  1. September 21, 2010 - Neanderthals more advanced than previously thought
  2. September 21, 2010 - Volcanoes wiped out the Neanderthals?
  3. September 22, 2010 - Volcanoes Killed Off Neanderthals, Study Suggests
  4. September 22, 2010 - Neanderthals More Intelligent Than Thought
  5. September 24, 2010 - Neandertals blasted out of existence, archaeologists propose
  6. September 24, 2010 - Neanderthals were able to 'develop their own tools'
  7. September 30, 2010 - Volcanoes wiped Neanderthals out, research suggests
Background


Small genomes

References:
  1. September 21, 2010 - Genomic 'haircut' makes world's tiniest genome even smaller: research
Background


Intrinsically disordered proteins

References:
  1. September 21, 2010 - New research divines structure for class of proteins
Background


Zyxin and cytoskeleton repair

References:
  1. September 21, 2010 - Study offers first explanation of how cells rapidly repair and maintain structure
Background


Oxytocin

References:
  1. September 21, 2010 - Hormone oxytocin improves social cognition but only in less socially proficient individuals
Background, Background


Salmonella and the immune system

References:
  1. September 22, 2010 - Immune response feeds parasite
  2. September 22, 2010 - Salmonella causes, then feeds off gut inflammation
  3. September 22, 2010 - Salmonella creates environment in human intestines to foster its own growth
Background


Protein crystallization

References:
  1. September 22, 2010 - Berkeley lab scientists reveal path to protein crystallization
Background


Bacterial drug resistance mechanism

References:
  1. September 22, 2010 - Scientists reveal structure of dangerous bacteria's powerful multidrug resistance pump
  2. September 23, 2010 - Researchers identify structure that allows bacteria to resist drugs
Background


Mitosis

References:
  1. September 23, 2010 - Genetic switch underlies noisy cell division
Background


Long non-coding RNA and pre-mRNA splicing

References:
  1. September 23, 2010 - Cancer-associated long non-coding RNA regulates pre-mRNA splicing
Background, Background


Evolution of vertebrate jaws

References:
  1. September 24, 2010 - Researchers discover genetic clues to evolution of jaws in vertebrates
Background


Epigenetic effects of stress

References:
  1. September 24, 2010 - Stress can control our genes
Background


Proteome map

References:
  1. September 24, 2010 - Research team fully maps human proteome
Background


Origins of animal body plans

References:
  1. September 24, 2010 - Innovative solution to the evolution of form, depicting graphic steps from egg to human skeleton - also here, here
Background



Neuroscience, psychology, and behavior


Oscillatory phase coupling of neurons

References:
  1. September 20, 2010 - For neurons to work as a team, it helps to have a beat - also here
  2. September 21, 2010 - Cortical synchronization of neuron firing in multiple brain regions
Background


Modeling brain metabolism

References:
  1. September 20, 2010 - Study finds brain wolfs energy to stop thinking
Background, Background


Endocannabinoids

References:
  1. September 20, 2010 - Compound boosts marijuana-like chemical in the body to relieve pain at injury site
Background


NMDA receptors and muscarinic acetylcholine receptors

References:
  1. September 20, 2010 - Understanding brain function could lead to breakthrough Alzheimer's treatment
Background


Genes affecting reasoning and general intelligence

References:
  1. September 20, 2010 - Found: genes that make kids smart
Background


Informatio storage in gene circuits

References:
  1. September 20, 2010 - How Gene Circuits Store Information
  2. September 20, 2010 - How Gene Circuits Store Information
Background


Broca's region and language

References:
  1. September 21, 2010 - Complex brain landscape controls speech
Background


Synapses

References:
  1. September 21, 2010 - Brain cell communication: Why it's so fast
Background


Evolution of altruism

References:
  1. September 21, 2010 - Research sheds light on altruism: Digital evolution techniques help show how species become altruistic - also here
Background, Background


Self-excitation of orexin-releasing neurons

References:
  1. September 21, 2010 - Orexin wakes up your brain by self-excitation mechanism
Background, Background


Learning enhancement

References:
  1. September 22, 2010 - Less pain for learning gain: Research offers a strategy to increase learning with less effort
Background


Brain-imaging studies

References:
  1. September 22, 2010 - Vegetative state patients may soon be able to communicate
Background


Object recognition

References:
  1. September 22, 2010 - Neuroscientists reveal how the brain learns to recognize objects
Background


Imprinting and selfishness

References:
  1. September 22, 2010 - Researcher links maternal genes to selfish behavior
Background, Background, Background


Memory enhancement with transcranial direct current stimulation

References:
  1. September 23, 2010 - Name recall get a big shock
Background


Nicotinic acetylcholine receptors

References:
  1. September 23, 2010 - The nicotine addiction
Background


The insula and effects of physiological state on emotion

References:
  1. September 24, 2010 - Stomach-churning experiment not for the faint of heart
Background



Health and medicine


Obesity

References:
  1. September 20, 2010 - Obesity in children linked to common cold virus
  2. September 20, 2010 - Childhood viral infection may be a cause of obesity
  3. September 22, 2010 - When exercise just isn't enough
  4. September 23, 2010 - Three square meals may beat mini-meals for dieters
Background


Cardiovascular disease

References:
  1. September 20, 2010 - Pollution takes its toll on the heart
  2. September 20, 2010 - Seasonal flu vaccine lowers risk of first heart attack
  3. September 20, 2010 - Flu shot linked to reduced heart attack risk
  4. September 21, 2010 - Adverse cardiac events are rare after a negative cardiac CTA exam, study suggests
  5. September 21, 2010 - 'Pre-diabetes' raises risk of heart attack, stroke
  6. September 23, 2010 - Molecular 'playbook' for halting heart failure risk factor uncovered
  7. September 24, 2010 - Surgery can lead to long-term reduction in stroke risk
Background


AIDS

References:
  1. September 20, 2010 - Prototype vaginal gel fails to block HIV: study
  2. September 23, 2010 - Non-stick coating of a protein found in semen reduces HIV infection
Background


Cancer

References:
  1. September 20, 2010 - Cholesterol drug may have role in treating prostate cancer
  2. September 20, 2010 - New driver of T cell leukemia growth
  3. September 20, 2010 - Effects of chemoradiation therapy by using capecitabine on gastric cancer patients
  4. September 20, 2010 - Dual-energy mammography: Visualizing victory over breast cancer
  5. September 20, 2010 - Stool DNA test for colon cancer not yet cost-effective
  6. September 20, 2010 - Roche's Avastin fails in post-surgery colon study
  7. September 20, 2010 - Roche's Avastin fails in late-stage colon cancer study
  8. September 21, 2010 - Vitamin D protects against obesity-induced endometrial cancer, researchers say
  9. September 21, 2010 - 'Synthetic lethality' strategy improves molecularly targeted cancer therapy
  10. September 22, 2010 - Toward the first nose drops to treat brain cancer
  11. September 22, 2010 - Largest-ever breast cancer surgery study published
  12. September 22, 2010 - Study finds mammograms offer modest benefit - also here
  13. September 22, 2010 - Mammograms' Value in Cancer Fight at Issue
  14. September 23, 2010 - Mammograms have only 'modest' impact on breast cancer: study
  15. September 23, 2010 - Declining breast cancer incidence in Canada with declining HRT usage
  16. September 23, 2010 - Norwegian research questions benefit of mammograms
  17. September 23, 2010 - Breast cancer rates fell with hormone therapy drop
  18. September 24, 2010 - Researchers create first molecule blocks key component of cancer genes' on-off switch - also here, here
  19. September 24, 2010 - EU agency reviews Roche's Avastin in breast cancer
Background


Diabetes

References:
  1. September 20, 2010 - Kids and diabetes risk: Do chromosomes hold new clues?
  2. September 20, 2010 - In pregnancy, a large waistline and high triglycerides: Early screen for gestational diabetes
  3. September 20, 2010 - Astra, BMS diabetes drug hits targets in new trial
  4. September 22, 2010 - Smokers show elevated diabetes risk
  5. September 24, 2010 - Diabetes risk may fall as magnesium intake climbs
Background


Tuberculosis

References:
  1. September 20, 2010 - Elderly might not benefit from TB vaccines in development
  2. September 21, 2010 - Evolution in the urban jungle
  3. September 22, 2010 - Aeras and Crucell announce Phase II clinical trial start in Kenya
  4. September 23, 2010 - City living helped humans evolve immunity to TB
  5. September 23, 2010 - New TB vaccine enters clinical testing
Background


Parkinson's disease

References:
  1. September 20, 2010 - Protein may advance Parkinson's by preventing neurons from clearing debris
Background


Alzheimer's disease

References:
  1. September 20, 2010 - Alzheimer's brain protein tangles offer clue on worsening
  2. September 21, 2010 - Scientists identify a new target for Alzheimer's disease
  3. September 22, 2010 - Brain-protecting enzyme may fight Alzheimer's
  4. September 23, 2010 - Team of researchers finds possible new genetic risk for Alzheimer's disease
  5. September 24, 2010 - Entirely new drug for Alzheimer's now being tested on patients
Background


Cancer biology

References:
  1. September 21, 2010 - Targeted therapy triggers complex mechanism of resistance
  2. September 21, 2010 - Stress before cancer therapy could help deadly cells survive treatment, lead to disease recurrence
  3. September 23, 2010 - Researchers discover new signaling pathway that controls cell development and cancer
  4. September 24, 2010 - Melanoma uses body's immune system to spread to lungs
Background


Rheumatoid arthritis

References:
  1. September 21, 2010 - CRP genetic variants crucial in interpreting inflammatory disease activity
Background


Dementia

References:
  1. September 21, 2010 - No link seen between moderate drinking, dementia
  2. September 22, 2010 - For sufferers of an early-onset dementia, career choice may determine location of disease in brain
Background


Malaria

References:
  1. September 22, 2010 - Human malarial parasite came from gorillas
  2. September 22, 2010 - Main malaria parasite came to humans from gorillas, not chimps
  3. September 22, 2010 - Human Malaria Parasite Arose from Gorillas, Not Chimps
  4. September 22, 2010 - Malaria parasite crossed to Man from gorilla: scientists
  5. September 22, 2010 - Study: Malaria sprang from gorillas to humanity
  6. September 22, 2010 - Malaria comes courtesy of gorillas, DNA study shows
  7. September 23, 2010 - Malaria crossed to humans from gorillas
  8. September 24, 2010 - Malaria's newest pathway into human cells identified
Background


Stem cells

References:
  1. September 22, 2010 - Researchers engineer adult stem cells that do not age - also here, here
  2. September 22, 2010 - Northwestern first site open for spinal cord stem cell trial - also here
  3. September 22, 2010 - Stem cell technique offers new potential to treat blindness
Background


Hepatitis C

References:
  1. September 22, 2010 - Taribavirin offers a safe, effective alternative for chronic hepatitis C
Background


SIRT1 and Alzheimer's disease

References:
  1. September 22, 2010 - Acetylation may contribute to dementia and Alzheimer's disease
Background


Multiple sclerosis

References:
  1. September 22, 2010 - Novartis gains FDA approval for new MS drug - also here
  2. September 23, 2010 - T cells attack neurons in MS
  3. September 23, 2010 - U.S. approves first pill for multiple sclerosis
  4. September 23, 2010 - Imaging study provides new view of multiple sclerosis
Background


Copyright © 2010 by Charles Daney, All Rights Reserved