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DNA test better than standard screens in identifying fetal chromosome abnormalities

February 27, 2014 11:15 am | by EurekAlert! | News | Comments

A study in this week's New England Journal of Medicine potentially has significant implications for prenatal testing for major fetal chromosome abnormalities. The study found that in a head-to-head comparison of noninvasive prenatal testing using cell free DNA to standard screening methods, testing significantly reduced the rate of...

Water is detected in a planet outside our solar system

February 27, 2014 11:01 am | by EurekAlert! | News | Comments

Water has been detected in the atmosphere of a planet outside our solar system with a new technique that could help researchers to learn how many planets with water, like Earth, exist throughout the universe. The astronomers detected the water in the atmosphere of a planet as massive as Jupiter that is orbiting the nearby star tau Boötis.

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3-D microgels 'on-demand' offer new potential for cell research

February 27, 2014 10:51 am | by EurekAlert! | News | Comments

Stars, diamonds, circles. Rather than your bowl of Lucky Charms, these are three-dimensional cell cultures generated by a new digital microfluidics platform, the results of which have been published in Nature Communications this week by researchers at the University of Toronto. The tool, which can be used to study cells in cost-efficient, three-dimensional microgels, may hold the key to personalized medicine applications in the future.

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Real time forecast of Hurricane Sandy had track and intensity accuracy

February 27, 2014 10:49 am | by EurekAlert! | News | Comments

A real-time hurricane analysis and prediction system that effectively incorporates airborne Doppler radar information may accurately track the path, intensity and wind force in a hurricane, according to Penn State meteorologists. This system can also identify the sources of forecast uncertainty.

Smart Fabrics & Wearable Technology 2014

February 27, 2014 10:48 am | Events

The fashion industry knows what consumers want to wear, often before they do. Recently, fashion houses have been predicting that we will soon be using our clothing not only to look good, but to communicate, and learn from our behaviours. Integrating wearable technology into a wave of new designs offers everyday consumers the opportunity to interact with fashion.

Maze puts images on floor, where rats look

February 27, 2014 10:45 am | by EurekAlert! | News | Comments

Visual acuity is sharpest for rats and mice when the animals are looking down. Researchers have found that rodents can learn tasks in a fourth to a sixth of the usual number of repetitions when visual stimuli are projected onto the floor of the maze rather than onto the walls. Findings are reported in the Journal of Visualized Experiments.

Cancer cells: Finding the few foes among billions of friends

February 27, 2014 10:35 am | by EurekAlert! | News | Comments

Beating cancer is all about early detection, and new research from the University of South Carolina is another step forward in catching the disease early. A team of chemists is reporting a new way to detect just a few lurking tumor cells, which can be outnumbered a billion to one in the bloodstream by healthy cells. 

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3D-MID technology advances component and system miniaturization

February 27, 2014 10:26 am | Harting, Inc. | Product Releases | Comments

HARTING (Elgin, IL) has brought a one-stop concept for designing and manufacturing 3D-MID components to North America. 3D-MID (3D Molded Interconnect Device) components are injection-molded plastic parts with integrated electrical circuits. These circuits can

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Closest, brightest supernova in decades is also a little weird

February 27, 2014 9:56 am | by EurekAlert! | News | Comments

A bright supernova discovered only six weeks ago in a nearby galaxy is provoking new questions about the exploding stars that scientists use as their main yardstick for measuring the universe. Called SN 2014J, the glowing supernova was discovered by a professor and his students in the United Kingdom on Jan. 21, about a week after the stellar explosion first became visible as a pinprick of light in its galaxy.

Disney Research soccer formations analysis suggests home advantage is result of execution

February 27, 2014 9:48 am | by EurekAlert! | News | Comments

Formation detection could be new tool for visually summarizing a game. An automated analysis by Disney Research Pittsburgh of team formations used during an entire season of professional soccer provides further evidence that visiting teams are less successful than home teams because they play conservatively, not because of a mythical home advantage.

A cavity that you want

February 27, 2014 9:44 am | by EurekAlert! | News | Comments

Associated with unhappy visits to the dentist, “cavity” means something else in the branch of physics known as optics .Put simply, an optical cavity is an arrangement of mirrors that allows beams of light to circulate in closed paths. Engineers are developing an optical “nanocavity” to boost light absorption in semiconductors; it could improve solar cells, cameras and more.

ARM-based SoC family adds memory options for advanced smart energy, home automation

February 27, 2014 9:38 am | Silicon Laboratories Inc. | Product Releases | Comments

Silicon Labs (Austin, TX) expanded its ARM-based Ember ZigBee system-on-chip (SoC) portfolio delivering desirable wireless performance, energy efficiency and reliability for the Internet of Things (IoT). The EM358x family includes six SoC products that combine

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Optoswitches turn pain off and sight on

February 27, 2014 9:30 am | by EurekAlert! | News | Comments

All modes of sensory perception are based on communication between nerve cells. Both the response to the primary stimulus and the transmission of the resulting signal depend on the function of specialized receptor proteins that are associated with the surface membranes of neurons.  However, Dirk Trauner has helped develop a method which enables all types of neuroreceptors to be controlled by light.

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Smart SPHERES are about to get a whole lot smarter

February 27, 2014 9:13 am | by EurekAlert! | News | Comments

Smart devices - such as tablets and phones - increasingly are an essential part of everyday life on Earth. The same can be said for life off-planet aboard the International Space Station. From astronaut tweets to Google+ Hangouts, our reliance on these mobile and social technologies means equipment and software upgrades are an everyday occurrence - like buying a new pair of shoes to replace a pair of well-worn ones.

Better remote-sensing explosive detectors: The beginning of the end of full-body scanners?

February 27, 2014 9:05 am | by EurekAlert! | News | Comments

Standing in a full-body scanner at an airport isn't fun, and the process adds time and stress to a journey. Researchers now report in ACS' The Journal of Physical Chemistry Letters a more precise and direct method for using that "terahertz" (THz) technology to detect explosives from greater distances. The advance could ultimately lead to detectors that survey a wider area of an airport without the need for full-body scanners.

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