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Date: Friday, 22 Aug 2014 02:17

To sexually objectify someone is to focus on their body in terms of how it can provide sexual pleasure rather than viewing that person as a complete human being with thoughts and feelings.

Objectification has long been considered a problem in the media - stories of Mad Men star Jon Hamm invariably mention that he doesn't wear underwear - but how does it affect individual romantic relationships? 

New surveys hope to tell us, but since they are by social psychologists and the paper is in Psychology of Women Quarterly, a feminist, scientific, peer-reviewed journal, they only find that objectification of a female partner's body is related to higher incidents of sexual pressure and coercion. 


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Author: "News Staff" Tags: "Psychology"
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Date: Friday, 22 Aug 2014 01:30



By Agus Santoso, Senior Research Associate at UNSW Australia.

It looks like it’s all over bar the shouting for the chance of this year bringing on a “super” El Niño. Or is it?

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Author: "The Conversation" Tags: "Atmospheric"
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Date: Friday, 22 Aug 2014 00:50
Though the end of the 20th century looked like we were going to see runaway temperatures around the globe, that hasn't really happened despite countries like China and Russia and Mexico and India continuing to belch CO2 into the atmosphere.

More than a dozen hypotheses have been proposed for the so-called global warming hiatus, ranging from air pollution to volcanoes to sunspots and now the University of Washington has entered the fray, saying that the heat absent from the surface is plunging deep in the north and south Atlantic Ocean, and is part of a naturally occurring cycle. 

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Author: "News Staff" Tags: "Oceanography"
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Date: Friday, 22 Aug 2014 00:30

A study has identified a protein that appears to play a key role in protecting people infected with Mycobacterium tuberculosis — the bacterium that causes tuberculosis — from developing the active form of the disease. The protein, interleukin-32, was discovered to be one biomarker of adequate host defense against TB.


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Author: "News Staff" Tags: "Genetics and Molecular Biology"
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Date: Friday, 22 Aug 2014 00:30

Tekmira Pharmaceuticals and collaborators at the University of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston, have protected nonhuman primates against Marburg virus, also known as Angola hemorrhagic fever.

There are currently no vaccines or drugs approved for human use and no post-exposure treatment that has completely protected nonhuman primates against MARV-Angola, the most deadly Marburg viral strain, with a mortality rate of up to 90 percent. This virus, which is in the same family as Ebola, has a rapid disease course (seven to nine days) in nonhuman primates. There have been two recent imported cases of MARV HF to Europe and the United States, further increasing concern regarding the public health threat posed by this deadly virus.


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Author: "News Staff" Tags: "Immunology"
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Date: Thursday, 21 Aug 2014 23:52

Paid editors on Wikipedia – should you be worried?

By Kim Osman, PhD Candidate at Queensland University of Technology

Whether you trust it or ignore it, Wikipedia is one of the most popular websites in the world and accessed by millions of people every day. So would you trust it any more (or even less) if you knew people were being paid to contribute content to the encyclopedia?

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Author: "The Conversation" Tags: "Technology"
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Date: Thursday, 21 Aug 2014 23:35

Calcium buildup in the coronary arteries of chronic kidney disease patients may be a strong indicator of heart disease risk, according to a new study in the Journal of the American Society of Nephrology (JASN). Researchers at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health assert that coronary calcium outperforms two other commonly used measures of subclinical atherosclerosis in predicting the risk of heart disease among individuals with kidney disease.

Approximately 50 percent of all patients with chronic kidney disease (CKD) die from cardiovascular disease, but some previous studies concluded that conventional risk factors for predicting heart disease -- such as blood pressure and lipid levels -- were not as useful in CKD patients.


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Author: "News Staff"
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Date: Thursday, 21 Aug 2014 23:30

When America invaded both Iraq and Afghanistan, critics of President George Bush insisted that Muslim countries were not ready for democracy and he would fail. 

Were they right? Does Islam only lend itself to dictatorships?

The record in the past hundred years is not good. What was once a cradle of scientific thought hasn't produced anything meaningful since the new fundamentalism took hold. But sociologists say Muslims may be ready than western liberals think.   


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Author: "News Staff" Tags: "Science and Society"
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Date: Thursday, 21 Aug 2014 23:00


By James Smith, Research Fellow in Fisheries at UNSW Australia

It may sound overly simple, but just five processes can define us as animals: eating, metabolism, reproduction, dispersal and death.

They might not seem like much, but, thanks to a mathematical model from scientists at Microsoft Research, we know that these five processes are the key to all ecosystems.

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Author: "The Conversation" Tags: "Ecology and Zoology"
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Date: Thursday, 21 Aug 2014 22:30

The moon is a tranquil place but an article in the Journal of Geophysical Research-Planets suggests that periodic storms of solar energetic particles may have significantly altered the properties of the soil in the moon's coldest craters through the process of sparking - it just took eons.

The article proposes that high-energy particles from uncommon, large solar storms penetrate the moon's frigid, polar regions and electrically charge the soil. The charging may create sparking, or electrostatic breakdown, and this "breakdown weathering" process has possibly changed the very nature of the moon's polar soil, suggesting that permanently shadowed regions, which hold clues to our solar system's past, may be more active than previously thought.


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Author: "News Staff" Tags: "Applied Physics"
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Date: Thursday, 21 Aug 2014 21:54

The recently published genome of Brassica napus — commonly known as canola — paves the way for improved versions of the plant, which is used widely in farming and industry. 


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Author: "News Staff" Tags: "Genetics and Molecular Biology"
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Date: Thursday, 21 Aug 2014 19:02

Young girls with an intense, red, itchy rash on their outer genital organs - vulvitis - may be at increased risk of developing urinary tract infections, according to new research from Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center. 

Vulvitis is not a disease, but rather inflammation of the the vulva. It is the most common gynecological condition in pre-menstrual girls and is the greatest reason for referral to a pediatric gynecological specialist. 

The treatment may be as simple as better hygiene and avoiding potential irritants such as bubble baths and swimming pools.


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Author: "News Staff" Tags: "Public Health"
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Date: Thursday, 21 Aug 2014 19:02
Author: "News Staff" Tags: "Evolution"
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Date: Thursday, 21 Aug 2014 19:02

Across Australia, catch Mars and Saturn around 8 pm local time.Source: Museum Victoria/Stellarium

By Tanya Hill, Museum Victoria

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Author: "The Conversation" Tags: "Space"
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Date: Thursday, 21 Aug 2014 16:30

By Mark Lawler, Queen's University Belfast

Personalized medicine is the ability to tailor therapy to an individual patient so that, as it’s often put, the right treatment is given to the right patient at the right time. But just how personal is it?

While the phrase might conjure up images of each patient getting their own individual therapeutic cocktail – this isn’t actually the case. Designing an individually tailored package would be too labour intensive and (at least currently) too expensive. Instead, the answer lies in understanding the genetics of patients and disease.

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Author: "The Conversation" Tags: "Pharmacology"
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Date: Thursday, 21 Aug 2014 16:30
It’s possible to assess dietary compliance from a blood sample - that is useful in controlled dietary intervention studies investigating the health benefits of specific diets, since such studies have mainly relied on the participants’ self-reported dietary intake, which is often biased, making it more difficult to assess the real health benefits.

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Author: "News Staff" Tags: "Technology"
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Date: Thursday, 21 Aug 2014 16:00

Due to increased regulations, a culture war against pharmaceutical corporations, and the high costs of trials, companies have increasingly allowed early taxpayer-funded biomedical research to spread the risk among hundreds of millions of people. The pace of invention has slowed considerably and it may be because of academic culture, according to a new study.

An analysis of patented university inventions has revealed early bottlenecks on the path to commercialization and the authors suggest that better communication of basic research results during the discovery stage could lead to faster commercialization down the road.


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Author: "News Staff" Tags: "Science and Society"
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Date: Thursday, 21 Aug 2014 15:56

Tropical Storm Karina was weakening on August 20 when NASA's Terra satellite passed overhead. The Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer or MODIS instrument aboard Terra snapped a visible image of Tropical Storm Karina on August 20 at 19:40 UTC (3:40 p.m. EDT). The MODIS image showed that a thick band of strong thunderstorms spiraled into Karina's center from the southeast. The band of thunderstorms wrapped around Karina's eastern and northern quadrants, spiraling into the center from the west, making the tropical cyclone look like the number nine.


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Author: "News Staff" Tags: "Aerospace"
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Date: Thursday, 21 Aug 2014 15:31

A team of researchers  is a step closer to solving the mystery of how lizards regenerate their tails. They have found the genetic "recipe", which involves genetic ingredients in just the right mixture and amounts.

The scientists used molecular and computer analysis tools to examine the genes turned on in tail regeneration. The team studied the regenerating tail of the green anole lizard (Anolis carolinensis), which when caught by a predator, can lose its tail and then grow it back. 


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Author: "News Staff" Tags: "Genetics and Molecular Biology"
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Date: Thursday, 21 Aug 2014 15:31

When salmon encounter turbulent, fast-moving water, such as rapids or areas downstream of dams, they must move upstream using a behavior known as "burst swimming" that is similar to sprinting for humans.


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Author: "News Staff" Tags: "Ecology and Zoology"
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