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Latest and Breaking Chemistry & Physics News

Cosmological 'lost' lithium: An environmental solution
(International School of Advanced Studies (SISSA)) In old stars there is too little Lithium -- 7, a primordial isotope which was created along with the universe in the first 3 minutes, and scientists do not know why. A team led by SISSA revisited this 'lithium problem'. Their results provide a new explanation that certifies the validity of the Big Bang Nucleosynthesis and calls for attention to the interaction between the stars and the environment in which the stars were formed.

Biology, not just physics, controls release of scent compounds from plants
(Purdue University) Purdue University research suggests active biological mechanisms transport scent and taste compounds known as volatiles from plant cells to the atmosphere, a finding that could overturn the textbook model of volatile emission as a process that occurs solely by diffusion.

Case study reveals therapy to reduce sarcoidosis symptoms in 5q-myelodysplastic syndrome
(American College of Chest Physicians) A case study published in the August issue of the journal CHEST found lenalidomide treatments may have an immediate effect in the treatment of sarcoidosis-related symptoms. Sarcoidosis, a disease that involves abnormal collections of inflammatory cells that can form nodules in various organs, can affect individuals from all racial and age groups. To date, no optimal therapies have been effective in managing this condition.

World's quietest gas lets physicists hear faint quantum effects
(University of California - Berkeley) Bose-Einstein Condensates have been cooled to a record 0.5 nanoKelvin, but the entropy of these gases are relatively high, meaning half the gas is normal, not quantum. UC Berkeley physicists found a way to reduce the entropy or noise in a BEC system at 1 nanoKelvin so that nearly all atoms are in the same quantum state, creating the quietest gas ever. It can be used to model quantum magnets and high-temperature superconductors.

How did the Fantastic Four get their powers? (video)
(American Chemical Society) The Thing, Human Torch, Invisible Woman and Mister Fantastic are back this summer! In the new movie reboot, the team gets its powers while in an alternate dimension. Here at Reactions, though, we stick to comic-book canon. In this week's video, we explain the original way the Fantastic Four got their power - radiation - with help from SciPop Talks.

Keeping algae from stressing out
(DOE/Joint Genome Institute) Some algae like Chlamydomonas reinhardtii produce energy-dense oils or lipids when stressed, and these lipids can then be converted into fuels. However, researchers must stress the algae just enough to produce lipids, but not enough to kill them. In Nature Plants, a team led by DOE Joint Genome Institute scientists analyzed the genes being activated during algal lipid production; particularly the molecular machinery that orchestrates these gene activities inside the cell when it produces lipids.

Atomic view of microtubules
(DOE/Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory) Berkeley Lab researchers produced an atomic view of microtubules that enabled them to identify the crucial role played by a family of end-binding proteins in regulating microtubule dynamic instability, the physical property that enables microtubules to play a crucial role in cell division.

Ukranian physicists uprooted by war, behemoth telescopes that cost a billion dollars or more, and more
(American Institute of Physics) David Kramer of Physics Today discusses the negative impact that the conflict in eastern Ukraine has had on physicists and students forced to relocate from their homes and universities. More than 25 universities and research institutes with physical sciences programs have been forced to relocate from the separatist-controlled areas of the Donbass, an eastern region that includes the cities of Donetsk and Luhansk...

Molecular tinkering doubles cancer drug's efficacy
(Duke University) Researchers at Duke University have molecularly repackaged a widely used cancer drug called paclitaxel, more than doubling its effectiveness at destroying tumors than the current gold-standard pharmaceutical, Abraxane.

Kavli Lectures: Solving society's problems, examining highly versatile polymers
(American Chemical Society) Using chemistry to solve societal problems and investigating the extraordinary characteristics of porous polymers will be the topics of a pair of Kavli Lectures at the 250th National Meeting & Exposition of the American Chemical Society (ACS), the world's largest scientific society. The meeting will take place August 16-20 in Boston.

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