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Latest and Breaking Science Policy News

Playing 'tag' with pollution lets scientists see who's 'it'
(DOE/Pacific Northwest National Laboratory) Using a climate model that can tag sources of soot and track where it lands, researchers have determined which areas around the Tibetan Plateau contribute the most soot -- and where. The model can also suggest the most effective way to reduce soot on the plateau, easing the amount of warming the region undergoes. The study, which appeared in Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics in June, might help policy makers target pollution reduction efforts.

State immunization laws should eliminate non-medical exemptions, say internists
(American College of Physicians) Support for eliminating existing exemptions, except for medical reasons, from immunization laws was among the policy recommendations adopted last weekend at the summer meeting of the Board of Regents of the American College of Physicians.

Shoring up Tor
(Massachusetts Institute of Technology) Researchers mount successful attacks against popular anonymity network -- and show how to prevent them.

Penn bioethicists call for end to 'pay-to-play' clinical research
(University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine) Charging people to participate in research studies is likely to undermine the fundamental ethical basis of clinical research, according to a new paper written by bioethicists, including lead author Ezekiel Emanuel, M.D., Ph.D., chair of the department of Medical Ethics and Health Policy at the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania, and published in Science Translational Medicine.

Short wavelength plasmons observed in nanotubes
(DOE/Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory) Working at the Advanced Light Source, Berkeley Lab researchers have observed 'Luttinger-liquid' plasmons in metallic single-walled nanotubes. This holds great promise for novel plasmonic and nanophotonic devices over a broad frequency range, including telecom wavelengths.

Carnegie's Greg Asner elected Fellow of American Geophysical Union
(Carnegie Institution) Carnegie investigator Greg Asner has been elected a Fellow of the American Geophysical Union (AGU). He is one of 60 new members. The honor is given 'to individual AGU members who have made exceptional scientific contributions and attained acknowledged eminence in the fields of Earth and space sciences.'

Researchers provide new details about sea stars' immunity
(University of Texas at Arlington) A study led by a University of Texas at Arlington graduate student examining sea stars dying along the West Coast provides new clues about the starfish's immune response and its ability to protect a diverse coastal ecosystem.

Patent granted for Oregon-led effort to build fractal-based nerve connections
(University of Oregon) A vision of using artificial fractal-based implants to restore sight to the blind -- part of a far-reaching concept that won an innovation award for University of Oregon physicist Richard Taylor this year from the White House -- is now covered under a broad US patent.

'Carbon sink' detected underneath world's deserts
(American Geophysical Union) The world's deserts may be storing some of the climate-changing carbon dioxide emitted by human activities, a new study suggests. Massive aquifers underneath deserts could hold more carbon than all the plants on land, according to the new research.

Switching off street lights at night does not increase car crashes and crime
(London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine) Reduced street lighting in England and Wales is not associated with road traffic collisions or crime, according to research from the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine and UCL.

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