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Study: 14 percent of childhood asthma may be caused by traffic pollution

As much as 14 percent of chronic childhood asthma may be caused by people living near busy roads and exposed to traffic pollution, a study in 10 European cities found Friday. The study, released by the European Respiratory Journal, matched local health data with exposure to traffic pollution in Barcelona,…

Liberal ‘gaydar’ relies less on stereotypes than conservatives’

A recent study has asked whether people’s political leanings can affect their ability to ascertain a person’s sexual orientation. According to Mother Jones, a new paper published Friday in the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, conservatives scored slightly better in some ways than liberals, although liberals thought more like…

Planck spacecraft’s map of ‘almost perfect’ universe could point to new physics

Today is a great day. The European Space Agency has released the most precise map so far of the oldest light in the universe. The best news is that is reveals an ‘almost perfect universe‘. By that they mean it almost conforms to expectations – but not quite. While the basic…

Scientists find visions of a benevolent future society motivate reform

Activists, take note: People support reform if they believe the changes will enhance the future character of society, according to a study published online this month in the Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin. Namely, people support a future society that fosters the development of warm and moral individuals. “There are…

U.S. tuberculosis cases hit record low

Cases of tuberculosis reached an all-time low in the United States last year, but the disease continued to affect minorities at much higher rates than whites, health authorities said Thursday. There were fewer than 10,000 US cases of TB for the first time since records began being compiled in 1953,…

Study: Ancient megavolcanoes killed half the world’s species

New rock dating techniques have helped narrow the timeframe of a chain of massive volcanic eruptions that wiped out half the world’s species 200 million years ago, a study said Thursday. The result is the most precise date yet — 201,564,000 years ago — for the event known as the…

Astronomers map how light of the big bang scattered across the universe

Most detailed ever chart of cosmic microwave background confirms remarkable accuracy of current cosmological models The most detailed map ever made of the oldest light to shine through the universe has been released by scientists at the European Space Agency (ESA). The view of the heavens in red and blue speckles confirms…

Pediatricians’ group: Marriage equality is good for kids

The American Academy of Pediatrics announced Thursday that it supports marriage equality for same sex couples. According to the New York Times, the AAP released a policy statement Thursday morning saying that marriage is in the best interests of children living in households headed by same sex parents. “All children…

Study warns that skiing under the influence of alcohol is dangerous

One in five people ski having consumed alcohol, and 29 percent of these hurtle down the piste over the legal limit for driving, an Austrian survey showed Thursday. “People skiing under the influence of alcohol pose an increased risk to themselves and to other people on the slopes,” said Alexandra…

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