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Ecstasy could treat blood cancers: researchers

LONDON — Researchers in Britain revealed Friday they are exploring whether the nightclubbers’ drug ecstasy could be effective in treating blood cancers. Scientists at the University of Birmingham in central England said modified forms of the drug boosted its ability to destroy cancerous cells by 100 times. Six years ago,…

Blacks get less science funding than whites: U.S. study

WASHINGTON — Black scientists lag behind whites in US government funded research grants with a 10 percentage point gap between the two that cannot be explained by education or experience, a study said Thursday. The National Institutes of Health, which funnels more than 30 billion dollars into scientific research each…

Climate change forces species to move fast: study

WASHINGTON — Climate change appears to be forcing many of the world’s creatures to migrate to more favorable locales up to three times faster than previously believed, a study said Thursday. Researchers compiled past studies on species migration and combined them into a meta-analysis that showed a clear trend toward…

Study: Cell phone radiation may reduce sperm count

A study published this week (PDF) in the Journal of Andrology claims that prolonged exposure to cellular phone radiation may reduce sperm count and overall reproductive health in male humans and animals. Though the study cautions that much more research is needed, the conclusions are rather stark for male cell…

Study finds that sniffer dogs can detect lung cancer

LONDON (Reuters) – German scientists experimenting with sniffer dogs have found they can accurately detect lung cancer by smelling breath samples. In a study carried out by researchers from Schillerhoehe Hospital in Germany, the dogs were able to correctly detect lung tumors in 71 percent of patients, suggesting a similar…

Stem cell team aims for spare heart parts within five years

HONG KONG (Reuters) – Stem cell researchers in Hong Kong and the United States are trying to grow spare parts for the human heart that may be ready for tests on people within five years, they said on Thursday. Scientists have already made basic heart muscle from stem cells, but…

Drought losses hit $5.2 billion in Texas

SAN ANTONIO (Reuters) – The historic Texas drought that has parched most of the state throughout the summer has caused $5.2 billion in losses to agriculture, making it the most destructive drought in the state’s history, agriculture officials said on Wednesday. They called the damage estimate “conservative,” but it still…

Space first: Live 3-D images from orbit

PARIS — Astronauts have produced the first live 3-D video images in the 50-year history of space travel, the European Space Agency (ESA) said on Wednesday. On August 6, NASA astronaut Ron Garan used a stereoscopic camera to film the inside of the International Space Station (ISS) and streamed the…

Jodie Foster helps keep SETI’s search for aliens alive

LOS ANGELES — “Contact” star Jodie Foster was among donors helping to revive the 42 radio telescope dishes at a key California institute searching for extraterrestrial life, the group said Tuesday. The Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence (SETI) Institute in California, which got a direct hit from federal and California budget…

Mercury-loving bugs speed help for toxic spills

PARIS — Scientists say they have engineered bacteria that can mop up mercury, a step forward in the goal of using “bioremediation” to cleanse toxic chemicals from the environment. Mercury pollution of water and soil by industrial spills or gold mining is a major hazard because the chemical accumulates up…

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