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Study seeks to prove theory humans still evolving

Rare evidence of the long-held belief that humans are still evolving has been unearthed in the parish records of a French-Canadian island on the Saint Lawrence seaway, researchers say. Ile aux Coudres is located 80 kilometers (50 miles) northeast of Quebec City. Between 1720 and 1773, 30 families settled there…

Task force: Routine screening for prostate cancer does not save the lives of healthy men

Routine screening for prostate cancer does not help save the lives of healthy men and often triggers the need for more tests and treatments, a US government health panel said Friday. The US Preventive Services Task Force’s draft recommendations, which will be open to public comment on Tuesday, are likely…

Monkey mind control — a breakthrough for paralysis?

SAO PAULO (Reuters) – Scientists believe they are a step closer to enabling paralyzed people to walk and use artificial arms after an experiment in which monkeys moved and sensed objects using only their minds. The monkeys were able to operate a virtual arm to search for objects through brain…

More energy than expected from Crab supernova: study

The Crab Pulsar, a fast-spinning supernova remnant discovered in 1968, appears to emit pulsed gamma-rays at greater energy levels than can be explained by current scientific models, a new study said Thursday. Astrophysicists using the VERITAS telescope array at the Whipple Observatory in the US state of Arizona have detected that the intriguing young neutron…

Scientists use cloning to make human stem cells

CHICAGO (Reuters) – U.S. scientists for the first time have used a cloning technique to get tailor-made embryonic stem cells to grow in unfertilized human egg cells, a landmark finding and a potential new flashpoint for opponents of stem cell research. The researchers were trying to prove it is possible…

Forecasters predict extreme cold winter for Chicago

(Reuters) – Private forecaster Accuweather.com said on Wednesday that heavy snow and extreme cold should be expected in the north central United States, especially in the Chicago area, in the coming winter. The East Coast faces average to slightly above average snowfall during the winter of 2011-2012 as a Pacific…

Nobel winner thought prize call was ‘student joke’

When a Swedish voice came down the line informing him he had a “very important call” Tuesday night, Australia’s newest Nobel laureate Brian Schmidt assumed it was an elaborate undergraduate joke. “My first thought was ‘Geez my students have done a pretty good job on this accent’,” the Australian-American astronomer said Wednesday. “She asked…

Federal agency blocks FDA-approved marijuana research for veterans

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has blocked a pilot study to examine the benefits of marijuana for veterans with treatment-resistant post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). The study was sponsored by the nonprofit research organization the Multidisciplinary Association for Psychedelic Studies (MAPS), and would have been conducted by…

Nature of universe is still a mystery to Nobel winners

WASHINGTON — They won the Nobel Prize for changing our understanding of the universe, but their discovery left an even larger mystery — what is this dark energy that is propelling the universe to expand so fast? US astronomer Saul Perlmutter, 52, and his one-time competitors Adam Riess and Brian…

‘Dark energy’ targeted in European space mission

So-called dark energy, believed to play a role in the accelerated expansion of the Universe, will be studied in a major science mission to be launched later this decade, the European Space Agency (ESA) said on Tuesday. A space telescope known as Euclid will be launched in 2019 with the…

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