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U.S. insurer to stop coverage of gynecological procedure following FDA advisory

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – A health insurer with 5.2 million members in three Eastern U.S. states said on Saturday it would stop providing coverage for a procedure called laparoscopic power morcellation that is used in gynecological surgery and may inadvertently spread cancer. Highmark Inc, which has customers in Pennsylvania, Delaware and…

Companion planets may help create tidal heating on older worlds

A team of astronomers, including researchers from the University of Arizona, has found that for certain planets about the size of Earth, the gravitational pull of an outer companion planet could generate enough heat to prevent that internal cooling.…

NIH plans human testing of Ebola vaccine by this Fall

The urgency of the Ebola outbreak compares to only two other level-3 CDC warnings this century, including the outbreak of severe acute respiratory syndrome in 2003 as well as disease outbreaks after the 2010 earthquake in Haiti.…

DNA sequencing shows evolutionary history of butterflies

Several of the study’s findings were surprising, including the discovery that butterflies are more closely related to small moths than to larger ones. …

Ebola outbreak ‘moving faster than efforts to control it,’ says WHO chief

Efforts shift to finding those who have come into contact with victims as Guinea, Sierra Leone and Liberia battle epidemic This week, Awa Faye added a new feature to her restaurant on a crowded street in Sierra Leone’s hilly capital of Freetown: a sign that instructs all patrons to wash…

NASA’s 2020 Mars rover will carry tools to make oxygen

The suite of space-age tools loaded on NASA’s next robotic vehicle, bound for the Red Planet in 2020, will include a device for making oxygen out of carbon dioxide. Designed by the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, the Mars Oxygen ISRU (in situ research utilization) Experiment (MOXIE), aims to see if…

How small birds evolved from giant meat eating dinosaurs

By Mike Lee and Gareth Dyke, University of Southampton Spectacular transitional fossils, many from northern China, provide overwhelming evidence that dinosaurs evolved into birds and thus didn’t all perish when the deadly meteorite struck at the end of the Cretaceous period. We now know that many bipedal, meat-eating dinosaurs (theropods)…

Scientists revolt against one of Europe’s most ambitious research projects: Human Brain Project

Dissenters are threatening to boycott a $1.6 billion attempt to simulate the brain’s workings.…

Ebola epidemic will not spread in US: Centers for Disease Control

"This is a tragic, painful, dreadful, merciless virus. It is the largest, most complex outbreak that we know of in history," Thomas Frieden, director of CDC, said on Thursday, according to an NBC report. However, “Ebola poses little risk to the U.S. general population,” and that its spread across the…

Ebola rages in Africa as West agonizes over ethics of vaccine and drug testing

If there are to be vaccines and drugs against Ebola, trials in outbreaks will have to be done In 2002, scientists writing in a leading American medical journal discussed the possibility that the Ebola virus could be used in a biochemical weapon. It would be technically difficult and unlikely to…

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