Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Stem Cell Breakthrough

Two research teams have found a way to reprogram human skin cells to act like stem cells. Stem cells have the abililty to become any type of cell in the body.

Imagine the possibilities for the future; if you need to replace brain cells, take some of your skin cells and doctors can tell them to become nerve cells! If your heart is damaged, maybe you can make new heart cells from your skin?

Science is not quite there yet, but this discovery will bring us one step closer.



Saturday, November 3, 2007

Growing Landfills

* 166 bottles of water are consumed by the average American each year.

* 8 out of 10 bottles of water are not recycled and end up in landfills or incinerators.

* 1,000 = number of years required for a plastic bottle to decompose!

-Container Recycling Institute; EnvironmentMassachusetts.org

Sunday, October 28, 2007

Discoverer of DNA Polymerase Passes

Arthur Kornberg won the Nobel Prize for Medicine in 1959 for synthesizing DNA in the laboratory. Through his work to uncover the enzymes involved in the creation of DNA he isolated and identified both DNA polymerase and DNA ligase. These two enzymes are still used today in Biotechnology.

Kornberg's son Roger received the Nobel Prize in Chemistry in 2006.

Dr. Kornberg passed away at the age of 89.


Friday, October 12, 2007

Al Gore wins Nobel Peace Prize!

Former Vice President Al Gore and the U.N.'s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change won the 2007 Nobel Peace Prize for work to raise awareness about global warming.

Gore has spent the last 5 years travelling the globe and speaking out about global warming and the effects it is having on earth. Gore has been a proponent of the environment since his early days in the Senate. His oscar winning documentary "An Inconvenient Truth" came out in 2006 and brought the issues of global warming to a wide audience.


Saturday, September 15, 2007

A day at the beach?

The world's largest animal, a blue whale, washed ashore 10 miles north of Ventura. The mammal is 78 feet long and weighs over 50 tons! Scientists are taking tissue samples to try and determine the cause of death. Blue whales are currently migrating through the Santa Barbara channel for the winter.


Thursday, September 13, 2007

Girls Gone Wild

Researchers at Harvard have discovered that men and women aren't that different after all.

They have found that brain pathways for male sexual behavior can also be found in female mice! Originally it was believed that male and female mice's brains were hardwired differently and this lead to a difference in behavior between the sexes.

Animals use pheromones to transmit sexual signals, the vomeronasal organ (VNO) in the nose can receive these signals. When the VNO is removed in female mice they begin to act like male mice: mounting other mice, sniffing, and pelvic thrusting! They also have a reduction in their maternal instinct.

So the question is: Are men that different from women?



Tuesday, September 4, 2007


Have you noticed that southern California is going through a heat wave?

We all need to limit our power use, here is one way you can help.

Clothes dryers are use a lot of energy

Hints to reduce energy use:
1. Clean the lint filter after each load
2. Use the cool-down cycle
Better yet, abandon your dryer and buy some drying racks, if
you don't have a clothesline. Generally, clothes will dry overnight.