In a study published in the December 24, 2004 issue of the journal Science, Michael Moore and Greg Early at the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI) have documented bone lesions in the rib and chevron bones of sperm whales, most likely caused by tissue damage from nitrogen bubbles that form when the animals rise to the surface.
The WHOI biologists found that the lesions grow in severity with age, and are found in animals from the Pacific and the Atlantic Oceans. The lesions were found in animals that died up to 111 years ago, and there appears to be no increase in the lesion prevalence since the oceans were industrialized.
Moore and Early studied sixteen partial or complete sperm whale skeletons from the Pacific and Atlantic Oceans that had been archived in museums. They found a series of changes in bones attached to the backbone, namely rib bones, and other small bones in the sperm whales tail region. The changes are patches of bone death as a result of obstructed blood supply to the joint surfaces of the bone.
Shelley Dawicki | EurekAlert!
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The WHO reports an estimated 429,000 malaria deaths each year. The disease mostly affects tropical and subtropical regions and in particular the African continent. The Fraunhofer Institute for Silicate Research ISC teamed up with the Fraunhofer Institute for Molecular Biology and Applied Ecology IME and the Institute of Tropical Medicine at the University of Tübingen for a new test method to detect malaria parasites in blood. The idea of the research project “NanoFRET” is to develop a highly sensitive and reliable rapid diagnostic test so that patient treatment can begin as early as possible.
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The formation of stars in distant galaxies is still largely unexplored. For the first time, astron-omers at the University of Geneva have now been able to closely observe a star system six billion light-years away. In doing so, they are confirming earlier simulations made by the University of Zurich. One special effect is made possible by the multiple reflections of images that run through the cosmos like a snake.
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Just because someone is smart and well-motivated doesn't mean he or she can learn the visual skills needed to excel at tasks like matching fingerprints, interpreting medical X-rays, keeping track of aircraft on radar displays or forensic face matching.
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