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Archives for April, 2009

Correction appended: This post incorrectly stated the Center for Disease Control as the organization responsible for raising the pandemic threat level. This is the duty of the World Health Organization. Swine flu outbreaks are raising alarm across the globe and prompting the World Health Organizationto consider raising the pandemic threat level. For the most current…

Related ScienceBlogs Posts: Jake on genetics and obesity Razib on obesity and heritability

Swiss astronomers recently discovered the small exoplanet, Gliese 581 e, calculated to have a minium mass less than twice that of our own dear planet. This planet resides within the same solar system as Gliese 581 d, which scientists speculate could be capable of supporting life. “With a minimum age of these planets of 7…

Hundreds of research supporters rallied on UCLA’s campus Wednesday to protest acts of terrorism directed at scientists by animal rights activists. The event, organized by the UCLA chapter of Pro-Test, a group founded in Oxford, England to support animal testing for the pursuit of science, drew an estimated 800 people to the rally. A simultaneous…

The Buzz: Earth Day

Today is Earth Day, and here on ScienceBlogs our bloggers are observing it by sharing their reasons for caring about our planet and its environment. ScienceBlogs’ newest blog, Guilty Planet, launched today in timing with the occasion. Written by Jennifer Jacquet, formerly of Shifting Baselines, the blog will explore human patterns of consumption and what…

With news headlines prompting readers to question if Twitter causes a decay in one’s moral fabric, ScienceBloggers are attempting to set the record straight. As Jessica Palmer from Bioephemera explains, the mainstream media got wind of a press release from the University of Southern California, the author of which jumped to conclusions based on hypothetical…

Following through with President Obama’s executive order issued March 9, Removing Barriers to Responsible Scientific Research Involving Human Stem Cells (link to PDF), the NIH has released a draft of guidelines revising the NIH’s position on how it may fund “responsible, scientifically worthy human stem cell research, including human embryonic stem cell research.” The funding…

As apex organisms in the scope of Earth’s multi-tiered web of life, most of us go about our day-to-day activities oblivious to the fact that bacteria are literally everywhere. Microorganisms can thrive in the most surprising locales—places totally inhospitable to human life. Recently, scientists from Harvard documented a flourishing bacterial ecosystem buried under 400 meters…

While historical accounts of the Spanish Hapsburgs dynasty have suggested that prevalent inbreeding likely contributed to the family’s downfall, such suspicions weren’t supported by genetic data–until now. In a new paper in PLoS One, researchers traced the genes of the Hapsburgs through more than 3,000 individuals over 16 generations to calculate the “inbreeding coefficient,” a…

A proposed law to protect native species and habitats from invasion by nonnative animals is scheduled to be heard April 23 in the U.S. House of Representatives, and ScienceBloggers are voicing strong–and contending–sentiments about the bill. House Resolution 669, the Nonnative Wildlife Invasion Protection Act, would prevent the importation and trade of invasive animal species,…