Science, we have science


Public Release: 8-Oct-2008
Rutgers researcher examines connections between vision and movement
In research designed to assist US Department of Homeland Security and provide insight into how autistic individuals perceive others, Dr. Maggie Shiffrar of Rutgers University, is examining how our visual system helps interpret the intent conveyed in subtle body movements. While most autism research has focused on difficulties in face perception, Shiffrar is one of the first to examine autism as it relates to connections between visual analysis, body movement and our ability to interact.
U.S. Dept. of Homeland Security, National Science Foundation,Simons Foundation

Public Release: 8-Oct-2008
Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences
Circadian clock may be critical for remembering what you learn, Stanford researchers say
The circadian rhythm that quietly pulses inside us all, guiding our daily cycle from sleep to wakefulness and back to sleep again, may be doing much more than just that simple metronomic task, according to Stanford researchers. Working with Siberian hamsters, biologist Norman Ruby has shown that having a functioning circadian system is critical to the hamsters’ ability to remember what they have learned. Without it, he said, “They can’t remember anything.”
Howard Hughes Medical Center

Public Release: 8-Oct-2008
Analyses of Social Issues and Public Policy
Many children attribute white male monopoly on White House to discrimination
Many children attribute the lack of female, African American, and Latino presidents to gender and racial discrimination.
“Surprisingly, when asked about potential legal barriers, one in four children stated that it was currently against the law for women, African Americans, or Latinos to be President.”

Public Release: 8-Oct-2008
Journal of Environmental Quality
Pickleweed tolerates irrigation with seawater and high levels of boron
Researchers have discovered that reusing saline drainage water and applying it to salt-tolerant crops in California’s San Joaquin Valley can help reduce the environmental impact of excess drainage volumes. The study focused on pickleweed, sold in European markets as a salad ingredients, and its ability to tolerate irrigation with seawater and drainage water with high concentrations of boron.

Public Release: 8-Oct-2008
Learning how not to be afraid
New studies by Howard Hughes Medical Institute researchers are showing how the brain changes when mice learn to feel safe and secure in situations that would normally make them anxious. The mice developed a conditioned inhibition of fear that squelches anxiety as effectively as antidepressant drugs, such as Prozac.
Public Release: 7-Oct-2008

All counterterrorism programs that collect and mine data should be evaluated for effectiveness
All US agencies with counterterrorism programs that collect or “mine” personal data — such as phone, medical and travel records or Web sites visited — should be required to systematically evaluate the programs’ effectiveness, lawfulness, and impacts on privacy, says a new report from the National Research Council.


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