news from the lab 2015


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Results 21 - 40 of 106.

Social Sciences - Life Sciences
30.11.2015
Anxiety can kill your social status
Anxiety can kill your social status
30.11.15 - Neuroscientists at EPFL identify a brain region that links anxious temperament to low social status. The researchers were able to tweak social hierarchy in animals by using vitamin B3. There are important differences in how individuals approach life. While some people are relaxed and calm, others often see situations as threatening, making them worried and tense.
Life Sciences
27.11.2015
How cells create free space
How cells create free space
In order to divide, cells in the intestinal wall have to leave their densely packed environment and migrate to the surface. ETH researchers have now discovered how they do this - using a tiny bed of nails. The human body is constantly regenerating itself. Trillions of cells die in our bodies each day.
Physics/Materials Science - Microtechnics/Electroengineering
26.11.2015
Surprising discovery of a new particle
Surprising discovery of a new particle
Studying peculiar properties of a long known metallic material researchers have chanced upon a new particle. It is related to the so-called Weyl fermions that the mathematician Hermann Weyl predicted almost ninety years ago. Weyl had overlooked the particle, which could have interesting applications in electronics.
Environment/Sustainable Development - Earth Sciences
26.11.2015
Tiny amoebas could play a big role in climate
Tiny amoebas could play a big role in climate
26.11.15 - For the first time, researchers at EPFL and the WSL investigate how the fate of tiny algae-harboring amoebas that live in peatlands could reinforce global warming. The world's peatlands store tremendous amounts of carbon - up to 20 years' worth of human and natural emissions.
Life Sciences
25.11.2015
A new form of real gold, almost as light as air
A new form of real gold, almost as light as air
Researchers at ETH Zurich have created a new type of foam made of real gold. It is the lightest form ever produced of the precious metal: a thousand times lighter than its conventional form and yet it is nearly impossible to tell the difference with the naked eye.
Life Sciences
24.11.2015
A role for neural noise in animal behavior
A role for neural noise in animal behavior
24.11.15 - Researchers from EPFL and UNIL have used flies to show how behaviors may be shaped by seemingly random brain activity. This study raises new questions about the role of neural noise in moment-to-moment decisions. What processes lie behind voluntary actions like when to walk or rest? According to a study carried out by EPFL and the University of Lausanne, these choices may be shaped in part by neural fluctuations.
Life Sciences - Medicine/Pharmacology
24.11.2015
Lactate for Brain Energy
Lactate for Brain Energy
Nerve cells cover their high energy demand with glucose and lactate. Scientists of the University of Zurich now provide new support for this. They show for the first time in the intact mouse brain evidence for an exchange of lactate between different brain cells. With this study they were able to confirm a 20-year old hypothesis.
Life Sciences - Medicine/Pharmacology
24.11.2015
Bacterial Nanomachine Serves as a Versatile Tool
Bacterial Nanomachine Serves as a Versatile Tool
The team from the startup company "T3 Pharmaceuticals" at the Biozentrum of the University of Basel has developed a fast and simple technique that can provide valuable insights into important life processes and which can be applied for therapeutic purposes. In the recent issue of the "Journal of Cell Biology", the young entrepreneurs describe a bacterial nanomachine that they implement as a tool to selectively inject diverse proteins into cells.
Physics/Materials Science - Chemistry
23.11.2015
Using light-force to study single molecules
Using light-force to study single molecules
23.11.15 - Scientists at EPFL show how a light-induced force can amplify the sensitivity and resolution of a technique used to study single molecules. When it comes to studying single molecules, scientists use a powerful technique called "surface-enhanced Raman scattering" (SERS). An extremely sensitive tool, SERS detects the vibrations within the atoms of the illuminated molecule as a change in light color.
Computer Science/Telecom - Physics/Materials Science
20.11.2015
Two finalists in supercomputing
Two finalists in supercomputing
Every year at the SC conference, the Gordon Bell Prize is presented to recognise outstanding work in the field of high-performance computing.
Life Sciences
18.11.2015
Why mice have longer sperm than elephants
Why mice have longer sperm than elephants
In the animal world, if several males mate with the same female, their sperm compete to fertilize her limited supply of eggs. Longer sperm often seem to have a competitive advantage. However, a study conducted by researchers from the Universities of Zurich and Stockholm now reveals that the size of the animals also matters.
Environment/Sustainable Development
18.11.2015
Plant roots shaped by river fluctuations
Plant roots shaped by river fluctuations
Changing flow rates in rivers can be disruptive to bushes and trees that grow on riverbanks. Now, researchers from EPFL have developed a way to predict how fluctuations in the water table impact the roots that nourish them.
Medicine/Pharmacology - Physics/Materials Science
17.11.2015
3D-mapping a new drug-delivery tool
3D-mapping a new drug-delivery tool
17.11.15 - Scientists from EPFL and Nestlé have developed a new method that can "see" inside dispersed cubosomes (dispersed cubic liquid crystalline phases) with unprecedented detail. The breakthrough can help to improve their design significantly for better drug or nutrient delivery. Cubosomes are small biological "capsules" that can deliver molecules of nutrients or drugs with high efficiency.
Medicine/Pharmacology
13.11.2015
Gaming Against Heart Disease in Diabetic Patients
Gaming Against Heart Disease in Diabetic Patients
Exercise is healthy - this applies to all of us, especially though for people suffering from type 2 diabetes. Researchers from the University of Basel were able to show that fitness games, or "exergames", for the Nintendo Wii console are suitable to increase cardiorespiratory fitness in type 2 diabetic patients and thus lower the risk of related heart disease.
Astronomy - Earth Sciences
11.11.2015
Plate tectonics thanks to plumes?
Plate tectonics thanks to plumes?
It is common knowledge that the Earth's rigid upper layer called lithosphere is composed of moving plates. But just what mechanism first set plate tectonics into motion still remains a mystery. A team of researchers led by ETH professor Taras Gerya has now come up with one possible answer by using simulations.
Medicine/Pharmacology - Environment/Sustainable Development
11.11.2015
Tackling a neglected disease with math
Tackling a neglected disease with math
11.11.15 - Schistosomiasis is a parasitic disease that is endemic in sub-Saharan Africa.
Microtechnics/Electroengineering
10.11.2015
Going back in time to locate short circuits in power grids
Going back in time to locate short circuits in power grids
10.11.15 - EPFL researchers have come up with a method to determine the exact location of short circuits in a power grid. This is an important step towards operating complex power grid topologies that enable the massive integration of renewable energy resources. When a high-voltage power line is damaged by wind, ice or a tree, electricity utilities must quickly find the fault location and repair it to meet the power quality requirements or avoid cascade blackout.
Chemistry
09.11.2015
Nanobodies from Camels Enable the Study of Organ Growth
Nanobodies from Camels Enable the Study of Organ Growth
Researchers at the Biozentrum of the University of Basel have developed a new technique using nanobodies. Employing the so-called "Morphotrap", the distribution of the morphogen Dpp, which plays an important role in wing development, could be selectively manipulated and analyzed for the first time in the fruit fly.
Physics/Materials Science - Astronomy
09.11.2015
“It's scarcely possible to grasp intuitively”
“It’s scarcely possible to grasp intuitively”
In November 1915, Albert Einstein presented four seminal publications that laid the foundation for the general theory of relativity. A symposium at ETH Zurich celebrates its 100th anniversary from 12 to 14 November. ETH News: Hans-Rudolf Ott, you are one of the organisers of the symposium on 100 years of the general theory of relativity.
Life Sciences - Medicine/Pharmacology
06.11.2015
When less is really more
When less is really more
ETH researchers have found that therapeutic iron supplements may be less effective when given in brief intervals: A peptide molecule blocks iron absorption in the intestine even 24 hours after the iron administation. Anaemia is often the result of an iron deficiency. In such cases the patients, who are typically female, will be prescribed iron supplements to be taken daily.

 
 
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