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Life Sciences - Environment - 29.12.2023
Warrior and nurse ants
Warrior and nurse ants
Matabele ants are able to detect and treat infected wounds in their fellow ants. The work carried out at the University of Lausanne's Department of Ecology and Evolution on this African species is the subject of a publication in "Nature Communications" and a documentary.

Psychology - Health - 27.12.2023
Artificial intelligence as therapeutic support
Artificial intelligence as therapeutic support
Artificial intelligence (AI) can reliably detect emotions based on facial expressions in psychotherapeutic situations. These are the findings of a feasibility study by researchers from the Faculty of Psychology and the University Psychiatric Clinics (UPK) at the University of Basel. The AI system is also able to reliably predict therapeutic success in patients with borderline personality pathology.

Life Sciences - 22.12.2023
Light colour is less important for the internal clock than originally thought
Light colour is less important for the internal clock than originally thought
Light in the evening is thought to be bad for sleep. However, does the colour of the light play a role? Researchers from the University of Basel and the Technical University of Munich (TUM) compared the influence of different light colours on the human body. The researchers' findings contradict the results of a previous study in mice.

Paleontology - Environment - 21.12.2023
A long-known deposit yields new secrets
A long-known deposit yields new secrets
Paleontologists lack the fossils they need to trace the evolutionary history of the Amazon region, a region characterized by unparalleled biodiversity. By exploiting data from a site known for over a century, Juan Carrillo, a researcher at the University of Fribourg, and his colleagues from other institutions, have made exceptional discoveries that shed new light on this little-known past .

Environment - Earth Sciences - 20.12.2023
Permafrost: a ticking time bomb beneath our feet
Permafrost: a ticking time bomb beneath our feet
Nearly a quarter of the Earth's land surface is permanently frozen. These areas, known as permafrost, are found in northern polar regions and at high altitudes.

Life Sciences - Health - 19.12.2023
More parallel 'traffic' observed in human brains than in animals
More parallel 'traffic' observed in human brains than in animals
In a study comparing human brain communication networks with those of macaques and mice, researchers found that only the human brains transmitted information via multiple parallel pathways, yielding new insights into mammalian evolution. When describing brain communication networks, EPFL senior postdoctoral researcher Alessandra Griffa likes to use travel metaphors.

Life Sciences - 19.12.2023
Can we decode the language of our primate cousins?
Can we decode the language of our primate cousins?
A team from the University of Geneva shows that the human brain is capable of identifying the vocalisations of certain primate species, if they are close to us and if the frequencies used are also close to our own. Are we able to differentiate between the vocal emissions of certain primates? A team from the University of Geneva asked volunteers to categorise the vocalisations of three species of great apes ( Hominidae ) and humans.

Health - Life Sciences - 18.12.2023
New possibilities for botox
New possibilities for botox
PSI researchers have discovered a surprising trick that could expand the possibilities for medical use of botulinun toxin A1, better known under the name Botox, as an active agent. They have developed antibody-like proteins that speed up the enzyme's effect on the transmission of nerve signals. This suggests that Botox might, for example, be able to relief pain more quickly than before.

Pharmacology - Health - 18.12.2023
Antibiotic consumption rose massively in the first year of the pandemic
Antibiotic consumption rose massively in the first year of the pandemic
Antibiotics are useless against viruses, including the coronavirus. Nevertheless, doctors in Switzerland prescribed antibacterial drugs about twice as often in the first year of the pandemic as before, report researchers from the University of Basel. A risky practice, warns the research team . It was a time of great uncertainty: when the first coronavirus wave rolled across Switzerland in spring 2020, there were neither diagnostic tests nor a vaccine nor effective medication.

Physics - Innovation - 18.12.2023
A micro-ring resonator with big potential
A micro-ring resonator with big potential
Researchers have developed a hybrid device that significantly improves existing, ubiquitous laser technology. The team at EPFL's Photonic Systems Laboratory (PHOSL) has developed a chip-scale laser source that enhances the performance of semiconductor lasers while enabling the generation of shorter wavelengths.

Health - Pharmacology - 18.12.2023
Combating Over-Prescription of Antibiotics in Children: A Swiss-Tanzanian Digital Health Innovation with Promising Results
Combating Over-Prescription of Antibiotics in Children: A Swiss-Tanzanian Digital Health Innovation with Promising Results
A large-scale study by the DYNAMIC project has produced promising results: the use of a new digital clinical decision-making tool has led to a twoto three-fold reduction in the prescription of antibiotics. These results, just published in the peer-reviewed journal Nature Medicine, marks an important step towards curbing bacterial antimicrobial resistance.

Astronomy / Space - Physics - 15.12.2023
Scientists measure the distance to stars by their music
Scientists measure the distance to stars by their music
A team of astronomers has used asteroseismology, or the study of stellar oscillations, to accurately measure the distance of stars from the Earth. Their research examined thousands of stars and checked the measurements taken during the Gaia mission to study the near Universe. For most of us, the countless bright spots in the nighttime sky all seem to be stars.

Life Sciences - Microtechnics - 14.12.2023
Cognitive strategies to augment the body with an extra robotic arm
Cognitive strategies to augment the body with an extra robotic arm
Scientists show that breathing may be used to control a wearable extra robotic arm in healthy individuals, without hindering control of other parts of the body. Neuroengineer Silvestro Micera develops advanced technological solutions to help people regain sensory and motor functions that have been lost due to traumatic events or neurological disorders.

Life Sciences - Health - 14.12.2023
Physical and Social Activities Promote Healthy Brain Aging
Neuropsychology Physical and social activities in old age have a protective effect on the entorhinal cortex, researchers at UZH have shown. This important area of the brain, which plays a central role in memory, is impaired in patients with Alzheimer's disease, even in the early stages. Physical exercise is associated with a variety of positive health aspects.

Environment - Astronomy / Space - 14.12.2023
Accurate snow measurement thanks to AI and satellites
Accurate snow measurement thanks to AI and satellites
Snow measurement has never been so fast and accurate: researchers have developed an artificial intelligence capable of determining snow depth across Switzerland using satellite images. How much snow is there up in the mountains, and where exactly is it? The answer is of just as much interest to the winter tourism industry and operators of hydropower plants as it is to winter sport enthusiasts looking to gauge the risk of avalanches.

Innovation - 12.12.2023
Artificial intelligence for safer bike helmets and better shoe soles
Artificial intelligence for safer bike helmets and better shoe soles
Researchers have trained an artificial intelligence to design the structure of so-called metamaterials with desired mechanical properties for a wide range of applications. Bike helmets that absorb the energy of an impact, running shoes that give you an extra boost with every step, or implants that behave just like natural bone.

Health - 12.12.2023
Limited Trust in Health Systems Can Hinder Universal Health Coverage
Limited Trust in Health Systems Can Hinder Universal Health Coverage
Studies published in the Lancet Global Health finds that only one-quarter of people thinks their health system works well. The People's Voice Survey analysed people's views and trust in the system in 15 countries, adding a missing component to how one evaluates health system performance. Swiss TPH contributed to these studies.

Health - History / Archeology - 12.12.2023
Plague from Egypt: topos or reality?
Plague from Egypt: topos or reality?
Many reports from antiquity about outbreaks of plague mention Egypt as the source of pestilences that reached the Mediterranean. But was this really the case? Researchers from the University of Basel are conducting a critical analysis of the ancient written and documentary evidence combined with archaeogenetic findings to add some context to the traditional view.

Environment - Earth Sciences - 12.12.2023
Heavy metals in the rivers of Greenland
Heavy metals in the rivers of Greenland
Field studies by Eawag researcher David Janssen in southern Greenland show that the heavy metals in the rivers are largely of natural origin, and that the influence of mining and agriculture is negligible, at least during the period observed. The rivers in Greenland can transport unusually high concentrations of heavy metals, including copper, zinc, gold, silver, platinum, lead and mercury.

Health - 12.12.2023
Limited Trust in Health Systems Hinders Universal Health Coverage
Limited Trust in Health Systems Hinders Universal Health Coverage
A series of papers in the Lancet Global Health published yesterday finds that only one-quarter of people thinks their health system works well. The People's Voice Survey analysed people's views and trust in the system in 15 countries, adding a missing component to how one evaluates health system performance.
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