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United Academics Magazine publishes popular science news on a daily basis.

United Academics
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  • January 21, 2014
  • 04:56 AM

Why your friends have more friends than you do

by Patrícia Fonseca Pedro in United Academics

Have you ever noticed that most of your friends have more friends than you have? Even though you could swear it was the opposite? Have faith, you are are not alone! This social effect is called ‘Friendship Paradox’ and it happens to all, even to your sociable friends.... Read more »

Young-Ho Eom, & Hang-Hyun Jo. (2014) Generalized friendship paradox in complex networks. arxiv.org. arXiv: 1401.1458v1

  • January 20, 2014
  • 06:03 AM

Light Activated Glue Could Drastically Improve Vascular Surgery

by Rebekah Morrow in United Academics

Inspired by slugs and worms and successfully tested on rats and pigs: light activated glue. This future gadget for surgeons could drastically improve vascular operations.... Read more »

Lang N, Pereira MJ, Lee Y, Friehs I, Vasilyev NV, Feins EN, Ablasser K, O'Cearbhaill ED, Xu C, Fabozzo A.... (2014) A blood-resistant surgical glue for minimally invasive repair of vessels and heart defects. Science translational medicine, 6(218). PMID: 24401941  

  • January 18, 2014
  • 11:00 AM

Sloth Fur May Help Scientists Make Our Next Health Pill

by Dyani Lewis in United Academics

A study published this week in PLoS One takes bio-prospecting for new drugs to a new and unusual level. Researchers from the Republic of Panama and the US have surveyed fungi residing on the hair of the three-toed sloth, Bradypus variegatus, for potential pharmaceutical compounds.... Read more »

Higginbotham S, Wong WR, Linington RG, Spadafora C, Iturrado L . (2014) Sloth Hair as a Novel Source of Fungi with Potent Anti-Parasitic, Anti-Cancer and Anti-Bacterial Bioactivity. PLoS ONE . info:/

  • January 18, 2014
  • 06:21 AM

Recipe discovered for drink Asterix and the VIkings: Nordic Grog

by Chiara Civardi in United Academics

If you have ever seen „Asterix and the Vikings” I am sure you will remember Olaf Timandahaf and its Viking tribe, celebrating and drinking from skull- made mugs. The aim of a new study was to discover what exactly the beverage inside these mugs was.If you are keen to try it, the recipe is as follows:... Read more »

  • January 15, 2014
  • 09:52 AM

Drug Labeling Influences Effects Of Painkillers

by Agnese Mariotti in United Academics

Researchers discovered surprising placebo effects. For example, properly labeled placebo had a painkilling effect; this observation indicates that the ritual of taking a pill contributes to the treatment’s effect.... Read more »

Kam-Hansen S, Jakubowski M, Kelley JM, Kirsch I, Hoaglin DC, Kaptchuk TJ, & Burstein R. (2014) Altered placebo and drug labeling changes the outcome of episodic migraine attacks. Science translational medicine, 6(218). PMID: 24401940  

Finniss DG, Kaptchuk TJ, Miller F, & Benedetti F. (2010) Biological, clinical, and ethical advances of placebo effects. Lancet, 375(9715), 686-95. PMID: 20171404  

  • January 14, 2014
  • 06:50 AM

Why These Tiny Monkeys Have So Many Twins

by Gunnar de Winter in United Academics

Deep in the jungles of Central and South America, the New World Monkeys roam, with the world’s smallest known primate, the pygmy marmoset. Despite their size, there’s something else that sets these small tree-dwellers apart from their close evolutionary cousins (including us humans).... Read more »

Harris RA, Tardif SD, Vinar T, Wildman DE, Rutherford JN, Rogers J, Worley KC, & Aagaard KM. (2013) Evolutionary genetics and implications of small size and twinning in callitrichine primates. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America. PMID: 24379383  

  • January 13, 2014
  • 06:35 AM

Erasing Long Term Memories: Scientists Finally Did It

by Simone Munao in United Academics

To comprehend the importance of the results obtained by Kroes, it is necessary to have some background knowledge. In 1968 the researcher Donald Lewis tamed some rats to fear a certain sound up to the point where they panicked when they heard it. ... Read more »

  • January 10, 2014
  • 09:03 AM

Study Reveals How Sports Reduces Body Fat After Exercise

by Shefali Sabharanjak in United Academics

Besides the straightforward relationship between muscle movement and utilization of energy stored in body fat, there are also two distinct ways in which exercise can boost your metabolism and burn body fat even when the exercise session is over.... Read more »

Sanchis-Gomar F, Lippi G, Mayero S, Perez-Quilis C, & García-Giménez JL. (2012) Irisin: a new potential hormonal target for the treatment of obesity and type 2 diabetes. Journal of diabetes, 4(3), 196. PMID: 22372821  

  • January 8, 2014
  • 09:54 AM

Google Biases Your Search for Scientific Information

by Nura Rutten in United Academics

Top-ranked sites on Google have different thematic emphasis than lower-ranked sites when searching for scientific information.... Read more »

  • January 7, 2014
  • 06:54 AM

4 Tips To Stick To Your Resolutions

by Elisabeth Buhl Thubron in United Academics

Resolutions, shmesolutions. We have all tried to re-invent ourselves, but what underlies our need to do so and why do most of us fail?... Read more »

Lally, P., van Jaarsveld, C. H. M., Potts, H. W. W., . (2010) How are habits formed: Modelling habit formation in the real world. European Journal of Social Psychology. DOI: 10.1002/ejsp.674  

Gardner B, Lally P, & Wardle J. (2012) Making health habitual: the psychology of 'habit-formation' and general practice. The British journal of general practice : the journal of the Royal College of General Practitioners, 62(605), 664-6. PMID: 23211256  

  • January 6, 2014
  • 09:15 AM

Older Gamers Play For Different Reasons Than Youngsters

by Katja Keuchenius in United Academics

People of the future will spend a lot of time enjoying their retirement. How? By playing silly online video games, probably. More and more older adults are doing this, and not just because they are bored.... Read more »

  • January 3, 2014
  • 05:26 AM

Study Shows One Ethnic Group in L.A. May Be More Racist

by Katja Keuchenius in United Academics

First of all, we are of course not talking about all Asians, all Hispanics, all blacks, or all whites. Still, a recent research on racial attitudes does give us some insight into general differences between relatively representative subjects of four ethnic groups living in the US.... Read more »

  • December 30, 2013
  • 09:49 AM

5 Bizarre Facts About Your (Last) Breath

by Katja Keuchenius in United Academics

Where does your lost body fat go to when you exercise? Exactly: your breath. And did you know you have your own unique breath print? Does your last breath weigh 21 grams?... Read more »

de Meij TG, Larbi IB, van der Schee MP, Lentferink YE, Paff T, Terhaar Sive Droste JS, Mulder CJ, van Bodegraven AA, & de Boer NK. (2014) Electronic nose can discriminate colorectal carcinoma and advanced adenomas by fecal volatile biomarker analysis: proof of principle study. International journal of cancer. Journal international du cancer, 134(5), 1132-8. PMID: 23959518  

  • December 27, 2013
  • 06:58 AM

Why We Never Find Dinosaur Poo: New Explanation

by Chiara Civardi in United Academics

Since they were spread all over the world and they were giant, they should have produced a huge amount of excrements. Where have these gone? Why aren’t we encountering fossil poops (coprolites) everyday? How did they disappear?... Read more »

Vršanský P, van de Kamp T, Azar D, Prokin A, Vidlička L, & Vagovič P. (2013) Cockroaches probably cleaned up after dinosaurs. PloS one, 8(12). PMID: 24324610  

  • December 24, 2013
  • 10:44 AM

One Function Of Religion That Will Never Die

by Flora Brils in United Academics

Merry Christmas! Tomorrow we celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ. In origin a religious holiday, but how important is this aspect still in our modern society? It sometimes seems Christmas is nowadays only about diner parties, presents, eating and drinking. Is religion slowly disappearing from our lives or is it just changing form?... Read more »

  • December 21, 2013
  • 11:15 AM

How Your Dog Protects You From Getting Allergic

by Dyani Lewis in United Academics

Own a dog? Then put down your duster and turn off the vacuum cleaner. Your household dust could be protecting you from allergies, thanks to your furred friend. As unsavory as it sounds, consuming small amounts of dog-microbe-laden dust could keep you breathing easy, according to research carried out in mice.... Read more »

Fujimura KE, Demoor T, Rauch M, Faruqi AA, Jang S, C Johnson C, Boushey HA, Zoratti E, Ownby D, Lukacs NW.... (2013) House dust exposure mediates gut microbiome Lactobacillus enrichment and airway immune defense against allergens and virus infection. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America. PMID: 24344318  

  • December 17, 2013
  • 07:31 AM

Why HIV Prevention Programs Fail

by Flora Brils in United Academics

Although education is essential in preventing the spread of HIV infection, knowledge is only of use if put into practice. A recent study assesses knowledge and attitudes regarding HIV/AIDS among University students and staff in Moshi Town in Tanzania... Read more »

  • December 15, 2013
  • 09:19 AM

Human Rights: What Are the Boundaries?

by Nura Rutten in United Academics

A statistical analysis of the Clash of Civilizations theory shows no proof for cultural division in human rights... Read more »

  • December 13, 2013
  • 03:27 AM


by Gunnar de Winter in United Academics

Menopause allows women to cater to their kin, and, in doing so, maximize their inclusive fitness. However, if menopause was shaped by natural selection, why is it such an arduous process rather than a smooth transition?... Read more »

  • December 12, 2013
  • 10:16 AM

Do brain differences really explain gender behaviour?

by Elisabeth Buhl Thubron in United Academics

Society is gender-obsessed and the science of gender differences is riddled with controversy. Is this just another example of the mass media and scientists over-interpreting these differences to fit in with the popular notion of gender stereotypes?... Read more »

Ingalhalikar M, Smith A, Parker D, Satterthwaite TD, Elliott MA, Ruparel K, Hakonarson H, Gur RE, Gur RC, & Verma R. (2013) Sex differences in the structural connectome of the human brain. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America. PMID: 24297904  

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