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

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  • 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  

  • December 11, 2013
  • 07:07 AM

Treating Fungi With Plastic Bottles

by Patrícia Fonseca Pedro in United Academics

Investigators have found that they can use PET plastic bottles as raw-material to manufacture a biomaterial, which will disrupt fungi cells’ outer membrane. Therefore, it prevents the fungi’s cell division and ultimately, it causes the fungi’s death.... Read more »

Fukushima K, Liu S, Wu H, Engler AC, Coady DJ, Maune H, Pitera J, Nelson A, Wiradharma N, Venkataraman S.... (2013) Supramolecular high-aspect ratio assemblies with strong antifungal activity. Nature communications, 2861. PMID: 24316819  

  • December 9, 2013
  • 07:08 AM

Your subconcious knows if your marriage will last

by Koko Beers in United Academics

Implicit gut feelings of newlyweds predict the succes of a marriage, new research suggests. ... Read more »

  • December 6, 2013
  • 09:41 AM

Using Twitter To Track The Flu

by Dyani Lewis in United Academics

In 2008, Google entered the flu monitoring game by launching Google Flu Trends. Now, a team of Italian researchers report that Twitter could be used in an even more reliable way. ... Read more »

  • December 5, 2013
  • 07:41 AM

How chimps can act as caretakers and murderers of their predator's cub

by Katja Keuchenius in United Academics

This video and picture were made in 2011, but are currently reliving their fame on social media. The material is cute, of course, and interesting. It shows how encaptured chimps can be taught to care for their predator’s cubs. A chimp’s natural environment can also make him do just the opposite. In 1986 researchers described how a group of wild chimpanzees deliberately managed to drag a leopard’s cub away from its mother and then kill it.... Read more »

Hiraiwa-Hasegawa M, Byrne RW, Takasaki H, & Byrne JM. (1986) Aggression toward large carnivores by wild chimpanzees of Mahale Mountains National Park, Tanzania. Folia primatologica; international journal of primatology, 47(1), 8-13. PMID: 3557232  

  • December 3, 2013
  • 07:41 AM

Your Risk Of Disease: Would You Want To Know?

by Elisabeth Buhl Thubron in United Academics

Private companies are selling a direct-to-consumer service that scans your genome for disease-associated variations in your DNA sequence. Who wouldn’t want to know their future risk of developing a disease? If the appropriate preventative measures are taken now then perhaps disease onset can be delayed? ... Read more »

  • December 2, 2013
  • 03:00 PM

How the Milky Way feeds itself to make new stars

by Jeffrey Daniels in United Academics

Galaxies like our Milky Way make stars. In order to accomplish that, the galaxy must first have clouds of hydrogen and helium. But gas clouds floating in from intergalactic space are usually deflected by the galaxy’s electromagnetic field.... Read more »

Alex S. Hill, S. A. Mao, Robert A. Benjamin, Felix J. Lockman, & Naomi M. McClure-Griffiths. (2013) Magnetized Gas in the Smith High Velocity Cloud. 2013, ApJ, 777, 55. arXiv: 1309.2553v2

  • November 29, 2013
  • 09:50 AM

Finally: Pills Instead Of Injections For Type 1 Diabetes

by Patrícia Fonseca Pedro in United Academics

We already use nanoparticles for various ends. What if they could also act as pills to carry the insulin to our blood instead of having to take insulin shots? Wouldn’t it be so much more easy and painless for diabetes patients?... Read more »

Pridgen EM, Alexis F, Kuo TT, Levy-Nissenbaum E, Karnik R, Blumberg RS, Langer R, & Farokhzad OC. (2013) Transepithelial transport of fc-targeted nanoparticles by the neonatal fc receptor for oral delivery. Science translational medicine, 5(213). PMID: 24285486  

  • November 28, 2013
  • 09:47 AM

When And Where Did Dogs Become Man’s Best Friend?

by Alex Reis in United Academics

New research contradicts the idea that the first farmers were responsible for domesticating dogs. It turns out that dogs became our faithful companions even before the appearance of the first settlements. The appeal presented by hunter-gatherers was enough to arouse the wolf’s curiosity and approach humans.... Read more »

Thalmann O, Shapiro B, Cui P, Schuenemann VJ, Sawyer SK, Greenfield DL, Germonpré MB, Sablin MV, López-Giráldez F, Domingo-Roura X.... (2013) Complete mitochondrial genomes of ancient canids suggest a European origin of domestic dogs. Science (New York, N.Y.), 342(6160), 871-4. PMID: 24233726  

Larson G, Karlsson EK, Perri A, Webster MT, Ho SY, Peters J, Stahl PW, Piper PJ, Lingaas F, Fredholm M.... (2012) Rethinking dog domestication by integrating genetics, archeology, and biogeography. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, 109(23), 8878-83. PMID: 22615366  

Vilà C, Savolainen P, Maldonado JE, Amorim IR, Rice JE, Honeycutt RL, Crandall KA, Lundeberg J, & Wayne RK. (1997) Multiple and ancient origins of the domestic dog. Science (New York, N.Y.), 276(5319), 1687-9. PMID: 9180076  

Thalmann O, Shapiro B, Cui P, Schuenemann VJ, Sawyer SK, Greenfield DL, Germonpré MB, Sablin MV, López-Giráldez F, Domingo-Roura X, Napierala H,Uerpmann HP, Loponte DM, Acosta AA, Giemsch L, Schmitz RW, Worthington B, Buikstra JE, Druzhkova A, Graphoda. (2013) Fossil dogs and wolves from Palaeolithic sites in Belgium, the Ukraine and Russia: osteometry, ancient DNA and stable isotopes. Science . DOI: 10.1016/j.jas.2008.09.033  

Pang JF, Kluetsch C, Zou XJ, Zhang AB, Luo LY, Angleby H, Ardalan A, Ekström C, Sköllermo A, Lundeberg J.... (2009) mtDNA data indicate a single origin for dogs south of Yangtze River, less than 16,300 years ago, from numerous wolves. Molecular biology and evolution, 26(12), 2849-64. PMID: 19723671  

  • November 26, 2013
  • 11:40 AM

How To Stop Online Bullying

by Flora Brils in United Academics

Bullying can have a big impact, including loneliness, depression, anxiety, low self-esteem and even suicide. Now cyberbullying is on the rise. How to adress this new phenonemon? Researchers map responses that are successful (or unsuccesful) against cyberbullying.... Read more »

  • November 25, 2013
  • 08:52 AM

Brain Scans in the Classroom: The Future of Neuroscience

by Koko Beers in United Academics

Neuroimaging techniques have been widely used to study the brain as well as for clinical applications. New developments direct neuroscience towards more practical applications of neuroimaging, that go beyond research or health care, explaining pedophelial behaviour, improving movie making and more.... Read more »

Ariely D, & Berns GS. (2010) Neuromarketing: the hope and hype of neuroimaging in business. Nature reviews. Neuroscience, 11(4), 284-92. PMID: 20197790  

Belcher, A. . (2010) Neurolaw. Wiley Interdisciplinary Reviews: Cognitive Science. DOI: 10.1002/wcs.8  

  • November 24, 2013
  • 06:10 AM

Machine Made Body Parts

by Rebekah Morrow in United Academics

I first heard about this while I was watching Grey’s Anatomy. Meredith was trying to print a 3D model of a liver, and I thought “That’s cool, but it will never happen.” As it turns out, I was wrong – it’s already happening.... Read more »

Lee VK, Singh G, Trasatti JP, Bjornsson C, Tran TN, Xu G, Yoo SS, Dai G, & Karande P. (2013) Design and Fabrication of Human Skin by 3D Bioprinting. Tissue engineering. Part C, Methods. PMID: 24188635  

  • November 22, 2013
  • 05:15 AM

Humpback Whales Share Songs Over Lunch

by Dyani Lewis in United Academics

Whales learn new tunes at shared Antarctic feeding grounds.... Read more »

  • November 22, 2013
  • 04:17 AM

4 Beneficial Effects Of Physical Exercise On The Brain

by Agnese Mariotti in United Academics

Research in the last decade has identified some of the main effects of exercise on the brain and has started to unravel the molecular mechanisms by which the physiological changes triggered by exercise modify the activity of neurons in the brain.... Read more »

  • November 21, 2013
  • 05:17 AM

New Step In Genetic Modification Of Plants

by Geetanjali Yadav in United Academics

Plant transformation is insertion of new genetic material to the plant’s body. This used to be difficult because many economically important plants are recalcitrant to it as they lack certain gene elements. But according to a recent report published in Science, researchers now have successfully transformed a model plant, Arabidopsis, through agrobacterium-mediated transformation process.... Read more »

Sardesai N, Lee LY, Chen H, Yi H, Olbricht GR, Stirnberg A, Jeffries J, Xiong K, Doerge RW, & Gelvin SB. (2013) Cytokinins Secreted by Agrobacterium Promote Transformation by Repressing a Plant Myb Transcription Factor. Science signaling, 6(302). PMID: 24255177  

  • November 18, 2013
  • 08:14 AM

Collective Memory: Scientific Aproach To Telepathy

by Katja Keuchenius in United Academics

Why do humans often make independent but similar discoveries at about the same time? What makes us repetitively stumble upon that new word or phenomenon that we just learned about the other day? And how do mice know all about our poison and traps? Is it because all members of a species share a thelapethic-like collective memory?... Read more »

  • November 15, 2013
  • 10:48 AM

Humans Did Not Speciate For Two Million Years

by Jeffrey Daniels in United Academics

Newly found fossils suggest hominids are ‘breeds’ of the same species.... Read more »

  • November 14, 2013
  • 03:00 PM

Sleeping Literally Clears Your Head

by Pieter Carrière in United Academics

It is a common experience that a problem difficult at night is resolved in the morning after the committee of sleep has worked on it, John Steinbeck hit the nail on the head. It turns out sleep flushes your brain clear.... Read more »

Xie L, Kang H, Xu Q, Chen MJ, Liao Y, Thiyagarajan M, O'Donnell J, Christensen DJ, Nicholson C, Iliff JJ.... (2013) Sleep drives metabolite clearance from the adult brain. Science (New York, N.Y.), 342(6156), 373-7. PMID: 24136970  

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