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  • Humans, monkeys age the same way - Futurity
    University Syracuse University Texas A M University Tulane University University at Buffalo University College London University of Arizona University of California at Irvine University of California Berkeley University of California Davis University of California Santa Barbara University of Chicago University of Colorado at Boulder University of Copenhagen University of Florida University of Illinois University of Iowa University of Kansas University of Leeds University of Maryland University of Melbourne University of Michigan University of Minnesota University of Missouri University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill University of Nottingham University of Oregon University of Pennsylvania University of Pittsburgh University of Queensland University of Rochester University of Sheffield University of Southampton University of Southern California University of Texas at Austin University of Toronto University of Virginia University of Warwick University of Washington University of York Vanderbilt University Washington University in St Louis Yale University Top Stories Related Articles Algae spew mucus to alter sea ice iPad power from bendy glass fuel cells Empathy ups brain response to atypical bodies Share This Article facebook twitter Action googleplus Google linkedin LinkedIn pinterest Pinterest reddit Reddit Stumbleupon mail Email Print Humans monkeys age the same way Duke University Iowa State University Posted by Karl Bates Duke on March 14 2011 You are free to share this article under the Attribution 4 0 International license DUKE IOWA STATE US The assumption that humans age more slowly than other animals may not be true It seems all primates follow a similar pattern of getting older The findings are from the first multi species comparison of human aging patterns with those in chimps gorillas and other primates Findings appear in the March 11 issue of Science We had good reason to think human aging was unique says co author Anne Bronikowski an associate professor at Iowa State University For one humans live longer than many animals There are some exceptions parrots seabirds clams and tortoises can all outlive us but humans stand out as the longest lived primates Humans live for many more years past our reproductive prime Bronikowski says If we were like other mammals we would start dying fairly rapidly after we reach mid life But we don t The results also confirm a pattern observed in humans and elsewhere in the animal kingdom As males age they die sooner than their female counterparts In primates the mortality gap between males and females is narrowest for the species with the least amount of male male aggression a monkey called the muriqui the researchers report Muriquis are the only species in our sample in which males do not compete overtly with one another for access to mates says co author Karen Strier an anthropologist at the University of Wisconsin who has studied muriquis since 1982 The results suggest the reason why males of other species die faster than females may be the stress and strain of competition the authors note Aging in the wild There s been this argument in the scientific literature for a long time that

    Original URL path: http://www.futurity.org/humans-monkeys-age-the-same-way/ (2016-02-12)
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  • Startling trick turns jellyfish into super swimmers - Futurity
    unmatched efficiency Video of a swimming moon jellyfish Aurelia aurita showing the visualized fluid vectors colored arrows and vorticity spin associated with the fluid as result of the swimming motion Colors indicate direction of spin with blue being clockwise and red representing counterclockwise fluid rotation generated by the animal as it swims Playback is approximately 1 5 of real time Brad Gemmell Credit University of Southern Florida Video of a lamprey eel black outline swimming in a water tank Colors indicate the low pressure suction forces blue and high pressure pushing forces red generated by the animal as it swims Colorbar indicates pressure in units of Pascals Newtons per square meter Playback is approximately 1 60 of real time Credit John Dabiri Stanford Engineering Researchers say the findings could spur new designs for energy efficient underwater craft It confounds all our assumptions says John Dabiri professor of civil and environmental engineering and of mechanical engineering at Stanford University But our experiments show that jellyfish and lampreys actually suck water toward themselves to move forward instead of pushing against the water behind them as had been previously supposed Researchers have spent years studying the propulsion systems of jellyfish and eel like lampreys Both animals long ago evolved into efficient swimmers Each minimal pulsing or undulating movement helps them cover a significant distance Studying nature for clues to improve human made technologies is part of a field called biomimetics and researchers originally set out looking for insights to improve the design of submarines and ships Jellyfish with tiny jets can turn on a dime About three years ago Dabiri began to suspect that scientists fundamentally misunderstood underwater propulsion that moving forward like nature s best swimmers was far more complicated than spinning a propeller or kicking one s feet to push off against the water behind Instead as a lamprey slithers along it creates a pocket of low pressure water inside each bend of its body As the water ahead of the lamprey races into this low pressure bend the flow of that water pulls the lamprey forward Jellyfish propulsion is similar As the jelly s umbrella shaped plume collapses water ahead of the animal is pulled aft propelling the jellyfish forward 260 year old math problem To make their case researchers designed an experiment that enabled them to use a 260 year old equation that helps scientists to explain the theoretical behavior of fluids around solid objects such as swimming animals This is tricky because solids and fluids are so different Interactions between solid objects are usually straightforward like two billiard balls bouncing off each other and therefore you can calculate the forces without much difficulty Dabiri says But in a fluid every molecule is like a billiard ball and they are practically innumerable There isn t a simple way to calculate all those interactions In 1755 mathematician Leonard Euler created an equation to describe fluid motion It boiled down to the interplay of three variables time the rate of flow

    Original URL path: http://www.futurity.org/lampreys-jellyfish-swimming-1041612/ (2016-02-12)
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  • Mashup mammal: More cat than dog - Futurity
    University of Oregon University of Pennsylvania University of Pittsburgh University of Queensland University of Rochester University of Sheffield University of Southampton University of Southern California University of Texas at Austin University of Toronto University of Virginia University of Warwick University of Washington University of York Vanderbilt University Washington University in St Louis Yale University Science and Technology Related Articles How a retrovirus can kick start brain repair Flowers optimized colors for bee vision Why cameras are taking thousands of mosquito pics Share This Article facebook twitter Action googleplus Google linkedin LinkedIn pinterest Pinterest reddit Reddit Stumbleupon mail Email Print Mashup mammal More cat than dog Brown University Posted by Richard Lewis Brown on May 4 2011 You are free to share this article under the Attribution 4 0 International license BROWN US With a head and body of a dog a striped coat like a cat and a baby carrying pouch like a kangaroo the thylacine of Australia and Tasmania was an odd mix A study of the bones of the now extinct thylacine called both a marsupial wolf and a Tasmanian tiger has determined that the solitary ambush style predator was more cat than dog but also clearly a marsupial We provide quantitative support to the suspicions of earlier researchers that the thylacine was not a pursuit predator says Borja Figueirido a postdoctoral researcher at Brown University and the paper s lead author The research is reported in the journal Biology Letters Although there is no doubt that the thylacine diet was similar to that of living wolves we find no compelling evidence that they hunted similarly For millions of years Thylacinus cynocephalus roamed mainland Australia Its numbers declined as humans settled throughout the continent beginning some 40 000 years ago and as the dingo a small dog like animal was introduced about 4 000 years ago Thylacines last remaining outpost was in dingo free Tasmania but a concerted eradication effort wiped out the species The last known thylacine died at a zoo in 1936 It s unclear why the animal fared so poorly with the arrival of humans and dingoes but speculation is that human activity disrupted the thylacine habitat and perhaps its food sources The role dingoes had on the thylacine demise is less clear Speculationis that because dingoes were the placental spitting image of the marsupial thylacines evolved in isolated settings called evolutionary convergence When dingoes arrived in Australia they helped push the thylacines out But Figueirido and Christine Janis professor of biology and a co author on the paper say there s more to the story The researchers compared the thylacine s skeleton with pumas panthers jackals wolves hyenas and Tasmanian devils that are the largest living carnivorous marsupials Previous research had discovered the elbow joint is a clue to predator habits because it shows whether the animal is built for flexibility and dexterity in handling prey or for chase and speed in tracking down the next meal Figueirido and Janis found that the thylacine

    Original URL path: http://www.futurity.org/mashup-mammal-was-more-cat-than-dog/ (2016-02-12)
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  • Do mating songs stir up birds’ emotions? - Futurity
    Yale University Science and Technology Related Articles Solar cell spikes let in 99 of sunlight Can nuclear fusion get us to Mars Hypersonic flight aboard superfast computer Share This Article facebook twitter Action googleplus Google linkedin LinkedIn pinterest Pinterest reddit Reddit Stumbleupon mail Email Print Do mating songs stir up birds emotions Emory University right Original Study Posted by Carol Clark Emory on December 27 2012 You are free to share this article under the Attribution 4 0 International license EMORY US A bird listening to birdsong may experience some of the same emotions as a human hearing music report researchers who worked with white throated sparrows We found that the same neural reward system is activated in female birds in the breeding state that are listening to male birdsong and in people listening to music that they like says Sarah Earp who led the research as an undergraduate at Emory University For male birds listening to another male s song it was a different story They had an amygdala response that looks similar to that of people when they hear discordant unpleasant music The study published in Frontiers in Evolutionary Neuroscience is the first to compare neural responses of listeners in the long standing debate over whether birdsong is music Scientists since the time of Darwin have wondered whether birdsong and music may serve similar purposes or have the same evolutionary precursors Earp notes But most attempts to compare the two have focused on the qualities of the sound themselves such as melody and rhythm Earp s curiosity was sparked while an honors student at Emory majoring in both neuroscience and music She took The Musical Brain course developed by Paul Lennard director of the Neuroscience and Behavioral Biology program which brought in guest lecturers from the fields of neuroscience and music During one class the guest speaker was a composer and he said that he thought that birdsong is like music but Dr Lennard thought it was not Earp recalls It turned into this huge debate and each of them seemed to define music differently I thought it was interesting that you could take one question and have two conflicting answers that are both right in a way depending on your perspective and how you approach the question As a senior last year Earp worked in the lab of study co author Donna Maney a neuroscientist who uses songbirds as a model to study the neural basis of complex learned behavior When Earp proposed using the lab s data to investigate the birdsong music debate Maney thought it was a great idea Birdsong is a signal Maney says And the definition of a signal is that it elicits a response in the receiver Previous studies hadn t approached the question from that angle and it s an important one Earp reviewed studies that mapped human neural responses to music through brain imaging She also analyzed data from the Maney lab on white throated sparrows The lab maps brain

    Original URL path: http://www.futurity.org/do-mating-songs-stir-up-birds%e2%80%99-emotions/ (2016-02-12)
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  • Uncertain choices light up 'explorer' brains - Futurity
    googleplus Google linkedin LinkedIn pinterest Pinterest reddit Reddit Stumbleupon mail Email Print Uncertain choices light up explorer brains Brown University right Original Study Posted by David Orenstein Brown on February 9 2012 You are free to share this article under the Attribution 4 0 International license BROWN US People who consistently select for uncertainty may harness the computational power of a specific brain region Some people explorers choose to grapple with uncertainty head on It s a strategy of maximizing rewards by discovering whether as yet unexplored options might yield better returns While some might stick with the usual explorers might order the special in a restaurant because they aren t sure they ll like it In the new study Brown University researchers show that such explorers use a specific part of their brain to calculate the relative uncertainty of their choices while non explorers do not The study published in the journal Neuron newly exposes an aspect of the brain s architecture for producing decisions and learning says co author David Badre assistant professor of cognitive linguistic and psychological sciences There was no consensus that a precise area of the prefrontal cortex in this case the right rostrolateral prefrontal cortex would be so clearly associated with a specific operation such as performing the requisite uncertainty comparison for supporting a decision making strategy There has long been a debate about the functional organization of the frontal cortex Badre says There has been a notion that the frontal lobe lacks specialization when exercising cognitive control that it s undifferentiated This study provides evidence that there is a kind of organization This is an example of how higher order functions such as decision making may relate to the frontal lobe s more general functional architecture Stop the clock To spot explorer behavior among their 15 participants Badre and Michael Frank associate professor of cognitive linguistic and psychological sciences slid them into an MRI scanner and presented them with a game to play Participants had to stop the sweeping hand of a virtual clock to win points in different rounds They were told that they could maximize their rewards by responding quickly in some rounds and slowly in others The trick is they did not know round to round which response prevailed and the number of points they could win was highly variable They therefore had to employ a strategy to discover how to maximize their rewards among uncertain options keeping track of the current expected value of fast and slow responses in each round While the MRI scanner tracked the blood flow in the brains of the subjects a proxy for neural activity the game s software tracked their response times in each round The computer then fed the game s data into mathematical models devised to determine whether participants adapted their response times by taking relative uncertainty into account or adapted in another manner Over dozens of rounds a clear pattern emerged Regardless of which version of the model they used

    Original URL path: http://www.futurity.org/uncertain-choices-light-up-explorer-brains/ (2016-02-12)
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  • Lamprey DNA could hold evolution secrets - Futurity
    Georgia Institute of Technology Indiana University Iowa State University Johns Hopkins University McGill University Michigan State University Monash University National University of Singapore New York University Northwestern University Penn State Princeton University Purdue University Rice University Rutgers University Stanford University Stony Brook University Syracuse University Texas A M University Tulane University University at Buffalo University College London University of Arizona University of California at Irvine University of California Berkeley University of California Davis University of California Santa Barbara University of Chicago University of Colorado at Boulder University of Copenhagen University of Florida University of Illinois University of Iowa University of Kansas University of Leeds University of Maryland University of Melbourne University of Michigan University of Minnesota University of Missouri University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill University of Nottingham University of Oregon University of Pennsylvania University of Pittsburgh University of Queensland University of Rochester University of Sheffield University of Southampton University of Southern California University of Texas at Austin University of Toronto University of Virginia University of Warwick University of Washington University of York Vanderbilt University Washington University in St Louis Yale University Science and Technology Related Articles Turtles Little change in 210 million years Graphite surprise throws physics for a loop Glass just two atoms thick shatters world record Share This Article facebook twitter Action googleplus Google linkedin LinkedIn pinterest Pinterest reddit Reddit Stumbleupon mail Email Print Lamprey DNA could hold evolution secrets Michigan State University right Original Study Posted by Layne Cameron Michigan State on February 25 2013 You are free to share this article under the Attribution 4 0 International license MICHIGAN STATE US Scientists have decoded the entire sea lamprey genome which offers clues to the history of vertebrate evolution including that of humans The sea lamprey is one of the few ancient jawless species that has survived through the modern era The paper published in Nature Genetics not only sheds light on how the venerable invasive species adapted and thrived but also provides many insights into the evolution of all vertebrates species with backbones and spinal cords which includes humans says Weiming Li fisheries and wildlife professor at Michigan State University who organized and coordinated the team One sea lamprey can kill more than 40 pounds of fish and the US and Canadian governments spend 10 to 15 million annually to control them in the Great Lakes Credit Michigan State Sea lampreys are amazing survivors says Li whose teammate Jeramiah Smith of the University of Kentucky led the analysis of the genome assembly Even though they diverged from our lineage 500 million years ago they give us a template of how vertebrates including humans evolved into the modern species that we have today By serving as a bridge to bygone eras lamprey DNA also provides pathways to many extinct lineages thus opening the door to decode many prehistoric species he adds Based on fossil records the Cambrian period is cited as a dramatic time when life exploded from single celled organisms to complex multi celled

    Original URL path: http://www.futurity.org/lamprey-dna-could-hold-evolution-secrets/ (2016-02-12)
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  • To protect your phone, this system learns how you tap - Futurity
    University Syracuse University Texas A M University Tulane University University at Buffalo University College London University of Arizona University of California at Irvine University of California Berkeley University of California Davis University of California Santa Barbara University of Chicago University of Colorado at Boulder University of Copenhagen University of Florida University of Illinois University of Iowa University of Kansas University of Leeds University of Maryland University of Melbourne University of Michigan University of Minnesota University of Missouri University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill University of Nottingham University of Oregon University of Pennsylvania University of Pittsburgh University of Queensland University of Rochester University of Sheffield University of Southampton University of Southern California University of Texas at Austin University of Toronto University of Virginia University of Warwick University of Washington University of York Vanderbilt University Washington University in St Louis Yale University Science and Technology Related Articles Elephant shark genome offers a few surprises Brain training works but there s a catch Microrobot lifts bead 4x its weight Share This Article facebook twitter Action googleplus Google linkedin LinkedIn pinterest Pinterest reddit Reddit Stumbleupon mail Email Print It s pretty easy for someone to look over your shoulder while you re unlocking your phone and see your password says Samuel Clarke This system ensures security even if someone takes your phone or tablet and starts using it Credit Nicola Flickr To protect your phone this system learns how you tap Georgia Institute of Technology Posted by Jason Maderer Georgia Tech on April 7 2014 You are free to share this article under the Attribution 4 0 International license A new security system continuously monitors how a user taps and swipes a mobile device and recognizes if the movements don t match the owner s normal tendencies If that happens the system can be programmed to automatically lock The LatentGesture system from cybersecurity researchers at Georgia Institute of Technology used Android devices in testing and was nearly 98 percent accurate on a smartphone and 97 percent correct on tablets The research team will present the findings in Toronto at ACM Chinese CHI 2014 at the end of April Related Articles On Futurity University of Kansas Free app lets amateurs find and I D fossils Carnegie Mellon University Keyboards shrink for extra tiny devices University of Florida In Africa 15M cell phones map malaria The system learns a person s touch signature then constantly compares it to how the current user is interacting with the device says Polo Chau assistant professor of computing who led the study To test the system Chau and his team set up an electronic form with a list of tasks for 20 participants They were asked to tap buttons check boxes and swipe slider bars on a phone and tablet to fill out the form The system tracked their tendencies and created a profile for each person After profiles were stored the researchers designated one person s signature as the owner of the device and repeated the tests LatentGesture

    Original URL path: http://www.futurity.org/unique-tap-gives-mobile-devices-added-security/ (2016-02-12)
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  • Electric fish come equipped with dimmer - Futurity
    University Rutgers University Stanford University Stony Brook University Syracuse University Texas A M University Tulane University University at Buffalo University College London University of Arizona University of California at Irvine University of California Berkeley University of California Davis University of California Santa Barbara University of Chicago University of Colorado at Boulder University of Copenhagen University of Florida University of Illinois University of Iowa University of Kansas University of Leeds University of Maryland University of Melbourne University of Michigan University of Minnesota University of Missouri University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill University of Nottingham University of Oregon University of Pennsylvania University of Pittsburgh University of Queensland University of Rochester University of Sheffield University of Southampton University of Southern California University of Texas at Austin University of Toronto University of Virginia University of Warwick University of Washington University of York Vanderbilt University Washington University in St Louis Yale University Earth and Environment Related Articles Will thirsty corn limit US ethanol goals Traveling rain band could leave billions dry No signs of fracking fluids in Arkansas drinking water Share This Article facebook twitter Action googleplus Google linkedin LinkedIn pinterest Pinterest reddit Reddit Stumbleupon mail Email Print Electric fish come equipped with dimmer University of Texas at Austin Posted by Futurity Jenny Leonard on October 1 2009 You are free to share this article under the Attribution 4 0 International license TEXAS AUSTIN US Electric fish communicate by quickly plugging special channels into their cells to generate electrical impulses according to new research And like all good consumers they conserve energy by turning their electrical signals up and down Researchers at the University of Texas at Austin say the fish generate electric fields to navigate fight and attract mates in murky streams and rivers throughout Central and South America They do so at night while trying to avoid predators such as catfish that sense the electric fields Harold Zakon professor of neurobiology says the dimmer switch comes in the form of sodium channels the fish insert and remove from the membranes of special cells called electrocytes within their electric organs When more sodium channels are in the cell membrane the electric impulse emitted by the electric organ is greater The process is under the control of hormones and is maintained through a day night circadian rhythm that can change rapidly during social encounters For a vertebrate animal this is the first account that brings the whole system together from the behavior down to the rapid insertion of channels and in such an ecologically meaningful way says Michael Markham a research scientist in Zakon s laboratory This is part of the animal s every day activity and it is being regulated very tightly by a low level molecular change The rapidity of the action is particularly stunning Markham says This is happening within a matter of two to three minutes The machinery is there to make this dramatic remodeling of the cell and it does so within minutes from the time that some sort

    Original URL path: http://www.futurity.org/electric-fish-come-equipped-with-dimmer/ (2016-02-12)
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