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21 Sep

Venom may not be something you’d wish on your worst enemy. However, it could be coming to a drugstore near you, thanks to research studying its usefulness in painkillers. Scientists are studying venom from a variety of organisms for use in treating medical conditions. Since 15 percent of all organisms have venom, researchers have had no trouble finding insects to study as they create compounds for today’s pharmaceuticals.

There are already venom-inspired products on the market, including Ziconotide, which is used as treatment for chronic pain. Ziconotide mimics the venom found in cone snails. Another drug, inspired by venom in the Gila monster, is Exenatide, which is prescribed to diabetes patients. A deadly viper inspired the compound found in Captopril, which treats high blood pressure. Viper venoms are also behind two other blood pressure treatments, ptifibatide and tirofiban.

19 Sep

Scientists are mimicking the behavior of insects while designing a type of silicone that is more adhesive than previous versions. The team of researchers at Kiel University spent time studying the feet of male leaf beetles, which feature a design similar to a mushroom. This design allows them to easily move across surfaces like ceilings and walls without gravity taking its course.

To design their new type of silicone, researchers shaped silicone elastomers into mushroom shapes, then treated them with plasma. They found that the material’s adhesiveness was helped along by the chemical, but the curvature worked with the plasma to better stick to surfaces.

17 Sep

A new large-scale research analysis from the University of Exeter Medical School and the Centre for Ecology and Hydrology indicates that people who bathe, swim, or participate in water sports in the ocean have a higher likelihood of experiencing ear aches, stomach troubles, and other kinds of maladies than people who refrain from dipping into the sea.

The researchers found that swimming in the ocean upped the odds of people complaining about general ear ailments by 100 per cent, with the odds of people coming down with earaches increased by 77 per cent. When it came to gastrointestinal illnesses, the odds rose by 29 per cent.

Dr. Anne Leonard of the University of Exeter Medical School said, “We think that this indicates that pollution is still an issue affecting swimmers in some of the world’s richest countries.”

15 Sep

Following a failed attempt in 2017, a Norwegian group known as Offshore Sensing recently announced that its unmanned sailing vessel had completed a successful Transatlantic crossing.

The journey of some 1,685 miles began on June 7, 2018 in Newfoundland and ended on August 26 when the Sailbuoy Met reached the Irish coast.

The unmanned craft's previous, unsuccessful trip across the ocean finished after the Sailbuoy Wave had traveled about 2,800 miles over a time span of a couple of months. It was finally scooped from the water by a fishing vessel somewhere in the middle of the North Atlantic. When the craft was inspected to discover why it hadn't sailed as planned, the culprit was determined to be a loose screw which had more or less fried the autopilot controls.

13 Sep

Wrinkles are an inevitable part of getting older. You can fight them with Botox and plastic surgery, but you’ll at least deal with a few ridges here and there. But a new study may give you another reason to worry about the wrinkles you’re experiencing with age. It connects excessive forehead wrinkles to an increased risk of cardiovascular disease.

Researchers in France looked at data from more than 3,200 French adults, comparing adults who were aged 32, 42, 52 and 62 when the study began. Each participant was assigned a score on the number and depth of the forehead wrinkles they had. Over the course of the next two decades, researchers followed the study participants and found that 233 of them died.

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