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Biomedicine: A Plateau in Childhood Obesity?

Federal officials say childhood obesity may have leveled off in the United States. A new analysis of the most recent data found the first sign since the 1980s that the number of 2-to-19-year-olds who are overweight may have stopped rising.

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Arctic Warming Brings 'Very Dramatic Changes'

The BBC reported that a Canadian military expedition has uncovered dramatic evidence of the breakup of giant Arctic ice shelves in Canada's far north. The team found a network of cracks stretching for more than 10 miles on Ward Hunt, the area's largest shelf. Scientists with the troops said it could be another indicator of climate change.

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On Mars, Ice and Salt

An electrical short in the Phoenix Lander's mechanical arm delayed its exploration of the Martian north pole last week, but new photos on Saturday revealed that the spacecraft's thrusters had uncovered a large patch of ice, which is exactly what scientists hope to sample and analyze.

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A Step Toward Thought-Controlled Machines

In last week's issue of Nature, researchers reported a dramatic advance in brain-machine interface. Two monkeys with tiny sensors implanted in their brains were able to control a mechanical arm with their thoughts. It suggests that brain-controlled prosthetics, if not yet practical, are at least technically feasible.

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Ancient Past: A New Meaning for Stonehenge?

British archaeologists said last week that Stonehenge, the prehistoric stone monument, appears to have served as a cemetery for as long as 500 years and may have been a burial site for a single important family, perhaps a royal dynasty.

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Giant 'Kitchen Towel' Could Be Used to Mop Up Oil Spills

Giant "kitchen towels" could replace booms, bombs and detergents as the best remedy for a catastrophic oil spill, researchers said after inventing a super-absorbent membrane. ...

from the Times (London)

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Erbitux OK for Colorectal Cancer Patients with Genetic Marker

A new study shows which colorectal cancer patients may benefit from a drug - and which would be better off without it. ...

from USA Today

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Oyster-Saving Efforts a Wash in Chesapeake

A vast government effort to bring oysters back to the Chesapeake Bay has turned out so dismally that it has the ring of a math-class riddle. How do you spend $58 million to get more of something and wind up with less of it?

from the Washington Post

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PODCASTS: Expanding With the Cosmos

Using the Atacama Cosmology Telescope (ATC), a 6.5-meter microwave collector in Chile, cosmologists are piecing together the early history of the known universe. In an exclusive American Scientist interview, Arthur Kosowsky—a member of the ATC team and a professor in the Department of Physics and Astronomy at the University of Pittsburgh—discusses how he is using ATC to reach back in time billions of years to search for gravitational waves that could verify inflation and reveal unprecedented details about how the cosmos was born.

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