China’s rover has discovered a new type of moon rock

It’s almost 3 billion years old.

China’s Yutu lunar rover mission has turned up something pretty special during its lonely survey of the Moon – a never-before-seen type of volcanic lunar rock, estimated to be almost 3 billion years old. Found in the little-studied Imbrium Basin, one of the largest known craters in the Solar System, the rock’s mineral composition is unlike anything scientists have seen in a moon rock.

The Yutu rover, whose name means “Jade Rabbit”, was the first spacecraft to land on the Moon since the US Apollo and Soviet Union Luna missions ended around 40 years ago. (Others have been deliberately crashed on the surface, but we can’t really count those.) Having just passed its two-year lunar anniversary, Yutu is now the world’s longest-serving lunar rover.

While information collected by past lunar orbiters has given scientists some idea of the different types of volcanic rocks that make up the surface of the Moon, this is the first chance we’ve had to sample them directly since the 1970s.

Having analysed data on the new type of moon rock – recorded by Yutu’s on-board instruments – researchers from China and the US suspect it comes from a relatively young region, which was formed around 2.96 billion years ago.

With the Moon estimated to have formed around 4.5 billion years ago, and sprouting volcanoes 500 million years after that due to an internal build-up of heat from radioactive decay, the discovery will help us to better understand the behaviour of the Moon’s long-gone but youngest volcanoes.

“The diversity tells us that the Moon’s upper mantle is much less uniform in composition than Earth’s,” said one of the team, Bradley L. Jolliff from Washington University. “And correlating chemistry with age, we can see how the Moon’s volcanism changed over time.”

When moon rocks were sampled by the Apollo and Luna mission rovers back in the ’70s, scientists had no way of getting accurate readings of the exact compositions. But thanks to Yutu having an alpha-particle X-ray spectrometer and a near-infrared hyperspectral imager equipped, Joliff and his colleagues from several Chinese research institutions have been able to figure out exactly how much titanium and iron is in their sample.

The titanium value in particular is really important, because it’s a good indication of how, when, and where volcanic magma first formed on the Moon. “The variable titanium distribution on the lunar surface suggests that the Moon’s interior was not homogenised,” said Jolliff. “We’re still trying to figure out exactly how this happened. Possibly there were big impacts during the magma ocean stage that disrupted the mantle’s formation.”

An added bonus in being able to properly analyse this new type of moon rock is that scientists can now use it as a baseline for observations recorded by spacecraft in orbit around the Moon. “We now have ‘ground truth’ for our remote sensing – a well-characterised sample in a key location,” Jolliff explains. “We see the same signal from orbit in other places, so we now know that those other places probably have similar basalts.”

Scientists say this strategy can help you learn anything fast.

We’ve been studying all wrong.

In his book Fluent Forever, opera singer Gabriel Wyner suggests that one of the best ways to learn a new language is to practice remembering it. In other words, instead of reading and re-reading a list of vocabulary words, you should read it once and then test yourself repeatedly.

The same strategy works for pretty much anything you’re hoping to commit to memory, and there’s a growing body of research behind it. Psychologists call this phenomenon the ‘testing effect’.

A 2003 study, cited in a meta-analysis by Henry L. Roediger III and Jeffrey D. Karpicke, highlights the power of testing for making information stick. In the study, researchers led by Mark Wheeler had participants either review a list of 40 words five times or review it once and take four recall tests. Then they took a recall test either 5 minutes or one week later.

Results showed that participants who’d read the word list five times performed much better on the recall test five minutes later. But participants who’d read the test just once and been tested performed better on the test one week later. In other words, testing helped boost the participants’ long-term memory.

More recent research suggests that combining testing with immediate feedback (finding out whether you answered right or wrong) is more effective, and can even boost memory right after the information is learned.

In a 2014 study led by Carola Wiklund-Hörnqvist, 83 students in an undergraduate psychology course studied a series of psychological concepts for four minutes. Half the participants continued to study these facts while each fact was presented on a computer screen for 15 seconds.

The other half took six tests in which they had to come up with the concept described on the screen. For example, if they saw “the improvement in retention of information presented at the beginning of a list”, they would have to type in “primacy effect”. Then they would see the correct answer.

At the conclusion of the learning period, all participants took a test in which they were presented with a fact and required to type in the corresponding concept. They took the same test eighteen days and five weeks later.

Participants who had been tested performed better on all three tests.

Taken together, these studies suggest that the most efficient strategy for remembering something – whether you’re learning a new language or studying for a science exam – is simply to practice recalling it. It’s probably a lot more effective than trying to drill the facts into your head by staring at them for an hour.

How smartphone’s light affect human brain?

TI_Graphics_How blue light affects body (1)

It may be hard to stop, but looking at your phone at night is a terrible idea.

Smartphone screens emit bright blue light so you can see them even at the sunniest times of day.

But at night, your brain gets confused by that light, as it mimics the brightness of the sun. This causes the brain to stop producing melatonin, a hormone that gives your body the “time to sleep” cues. Because of this, smartphone light can disrupt your sleep cycle, making it harder to fall and stay asleep — and potentially causing serious health problems along the way.

Why do you sweat more than everyone else?

Your fitness regime could be to blame.

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Humans are preconditioned to sweat. When it gets hot we sweat to cool ourselves down. Simple. Well, not quite – there are many reasons why you might sweat more or less than your friend at the gym, but there are things you can do to dry yourself out a little.

Firstly, your gender plays a role. Women have more sweat glands, but sweat less than men. Secondly, this is probably not surprising to many of you, but fitness also determines how much you sweat. And it’s not the unfit people who are sweating more – multiple studies have shown that fitter people on average sweat more than unfit people.

But this isn’t the whole story. An unfit person doing the same workload as a fit person might reach their maximum oxygen uptake earlier, and so begin to sweat sooner, but a fit person will sweat more efficiently overall.

Another factor that can affects our sweat levels is how we consume our favourite drinks: coffee and alcohol. Coffee actually causes to you sweat less due to its diuretic effect, but sweating less and being dehydrated isn’t exactly ideal either, so make sure to drink plenty of water if you’re going to be sweating it out at the gym or spending time outside a hot day.

Alcohol can also make you sweat more after you’ve had a few cocktails. That red face some of us get when we’re drinking is caused by the alcohol increasing your heart rate and dilating the blood vessels in your skin. This leads to an increase in body temperature and then an increase in sweat.

Even if none of these things apply, some people are just sweaty. If the sweat is excessive though, it could be a sign of an underlying illness. The collective term for excessive sweating is hyperhidrosis, and there are two types – primary focal hyperhidrosis and secondary generalised hyperhidrosis.

Secondary generalised hyperhidrosis is excessive sweating caused by a medical condition, or a side effect from certain medications. Some people sweat on a generalised level, which means in large areas or all over their body.

Primary focal hyperhidrosis, on the other hand, is excessive sweating not caused by any external factors. When it comes to these patients, some areas on the body are affected more than others. Common sweaty areas for people affected by primary focal hyperhidrosis are the hands, feet, underarms, and head. Patients will often have more than one excessively sweaty area – people dealing with crazy sweaty hands almost always having crazy sweaty feet.

But no matter why we sweat, it helps keep our bodies cool, so although it might be slightly unpleasant, your body will thank you for suffering through it. Just remember to always pack an extra shirt – just in case.

5 Amazing Ways How Probiotics Help During Breastfeeding

When you mention bacteria, most people immediately think of harmful disease-causing germs. However our bodies are full of bacteria and they are integral to our bodily functions. These “good” or “helpful” bacteria are beneficial for your health and especially for the digestive system.

Probiotics are part of these “helpful ” bacteria because they help keep your gut healthy. Probiotics occur naturally in your body. But you can also find them in some foods and supplements. The most common natural foods that contain probiotics are yogurt and chocolate.

How Probiotics Support Infant Health

1. Prevention Of  Eczema

During breastfeeding, the presence of probiotics in the diet will help prevent diseases like Eczema. According to a study in the “Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology”, the consumption of probiotics by pregnant and breastfeeding mothers increased the immunoprotective potential of their breast milk. “Transforming growth factor beta 2” is an anti-inflammatory substance that is increased by the consumption of probiotics.

During a study conducted in Finland, Probiotics were shown to protect children from Atopic Eczema administered to the mother before delivery and during breastfeeding.

2. Prevents Constipation

There were limited studies regarding the effects probiotics had on a child with chronic constipation. A study conducted in Italy looked to shed some light on this topic. The test was conducted from Jan 2008 to December 2008 on 44 infants admitted to the gastrointestinal ward of a hospital in Naples. The results suggested that regular consumption of probiotics improved the bowel movements in the infants.

3. Positive Effect On Immune System

As a newborn’s diet is based exclusively on a mother’s diet, it is essential for a baby’s digestive system to develop immunity. When probiotics in the mother’s diet are passed onto the child, it helps fortify the immune system and lets the digestive system mature faster.

The gut comprises roughly 60 to 70 percent of the immune system. Inoculating a baby’s gut with probiotics through breastfeeding is an important strategy to strengthen the baby’s overall health. The inclusion of probiotics in a mother’s diet during pregnancy is also an effective way of boosting immunity.

4. Thrush Prevention

Thrush is a fungal infection that can infect a baby’s mouth during breastfeeding. The bacteria responsible for thrush are usually present in our immune system and are kept in check. However, when there is bacterial imbalance, it can cause infections and our immune system will not be able to cope up with the sudden growth.

Probiotics are known for their ability to regulate the good bacteria in the body. This helps fight thrush and should be a vital part of the mother’s diet during breastfeeding.

5. Prevention Of Gut And Psychology Syndrome

GAP Syndrome or GAPS is a condition where there is a connection between the functioning of the digestive system and the brain. It can lead to serious health complications and stunted growth. Autism, ADHD, Schizophrenia and mood disorders can all be considered results of GAP syndrome. Probiotics help in actively assisting the digestive system and the smooth functioning of the immune system. They are essential inclusions in a mother’s diet as they affect the digestive system and other areas too.

Probiotics are essential components of a newborn’s diet. Whether consumed naturally or through supplements, probiotics are highly effective in boosting a baby’s immunity, fighting off infections and ensuring the best of health.

Successful IVF requires multiple attempts

A new study has revealed that two-thirds of couples undergoing in vitro fertilization treatment need up to six attempts to have a successful pregnancy. Scientists at the universities of Bristol and Glasgow said the process is not a ” single shot” as chances of success increased with the number of treatments, the Independent reported.
Representational Image. (Picture Courtesy: Pixabay)
The authors found that in all women, the live-birth rate for the first cycle was 29.5 per cent, and remained above 20 per cent up to and including the fourth cycle for women under 40. The cumulative percentage of live-births across all cycles continued to increase up to the ninth cycle, with 65 per cent of women achieving a live birth by the sixth cycle.
IVF is commonly stopped after three or four unsuccessful embryo transfers, with three unsuccessful transfers labelled as repeat implantation failure. Professor Lawlor said that these findings support the efficacy of extending the number of IVF cycles beyond three or four.

Antenna-powered WiFi on moving vehicles tested

Tech startup, Kymeta has completed a testing phase of a newly developed smart antenna, called mTenna, on a moving vehicle over the course of 8,000 miles. The product, capable of providing WiFi anywhere in the world including planes and ships, offers internet through a satellite connectivity. Currently, WiFi provided on moving vehicles uses LTE connections in spite of satellite connections.

How to Treat and Ease The Pain Of A Stiff Neck or Shoulder


The domestication of dogs has caused harmful genetic changes, study finds

Sad reading for dog lovers.

The domestication of dogs over the course of several thousand years has inadvertently led to them carrying harmful genetic baggage, a new study has found.

According to researchers at the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA), a combination of practises carried out by humans to select for desirable traits in domestic dogs has resulted in them possessing an excess of deleterious DNA today.

“Dogs have an integral role in human society, and recent evidence suggests they have a unique bond that elicits a beneficial hormonal response in both dogs and human handlers,” the authors write. “Here, we show this relationship has a dark side.”

The separation of dogs from their grey wolf ancestors started more than 15,000 years ago, and that’s where the problems began, the researchers say. Severe population ‘bottlenecking’, where not enough grey wolves contributed to the starter population, meant the genetic diversity of early dogs was not as wide as it should have been.

This problem has been compounded over time by the artificial selection of dogs for selective breeding purposes – where breeders pick animals for mating based on certain physical or temperamental traits.

While this has resulted in the creation of the distinct and much-loved dog breeds we know today, it’s also saddled the animals with harmful mutations in the process that get passed along with the desired characteristics.

The negative genetic repercussions of this – which are more pronounced than the recent effects of inbreeding – can lead to breeds having increased susceptibility to particular diseases.

To assess the health of today’s dogs, the researchers analysed the complete genome sequences of 46 domesticated dogs from 34 breeds. They contrasted this with sequences of wolves and village dogs (animals descended from indigenous dogs) in what they claim represents the largest survey of dog genetic diversity based on genome sequences to date.

Their findings, reported in PNAS, describe how dogs for the most part possess more harmful gene variants than wolves, and which increase in frequency in dogs bred for positively selected traits.

“Small population size during domestication and strong artificial selection for breed-defining traits has unintentionally increased the numbers of deleterious genetic variants,” the researchers write. “Our findings question the overly typological practice of breeding individuals that best fit breed standards, a Victorian legacy. This practise does not allow selection to remove potentially deleterious variation associated with genes responsible for breed-specific traits.”

The researchers say their findings may have important implications for selective breeding programs, highlighting the genetic costs associated with the human favouring of select breed traits.

“Our results also suggest that maintaining a large population size, rather than just avoiding inbreeding, is a critical factor for preventing the accumulation of deleterious variants,” the researchers conclude.

Sex burns calories – Reasons to Have More Sex