Culture

A number of threatened species in the developing world are entirely dependent on human agriculture for their survival, according to new research by the University of East Anglia (UEA).

Published today in the journal Conservation Letters, the study concludes that many species, rather than just using farmland to supplement their natural habitat, would actually be driven to extinction without it. Species such as the White-shouldered Ibis in Cambodia, the Sociable Lapwing in Kazakhstan and the Liben Lark in Ethiopia rely on local people and their agriculture.

Is there a psychological reason why people default on their mortgages? A new study, which will be published in an upcoming issue of Psychological Science, a journal of the Association for Psychological Science, finds that people with bad credit scores are more impatient – more likely to choose immediate rewards rather than wait for a larger reward later.

In Germany, the rising cost of heating has sparked a renovation boom. In order to lower energy costs, more and more homeowners are investing in insulation facades. But the typical insulation layers on the market have one drawback: they add bulk. The 20-centimeter-thick outer skin changes the building's visual appearance and can result in significant follow-up costs – with a need to fit new, deeper window sills and sometimes even roof extensions.

Los Angeles, CA (December 2nd, 2011) – Most of us would agree that prevention is better than cure. But new results out in the journal Clinical Rehabilitation, published by SAGE, indicate that a costly intervention programme designed to reduce early retirement on health grounds in Finland had no measurable effect.

A lab discovery is a step toward implantable replacement cartilage, holding promise for knees, shoulders, ears and noses damaged by osteoarthritis, sports injuries and accidents.

Self-assembling sheets of mesenchymal stem cells permeated with tiny beads filled with growth factor formed thicker, stiffer cartilage than previous tissue engineering methods, researchers at Case Western Reserve University have found. A description of the research is published in the Journal of Controlled Release.

COLLEGE PARK, Md. -- Nearly two-thirds of Israeli Jews, 64 percent, favor establishing a nuclear free zone in the Middle East, even when it was spelled out that this would mean both Israel and Iran would have to forego nuclear weapons, finds a new University of Maryland poll.

In the new poll, fewer than half, 43 percent, support an attack on Iran's nuclear facilities. Recently, even leading voices within Israel's defense community have said that such a strike would merely slow, but not stop Iran and that Israeli cities would be vulnerable to retaliation.

People with obstructive sleep apnea are more likely to stick to prescribed treatment when a partner or parent is involved with their treatment, according to a team of sleep researchers.

Obstructive sleep apnea occurs when the upper airway collapses during sleep. It is the most common type of sleep-disordered breathing, and chances of it occurring become more elevated in obese people.

Evolutionary psychologists suspect that prejudice is rooted in survival: Our distant ancestors had to avoid outsiders who might have carried disease. Research still shows that when people feel vulnerable to illness, they exhibit more bias toward stigmatized groups. But a new study in Psychological Science suggests there might be a modern way to break that link.

FINDINGS: Tweaking the levels of factors used during the reprogramming of adult cells into induced pluriopotent stem (iPS) cells can greatly affect the quality of the resulting iPS cells, according to Whitehead Institute researchers. This finding explains at least in part the wide variation in quality and fidelity of iPS cells created through different reprogramming methods.

SAN DIEGO – (December 1, 2011) La Jolla Institute for Allergy & Immunology scientists have identified the histamine releasing factor (HRF) molecule as a promising target for developing new treatments for a number of allergic reactions including asthma.

The research team, led by Toshiaki Kawakami, M.D., Ph.D., is also the first to clarify the role of the HRF molecule in promoting asthma and some allergies, including identifying its receptor – a major finding that answers a long-held and important question in the allergy research community.

Researchers who have been following Danish HIV patients for more than fifteen years now see that the patients may live as long as other Danes if they take their medicine.

"It is my impression that patients often ask themselves a range of questions: 'What are my long-term prospects? Will I be dead in five years' time? Will the disease cause brain damage? Will I have heart trouble'?" says Professor Niels Obel, the University of Copenhagen and Rigshospitalet. He continues:

New research published in the journal Age and Ageing suggests that timely acute care immediately after a stroke reduces the level of disability in stroke survivors and the associated need for long-term care, therefore reducing aftercare costs.

COLUMBUS, Ohio -- Levels of health disparity have increased substantially for people born in the United States after 1980, according to new research.

The study also found that health disparity tends to increase as people move into middle age, before declining as people reach old age.

These two results suggest that the gap between the healthiest and least healthy people in the United States as a whole will grow larger for the next one or even two decades as the younger generations grow older and replace previous generations.

WASHINGTON, DC, November 29, 2011 — Levels of health disparity have increased substantially for people born in the United States after 1980, according to new research.

The study also found that health disparity tends to increase as people move into middle age, before declining as people reach old age.

These two results suggest that the gap between the healthiest and least healthy people in the United States as a whole will grow larger for the next one or even two decades as the younger generations grow older and replace previous generations.

New research from Scotland has shown that the rate of death in men and women hospitalised for chest pain unrelated to heart disease is higher in those with a history of psychiatric illness than without.