Oct 31, 2006
I remember seeing some dull old film clip of the thermite process in action during school chemistry class. Much better would have been to see it live, in the schoolyard with a science teacher dumb enough to head back over to the reaction vessel because it hadn’t fired up quickly enough. Well, for those who missed out there’s a nice video of that very happening….
Despite Carl Djerassi’s prediction (some years ago) that we would never see a “male pill”, it looks like just such a contraceptive treat is coming at last.
The new drug, Adjudin, is currently in early clinical trials and is a long way from human use. However, the very fact that drug companies are taking a male oral contraceptive seriously suggests a sea change iin attitudes. It’s not ten years ago that I heard Djerassi speak on …
Oct 30, 2006
Wondering what to do with all those seeds hacked from the orange flesh of your halloween pumpkin? You could try eating them, especially if you’re on a low-protein diet or likely to be exposed to the organic solcent carbon tetrachloride (tetrachloromethane)!
According to researchers in South Africa, pumpkin seeds can protect the liver from the harmful effects of protein deficiency and exposure to hepatotoxins such as carbon tet.
The seeds of the …
I abandoned the international system on Sciencebase some time ago. The translation of documents with relatively high scientific content by Google and Babel is just so poor that I received several emails from readers saying just how bad it made the site look to those whose native tongue is not English.
Regular readers may have noticed the selection of national flags on the right-hand menu have now been demoted to the bottom of the …
Oct 28, 2006
AP de Silva was born in Sri Lanka but moved to Queen’s University of Belfast, in the 1970s and is now Professor of Chemistry. His fascinating research into small logical molecules has found commercial application in diagnostics and sensors, has recently led to a breakthrough in labelling compound libraries, and may one day help us build a molecular computer.
Read my interview with AP in Reactive Reports to learn …
Oct 27, 2006
Adding a little culture to the chemical laboratory could help chemists find structures much faster than before. According to UK chemists, Samantha Chong and Maryjane Tremayne, of the University of Birmingham, combining the principles of social and biological evolution with a little fashion sense to make a new Cultural Differential Evolution algorithm allowed them to half the time it took to solve the structure of a molecule from its powder diffraction data.
Their research could have …
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