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Sunday, Nov 23rd

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Nobel prize in chemistry for US duo

US duo win Nobel Chemistry AwardTwo American doctors whose work over four decades has revealed how the body responds to the smells, sights, flavours and threats of the outside world have won this year's Nobel prize in chemistry.

Robert Lefkowitz at Duke University in Durham, North Carolina, and Brian Kobilka at Stanford University in Palo Alto, California, share science's most prestigious award – and 8m Swedish kronor (£744,000) – for their discovery of molecular sensors called G-protein-coupled receptors or GPCRs.

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Yoda worm brings Star Wars to the deep sea

Yoda sea creatureA worm from an ecosystem far, far away has been named after the Star Wars character Yoda. Yoda purpurata is one of three new species of deep-sea acorn worms discovered 1.5 miles beneath the Atlantic.

Scientists coined the genus name because the large lips on either side of the creature's head reminded them of the Jedi master's floppy ears. The creature is a dark reddish-purple – hence the other part of the worm's name, which is Latin for purple.

The Yoda worm, technically known as an enteropneust, is described in the latest issue of the journal Invertebrate Biology.

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Life created from eggs made from skin cells

Stem cells Stem cells made from skin have become "grandparents" after generations of life were created in experiments by scientists in Japan.

The cells were used to create eggs, which were fertilised to produce baby mice. These later had their own babies. If the technique could be adapted for people, it could help infertile couples have children and even allow women to overcome the menopause.

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Japanese scientists claim first synthesis of element 113

Periodic tableA group of Japanese scientists announced Wednesday that they have finally synthesized the elusive element 113, which has been called ununtrium.

If confirmed, the feat would mark the first time Japanese researchers have been first to synthesize an element of the periodic table. It would also be the first time an Asian research team has had the honor of naming an element.

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Faint galaxy sheds light on universe's early years

the massive galaxy cluster that includes MACS 1149-JD, the galaxy believed to date to 500 million years after the big bang.The Hubble Space Telescope has detected light from a small galaxy emitted about 500 million years after the big bang, an early era of the universe about which scientists know relatively little.

Last year, astronomers used Hubble to find another galaxy at a redshift of about 10, suggesting it was formed 480 million years after the big bang. But the help from gravity's magnifying glass allowed the CLASH team to learn more detail about MACS 1149-JD, Zheng said.

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Atomic bond types discernible in single-molecule images

Atomic bond imageA pioneering team from IBM in Zurich has published single-molecule images so detailed that the type of atomic bonds between their atoms can be discerned.
The same team took the first-ever single-molecule image in 2009 and more recently published images of a molecule shaped like the Olympic rings.

The new work opens up the prospect of studying imperfections in the "wonder material" graphene or plotting where electrons go during chemical reactions.

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ALICE scientists enter primeval plasma wonderland

ALICE scientists enter wonderlandScientists at CERN have smashed together various particles for the first time, moving closer to learning what was in the super-hot plasma wonderland that formed right after the primeval Big Bang, the European physics research centre said on Thursday.

The announcement followed another boost for physicists at CERN near Geneva with the effective endorsement by independent experts in a key journal of their claimed discovery of a new particle, the Higgs Boson.

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