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Health - Chemistry - 23.11.2020
Helicates meet Rotaxanes to create promise for future disease treatment
A new approach to treating cancers and other diseases that uses a mechanically interlocked molecule as a ‘magic bullet' has been designed by researchers at the University of Birmingham. Called rotaxanes, the molecules are tiny nanoscale structures that resemble a dumbbell with a ring trapped around the central post.

Chemistry - Life Sciences - 20.11.2020
Biofriendly protocells pump up blood vessels
Biofriendly protocells pump up blood vessels
An international team of researchers from Bristol and China has prepared biocompatible protocells that generate nitric oxide gas - a known reagent for blood vessel dilation - that when placed inside blood vessels expand the biological tissue. In a new study published today , Professor Stephen Mann and Dr Mei Li from Bristol's School of Chemistry, together with Associate Professor Jianbo Liu and colleagues at Hunan University and Central South University in China, prepared synthetic protocells coated in red blood cell fragments for use as nitric oxide generating bio-bots within blood vessels.

Chemistry - Life Sciences - 13.11.2020
Cysteine synthesis was a key step in the origin of life
In an important step during the early evolution of life on Earth, the formation of the amino acid cysteine delivered vital catalysts, which enabled the earliest protein molecules to form in water, according to a new study by UCL researchers. All proteins are built from the same 20 amino acids. One of these, cysteine, was assumed not to have been present at the origin of life.

Chemistry - Pharmacology - 12.11.2020
Interactive virtual reality emerges as a new tool for drug design against COVID-19
Interactive virtual reality emerges as a new tool for drug design against COVID-19
Bristol scientists have demonstrated a new virtual reality [VR] technique which should help in developing drugs against the SARS-CoV-2 virus - and enable researchers to share models and collaborate in new ways. The innovative tool, created by University of Bristol researchers, and published in the Journal of Chemical Information and Modeling, will help scientists around the world identify anti-viral drug leads more rapidly.

Chemistry - 04.11.2020
Easier way to create biodiesel developed
Our researchers have developed a new way to turn the rubbish we throw away into chemicals that can help make fuel, medicines, fertilisers and biodegradable packaging. The low-cost, powerful method can turn old cooking oil and agricultural waste into biodiesel, and turn food scraps and plastic rubbish in to high-value chemical precursors, which are used make every day products.

Chemistry - 28.10.2020
Novel approach in organic chemistry enables boron to be added to molecules with high precision
Novel approach in organic chemistry enables boron to be added to molecules with high precision
A major goal in organic synthesis is to develop efficient reactions to convert feedstock chemicals (otherwise known as raw or natural materials) into valuable reagents that can be used to create pharmaceuticals and agrochemicals. A powerful approach to this core scientific challenge is toconvert carbon-hydrogen bonds into carbon-heteroatom bonds.

Chemistry - Physics - 13.10.2020
Turning plastic waste into hydrogen and high-value carbons
Turning plastic waste into hydrogen and high-value carbons
The ever-increasing production and use of plastics over the last half century has created a huge environmental problem for the world.

Chemistry - Computer Science - 01.10.2020
’Digital chemistry’ breakthrough turns words into molecules
A new system capable of automatically turning words into molecules on demand will open up the digitisation of chemistry, scientists say. Researchers from the University of Glasgow's School of Chemistry, who developed the system, claim it will lead to the creation of a 'Spotify for chemistry' - a vast online repository of downloadable recipes for important molecules including drugs.

Astronomy / Space Science - Chemistry - 14.09.2020
Hints of life discovered on Venus
Hints of life discovered on Venus
A UK-led team of astronomers has discovered a rare molecule - phosphine - in the clouds of Venus, pointing to the possibility of extra-terrestrial 'aerial' life. The presence of life is the only known explanation for the amount of phosphine inferred by observations Paul Rimmer Astronomers have speculated for decades that high clouds on Venus could offer a home for microbes - floating free of the scorching surface, but tolerating very high acidity.

History / Archeology - Chemistry - 27.08.2020
Ceramic cooking pots record history of ancient food practices
Ceramic cooking pots record history of ancient food practices
Analysing three components of ceramic cooking pots - charred remains, inner surface residues and lipids absorbed within the ceramic walls - may help archaeologists uncover detailed timelines of culinary cooking practices used by ancient civilisations. The findings, from a year-long cooking experiment led by the University of California, University of Bristol and the Bernice Pauahi Bishop Museum in Hawaii, are published this week in the journal Scientific Reports .

Materials Science - Chemistry - 24.08.2020
New insights into lithium-ion battery failure mechanism
Researchers have identified a potential new degradation mechanism for electric vehicle batteries - a key step to designing effective methods to improve battery lifespan. The researchers, from the Universities of Cambridge and Liverpool, and the Diamond Light Source, have identified one of the reasons why state-of-the-art 'nickel-rich' battery materials become fatigued, and can no longer be fully charged after prolonged use.

Environment - Chemistry - 24.08.2020
Wireless device makes clean fuel from sunlight, CO2 and water
Researchers have developed a standalone device that converts sunlight, carbon dioxide and water into a carbon-neutral fuel, without requiring any additional components or electricity. We hope this technology will pave the way toward sustainable and practical solar fuel production Erwin Reisner The device, developed by a team from the University of Cambridge, is a significant step toward achieving artificial photosynthesis - a process mimicking the ability of plants to convert sunlight into energy.

Chemistry - 30.07.2020
Reveals origin of Stonehenge’s great sarsen stones
The giant sarsen stones that form the primary architecture of Stonehenge originate from West Woods on the edge of Wiltshire's Marlborough Downs, according to new research involving UCL. While the smaller 'bluestones' near the centre of the monument have been traced to Wales, the origin of the sarsen stones used to construct Stonehenge around 2,500 BC have remained a mystery for over four centuries.

Materials Science - Chemistry - 17.07.2020
New membrane could cut emissions and energy use in oil refining
New membrane could cut emissions and energy use in oil refining
Imperial has co-developed the first synthetic membrane to separate crude oil and crude oil fractions, which could help reduce carbon emissions. Crude oil is refined to create fuels like diesel, petrol and jet fuel, as well as lubricants and plastics. However, the processes used to create these byproducts are a major source of pollutants to the air, water, and soil.

Chemistry - 10.07.2020
Spinning chemicals for faster reactions
Cardiff University scientists have devised a new way of making reactions up to 70 times faster by using state-of-the-art equipment to spin chemicals around. They found that efficient mixing within a chemical reaction could be achieved by spinning chemicals and catalysts around in a small tube, causing the reactions to happen much quicker.

Physics - Chemistry - 06.07.2020
Flashes bright when squeezed tight: how single-celled organisms light up the oceans
Flashes bright when squeezed tight: how single-celled organisms light up the oceans
Research explains how a unicellular marine organism generates light as a response to mechanical stimulation, lighting up breaking waves at night. Our findings show how elegant decision-making can be on a single-cell level Maziyar Jalaal Every few years, a bloom of microscopic organisms called dinoflagellates transforms the coasts around the world by endowing breaking waves with an eerie blue glow.

Chemistry - Materials Science - 29.05.2020
New materials could make greener fast-charging batteries
New materials could make greener fast-charging batteries
Researchers have created a fast-charging battery prototype that uses sodium instead of lithium, potentially leading to more sustainable batteries. The prototype is one of the first to successfully use sodium in an organic battery that can be quickly charged and discharged hundreds of times without losing any capacity.

Chemistry - 21.05.2020
Chemical recycling makes useful product from waste bioplastic
A faster, more efficient way of recycling plant-based “bioplastics? has been developed by a team of scientists at the Universities of Birmingham and Bath. The team has shown how their chemical recycling method not only speeds up the process, it can also be converted into a new product - a biodegradable solvent - which can be sold for use in a wide variety of industries including cosmetics and pharmaceuticals.

Life Sciences - Chemistry - 14.05.2020
Reveals the extent of grey seals’ maternal sacrifice
Research reveals the extent of grey seals' maternal sacrifice Atlantic grey seals, the largest of the two seal species found around British, northern European and North American and Canadian shores, make a huge maternal sacrifice for their pups, new research has revealed. A collaboration of Scottish scientists, led by the University of Glasgow along with St Andrews and Strathclyde universities, has discovered new aspects of the fast that seal mothers go through for around 20 days while nursing their pups.

Chemistry - Life Sciences - 11.05.2020
Chemical evidence of dairying by hunter-gatherers in highland Lesotho in the first millennium AD
Chemical evidence of dairying by hunter-gatherers in highland Lesotho in the first millennium AD
Extensive archaeological evidence shows that Early Iron Age agricultural communities settled in the coastal regions of KwaZulu-Natal in South Africa from around AD 400. Although these farmers appear to have been in contact with local lowland hunter-gatherer groups, it was long assumed that they had little or no direct contact with hunter-gatherers already occupying the mountainous regions of Lesotho, as they did not settle the region until the 19 th century due to the unsuitability of the mountains for crop cultivation.
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