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Chemistry - Life Sciences - 13.01.2020
Accelerated speed of discovery could lead to more effective smoking cessation aids
Accelerated speed of discovery could lead to more effective smoking cessation aids
As smokers know all too well, nicotine is highly addictive. It's hard to quit smoking, a habit that claims the lives of more than seven million people each year. Smoking tobacco delivers nicotine to the neuroreceptors responsible for addiction, affecting the nervous system and causing addiction. A new study, led by scientists from the University of Bristol, into the molecular interactions involved has revealed how these neuroreceptors respond to nicotine.

Chemistry - Physics - 10.01.2020
Unused stockpiles of nuclear waste could be more useful than we might think, according to new study
Chemists have found a new use for the waste product of nuclear power - transforming an unused stockpile into a versatile compound which could be used to create valuable commodity chemicals as well as new energy sources. Depleted uranium (DU) is a radioactive by-product from the process used to create nuclear energy.

Chemistry - 08.01.2020
Catalytic protocells get zingy
Catalytic protocells get zingy
From the synthesis of drugs to the generation of plastics, catalysts - substances that speed up chemical reactions without being consumed - are the backbone of many industrial processes. Catalysts come in many forms such as inorganic nanoparticles, organic liquids and aqueous enzymes, and can be linked to solid surfaces to increase their performance.

Chemistry - Life Sciences - 06.01.2020
New way to sustainably make chemicals by copying nature's tricks
New way to sustainably make chemicals by copying nature’s tricks
Researchers have copied the way organisms produce toxic chemicals without harming themselves, paving the way for greener chemical and fuel production. The new technique, pioneered by Imperial College London scientists, could reduce the need to use fossil fuels to create chemicals, plastics, fibres and fuels.

Life Sciences - Chemistry - 18.12.2019
Researchers move one step further towards understanding how life evolved
A fundamental problem for biology is explaining how life evolved. How did we get from simple chemical reactions in the prebiotic soup, to animals and plants? A key step in explaining life is that about 4 billion years ago, all we had was just the simplest molecules that could replicate themselves. These are called 'replicators' - the earliest form of life, so simple that that they are almost chemistry rather than biology.

Chemistry - Environment - 02.12.2019
New membrane technology to boost water purification and energy storage
New membrane technology to boost water purification and energy storage
Imperial College London scientists have created a new type of membrane that could improve water purification and battery energy storage efforts. The new approach to ion exchange membrane design, which is published today , uses low-cost plastic membranes with many tiny hydrophilic (‘water-attracting') pores.

Earth Sciences - Chemistry - 27.11.2019
Barbequed clams on the menu for ancient Puerto Ricans
Scientists have reconstructed the cooking techniques of the early inhabitants of Puerto Rico by analysing the remains of clams. Led by Philip Staudigel, who conducted the analysis as a graduate student at the University of Miami Rosenstiel School and is now a postdoctoral researcher at Cardiff University, the team has used new chemical analysis techniques to identify the exact cooking temperatures at which clams were cooked over 2500 years ago.

Chemistry - Physics - 27.11.2019
Cutting nanoparticles down to size - new study
A new technique in chemistry could pave the way for producing uniform nanoparticles for use in drug delivery systems. Scientists have been investigating how to make better use of nanoparticles in medicine for several decades. Significantly smaller than an average cell, nanoparticles are more similar in size to proteins.

Environment - Chemistry - 18.11.2019
Climate change could double greenhouse gas emissions from freshwater ecosystems
Climate change could double greenhouse gas emissions from freshwater ecosystems
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Pharmacology - Chemistry - 14.11.2019
Could synthetic molecules provide a general treatment for Cystic Fibrosis?
A new treatment for lung disease in cystic fibrosis (CF) for which there remains no cure could potentially benefit all patients, according to a University of Bristol study published in Chemical Science. The findings are an important step towards a new therapy addressing the fundamental cause of cystic fibrosis.

Physics - Chemistry - 13.11.2019
Space rock research could reveal origins of Earth’s oceans
The return of a space probe bearing samples from a distant asteroid is being eagerly anticipated by researchers from the University of Glasgow and Curtin University in Australia. Scientists from the School of Geographical and Earth Sciences will receive three miniscule precious pieces of the asteroid Ryugu when the uncrewed Hayabusa2 mission returns to Earth late next year after six years in space.

Environment - Chemistry - 05.11.2019
Deep sea vents had ideal conditions for origin of life
By creating protocells in hot, alkaline seawater, a UCL-led research team has added to evidence that the origin of life could have been in deep-sea hydrothermal vents rather than shallow pools. Previous experiments had failed to foster the formation of protocells - seen as a key stepping stone to the development of cell-based life - in such environments, but the new study, published iná Nature Ecology & Evolution , finds that heat and alkalinity might not just be acceptable, but necessary to get life started.

Electroengineering - Chemistry - 05.11.2019
Scientists develop adhesive which can be unstuck in a magnetic field, reducing landfill waste
Researchers at the University of Sussex have developed a glue which can unstick when placed in a magnetic field, meaning products otherwise destined for landfill, could now be dismantled and recycled at the end of their life. Currently, items like mobile phones, microwaves and car dashboards are assembled using adhesives.

Chemistry - Environment - 29.10.2019
New hydrogen production method could support sustainable fuel creation
A new method of extracting hydrogen from water more efficiently could help underpin the capture of renewable energy in the form of sustainable fuel, scientists say. In a new paper, published today , researchers from universities in the UK, Portugal, Germany and Hungary describe how pulsing electric current through a layered catalyst has allowed them to almost double the amount of hydrogen produced per millivolt of electricity used during the process.

Chemistry - 15.10.2019
Platinum breakthrough for cleaner and cheaper catalysts
Scientists have developed a new way of significantly reducing the amount of platinum used in catalysts, opening up a much cheaper and cleaner ways of producing a whole host of commodity chemicals and fuels. Though present in a whole host of catalysts used to speed up chemical reactions in industrial processes, platinum is an extremely expensive metal that produces harmful by-products.

Chemistry - Life Sciences - 16.09.2019
Breakthrough in harnessing the power of biological catalysts
The power of nature could soon be used to create day-to-day materials such as paints, cosmetics and pharmaceuticals in a much more environmentally friendly way, thanks to a new breakthrough from scientists at Cardiff University. The international team, led by the Cardiff Catalysis Institute, has successfully unlocked the catalytic abilities of enzymes taken from fungi by creating the perfect conditions needed for them to function.

Chemistry - 06.09.2019
Making sustainable polymers from fragrant molecules
A way of making organic polymers from the fragrant molecules in conifers and fruit trees has been developed by scientists at the University of Birmingham. The technique, developed for 3D printing applications, could lead to a new generation of sustainable materials for use in biomedical applications or prototyping.

Chemistry - Materials Science - 12.08.2019
Supercapacitors turbocharged by laxatives
Supercapacitors turbocharged by laxatives
An international team of scientists, including a professor of chemistry from the University of Bristol, has worked out a way to improve energy storage devices called supercapacitors, by designing a new class of detergents chemically related to laxatives. Their paper, published today , explains why these detergents, called ionic liquids, are better electrolytes than current materials and can improve supercapacitors.

Chemistry - Physics - 06.08.2019
Artificial tongue could have whisky counterfeiting licked
An artificial 'tongue' which can taste subtle differences between drams of whisky could help cut down on the trade in counterfeit alcohol, scientists say. In a new paper published today in the Royal Society of Chemistry's journal Nanoscale, Scottish engineers describe how they built the tiny taster, which exploits the optical properties of gold and aluminium to test the tipples.

Life Sciences - Chemistry - 29.07.2019
Researchers build artificial cells that sense and respond to their environment
Imperial College London scientists have created artificial cells that mimic biological cells by responding to a chemical change in their surroundings. The artificial cells could be used to sense changes in the body and respond by releasing drug molecules, or to sense and remove harmful metals in the environment.
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