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Physics - Life Sciences - 11.12.2017
Clothes make the woman: less empathy towards women showing more skin
Clothes make the woman: less empathy towards women showing more skin
Sexualized representations, especially the emphasis of secondary sexual characteristics, can change the way we perceive an individual. An international team of researchers led by Giorgia Silani from the Faculty of Psychology at the University of Vienna has shown that empathic feelings and brain responses are reduced when we observe the emotions of sexualized women.

Health - Life Sciences - 16.11.2017
Veni Vidi Vici
Multidrug resistance of microbes poses a serious global threat to human health. Such resistant strains of Klebsiella pneumoniae significantly reduce therapeutic options for the treatment of Klebsiella-induced, potentially fatal pneumonia or sepsis.

Life Sciences - 08.11.2017
The key to a nut
The key to a nut
The Goffin's cockatoo is not a specialised tool user in the wild but has shown the capacity to invent and use different types of tools in captivity. Now cognitive biologists from the University of Vienna and the University of Veterinary Medicine Vienna tested these parrots in a tool use task, requiring the birds to move objects in relation to a surface.

Health - Life Sciences - 23.10.2017
Boost for lipid research: Graz researchers facilitate lipid data analysis
Boost for lipid research: Graz researchers facilitate lipid data analysis
Illnesses such as cancer and multiple sclerosis may also be associated with lipids. Disorders are difficult to assess due to the diversity of lipids. Graz scientists present a new tool for the analysis of lipids. No lipids, no life. In all organisms, lipids form cell walls, store energy and release it when necessary, and play an important role in cell signalling.

Astronomy / Space Science - Life Sciences - 17.10.2017
Microbes leave
Microbes leave "fingerprints" on Martian rocks
Scientists around Tetyana Milojevic from the Faculty of Chemistry at the University of Vienna are in search of unique biosignatures, which are left on synthetic extraterrestrial minerals by microbial activity. The biochemist and astrobiologist investigates these signatures at her own miniaturized "Mars farm" where she can observe interactions between the archaeon Metallosphaera sedula and Mars-like rocks.

Life Sciences - Health - 16.10.2017
Germ-free hatching eggs: An alternative to formaldehyde application
Germ-free hatching eggs: An alternative to formaldehyde application
Hatching eggs in large-scale hatcheries are currently treated with formaldehyde to eliminate germs. Researchers from TU Graz, acib and Roombiotic have now developed a natural alternative. There was a Europe-wide outcry in the summer of 2017 as it emerged that hatching eggs were being treated with the insecticide fipronil, which is harmful to health.

Life Sciences - Health - 16.10.2017
Risk of Caesarean section is heritable
Risk of Caesarean section is heritable
Women born by Caesarean section due to a fetopelvic disproportion (FDP) are more than twice as likely to develop FDP when giving birth than women born naturally. This is the conclusion of a study by a team of evolutionary biologists at the University of Vienna headed by Philipp Mitteroecker. Using a mathematical model, the team was able to explain the paradoxical phenomenon that natural selection did not lead to the reduction in the rates of obstructed labour.

Life Sciences - Chemistry - 12.10.2017
Enzymes at work: breaking down stubborn cellulose
Enzymes at work: breaking down stubborn cellulose
TU Graz researchers observe enzymes breaking down cellulose to aid the production of biofuels. The results are now published. Biofuels obtained from biomass are becoming increasingly important. Apart from biomethane, however, they cannot be produced efficiently, cheaply and sustainably since the current technological complexity and costs are still too high.

Life Sciences - 10.10.2017
Sharing of science is most likely among male scientists
Sharing of science is most likely among male scientists
Even though science is becoming increasingly competitive, scientists are still very willing to share their work with colleagues. This is especially true for male scientists among each other and less so for females among each other or between the sexes. These patterns of sharing among scientists were discovered by a team of Austrian, Dutch and German researchers led by Jorg Massen of the Department of Cognitive Biology at the University of Vienna, and the results of their study have been published in the scientific journal "Scientific Reports".

Life Sciences - Environment - 18.09.2017
A Cereal survives heat and drought
A Cereal survives heat and drought
Pearl millet genome sequence provides a resource to improve agronomic traits in extreme environments An international consortium under the lead of the non-profit organization "International Crops Res

Art and Design - Life Sciences - 13.09.2017
When music makes male faces more attractive
When music makes male faces more attractive
Women rate photographs of male faces as more attractive and are more likely to date the men pictured when they have previously heard music. Moreover, highly arousing music led to the largest effect on sexual attraction. A team of psychologists led by Manuela Marin (University of Innsbruck) and Helmut Leder (University of Vienna) explains the significance of this finding in relation to the origins of music in their latest publication in the scientific journal PLOS ONE.

Life Sciences - 11.09.2017
The evolutionary origin of the gut
The evolutionary origin of the gut
How did the gut, the skin and musculature evolve? This question concerns scientists for more than a century.

Life Sciences - 06.09.2017
Brain Composer:
Brain Composer: "thinking" melodies onto a musical score
TU Graz researchers develop new brain-computer interface application which allows music to be composed by the power of thought. How this works is shown in the current issue of the journal PLOS ONE. Brain-computer interfaces, known as BCI, can replace bodily functions to a certain degree. Thanks to BCI, physically impaired persons can control special prostheses through the power of their minds, surf in internet and write emails.

Life Sciences - Veterinary - 06.09.2017
Getting hook bending off the hook
Getting hook bending off the hook
The bending of a hook into wire to fish for the handle of a basket by the crow Betty 15 years ago stunned the scientific world. However, the finding was recently relegated as similar behavioural routines were discovered in the natural repertoire of the same species, suggesting the possibility that Betty's tool manufacture was less intelligent than previously believed.

Life Sciences - 21.08.2017
When fish swim in the holodeck
When fish swim in the holodeck
Behavior experiments are useful tools to study brain function. Standard experiments to investigate behavior in popular lab animals such as fish, flies or mice however only incompletely mimic natural conditions. The understanding of behavior and brain function is thus limited. Virtual Reality (VR) helps in generating a more natural experimental environment but requires immobilization of the animal, disrupting sensorimotor experience and causing altered neuronal and behavioral responses.

Life Sciences - Health - 17.08.2017
Bacteria stab amoebae with micro-daggers
Bacteria stab amoebae with micro-daggers
Researchers from ETH Zurich and the University of Vienna have discovered a type of bacteria that uses tiny daggers to prevent itself from being eaten by amoebae. The scientists also resolved the three-dimensional structure of the mechanism that allows the micro-daggers to be shot quickly. Bacteria have to watch out for amoeba.

Life Sciences - 01.08.2017
What flowers looked like 100 million years ago
What flowers looked like 100 million years ago
Flowering plants with at least 300,000 species are by far the most diverse group of plants on Earth. They include almost all the species used by people for food, medicine, and many other purposes. However, flowering plants arose only about 140 million years ago, quite late in the evolution of plants, toward the end of the age of the dinosaurs, but since then have diversified spectacularly.

Life Sciences - 12.05.2017
In both love and war, alligators signal size by bellowing
In both love and war, alligators signal size by bellowing
American alligators produce loud, low-frequency vocalizations called "bellows". Cognitive biologists at the University of Vienna, Stephan Reber and Tecumseh Fitch, investigated these vocalizations and found that they reveal the caller's body size. Alligators can use this information to avoid unpromising contests for mates and breeding areas.

Life Sciences - Computer Science - 09.05.2017
A new tool to decipher evolutionary biology
A new tool to decipher evolutionary biology
A new bioinformatics tool to compare genome data has been developed by teams from the Max F. Perutz Laboratories, a joint venture of the University of Vienna and the Medical University of Vienna, together with researchers from Australia and Canada. The program called ‘ModelFinder' uses a fast algorithm and allows previously not attainable new insights into evolution.

Psychology - Life Sciences - 11.04.2017
Stress can increase empathy
Stress can increase empathy
Acute psychosocial stress leads to increased empathy and prosocial behavior. An international team of researchers led by Claus Lamm from the University of Vienna investigated the effects of stress on neural mechanisms and tested the relationship between empathy and prosocial behavior in a new experiment.

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