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ATCV-1 - The Virus That Can Change Your Mind?

The highly adaptable nature of viruses is one of their most dangerous strengths. They are programmed to survive at all costs, mutating into different forms that often make the leap between different species. The infamous Ebola virus, which has infected almost 15,000 people in Africa this year, first evolved in monkeys and then evolved into a form which could be transmitted to humans.

Mammal to mammal transmission is not a huge leap to make, however, as the physiology involved is similar in each species. But could viruses that affect totally different life forms, such as algae, possibly evolve into a variety that could threaten humans?
Like it or not, mathematics underpins our whole existence, either by conscious design or through natural selection. Our ancestors were very appreciative of the significance of mathematics, illustrated by the precise geometric alignments that have been observed in the construction and placements of ancient monuments on earth, such as Stonehenge and...

"Mindfulness" is becoming the latest buzz word being applied as a solution in almost every industry, profession and human condition in the developed world. In British newspapers published in 2004, the term was used in articles just twice, yet ten years later that figure had risen to 150 mentions.

But what is exactly is mindfu...

IN WHITLEY'S JOURNAL

We have reached the climate tipping point much more quickly than anybody anticipated. But with methane outgassing in arctic tundra and beginning to boil up from under the Arctic Ocean, Greenland ice turning black due to lack of snowfall, and rapid warming of northern waters, the stage is set.

Nobody has any idea when dramatic changes will overtake us, but the form they will likely take is beco...
A combination of industrial pollution and climate-change-driven oxygen loss is turning the great Canadian lakes into jelly, according to new research by Cambridge University scientists published in Proceedings of the Royal Society B.

A "battle of the plankton" between two competing species, Holopedium and the planktonic Daph...

Ebola may not be the only viral threat to come out of Africa. Another family of viruses, deadly in some cases, may have already jumped from fruit bats into humans in Africa, according to a study published today in the journal Nature Communications.

The study provides the first, preliminary scientific evidence that “spillover...

IN ANNE'S DIARY

It’s fall, and birds and squirrels are stocking up on food for winter and building materials for their nests. Squirrels, like some dogs, have long fluffy tails. Other dogs have their tails docked. This is an old tradition, which originated among the European upper classes. The dogs of the lower classes had big fluffy tails like many mutts do today.

Whitley remembers when he was a kid, they...
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