Why can’t monkeys speak? Vocal anatomy is not the problem

Monkeys and apes are unable to learn new vocalizations, and for decades it has been widely believed that this inability results from limitations of their vocal anatomy: larynx, tongue and lips. But an international team of scientists has now looked inside monkeys' vocal tracts with x-rays, and found them to be much more flexible than thought before. The study indicates that the limitations that keep nonhuman primates from speaking are in their brains, rather than their vocal anatomy.

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Ancient enzyme morphed shape to carry out new functions in humans

A human enzyme has changed little from its days as a bacterial enzyme, new research reveals. In fact, the enzyme appears to be unique in its ability to change its shape—and its job in cells—without overhauling its basic architecture.

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Aggressive form of leukemia linked to defective ‘protein factory’

20 to 40 percent of the patients with multiple myeloma -- a type of leukemia -- have a defect in the ribosome, the protein factory of the cell. These patients have a poorer prognosis than patients with intact ribosomes. At the same time, they respond better to a drug that already exists, report investigators.

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Oxytocin improves synchronization in leader-follower interaction

A new study shows that participants receiving oxytocin -- a hormone known to promote social bonding - are more synchronized when finger-tapping together, than participants receiving placebo. This effect was observed when pairs of participants, placed in separate rooms tapped together in a leader/follower relationship.

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Erasing the line between imaging, analyzing

Current biomedical imaging and sensing technologies include computerized tomography, magnetic resonance imaging, optical coherence tomography, spectroscopy, and ultrasound. These technologies are at the intersection of the physical sciences, mathematics, computer science, and engineering. Now researchers are using biomedical imaging and sensing to study everything from the development of artificial vision systems to bone biomechanics.

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Linguists explore the evolution of color in new study

The naming of colors has long been a topic of interest in the study of human culture and cognition -- revealing the link between perception, language, and the categorization of the natural world. A major question in the study of both anthropology and cognitive science is why the world's languages show recurrent similarities in color naming. Linguists tracked the evolution of color terms across a large language tree in Australia in order to trace the history of these systems.

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Image-guided biopsy identifies patients who achieve pathologic complete response after neoadjuvant therapy

In a pilot study, image-guided biopsies identified select breast cancer patients who achieved pathologic complete response (pCR) after chemotherapy and/or targeted therapy, neoadjuvant systemic therapy (NST).

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Neurosurgeons harness 3-D technology to map brain during surgery

Neurosurgeons have begun using a high-definition imaging device to see inside the brain during surgery, allowing them to map safer pathways to reach and remove tumors. The device, called Brightmatter Guide, works like a GPS, providing real-time, brightly colored 3-D images.

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Older women with breast cancer report better cosmetic satisfaction with less radiation, less surgery

In the first study evaluating patient-reported cosmetic outcomes in a population-based cohort of older women with breast cancer, researchers found that less radiation was associated with improved cosmetic satisfaction long-term.

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