Links for 3rd March 2009

Fresh from the clogged tubes of teh intarwubs…

  1. Night Shift Makes Metabolism Go Haywire

    "Night shift workers often attempt to keep semi-normal hours on their off days, said Scheer, preventing their circadian rhythms from ever becoming settled. Van Couter added that even a small exposure to daylight while commuting could continually re-set their biological clocks.

    Scientists are not yet certain how circadian rhythms regulate metabolism, said Van Cauter, but animal studies have found circadian machinery in the hypothalamus — a brain structure linking the nervous and endocrine systems — and other parts of the body, including the glucose-regulating pancreas and leptin-releasing fatty tissue. "

    Tagged with: sciencebiologyproductivitysleepcircadianrhythmmetabolismnightshift

  2. Tunguska-sized space rock buzzes Earth

    "The asteroid, dubbed 2008 DD45, whizzed just 72,000 kilometres above the Earth's surface. That is less than a fifth of the distance to the Moon and just twice the distance to geosynchronous satellites. The object was first reported on Saturday by members of the Siding Spring Survey, a near-Earth object search programme based in Australia." That's all the warning we'd have got, folks. Extinction waits behind every turn on the road.

    Tagged with: sciencespaceNEOasteroidexistentialriskextinctioneventescape

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