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Tag: skin

Amazing fossil of 180-million-year-old 'sea monster' preserved its blubber and skin

Amazing fossil of 180-million-year-old 'sea monster' preserved its blubber and skin

World
Scientists have identified an extraordinary specimen of fossilized blubber from a ‘fish-lizard’ that lived 180 million years ago, according to a new report in the journal Nature. The blubber, a layer of fat beneath the skin of modern marine mammals that helps them preserve heat, indicates that the ancient 'sea monster' was warm-blooded, an unusual quality in a reptile, according to the report's authors. The Jurassic-era sea creature, called an ichthyosaur, appears to have shared qualities of both a mammal and a reptile, according to Johan Lindgren, a senior lecturer at Lund University in Sweden. "They looked kind of similar to dolphins, but the tail fin, it was vertical rather than horizontal,” Lindgren told ABC News. “They were reptiles," he said, while "dolphi...
Cracks in skin help elephants keep cool

Cracks in skin help elephants keep cool

Science
Oct. 3 (UPI) -- Elephants' skin is marked by a network of tiny crevices. These tiny channels trap water and mud, helping elephants regulate their body temperatures. In a new paper, published this week in the journal Nature Communications, scientists confirmed the channels are fractures of the animal's outer skin layer. Researchers at the University of Geneva, in Switzerland, conducted a detailed analysis of elephants' skin structure. The findings showed the dry, outer layer of an elephant's skin grows in a way that encourages tiny cracking caused by mechanical stress. Elephants don't have sweat glands. As a result, the outer layer of dying skin cells becomes dry and brittle. The cracks that form, however, come in handy. When sweat evaporates, it helps cool the body. To replicate this pro...
Turning wound cells into skin cells may help doctors heal ulcers

Turning wound cells into skin cells may help doctors heal ulcers

Health
Sept. 6 (UPI) -- Scientists have developed a technique to convert cells in open wounds into skin cells as an alternative to plastic surgery for treatment of large cutaneous ulcers. The method involves reprogramming the cells into a stem-cell-like state for healing skin damage, including severe burns, bedsores or chronic diseases such as diabetes. The researchers at the Salk Institute also see this process as a way to counter the effects of aging and better understanding skin cancer. Their findings were published Wednesday in the journal Nature. "This knowledge might not only be useful for enhancing skin repair but could also serve to guide in vivo regenerative strategies in other human pathological situations, as well as during aging, in which tissue repair is impaired," senior author Dr....
Elon Musk: SpaceX and Tesla alive 'by skin of their teeth'

Elon Musk: SpaceX and Tesla alive 'by skin of their teeth'

Technology
Elon Musk says his companies SpaceX and Tesla are both still alive only "by the skin of their teeth".The entrepreneur told an audience at the South by South West (SXSW) conference that both companies almost went bankrupt in 2008."I gave both SpaceX and Tesla a probability of less than 10% likely to succeed," he said during a Q&A session."At the beginning in 2002, I wouldn't even let my own friends invest as I didn't want to lose their money."Mr Musk said he made $ 180m (£130m) when PayPal was acquired by eBay in 2002, and he initially put $ 90m into SpaceX and Tesla, but the costs kept mounting.He said 2008 was an incredibly difficult year - SpaceX's Falcon 1 rocket failed for the third time, and Tesla almost went bankrupt two days before Christmas.By this point, he only had about $ 40