[ASC-media] NEW SCIENTIST PRESS RELEASE 31 MARCH 2012

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Wed Mar 28 02:08:43 CEST 2012


PRESS RELEASE

NEW SCIENTIST MAGAZINE ISSUE DATE 31 March 2012 (No. 2858)

THESE MAGAZINE STORIES ARE EMBARGOED FOR PRINT OR BROADCAST UNTIL: 05:00 HRS AEST (07:00 HRS NZST) THURS 29 MARCH 2012.

Reports on stories must credit NEW SCIENTIST as the source.

Reports online must include a link to www.NewScientist.com


MYSTERIES OF THE MILKY WAY
>From its furthest dark-matter-spattered reaches to its central black hole, our galaxy is still in many ways an enigma. There's a galactic octopus, an antimatter factory, disappearing dwarfs and a star that shouldn't exist - and that's just for starters. Feature Pages 32 - 36


INVASION OF THE BOWHEAD SNATCHERS
Over the last 50 years, sightings of orcas in Canada's Hudson Bay have increased markedly. It seems that climate change is altering their habits and movements, all of which bodes ill for other endangered marine mammals in the Bay. Feature Pages 37 - 39


SLEEPER CELLS
Our strongest antibiotics are being thwarted by bacteria that lie dormant, only to bounce back unharmed once the pressure is off. Feature Pages 40 - 43


THE IMPOSSIBLE EXPLOSION
On 11 December 2005, a massive explosion ripped the Buncefield fuel storage depot, north-west of London. It was one of Europe's biggest explosions and until now, the cause had been a mystery. Now it appears that a row of trees and shrubs was the key factor in making this much more than just a serious fire. Feature Pages 44 - 47


FARM DRUGS BAN MOOTED
Farmers in the US may soon be prevented from dosing healthy livestock with antibiotics that encourage faster growth in the wake of research showing that resistance can develop when bacteria jump between farm animals and humans. Page 6


MEDICINE THAT MAKES YOU FAT
Overuse of antibiotics has not only led to worrying levels of antibiotic resistance, but has also changed the bacteria that live inside us. Now evidence suggests that new gut floras may also promote obesity. Pages 8 - 9


15 MORE YEARS TO SAVE THE CLIMATE...
By widening our attack on greenhouse gases from just carbon dioxide to include methane, we may be able to buy up to 15 years to fight climate change. Pages 10 - 11


HANDS OFF THE WHEEL
Sceptical about driverless cars? Too late. They are already here - and smarter than ever. Pages 19 - 20


The following articles are for IMMEDIATE RELEASE. Please click on the links below to view the full-text articles.


ARCTIC SEA ICE MAY HAVE PASSED CRUCIAL TIPPING POINT
The disappearance of Arctic sea ice may have crossed a "tipping point" that could soon make ice-free summers a regular feature across most of the Arctic Ocean. http://www.newscientist.com/article/dn21626-arctic-sea-ice-may-have-passed-crucial-tipping-point.html


MUTANT PROTEIN MAY ALLOW FLU TO KILL
It's one of the biggest mysteries in flu: why is it a mild infection in some people, and a killer in others? In some cases it may be down to a protein that normally stops some viruses from invading cells, but which is mutated in some people. http://www.newscientist.com/article/dn21624-mutant-protein-may-allow-flu-to-kill.html


CREATING COLLAPSIBLE STRUCTURES WITH NO MOVING PARTS
Buckling buildings are normally bad news, but a new a 3D shape dubbed the "buckliball" could allow architects to create structures with collapsible ceilings or walls without the need for moving parts. http://www.newscientist.com/blogs/onepercent/2012/03/buckliball-means-collapsible-s.html


ENDS


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Tanesha Langham
Subscriptions Marketing Co-ordinator
New Scientist
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Email: media at newscientist.com.au
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