Published: Saturday 30 September 2006

bacterial hold: Bacteria have hair-like protrusions with a sticky protein on the tip that enables them to cling to surfaces. The coiled, bungee cord-like structure of the protrusions helps the bacteria hang on tightly, even under rough fluid flow inside the body, claim a group of researchers at the University of Washington in Seattle and ETH Zurich in Switzerland. The scientists have been studying how the bacterium Escherichia coli attaches to mucous membranes in the body.

quiet transistors: University of Arizona physicists have discovered how to turn single molecules into transistors -- a device that switches electrical current on and off, just like a valve turns water on and off in a garden hose. It's a breakthrough needed to make the next-generation of remarkably tiny, powerful computers that nanotechnologists dream of. They have applied for a patent on their device, called Quantum Interference Effect Transistor, nicknamed "QuIET."

juice good for memory: Researchers have found that people who drink three or more servings of fruit and vegetable juices per week have 76 per cent lower risk of developing Alzheimer's disease than those who drink juice less than once per week. The study was conducted by Qi Dai of the Vanderbilt School of Medicine in the US, and colleagues. It was based on 1,836 dementia-free subjects living in Seattle.

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