RSC - Advancing the Chemical Sciences

Chemistry World


News July 2009


Agilent swoops on Varian

31 July 2009

More consolidation hits the instrumentation industry as Agilent snaps up Varian for $1.5 billion (£900 million)

Hydrophilic pathway in a hydrophobic matrix

Writing channels into a porous matrix

31 July 2009

Researchers have used a laser to write a hydrophilic pathway into a 3D hydrophobic matrix

Multi-million pound fraud

Pharma supplier accused of multi-million pound fraud

31 July 2009

South African pharmaceutical ingredient supplier accused of a £1.2 billion investment fraud

Silver-gold nanoparticles on a DNA network

Nanoparticles take on terrorism

31 July 2009

Chinese scientists have used sunlight and DNA to make bimetallic nanoparticles that can detect tiny amounts of explosives

An ultra-smooth silver bullseye pattern

Smoothing out plasmonic surfaces

30 July 2009

Researchers have found a way to make smooth, patterned metal films that could be used in devices that manipulate electromagnetic waves called plasmons

Mantle oxidation

Water linked to mantle oxidation

30 July 2009

Scientists have analysed minuscule samples of magma and found a direct link between water content and oxidation state

A PDMS device and cells migrating through the device with time

Watching cancer cells spread

30 July 2009

Unexpected results challenge established beliefs about metastasis

The UK could be left without production capacity for vital chemicals

Chemicals sector struggles in recession

29 July 2009

As chemical plants fall victim to the economic crisis, what will be left of the chemicals sector when the upturn comes?

holographic data storage

Instant insight: Holography speaks volumes

29 July 2009

Søren Hvilsted and colleagues explain how holograms could be the key to storing increasing amounts of information

Reviewers took a close look at the ERC

ERC not up to scratch

28 July 2009

Two-year review highlights fundamental operational problems within the European Research Council

Common cancer therapy, cisplatin

DNA to direct and switch off chemo

28 July 2009

Researchers in the US have used DNA strands to target chemotherapy and switch it off if unwanted side effects appear

Fibroblasts growing on a gellan gum hydrogel surface

Jelly component sparks innovation for tissue repair

28 July 2009

A food additive is finding an alternative use in hydrogels for tissue engineering

Maize plant

Corn waste converted to chemicals

28 July 2009

Biofuel waste could be turned into building blocks for industrial chemicals

Aptamer-tagged bacterium

Sticky nanotubes detect bacteria in seconds

27 July 2009

Clever nanotubes promise to make spotting bacterial infections as easy as testing for pH


From methane to liquid gold

27 July 2009

Hydrocarbons may form in the mantle from methane

sodium hydride

Peer review by live blogging

27 July 2009

A controversial paper suggesting a strong reducing agent can promote oxidation was rapidly tested in the blogosphere


Pharma's shot in the arm?

24 July 2009

Swine flu may be causing suffering around the world, but pharma firms seem to be profiting from the pandemic

IQ affected by prenatal exposure to PAHs

Prenatal exposure to urban pollutants lowers IQ

24 July 2009

Prenatal exposure to polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons can reduce a child's IQ by over 4 points

Helical nanofilament

Chiral isotropic liquids from achiral molecules

24 July 2009

Liquid crystal phase molecules without 'handedness' form chiral structures that spontaneously separate into left- and right-handed domains

scaffold for tissue engineering

Ice gels take the heat

24 July 2009

Scientists have made a non-toxic scaffold for stem cell tissue engineering

Red blood cells

Blood cells get active

24 July 2009

Cell boosting peptide could help diabetics

Carbon nanotube rotating as it grows

Nanotube growth caught on camera

23 July 2009

Scientists provide proof that nanotubes rotate as they grow

Fluorine-labelled gold nanoparticle

Labelled ligands put nanoelectronics on track

23 July 2009

Scientists study self-assembly of fluorine-tagged nanoparticles


Signs of water on Enceladus

22 July 2009

Ammonia and organic compounds in icy plumes on one of Saturn's moons provide strong evidence for the existence of liquid water beneath the surface


New drug turns Alzheimer's theory on its head

22 July 2009

An antihistamine that improves Alzheimer's symptoms has raised questions about our understanding of the disease

Bacterial motion within the microfluidic device

Bacteria swim for power

22 July 2009

Power of swimming cells harnessed by photopolymerisation

Global warming

Degrees of freedom

21 July 2009

Climate change is high on the agenda and the burden lies heavily on scientists to find new solutions, but do researchers have the support they need?

More money needed for energy research

Nobel winners call for energy R&D funding

21 July 2009

Nobel Prize winners urge US president to provide increased, stable funding for clean energy alternatives

Dendrimer template for catalyst particles

Fuel cell catalysts go sub-nano

20 July 2009

12-atom catalyst particles could help relieve pressure on platinum reserves

Ferritin-polymer conjugate

Researchers form first liquid protein

20 July 2009

Chemists in the UK have figured out how to convert pure proteins into a liquid state, without any solvent


Buckling down to make microgears

20 July 2009

Thin films can buckle round curved substrates to form gears for micromachines

Scars could be a thing of the past

No scars with healing nanosheet

17 July 2009

Researchers create biodegradable nanosheets to seal up incisions and reduce scarring after surgery

Nanodot domain

Window opened on nanodot domain state formation

17 July 2009

Scientists have directly observed how domain states form in nanometre-scale ferroelectric crystals for the first time

hand holding cards

Instant insight: The organic chemist's toolbox

17 July 2009

Karl Anker Jørgensen and Søren Bertelsen from Aarhus University, Denmark, talk about impressive achievements in organocatalysis


New DNA technique sheds light on ancient populations

16 July 2009

Neanderthal genomes sequenced using new technique that is faster, cheaper and less wasteful

Chemical bonds don't always behave as expected

Strange vibrations

16 July 2009

Far from increasing chemical reactivity, vibrating chemical bonds can in some cases prevent a reaction, Taiwanese researchers discover

Forensic testing

Sound waves speed up sexual assault testing

16 July 2009

New analytical process uses acoustics to speed up separation of male and female DNA in forensic samples

Inverse photoconductor

Nanoparticles show 'inverse photoconductance'

16 July 2009

The first materials to become less conductive when exposed to light have been created by researchers

A nanoparticle sticking to a cell in flow conditions

Nano-earthquake to shake up drug screening

16 July 2009

A thumbnail-sized chip is mimicking the turbulent conditions a drug experiences on its journey through the body


Exxon and Venter to create fuel of the future

15 July 2009

US oil giant ExxonMobil is investing millions in developing biofuels from photosynthetic algae

Morris Robins

Interview: Understanding the fundamentals

15 July 2009

Morris Robins talks to Kathleen Too about turning crystalline sugars black, discovering Epivir and Cladribine and his new career in farming

Multicomponent reactions

Multicomponent reactions step up a gear

14 July 2009

Chemists have combined three different multicomponent reactions in a single step to form nine new bonds

Fat mouse

Synthetic peptide 'cures' obesity

14 July 2009

'Two-in-one' peptide hormone mimic causes dramatic weight loss in obese mice

Water droplets on a lotus leaf

Superhydrophobicity saves scalding

14 July 2009

Clothes could repel hot water with a Teflon-carbon nanotube composite coating

A blue Morning glory flower

Instant insight: True blue flowers

14 July 2009

What makes a purple pigment blue? The answer could lead to the elusive blue rose says Kumi Yoshida

Water wire

Getting a look at water wires

13 July 2009

Indian researchers put single file water molecules under the microscope

Omar Yaghi

Interview: The beauty of molecules

13 July 2009

Omar Yaghi is trying to solve the clean energy problem. Elizabeth Davies investigates

Blagoy Blagoev

Interview: Talking stem cells

13 July 2009

Blagoy Blagoev on how proteomics could be the key to understanding the unique biological properties of stem cells

Water dissociation

Branded drugs' competition-free days numbered

10 July 2009

EU and US authorities look to clamp down on pharma's deals to delay generic drugs


Wider menu for methane-eating microbes

10 July 2009

Marine microbes that oxidise methane for energy may use a wider variety of oxidants than previously thought

deuterated amino acid

The achiral key to life

10 July 2009

High deuterium levels found in meteorites could have been responsible for life on Earth

Ferritin-polymer conjugate

Researchers form first liquid protein

20 July 2009

Chemists in the UK have figured out how to convert pure proteins into a liquid state, without any solvent

silicone with bound dye

Sterile surfaces in a flash

10 July 2009

Blue dye coatings bring antibacterial benefit for material used in medical devices

Quinolone- topoisomerase IV complex

Detailed crystal structure raises antibiotic hopes

09 July 2009

High resolution snapshots reveal how bacteria become resistant to quinolone antibiotics


The science of longer lasting lager

09 July 2009

Chemists have designed a polymer that can improve the shelf life of drinks, such as beer

DNA wrapped around a carbon nanotube

DNA gets nanotubes sorted out

08 July 2009

Short DNA strings separate carbon nanotubes according to their structure

Mustard gas

Chemical weapons cleanup

08 July 2009

Researchers have used a hydrogen peroxide-based microemulsion system to safely decontaminate chemical warfare agents

Wastewater dyed pink in China

New solution for dye wastewater pollution

08 July 2009

Novel recyclable metal oxide filter removes harmful dyes from wastewater

Click chemistry on a chip

Click chemistry on a chip

08 July 2009

Over 1000 click chemistry reactions performed at once on a microchip

A child with measles

A structured approach to measles

08 July 2009

Liver compound and measles protein fragment combined for potential vaccine


BASF to cut up to 3700 more jobs

07 July 2009

German chemicals giant reveals plans to cut jobs and plants following its acquisition of Ciba

hand with many UV sensors attached

Where the sun does most damage

07 July 2009

Skin cancer's location on the body depends on the body's distance from the equator


Sulfate-coated soot boosts global warming

06 July 2009

Sulfate and nitrate particles could enhance global warming when combined with soot particles in the atmosphere

handheld remote controller for toy

Tiny pushes from a distance

06 July 2009

A microelectrode can remotely control the movement of a nanomotor

A display indicating unsafe drinking water using pictures

Paper displays hidden messages

06 July 2009

A sheet of paper turns into a cheap electronic display for point-of-care diagnostics

An yttrium oxide nanoparticle coated with a polymer and fluorophore

An alternative to quantum dots

06 July 2009

Yttrium-based bioimaging agents override background fluorescence in tissue

lactol ring

Novel chemical approach to graphene

05 July 2009

New reduction strategy based on NMR data yields purer graphene from graphite oxide

Virtual conference delegate

Virtual conference quandary for researchers

03 July 2009

Concern that recording and live streaming of conference presentations could jeopardise later journal publications

Yellow beaker

Urine turned into hydrogen fuel

02 July 2009

Whizz electrocatalyst frees the hydrogen from 'liquid gold'


Catalysing the fuels of the future

02 July 2009

Virent's biopetroleum catalysis system wins US green chemistry award

A tau protein clump

Probing protein aggregation

02 July 2009

NMR used to follow Alzheimer's-linked tau protein as it tangles

Amino acids

Tag and modify proteins

02 July 2009

A Nobel Prize-winning reaction for making carbon-carbon double bonds can be applied to proteins


Chemical security efforts spread

01 July 2009

Industry cautions over EU and US efforts to prevent chemical facilities being targeted by terrorist