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Study: Elite Athletes' Brains 82% Faster

Elite athletes are blessed with an area of the brain that performs 82 percent faster than average under intense pressure, a study published on Wednesday claims.

A series of tests commissioned by Dunlop Tyres in conjunction with University College London (UCL) found that extreme sportsmen and women performed significantly better under physical and mental duress than members of the public.

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Japan's Whaling Science under the Microscope

When Japanese researchers said earlier this year that eating whale meat could help prevent dementia and memory loss, the news provoked snorts of derision -- it couldn't be real science, went the retort.

Despite protestations of academic rigour from the men and women who do the work, anything involving the words "Japan", "whaling" and "research" suffers from a credibility gap in the court of global public opinion.

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China Illegally Fishing in Africa, Greenpeace Study Finds

Chinese companies have been illegally fishing off the coast of West Africa, environmental campaign group Greenpeace said in a study Wednesday, at times sending incorrect location data suggesting they are as far away as Mexico.

The number of Chinese-flagged or Chinese-owned fishing boats operating in Africa has soared in recent decades, from just 13 in 1985 to 462 in 2013, the international advocacy group said.

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Indian Public Campaigns to Send 'Killer' Tiger Home

Indian wildlife lovers have launched a campaign to move a tiger back to the wildlife reserve where he grew up after he was placed in captivity following the death of a forest guard.

The nine-year-old male, known as Ustad or Master, was taken from the Ranthambore National Park in northwestern India on Saturday and placed in an enclosure at a zoo 500 kilometers (310 miles) away.

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Japan Court Upholds Nuclear Power Plant Injunction

A Japanese court upheld an injunction banning the restart of two nuclear reactors, a report said Tuesday, in a blow to the government's ambitions to return to atomic power generation.

Fukui District Court in central Japan dismissed Kansai Electric Power's motion for a stay on an earlier decision to temporarily bar the restart of the No. 3 and No. 4 reactors at plant in Takahama, Kyodo News said.

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Russia Looks to Space Future after Bruising Failures

Russia's recent string of space failures -- including the embarrassing loss of a satellite after the rocket carrying it fell to Earth -- come as the country tries to restructure its ageing program.

Once the pride of the Soviet Union, the space sector was hit hard by the collapse of Communism.

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Pacific Quest: Solar Pilot Prepares for Toughest Leg

Strapped into a seat in a tiny one-man cabin, Swiss pilot Andre Borschberg will have to endure extraordinary conditions as he flies over the Pacific Ocean for five days and nights, powered only by the sun.

Each day he will experience altitudes of 28,000 feet, akin to the world's highest peak, and temperature changes of 55 degrees C (almost 100 F) in the unpressurized, unheated Solar Impulse 2 cockpit.

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Gene Breakthrough Sparks 'Home-Brewed Morphine' Fears

Scientists on Monday said they had unlocked a pathway for producing opiates from genetically-engineered yeast but feared the discovery could one day be a bonanza for drug lords.

Other experts agreed, saying anyone with basic skills could use such a yeast to churn out morphine, codeine and drugs using a simple home-brew beer kit.

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Report: China Police Shoot Killer Lion

Chinese police have shot dead a lion that killed a keeper, state media reported, in the country's second such zookeeper death this year.

Police were called in to shoot the lion to "ensure the safety of tourists", after the feline fatally injured a keeper who entered its cage for cleaning, according to the official Xinhua news agency.

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Russia Restarts Spacecraft after Embarrassing Failures

Russia's space agency said Monday it had managed to restart the engines of the Progress spacecraft and correct the orbit of the International Space Station (ISS) which it is attached to, after a failed first attempt.

"On Sunday night, the orbit of the ISS was successfully corrected," Roscosmos told Russian news agencies, 48 hours after the initial attempt to switch on the spacecraft's engines proved unsuccessful.

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