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10 April 2014 11:44 am ,
Vol. 344 ,
The Pyrenean ibex, an impressive mountain goat that lived in the central Pyrenees in Spain, went extinct in 2000. But a...
Tight budgets are forcing NASA to consider turning off one or more planetary science projects that have completed their...
Ebola is not a stranger to West Africa—an outbreak in the 1990s killed chimpanzees and sickened one researcher. But the...
In an as-yet-unpublished report, an international panel of geoscientists has concluded that a pair of deadly...
Tropical disease experts tried and failed before to eradicate yaws, a rare disfiguring disease of poor countries. Now,...
Since 2002, researchers have reported that agricultural communities in the hot and humid Pacific Coast of Central...
Balkan endemic kidney disease surfaced in the 1950s and for decades defied attempts to finger the cause. It occurred...
- 10 April 2014 11:44 am , Vol. 344 , #6180
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ScienceShot: How Natural Is Your Cola?
6 May 2011 1:32 pm
Water, sugar, and caramel coloring are the main ingredients in most soft drinks, but some "natural" beverage makers add cola nut extract to the recipe—and extra cents to the price tag. Now, researchers in Italy have developed a method to test whether these premium colas live up to their billing. The team took 1 liter of a particular naturally flavored soda brand and dumped in millions of tiny beads, each coated with a different sequence of amino acids. Some of the amino acid combinations latched onto the cola nut proteins in the soft drink. The researchers then separated out the captured proteins and identified them. When the team followed the same procedure with a liter of Coca-Cola, which does not claim to use cola nuts in its recipe, they found no protein signature. The technique, published today in the Journal of Proteome Research, could help consumer groups test the authenticity of naturally flavored sodas or other beverages, the researchers write.
See more ScienceShots.