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Proxima b. Credit: ESO/M. Kornmesser

A WORLD NEXT DOOR  Proxima Centauri casts a reddish glow over the surface of Proxima b (illustrated), the closest exoplanet to Earth, while two companion stars, Alpha Centauri A and B, appear as bright pinpricks of light.

coffee

JAVA GENE  A study of Italian and Dutch people’s DNA revealed a new gene that may affect how much coffee people drink. The gene is involved in determining how well people process caffeine.

Borrelia burgdorferi

SPECIAL BONDS  The corkscrew-shaped bacteria that cause Lyme disease (Borrelia burgdorferi) attach themselves to the sides of blood vessels using special bonds that get stronger under stress. 

CRISPR illustration

RETOOLED Tweaks to the cutting-edge gene editor known as CRISPR enhance its powers. 



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