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DEFINING A KINGDOM  In the peculiar, shape-shifting world of fungi (Erysiphe guttata shown), a rebellion has broken out against the traditional way of naming species. 

MAGNIFYING STAR   A white dwarf, the core of a dead star, contorts the light of the sunlike star it orbits, as seen in an artist’s illustration. The white dwarf’s gravity amplifies the light from its companion each time the white dwarf passes between the other star and Earth. 

ALL SPUN UP  Molecules hit with a laser have reached record spin speeds of 600 trillion revolutions per minute.

BARE BONES  Differences between the skeletons of modern humans (back) and Neandertals (front) may stem from the way the groups use some genes involved in bone growth. Chemical modifications of DNA may have dialed down the activity of these genes in Neandertals, leading to stocky frames. 

HERS, NOT HIS  A small female Neotrogla bark louse extends an inflatable, penislike organ (less than a millimeter long, shown in orange), which fits into a vaginalike pocket inside the male of her species and collects his sperm.  



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