Laurel Hamers

Laurel Hamers was the general assignment reporter at Science News.

All Stories by Laurel Hamers

  1. simulation of bundled chromosomes

    Here’s how cells rapidly stuff two meters of DNA into microscopic capsules

    Scientists have figured out how cells quickly pack up their chromosomes before a cell divides.

  2. phages

    Scientists find 10 new defense systems used by bacteria

    Scientists identify 10 groups of genes that appear to govern defense systems used by bacteria against virus attacks.

  3. E. coli colony

    The secret to icky, sticky bacterial biofilms lies in the microbes’ cellulose

    Bacteria use a modified form of cellulose to form sticky networks that can coat various surfaces.

  4. Streptococcus pyogenes
    Health & Medicine

    Not all strep infections are alike and it may have nothing to do with you

    Add-on genes in some bacteria shape the way strains interact with the immune system.

  5. green sea turtle

    Warming ocean water is turning 99 percent of these sea turtles female

    Green sea turtle populations in part of the Great Barrier Reef are becoming increasingly female due to higher ocean temperatures.

  6. prime numbers

    The largest known prime number has 23 million-plus digits

    A newly found prime number smashes the previous record for largest prime.

  7. coral reef

    Corals are severely bleaching five times as often as in 1980

    Corals are now bleaching more frequently and severely than they were in the early 1980s.

  8. milk snake

    A deadly fungus is infecting snake species seemingly at random

    A fungal disease doesn’t appear to discriminate among snake species, suggesting many of the reptiles may be at risk.

  9. thirteen-lined ground squirrel

    Specialized protein helps these ground squirrels resist the cold

    A less active cold-sensing protein explains, in part, why some hibernating ground squirrels are more tolerant of chilly conditions than the animals’ nonhibernating kin.

  10. CAR-T cells
    Health & Medicine

    Approval of gene therapies for two blood cancers led to an ‘explosion of interest’ in 2017

    The first gene therapies approved in the United States are treating patients with certain types of leukemia and lymphoma.

  11. tick on a dino feather preserved in amber

    Ticks had a taste for dinosaur blood

    A tick found trapped in amber is evidence the bloodsuckers preyed on feathered dinosaurs, a new study says.

  12. exploded egg

    Microwaved, hard-boiled eggs can explode. But the bang isn’t the worst part.

    Microwaved eggs can explode with a loud, but probably not ear-splitting, bang when pierced.