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E.g., 07/22/2019
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  • News

    Droplets of these simple molecules may have helped kick-start life on Earth

    For the origin of life on Earth, ancient puddles or coastlines may have had a major ripple effect.

    A new study shows that a simple class of molecules called alpha hydroxy acids forms microdroplets when dried and rewetted, as could have taken place at the edges of water sources. These cell-sized compartments can trap RNA, and can merge and break apart — behavior that could have encouraged...

    07/22/2019 - 15:24 Chemistry, Evolution, Cells
  • News

    Boosting a gut bacterium helps mice fight an ALS-like disease

    A friendly gut bacterium can help lessen ALS symptoms, a study of mice suggests.

    Mice that develop a degenerative nerve disease similar to amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), or Lou Gehrig’s disease, fared better when bacteria making vitamin B3 were living in their intestines, researchers report July 22 in Nature. Those results suggest that gut microbes may make molecules that can slow...

    07/22/2019 - 11:00 Neuroscience, Cells, Biomedicine
  • News in Brief

    Increased control over ions’ motions may help improve quantum computers

    Physicists are taking their quantum powers to the next level — the next energy level, that is.

    Researchers have controlled the motion of a trapped ion, an electrically charged atom, better than ever possible before, manipulating the energy level of its oscillation within an electromagnetic field. A single ion of beryllium, trapped by electromagnetic fields, was made to oscillate...

    07/22/2019 - 11:00 Physics
  • News in Brief

    India’s first lunar lander is on its way to the moon

    India’s first moon lander is on its way to the lunar south pole.

    At  5:13 a.m. EDT on July 22, the Chandrayaan 2 mission launched from the Satish Dhawan Space Center on India’s southeast coast. The mission consists of an orbiter; a lander named Vikram after Indian space scientist Vikram Sarabhai; and a rover named Pragyan, the Sanskrit word for wisdom.

    The spacecraft was originally...

    07/22/2019 - 05:36 Planetary Science
  • News

    Botox may relieve persistent pelvic pain caused by endometriosis

    For some women with endometriosis, the pain doesn’t stop after surgical and hormonal treatments. It can persist, triggered by muscle spasms that ripple through the pelvic floor. Now, a small study suggests that Botox, best known for smoothing wrinkles, could quell those spasms and relieve that pain.

    Thirteen women diagnosed with the disorder, in which tissue similar to what lines the...

    07/19/2019 - 10:00 Health
  • News

    Longer gaps between births can halve infant deaths in developing nations

    In some of the world’s least-developed countries, spacing births two years apart, instead of one, can nearly halve infant mortality rates, a study finds. But in more developed nations, increasing the interval between successive childbirths makes little difference to infant deaths, researchers report July 3 in Demography. 

    “At low levels of development, birth spacing is really important...

    07/19/2019 - 07:00 Science & Society, Human Evolution
  • News

    Manipulating nerve cells makes mice ‘see’ something that’s not there

    Aiming laser lights into mice’s brains can make them “see” lines that aren’t actually there. The results, described online July 18 in Science, represent the first time scientists have created a specific visual perception with laboratory trickery.The work is “technically amazing,” says neuroscientist and psychiatrist Conor Liston at Weill Cornell Medicine in New York City. “I think every...

    07/18/2019 - 14:00 Health, Neuroscience
  • News

    Permanent liquid magnets have now been created in the lab

    The rules about what makes a good magnet may not be as rigid as scientists thought. Using a mixture containing magnetic nanoparticles, researchers have now created liquid droplets that behave like tiny bar magnets.  

    Magnets that generate persistent magnetic fields typically are composed of solids like iron, where the magnetic poles of densely packed atoms are all locked in the same...

    07/18/2019 - 14:00 Materials, Physics
  • News

    A flexible bone that helps mammals chew dates back to the Jurassic Period

    Chew on this: Millions of years before the emergence of true mammals, an early ancestor had a tiny, saddle-shaped bone connected to the jaw that was thought to belong to mammals alone. That bone, scientists say, helps all mammals chew and swallow, and ultimately was one secret to our success, enabling the spread into various ecological niches. 

    Microdocodon gracilis, a shrew-sized mammal...

    07/18/2019 - 14:00 Paleontology
  • 50 years ago, lambs survived but didn’t thrive inside artificial wombs

    Watching the unborn —

    An artificial womb has been used to keep some 35 fetal lambs alive for up to 55 hours … researchers [still] have to show that a fetus can actually grow, not just survive, in their man-made womb…. Eventually, it might be possible to place extremely premature infants into such a womb … to support them until they can survive on their own. — Science News, July 5,...

    07/18/2019 - 07:00 Biomedicine, Technology