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  • Reviews & Previews

    Mastering the art of self-control

    Columbia University psychologist Walter Mischel made his scientific mark by tempting children with marshmallows. For nearly 50 years, Mischel has studied whether kids would eat, say, one marshmallow right away or wait 20 minutes to receive two marshmallows. Kids who waited for double the goodies grew up to do better in school, get better jobs, maintain better physical health and feel better...

    11/03/2014 - 10:00 Psychology, Science & Society
  • News

    Birth of new brain cells might erase babies’ memories

    Unlike the proverbial elephants, babies always forget.

    Infants’ memories may be wiped clean by the genesis of new brain cells, a study in rodents suggests. The findings offer an explanation for why people can’t recall memories from early childhood, a century-old mystery.

    The study’s authors “make a very interesting and compelling case,” says neuroscientist and psychiatrist Thomas...

    05/08/2014 - 15:56 Neuroscience
  • Feature

    Young'uns adrift on the sea

    Steve Simpson is gearing up his lab for research he dismissed as loony just two years ago: studying how coral larvae, mere squiggles of still-developing tissue, respond to sound.

    He hadn’t expected corals — that is, the simple, tiny animals that build coral skeletons — to even have a way of detecting noises. “They’re kind of lecture...

    12/30/2010 - 16:48
  • Feature

    A pregnant question

    The glow of pregnancy is no shield against depression. Millions of expectant mothers rely on antidepressant medication for help. But treating mom with drugs at this time in her life may have long-term consequences for baby.

    Around 10 percent of women suffer bouts of despair during the hormonal chaos of pregnancy or in the months after delivery. Some women are...

    05/21/2010 - 15:55
  • Feature

    Destination brain

    When Lilian Calderón-Garcidueñas recruited children for a study probing the effects of air pollution, Ana was just 7. The trim girl with an above-average IQ of 113 “was bright, very beautiful and clinically healthy,” the physician and toxicologist recalls.

    But now Ana (not her real name) is 11. And after putting her and 54 other children from a middle-class...

    05/07/2010 - 15:18 Pollution
  • News

    Catching your breath

    Scientists would like to take your breath away. Literally.

    Exhaled vapor holds clues to your health, revealing much more than just what you ate for lunch. In recent years, researchers have been scrutinizing the misty mixture of molecules with fervor, seeking evidence of conditions ranging from sleep apnea to cancer.

    Breath can also reveal exposure to pollutants such as...

    06/20/2008 - 11:15 Chemistry, Genes & Cells, Body & Brain
  • Feature

    Science News of the Year 2007

    Tuning In to Science

    In its own way, science is a lot like '60s rock 'n' roll on AM radio. If you're old enough, you remember the slogan: "And the hits just keep on comin'."

    With science, the news just keeps on comin'. Somehow, year after year, science never runs out of hit discoveries. From land-based laboratories to the depths of the oceans to remote realms of the cosmos, intrepid...

    12/18/2007 - 21:49 Humans & Society
  • Feature

    30 Hours with Team Slime Mold

    My reporting notes don't usually begin "Cuddle-Up," but this Saturday's project is already careening toward the surreal, and it's not even 9 a.m. I've been instructed to drive to an art deco amusement park just outside Washington, D.C. At Glen Echo Park, I'm to meet my contact at an open pavilion painted powder blue and adorned with the Cuddle-Up sign.

    There's some...

    07/25/2006 - 10:16 Other
  • Food for Thought

    Born to Love Salt

    If you happen to have an unhealthy penchant for salt, it may not be solely your fault. Mom may have to share some of the blame. Or so suggests a small but intriguing body of research.

    The newest of these studies finds that among normal-weight newborns, the smaller a baby is at birth, the more likely it is that he or she will show an early and strong preference for salty fare. As...

    01/26/2006 - 17:27 Nutrition
  • Feature

    Science News of the Year 2005

    Science News of Yesteryear

    Anthropology & Archaeology

    Astronomy

    Behavior

    Biomedicine

    Botany & Zoology

    Cell & Molecular Biology

    Chemistry

    ...
    12/20/2005 - 03:53 Humans & Society