Being immune to a virus is a good thing, until it’s not. That’s the lesson from a study that sought to understand the severity of the Zika outbreak in Brazil. Experiments in cells and mice suggest that a previous exposure to dengue or West Nile can make a Zika virus infection worse.
“Antibodies you generate from the first infection … can facilitate entry of the Zika virus into...
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The Martian atmosphere definitely had more gas in the past.
Data from NASA’s MAVEN spacecraft indicate that the Red Planet has lost most of the gas that ever existed in its atmosphere. The results, published in the March 31 Science, are the first to quantify how much gas has been lost with time and offer clues to how Mars went from a warm, wet place to a cold, dry one.
Behind their ferocious façade, tyrannosaurs were probably a bit touchy-feely. A new species of tyrannosaur may have had highly sensitive organs in its face that could detect touch and temperature, researchers report March 30 in Scientific Reports.
Several skulls of the newly identified species, Daspletosaurus horneri, which lived about 75 million years ago and grew about 9 meters long,...
I’ve been to the playground enough times to know a juicy parenting controversy when I see (or overhear) one. Bed-sharing, breastfeeding and screen time are always hot-button issues. But I’m not talking about any of those. No, I’m talking about actual juice.
Some parents see juice as a delicious way to get vitamins into little kids. Others see juice as a gateway drug to a sugar-crusted,...
Mosquitoes take weird insect flight to new heights.
The buzzing bloodsuckers flap their long wings in narrow strokes really, really fast — more than 800 times per second in males. That’s four times faster than similarly sized insects. “The incredibly high wingbeat frequency of mosquitoes is simply mind-boggling,” says David Lentink, who studies flight at Stanford University.
Neandertals knew how to kick it up a couple of notches. Between 38,000 and 43,000 years ago, these close evolutionary relatives of humans added two notches to five previous incisions on a raven bone to produce an evenly spaced sequence, researchers say.
This visually consistent pattern suggests Neandertals either had an eye for pleasing-looking displays or saw some deeper symbolic...
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Sea ice skylights formed by warming Arctic temperatures increasingly allow enough sunlight into the waters below to spur phytoplankton blooms, new research suggests. Such conditions, probably a rarity more than two decades ago, now extend to roughly 30 percent of the ice-covered Arctic Ocean during July, researchers report March 29 in Science Advances.
The microscopic critters need...
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One of Jupiter’s companions is a bit of a nonconformist.
The gas giant shares its orbit around the sun with a slew of asteroids, but scientists have now discovered one that goes against the flow. It journeys around the solar system in reverse — in the opposite direction of Jupiter and all the other planets. Asteroid 2015 BZ509 is the first object found that orbits in...
Scientists have long sought a strategy for curing genetic diseases, but — with just a few notable exceptions — have succeeded only in their dreams. Now, though, researchers in China and Texas have taken a step toward making the fantasies a reality for all inherited diseases.
Using the gene-editing tool known as CRISPR/Cas9, the researchers have successfully edited disease-causing...
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SAN FRANCISCO — Millennials, rejoice: A winking-face emoji is worth a slew of ironic words. The brain interprets irony or sarcasm conveyed by an emoji in the same way as it does verbal banter, researchers reported March 26 in San Francisco at the Cognitive Neuroscience Society’s annual meeting.
Researchers measured brain electrical activity of college students reading sentences ending in...