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E.g., 07/28/2015
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  • News

    Cells from grandma help keep fetus safe

    Parents often complain that grandparents meddle in child-rearing. New research suggests that such meddling starts in the womb, where cells from grandma manipulate the mother’s immune system.

    Scientists already knew that during pregnancy some cells from the fetus invade the mother, while cells from mom sneak into the offspring. These interloping cells can survive for decades (...

    07/23/2015 - 12:00 Cells, Immune Science
  • Culture Beaker

    Microbes may be a forensic tool for time of death

    There is life after death. And it’s kind of gross.

    For most of us, death means life (as we know it) is over, kaput, finis. Whatever we believe about a continued existence metaphysically, when we die, our body’s time on Earth comes to an end. But for the microbes living within us, time marches on. And if you are a microbial ecologist, that’s when things get interesting.

    “Once your...

    07/22/2015 - 11:30 Science & Society, Microbiology
  • News

    Biology may provide just the right chemistry for new drugs

    NORTH BETHESDA, Md. — Chemists are struggling to develop new drugs these days — and biologists may have just the pill for that.

    By tapping natural enzymes and tweaking microbes, researchers may find and make new drugs more easily, says biological engineer Vikramaditya Yadav of the University of British Columbia in Vancouver. Yadav says he has developed a method to make a complicated...

    07/20/2015 - 09:57 Chemistry
  • Scicurious

    The weekly grind of social jetlag could be a weighty issue

    For some of us, a weekly case of the Mondays isn’t just because of traffic, work pileups or our soulless office space. It’s because we had to get up early, and sleeping in on the weekend was so incredibly glorious. Besides, because we slept in on Sunday, we didn’t get to the gym until the afternoon, we cooked a late dinner for a friend and then we couldn’t fall asleep at all and so stayed up...

    07/20/2015 - 07:38 Health
  • News in Brief

    Polar bears’ ‘walking hibernation’ not much of an energy saver

    Polar bears’ normal summertime energy-saver mode is called “walking hibernation.” But it may not be drastic enough to compensate for lengthening warm seasons — and accompanying food shortages — as climate changes, researchers say.

    What happens to summertime bears is more like fasting than like winter hibernation, says ecologist John Whiteman of the University of Wyoming in Laramie.

    07/16/2015 - 15:17 Animals, Conservation
  • Scicurious

    Shifted waking hours may pave the way to shifting metabolism

    Shift work can be brutal. Working late nights, early mornings and constantly changing hours wreaks havoc on social and family life. But in our racing, 24-hour world, someone needs to keep the lights on. For years, scientists have studied just what happens when we play fast and loose with the body’s clock. A handful of new studies add to the evidence that shift work and other kinds of circadian...

    07/15/2015 - 14:30 Physiology, Health
  • Wild Things

    Feeding seabirds may give declining populations a boost

    Seabirds often have a tough life. They may nest on the side of a cliff, perched over a drop that would be certain death for the rest of us. Their ocean food can be tough to find, especially in years when the weather takes a turn. Some make incredibly...

    07/15/2015 - 12:00 Animals
  • Feature

    The origin of biological clocks

    The Earth has rhythm. Every 24 hours, the planet pirouettes on its axis, bathing its surface alternately in sunlight and darkness.

    Organisms from algae to people have evolved to keep time with the planet’s light/dark beat. They do so using the world’s most important timekeepers: daily, or circadian, clocks that allow organisms to schedule their days so as not to be caught off guard by...

    07/14/2015 - 13:00 Physiology, Evolution, Health
  • News

    Sugar makes mice sleepy

    Contrary to parental belief, sugar may actually cause drowsiness, not hyperactivity. Key brain cells awash in glucose put mice to sleep, scientists report July 8 in the Journal of Neuroscience.

    “We all experience this strong feeling of sleepiness after a very large meal,” says study coauthor Christophe Varin of Lyon Neuroscience Research Center and ESPCI ParisTech in France....

    07/14/2015 - 06:00 Neuroscience
  • Reviews & Previews

    Flowers’ roles considered in ecosystems and economics


    07/12/2015 - 09:03 Plants, Evolution, Agriculture