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E.g., 01/24/2017
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  • Growth Curve

    A ban on screens in bedrooms may save kids’ sleep

    Most nights I read a book in bed to wind down. But when I run out of my library supply, I read articles on my phone instead. I suspect that this digital substitution messes with my sleep. That’s not good for me — but it’s probably worse for the many children who have screens in their rooms at night.A team of researchers recently combed through the literature looking for associations between...

    01/23/2017 - 16:35 Health, Human Development
  • Rethink

    Baby dinosaurs took three to six months to hatch

    Dinosaurs might live on today as birds, but they hatched like reptiles. Developing dinos stayed in their eggs three to six months before emerging, far longer than previously suspected, researchers report online January 3 in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

    With few clues to dinosaurs’ embryonic lives, scientists assumed that young dinosaurs shared modern birds’ swift...

    01/23/2017 - 15:10 Paleontology
  • News

    Chemists strike gold, solve mystery about precious metal’s properties

    Gold’s glimmer is not the only reason the element is so captivating. For decades, scientists have puzzled over why theoretical predictions of gold’s properties don’t match up with experiments. Now, highly detailed calculations have erased the discrepancy, according to a paper published in the Jan. 13 Physical Review Letters.

    At issue was the energy required to remove an electron from a...

    01/23/2017 - 07:00 Physics, Chemistry
  • Reviews & Previews

    Real-life adventure tale details search for legendary city

    The Lost City of the Monkey GodDouglas PrestonGrand Central Publishing, $28

    Legend has it that hundreds of years ago, a rich, powerful city stood in the jungle of what is now eastern Honduras. Then, suddenly, all of the residents vanished, and the abandoned city became a cursed place — anyone who entered risked death.

    In a captivating real-life adventure tale, journalist and...

    01/22/2017 - 08:00 Archaeology, Anthropology, Health
  • News

    What a mosquito's immune system can tell us about fighting malaria

    Immune cells in a malaria-transmitting mosquito sense the invading parasites and deploy an army of tiny messengers in response. These couriers help turn on a mosquito’s defenses, killing off the parasites, a new study suggests.

    This more detailed understanding of the mosquito immune system, published January 20 in Science Immunology, might help scientists design new ways to combat...

    01/20/2017 - 14:00 Immune Science, Microbiology
  • Science Ticker

    How desert ants navigate walking backward

    Some ants are so good at navigating they can do it backward.

    Researchers think that foraging ants memorize scenes in front of them to find their way back to the nest. But that only works when facing forward. Still, some species have been observed trekking in reverse to drag dinner home.

    To find out how the ants manage this feat, Antoine Wystrach of the University of Edinburgh and...

    01/19/2017 - 18:14 Animals, Ecology
  • News in Brief

    Earth’s last major warm period was as hot as today

    The last time Earth’s thermostat was cranked as high as it is today, sea levels were high enough to completely drown New Orleans (had it existed at the time), new research suggests.

    Ocean surface temperatures around 125,000 years ago were comparable to those today, researchers report in the Jan. 20 Science. Previous estimates suggested that this period, the height of the last warm phase...

    01/19/2017 - 14:00 Climate, Earth, Oceans
  • News

    In debate over origin of fairy circles, both sides might be right

    Ecologists still don’t believe in fairies. But it may take magic to resolve a long-running debate over what causes the oddly regular spots of bare soil called fairy circles. A new approach now suggests combining the two main hypotheses.

    Fairy circles, each among about six close neighbors, sprinkle arid grasslands in southern Africa and Australia “like a polka dot dress,” says ecologist...

    01/19/2017 - 07:00 Ecology, Plants, Animals
  • News

    Cancer studies get mixed grades on redo tests

    An effort to reproduce findings of five prominent cancer studies has produced a mixed bag of results.

    In a series of papers published January 19 in eLife, researchers from the Reproducibility Project: Cancer Biology report that none of five prominent cancer studies they sought to duplicate were completely reproducible. Replicators could not confirm any of the findings of one study. In...

    01/18/2017 - 16:42 Science & Society, Cancer
  • News in Brief

    Monsoon deluges turned ancient Sahara green

    Thousands of years ago, it didn’t just rain on the Sahara Desert. It poured.

    Grasslands, trees, lakes and rivers once covered North Africa’s now arid, unforgiving landscape. From about 11,000 to 5,000 years ago, much higher rainfall rates than previously estimated created that “Green Sahara,” say geologist Jessica Tierney of the University of Arizona in Tucson and her colleagues....

    01/18/2017 - 16:37 Climate, Human Evolution