Vol. 177 No. #9
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More Stories from the April 24, 2010 issue

  1. Physics

    Next on CSI: Surface-enhanced Raman spectroscopy

    The modification of a powerful chemical analysis technique could make it the gold standard in detecting trace substances.

  2. Health & Medicine

    Ingredient of dark roasted coffees may make them easier on the tummy

    A compound generated in the roasting process appears to reduce acid production in the stomach.

  3. Life

    Hawaiian caterpillars are first known amphibious insects

    Developing underwater or above, it’s all good for moths that evolved new lifestyle in the islands

  4. Health & Medicine

    UV radiation, not vitamin D, might limit multiple sclerosis symptoms

    The rarity of MS in the tropics may be due to higher ultraviolet light exposure, not necessarily increased vitamin production, new research suggests.

  5. Humans

    Ancient DNA suggests new hominid line

    Genetic data unveil a previously unknown Stone Age ancestor in central Asia.

  6. Chemistry

    Building a cheaper catalyst

    Using perovskite instead of platinum in catalytic converters could shave many hundreds of dollars off the cost of a diesel car.

  7. Physics

    Bar codes could be next to check out

    New radio frequency tags would use nanotechnology to identify and track products.

  8. Earth

    Alternative flame retardants leach into the environment

    Supposedly safer chemicals are spotted in peregrine falcon eggs in California.

  9. Health & Medicine

    Cap or cork, it’s the wine that matters most

    Comparative study finds that screw tops can perform just as well in regulating the aging process.

  10. Health & Medicine

    Identical twins may not be so identical when it comes to gut bacteria

    A new study suggests that intestinal microbe populations vary widely from one person to another.

  11. Life

    Elephant legs bend like ‘big human limb’

    Mechanics suggests the creatures are more limber than thought and use all their legs to come to a four-way stop.

  12. Physics

    LHC revs up

    The world’s most powerful atom smasher achieves its most energetic collisions yet.

  13. Planetary Science

    Warmth in the dark age

    Lower reflectivity kept Earth from freezing under a fainter young sun.

  14. Life

    First songbird genome arrives with spring

    The genome of a songbird has been decoded for the first time. Zebra finches join chickens as the only birds to have detailed maps of their genetic blueprints.

  15. Space

    Cosmic magnetic field strength measured

    Hints of weak magnetism between galaxies narrows options for how the early universe got its fields.

  16. Health & Medicine

    Bees forage with their guts

    Researchers show that a gene helps honeybees choose between nectar and pollen.

  17. Chemistry

    Superheavy element 117 makes debut

    An international team of researchers fill a gap in the periodic table, and lay another stepping stone along the path to the “island of stability.”

  18. Health & Medicine

    Walnuts may slow prostate cancer

    More news from the American Chemical Society meeting.

  19. Science Future for April 24, 2010

    May 9 – 14 The 2010 Intel International Science and Engineering Fair is held in San Jose, Calif. See www.societyforscience.org/isef June 3 – 4 Researchers meet in Chicago to discuss social factors affecting mental health. See www.adler.edu/news/events June 14 – 17 Mathematicians meet in Austin, Texas, to assess progress in discrete mathematics. See www.siam.org/meetings/dm10

  20. Duel at Dawn: Heroes, Martyrs, and the Rise of Modern Mathematics by Amir Alexander

    The Romantic Age zeitgeist profoundly influenced modern mathematicians, a science historian argues. DUEL AT DAWN: HEROES, MARTYRS, AND THE RISE OF MODERN MATHEMATICS BY AMIR ALEXANDER Harvard Univ. Press, 2010, 320 p., $28.95.

  21. Wild Urban Plants of the Northeast: A Field Guide by Peter Del Tredici

    An exploration of the plant life that springs up amid chain-link fences and asphalt jungles. WILD URBAN PLANTS OF THE NORTHEAST: A FIELD GUIDE BY PETER DEL TREDICI Cornell Univ. Press, 2010, 374 p., $29.95.

  22. The Match: “Savior Siblings” and One Family’s Battle to Heal Their Daughter by Beth Whitehouse

    A family medical crisis uncovers issues around reproductive technology. THE MATCH: “SAVIOR SIBLINGS” AND ONE FAMILY’S BATTLE TO HEAL THEIR DAUGHTER BY BETH WHITEHOUSE Beacon Press, 2010, 272 p., $24.95.

  23. Book Review: Here Be Dragons by Dennis McCarthy

    Review by Sid Perkins.

  24. Book Review: The Eerie Silence: Renewing Our Search for Alien Intelligence by Paul Davies

    Review by Elizabeth Quill.

  25. How We Know What We Know About Our Changing Climate by Lynne Cherry and Gary Braasch

    Kids can learn about climate change by reading scientists’ firsthand accounts from the field. Dawn Publications, 2010, 66 p., $11.95. HOW WE KNOW WHAT WE KNOW ABOUT OUR CHANGING CLIMATE BY LYNNE CHERRY AND GARY BRAASCH

  26. Jumping to conclusions can make for good decisions

    Gary Klein, a psychologist and chief scientist at Applied Research Associates in Fairborn, Ohio, has for the past 25 years studied how people make real-life, critical decisions under extreme time pressure. In his 2009 book Streetlights and Shadows: Searching for the Keys to Adaptive Decision Making (MIT Press), Klein discusses 10 surprising ways effective thinkers […]

  27. Earth

    A fresh look at Mount St. Helens

    Nearly 30 years after the peak’s major eruption, recovery has just begun.

  28. Astronomy

    Can you hear me now?

    Astronomers reconsider how extraterrestrials could make contact.

  29. Humans

    Gambling on experience

    Perceptions of risk can get pulled in opposite directions.

  30. Letters

    Naked speed The article “Running barefoot cushions impact of forces on foot” (SN: 02/27/10, p. 14) says a lot about whether running barefoot is or isn’t healthier than running shod. Has anyone looked into which is faster? Henry Jones, Baton Rouge, La. “No,” responds Daniel Lieberman, a professor of evolutionary biology at Harvard University. But […]

  31. Science Past from the issue of April 23, 1960

    MEAT FLAVOR ISOLATED; MAY MAKE ALGAE EDIBLE — Two U.S. Department of Agriculture scientists have isolated and freeze-dried substances that give beef and pork their flavor and aroma. The substances could add flavor to the unappetizing algae that may be grown in interplanetary manned space ships as food for astronauts…. The [researchers] used cold water […]

  32. 50 Great Myths of Popular Psychology by S.O. Lilienfeld, S.J. Lynn, J. Ruscio and B.L. Beyerstein

    Psychologists team up to debunk popular urban legends in that field. Wiley-Blackwell, 2010, 332 p., $26.95. 50 GREAT MYTHS OF POPULAR PSYCHOLOGY BY S.O. LILIENFELD, S.J. LYNN, J. RUSCIO AND B.L. BEYERSTEIN