Vol. 176 No. #4

More Stories from the August 15, 2009 issue

  1. Computing

    Random numbers faster

    Researchers have devised a way to use a laser to create strings of orderless bits for encryption.

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  2. Earth

    Signs of ancient sea ice

    New analyses of Arctic seafloor sediments suggest floating ice debuted in the ocean at least 47.5 million years ago.

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  3. Life

    Old gene, short new trick

    A single genetic modification is linked to the stature of short-legged dog breeds, new research shows.

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  4. Physics

    Raindrops go it alone

    A new study using a high-speed camera finds the shattering of solitary drips can produce a variety of sizes.

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  5. Health & Medicine

    Early testing for Alzheimer’s

    Spinal fluid test in people with mild cognitive impairments can predict in many cases who will develop the disease.

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  6. Life

    Sleeping ugly

    Analysis pinpoints genes that help springtails dehydrate and tough out the winter.

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  7. Life

    Protein plays three cancer-fighting roles

    The tumor suppressor protein, p53, has three ways to protect cells from turning cancerous. A new study shows that p53 helps make microRNAs.

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  8. Health & Medicine

    Chimpanzees die from primate version of HIV

    A new study links the simian immunodeficiency virus to serious AIDS-like illness in a wild population.

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  9. Earth

    Lopsided lights

    Simultaneous snapshots reveal that northern and southern auroras aren’t always alike.

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  10. Health & Medicine

    Cheap shots — typhoid vaccine shows broad coverage

    Vaccine protects against typhoid across age groups and is especially effective in young children.

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  11. Life

    Beetle masters optics

    Researchers may gain inspiration from the shell of Chrysina gloriosa, which twists light in a particular way.

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  12. Animals

    Toucan’s bill gives big chill

    Bird’s supersized bill can switch personal air conditioning on and off, new research suggests.

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  13. Paleontology

    Fossil shows first all-American honeybee

    Nevada find contradicts long-held view of Europe and Asia as the native land of all honeybees.

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  14. Science Future for August 15, 2009

    August 31–September 4 Scientists and policy makers meet at the World Climate Conference-3 in Geneva. Visit www.wmo.int/wcc3 September 2–6 IEEE Engineering in Medicine and Biology Society meeting in Minneapolis. See www.embc09.org September 12–16 Educators explore new teaching methods at the Astronomical Society of the Pacific meeting in Millbrae, Calif. See www.astrosociety.org/events/meeting.html

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  15. Force and Motion: An Illustrated Guide to Newton’s Laws by Jason Zimba

    Problem sets help high school and college students of all backgrounds understand mechanics. Johns Hopkins Univ., 2009, 428 p., $50 FORCE AND MOTION: AN ILLUSTRATED GUIDE TO NEWTON’S LAWS BY JASON ZIMBA

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  16. Life

    Book Review: The Root of Thought: Unlocking Glia–The Brain Cell That Will Help Us Sharpen Our Wits, Heal Injury, and Treat Brain Disease by Andrew Koob

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  17. Tackling toxicology and environmental health

    In January, toxicologist Linda S. Birnbaum became director of the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences, home to the National Toxicology Program, in Research Triangle Park, N.C. Birnbaum recently spoke with Science News writer Rachel Ehrenberg. What areas would you like to see the institute zoom in on? LINDA S. BIRNBAUM “If I see hundreds […]

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  18. Venom hunters

    When the monitor lizard chomped into Bryan Fry, it did more than turn his hand into a bloody mess. Besides ripping skin and severing tendons, the lizard delivered noxious venom into Fry’s body, injecting molecules that quickly thinned his blood and dilated his vessels. As the tiny toxic assassins dispersed throughout his circulatory system, they […]

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  19. Planetary Science

    Stars go kaboom, spilling cosmic secrets

    At least once a second, a dim, elderly star somewhere in the cosmos turns into a thermonuclear bomb. Briefly outshining its home galaxy, the explosion, known as a type 1a supernova, unleashes the equivalent of 1028 megatons of TNT — enough energy to destroy an entire solar system. Astronomers have marveled at these cosmic firecrackers for […]

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  20. Smart from the start

    Karen Warkentin speaks admiringly of the eggs of red-eyed tree frogs because, for one thing, they know what’s shaking. SMART FROM THE START Three-day-old embryos of red-eyed tree frogs position their big, branching gills near the oxygen-rich egg surface. K. Warkentin/Boston Univ. and Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute PRENATAL ESCAPE A female pale spitting spider can’t […]

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  21. Letters

    Making tall or short of it In your article “The genetic dimension of height and health” ( SN: 5/9/09, p. 22 ), some medical consequences of being either taller or shorter than the median height of the study group are explained. To help us all extrapolate these findings to our own lives, don’t you think […]

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  22. Science Past from the issue of August 15, 1959

    Complex “Moon” Succeeds — Explorer VI, sent up on Aug. 7, is the most complex satellite launched by the United States. The 142-pound satellite orbits the earth from 150 miles at its lowest point to some 25,000 miles at its farthest… This highly elliptical flight path means that the satellite’s instruments will cover a larger […]

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  23. Shorebirds of North America, Europe, and Asia: A Photographic Guide by Richard Chandler

    A shorebird photographer offers detailed commentary on and vivid photos of 135 shorebird species. But no gulls. Princeton Univ., 2009, 448 p., $35. SHOREBIRDS OF NORTH AMERICA, EUROPE, AND ASIA: A PHOTOGRAPHIC GUIDE BY RICHARD CHANDLER

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