Vol. 163 No. #6 Archives

More Stories from the February 8, 2003 issue

  1. Earth

    Dust devils produce magnetic fields

    Scientists who chase dust devils report that the tiny twisters can produce a small magnetic field that changes magnitude between 3 and 30 times per second.

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  2. Sleepy brains make memorable waves

    Precisely timed electrical discharges in two parts of the brains of sleeping rodents offer clues to how slumber may foster memories of recently learned material.

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  3. Materials Science

    Microscopic glass ribbons provide molecular labels

    A new type of barcode too small to see with the naked eye holds promise for biomedical research, law enforcement, and everyday life.

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  4. Cell phones distract drivers, hands down

    Laboratory experiments indicate that using a hands-free cell phone while driving markedly interferes with the ability to maneuver a vehicle safely.

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  5. Tech

    Columbia Disaster: Why did the space shuttle burn up?

    The space shuttle Columbia, which tore apart killing all seven of its crew on Feb. 1 just minutes before it was scheduled to land, may have been doomed since its liftoff.

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  6. Health & Medicine

    Exonerated? Foods’ acrylamide risks appear low

    A new study downplays the likelihood that people will develop cancer from eating foods naturally tainted with acrylamide, a building block of many plastics and an animal carcinogen.

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  7. Bad Sleepers Hurry Death: Snoozing soundly staves off the Big Sleep

    Healthy elderly people who experienced difficulty falling or staying asleep die from natural causes at a much higher rate than those who slept well.

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  8. Agriculture

    Bt Cotton: Yields up in India; pests low in Arizona

    Two cotton-growing centers that could hardly differ more—small farms in India and industrial fields in Arizona—provide case studies that show the bright side of a widespread genetically engineered crop.

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  9. Humans

    Budget Boosts and Busts: R&D for Defense, NASA garner funding rise

    The President's $2.23 trillion federal budget proposal contains nearly $123 billion to fund federal research and development, an increase of about $8 billion over last year’s proposal.

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  10. Health & Medicine

    Mind Numbing: Anesthesia in baby rats stunts brain development

    General anesthetic drugs commonly used in pediatric surgery, when given to baby rats, trigger brain cells to commit a cellular form of suicide that leads to lasting memory and learning deficits.

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  11. Catch of the day for cancer researchers

    Scientists are using glowing tumor cells inside zebrafish to study how cancer spreads.

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  12. Genghis Khan’s Legacy?

    Genghis Kahn's military success 800 years ago may have spread a particular form of the Y chromosome, one he may have himself carried.

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  13. Essence of g

    New efforts to probe the biology of intelligence stir up a long-running controversy over what mental tests actually measure.

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  14. Health & Medicine

    Dietary Dilemmas

    Low-carbohydrate diets, such as the Atkins diet, could be more effective for weight loss than low-fat diets are.

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