January 20, 2018 | Science News

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January 20, 2018View Digital Issue

Editor's Note

Acting Editor in Chief Elizabeth Quill predicts 2018 could be a year full of important space discoveries.
By Elizabeth Quill | January 1, 2018
Magazine issue: Vol. 193, No. 1 , January 20, 2018 , p. 2

Features

illustration of astronauts on Mars

Feature

As the race to put humans on Mars heats up, researchers worry they are running out of time to find life on the Red planet.
illustration of a woman

Feature

For healthy women within 10 years of menopause, the benefits of hormone therapy for relief of hot flashes or other symptoms may outweigh the risks.

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Editor's Note

Acting Editor in Chief Elizabeth Quill predicts 2018 could be a year full of important space discoveries.

Features

illustration of a woman
For healthy women within 10 years of menopause, the benefits of hormone therapy for relief of hot flashes or other symptoms may outweigh the risks.
illustration of astronauts on Mars
As the race to put humans on Mars heats up, researchers worry they are running out of time to find life on the Red planet.

News

flooding in Louisiana
New flood maps suggest that the U.S. government underestimates how many people live in floodplains.
breast cancer cells
Breast cancer tumors may merge with blood vessels to help the cancer spread.
milk snake
A fungal disease doesn’t appear to discriminate among snake species, suggesting many of the reptiles may be at risk.
thirteen-lined ground squirrel
A less active cold-sensing protein explains, in part, why some hibernating ground squirrels are more tolerant of chilly conditions than the animals’ nonhibernating kin.
Kepler 90 system
An AI spotted an eighth planet circling a distant star, unseating the solar system as the sole record-holder for most known planets.
Ruling out natural variability, scientists say several of 2016’s extreme weather events wouldn’t have happened without human-caused climate change.
brain
Brain organoids show how ridges and wrinkles may form.
Fracking well
Babies born to moms living within one kilometer of a hydraulic fracturing site were more likely to be born underweight, researchers say.
Saturn’s rings again
Final data from the Cassini spacecraft put a date and a mass on the gas giant’s iconic rings.
Jupiter
NASA’s Juno spacecraft has measured the depth of Jupiter’s Great Red Spot for the first time.
ribosome
Ribosomes may switch up their components to specialize in building proteins.
illustration of a superconductor
Unusual high-temperature superconductors might be explained by standard superconductivity theory.
mouse muscle fibers
A new gene therapy uses CRISPR/Cas9 to turn on dormant genes.
opioid pills
Guidelines for prescribing opioids following a routine surgery prevented thousands of unnecessary pills from leaving the hospital, a new study finds.
satellite illustration
A key principle of general relativity holds up in a new space-based test.
scallop eyes
Each of a scallop’s many eyes contains an intricate mirror made from millions of crystals.
hydrogel disks
Battery-like devices inspired by electric eels could someday power wearable and implantable tech or soft robots.

Notebook

Halszkaraptor escuilliei
Weird dino swimmer had flipperlike limbs and a swanlike neck.
dead sea scroll caves
50 years after the Dead Sea Scrolls survived a war, another possible scroll cave offered tantalizing new clues.

Reviews & Previews

screenshot of Brainfacts.org
Getting up close to the human brain is easy with BrainFacts.org’s interactive organ.

Letters to the Editor

Readers asked about the definition of "species," a new atomic clock and how a neutron star collision produces heavy elements.

Science Visualized

soap bubble
Frigid air makes soap bubbles shimmering orbs thanks to surface tension.