January 24, 2015 | Science News

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January 24, 2015

Editor's Note

Editor in Chief, Eva Emerson, considers the the tensions between statistical correctness and headline grabbing research discussed in this issue's part one of a two part feature examining the state of science in the age of publish-or-perish.
By Eva Emerson | January 1, 2015
Magazine issue: Vol. 187 No. 2 , January 24, 2015 , p. 2

Features

Math illustration

Feature

Barriers to research replication are based largely in a scientific culture that pits researchers against each other in competition for scarce resources. Here are a few that skew results.
reproducing experiments

Feature

Researchers don’t even agree on whether it is necessary to duplicate studies exactly or to validate the underlying principles.
A corn processing plant in Illinois

Feature

Injecting carbon dioxide deep underground offers a promising way to curb global warming, but the extra pressure may cause faults to slip or fractures to release the buried gas.

Call to Action

SUPPORT SCIENCE NEWS

Science News is a nonprofit.

Help us keep you informed.

Editor's Note

Editor in Chief, Eva Emerson, considers the the tensions between statistical correctness and headline grabbing research discussed in this issue's part one of a two part feature examining the state of science in the age of publish-or-perish.

Features

A corn processing plant in Illinois
Injecting carbon dioxide deep underground offers a promising way to curb global warming, but the extra pressure may cause faults to slip or fractures to release the buried gas.
reproducing experiments
Researchers don’t even agree on whether it is necessary to duplicate studies exactly or to validate the underlying principles.
Math illustration
Barriers to research replication are based largely in a scientific culture that pits researchers against each other in competition for scarce resources. Here are a few that skew results.

News

A new simple chemical reaction makes manufacturing nylon less harmful to the planet.
A hollow tree
Insect-eating bats, not fruit bats, may have started the Ebola epidemic.
Influenza particles
A drug that shuts down a potent signaling molecule in cells might boost protection elicited with flu vaccination, a study finds.
A drug used in Eastern Europe for decades by people trying to quit smoking outperformed a nicotine patch in a six-month test.
tiny rock ant
Rock ants’ bias for turning left in mazes, a bit like handedness in people, may reflect different specializations in the halves of their nervous system.
Europa geyser illustration
Follow-up observations of Europa failed to confirm the existence of geysers venting the Jupiter moon’s hidden ocean into space.
two cobalt-blue glass beads
Chemical analysis of Danish discoveries extends northern reach of Bronze Age trade.
Hooded crows
Crows with little training pass a lab test for analogical reasoning that requires matching similar or different icons.
Targeting an immune signaling protein called interleukin-28B might boost protection generated by flu shots.
head in hands
Culture puts good or bad spin on voices heard by people with schizophrenia.
Mouse embryo
Stem cells supposedly made in acid baths were really embryonic stem cells, investigation finds.
Ruddy shelducks
A deadly bird flu virus spreads along wildfowl migration routes in Asia.
Cutting calories boosts hydrogen sulfide production, which leads to more resilient cells and longer lives, a new study suggests.

Notebook

giant boulder
Typhoon Haiyan pushed a 180-ton boulder, the most massive rock ever seen moved by a storm.
rotting fish
A night of smelling rotten eggs and fish while inhaling cigarette odors makes smokers reach for fewer cigarettes upon waking.
Fifty years ago, a researcher advised banning baby talk, but results since then say otherwise.
strands of fish eggs
Marcus Eriksen has always had a thing for trash, and now he tallies ocean pollution.
graph on decline
British historical records show a century-long decline of important pollinators: bees and some wasps.

Reviews & Previews

Benedict Cumberbatch as mathematician Alan Turing
Inaccuracies weaken “The Imitation Game,” an otherwise enjoyable film about Alan Turing breaking the Enigma code during World War II.

Letters to the Editor

Readers discuss volcanoes and brain studies involving chocolate, and recommend some science-based options for game night.

Science Visualized

baby cinereous mourner
A rare view of a baby cinereous mourner feeds debate over whether the bird both looks and acts the part of a toxic hairy caterpillar as defense against predators.