Vol. 177 No. #3
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More Stories from the January 30, 2010 issue

  1. Life

    Cancer plaguing Tasmanian devils began in one animal’s nerve cells

    Genetics provide a starting point for diagnosis and potential vaccines.

  2. Space

    New-found galaxies may be farthest back in time and space yet

    Potential finding uses data that push limits of current technology.

  3. Space

    Kepler space telescope finds its first extrasolar planets

    The NASA mission uncovers one Neptune-like and four Jupiter-like bodies.

  4. Space

    Plenty of black holes do-si-do

    Team finds 33 merging galaxies with 'waltzing' black-hole pairs, suggesting the phenomenon is more common than thought.

  5. Earth

    Footprints could push back tetrapod origins

    Newly discovered trackways much older than previous evidence for sea-to-land transition.

  6. Health & Medicine

    New test could discern serious condition early after bone marrow transplant

    Protein level in blood reveals graft-versus-host disease, may indicate severity of this complication

  7. Space

    WISE sees its first stars

    NASA's new infrared observatory is ready for action.

  8. Life

    Bornavirus genes found in human DNA

    Researchers have found molecular fossils of an RNA virus in human and other mammalian genomes, pushing back the emergence of RNA viruses millions of years.

  9. Space

    Gamma-ray burst may reveal some of oldest dust in the universe

    Remote flash may have uncovered supernova-generated dust from just 1 billion years after the Big Bang

  10. Physics

    Symmetry found hidden in supercold atoms

    Scientists have detected an elusive, complex symmetry in the frequencies of resonating particles

  11. Life

    Fruit fly bodies bank stem cells

    Stem cells carve their own niches.

  12. Archaeology

    Ancient hominids may have been seafarers

    Researchers have discovered hundreds of African-style stone hand axes on Crete, suggesting that sea-going hominids reached the island hundreds of thousands of years ago en route to Europe.

  13. Health & Medicine

    Skip spine stabilization and get to the hospital

    Gunshot victims may be more likely to survive if they get to the hospital quickly instead of getting spine stabilization first.

  14. Humans

    Copenhagen climate summit yields ‘real deal’ to limit greenhouse gases

    Nonbinding accord still needs beefing up, negotiators agree.

  15. Humans

    Graffiti on the walls in Pompeii

    News from the Archaeological Institute of America's annual meeting in Anaheim, Calif.

  16. Humans

    Zeus’ altar of ashes

    News from the Archaeological Institute of America's annual meeting in Anaheim, Calif.

  17. Science Future by January 30, 2010

    February 20–21 Free science discussion sessions and demos are open to the public at the AAAS annual meeting in San Diego. See www.aaas.org/meetings/2010  February 24–26 The International Stroke Conference 2010 is held in San Antonio. See strokeconference.org March 31 New nomination deadline for the 2010 National Medal of Science. Get forms at www.nsf.gov/od/nms/medal.jsp

  18. Laboratory Disease: Robert Koch’s Medical Bacteriology by Christoph Gradmann and Elborg Forster, translator

    A science historian examines the origins of the field of medical bacteriology and the life of one of its founders. Laboratory Disease: Robert Koch’s Medical Bacteriology by Christoph Gradmann and Elborg Forster, translator Johns Hopkins University Press, 2009, 318 p., $35.

  19. Understanding Solid State Physics by Sharon Ann Holgate

    The authors explain basic physics principles with undergraduates in mind. UNDERSTANDING SOLID STATE PHYSICS BY SHARON ANN HOLGATE CRC Press, 2010, 349 p., $79.95.

  20. The Nature Study Movement by Kevin C. Armitage

    A scholar describes the amateur naturalists of the late 19th century and their influence on modern environmentalism. THE NATURE STUDY MOVEMENT BY KEVIN C. ARMITAGE University Press of Kansas, 2009, 291 p., $34.95.

  21. Turtles: The Animal Answer Guide by Whit Gibbons and Judy Greene

    Turtle experts address 100 or so of the most common questions about these reptiles. TURTLES: THE ANIMAL ANSWER GUIDE BY WHIT GIBBONS AND JUDY GREENE Johns Hopkins University Press, 2009, 163 p., $24.95.

  22. Book Review: Communicating Science: Professional, Popular, Literary by Nicholas Russell

    Review by Rachel Zelkowitz.

  23. Book Review: The Faith Instinct: How Religion Evolved & Why It Endures by Nicholas Wade

    Review by Bruce Bower.

  24. Energy, safety and nuclear capabilities intertwined

    On January 1, Charles D. Ferguson became president of the Federation of American Scientists, a nongovernmental organization founded in 1945 by Manhattan Project scientists to promote humanitarian uses of science and technology. Ferguson worked at FAS 10 years ago as director of its nuclear policy project, and he returns after working from 2004 to 2009 […]

  25. Let there be light

    New technology illuminates neuronal conversations in the brain

  26. Dressing up dinos

    Adding soft tissue to bone helps scientists, paleoartists bring ancient creatures to life.

  27. The final chemistry frontier

    Molecules of the interstellar medium must break the rules to make the stuff of space.

  28. Letters

    Thinking animals An interesting article, but the question of human consciousness seems no closer to solution in “Humans wonder, anybody home?” by Susan Gaidos (SN: 12/19/09, p. 22) than it did in Julian Jaynes’ The Origin of Consciousness in the Breakdown of the Bicameral Mind of 1976. It seems to me that all the mental […]

  29. Science Past from the issue of January 30, 1960

    SAFE SEASONINGS NAMED — Some 150 seasonings and flavorings — ranging from the familiar cinnamon to exotic “ylang-ylang” — have been put on the safe list, the Food and Drug Administration has announced. Manufacturers who use these flavors in their food products need not furnish further proof of their safety. The list includes cloves, nutmeg, […]

  30. Write an Effective Funding Application: A Guide for Researchers & Scholars by Mary W. Walters

    A step-by-step guide to creating successful funding proposals. Johns Hopkins University Press, 2009, 151 p., $22. WRITE AN EFFECTIVE FUNDING APPLICATION: A GUIDE FOR RESEARCHERS & SCHOLARS BY MARY W. WALTERS