Vol. 172 No. #3
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More Stories from the July 21, 2007 issue

  1. Health & Medicine

    Brain stem cells help Parkinson’s monkeys

    Transplants of human-brain stem cells triggered signs of improvement in monkeys with a Parkinson's disease–like disorder.

  2. Alcohol problems hit nearly 1 in 3 adults

    Nearly one in three recently surveyed U.S. adults reports having had serious alcohol problems at some time in their lives.

  3. Planetary Science

    Hyperion’s hydrocarbons

    New observations by the Cassini spacecraft indicate the presence of ice and solid carbon dioxide on Saturn's moon Hyperion, and suggest an explanation for the orb's spongelike appearance.

  4. Tech

    Double-decker solar cell

    A two-layer, polymer-based solar cell has good efficiency and could be cheap to mass-produce.

  5. Materials Science

    Crystal matchmaker

    Nonperiodic structures called quasicrystals can act as interfaces between different crystal structures that would ordinarily not stick to each other.

  6. Health & Medicine

    fryPod: Lightning strikes iPod users

    A jogger wearing an iPod music player suffered second-degree ear and neck burns, burst eardrums, and jaw fractures after lightning struck a nearby tree.

  7. Health & Medicine

    AIDS Abated: Genome scans illuminate immune control of HIV

    Three genetic variations picked out by powerful whole-genome scans help explain why some people develop AIDS quickly while others keep it at bay.

  8. Earth

    Birth of an Island: Megaflood severed Europe from Britain

    Hundreds of thousands of years ago, the spillover from an immense glacial lake carved a chasm that in a matter of weeks separated what is now Britain from continental Europe.

  9. Health & Medicine

    Persistent Prions: Soilbound agents are more potent

    Prions, deformed proteins that cause brain-destroying diseases such as chronic wasting disease or mad cow disease, are more infectious when bound to soil particles.

  10. Computing

    Check on Checkers: In perfect game, there’s no winner

    Thanks to an immense calculation that worked out every possible game position, computers can now play a flawless game of checkers and force a draw every time.

  11. Animals

    Den Mothers: Bears shift dens as ice deteriorates

    As Arctic ice has dwindled, pregnant polar bears in northern Alaska have become more likely to dig their birthing dens on land or nearshore ice than on floating masses of sea ice.

  12. Health & Medicine

    Brain Seasoning: A common spice could deter Alzheimer’s

    A compound in the curry spice turmeric restores the ability of immune system cells to destroy plaques linked to Alzheimer's disease.

  13. Chemical Conversation: Red blood cells send a signal that makes platelets less sticky

    Red blood cells can send a chemical signal that makes platelets less sticky, easing blood flow through narrow vessels.

  14. Math

    Mathematical Lives of Plants

    Mathematical models that capture the essence of biological growth mechanisms are beginning to reveal how plants develop structures with intriguingly elegant geometries.

  15. Physics

    The Power of Induction

    A new technology based on classical electromagnetic theory uses oscillating magnetic fields to transfer electric power wirelessly across a room.

  16. Humans

    Letters from the July 21, 2007, issue of Science News

    Quantum leak? Perhaps there need not be “degrees of quantumness” (“Degrees of Quantumness: Shades of gray in particle-wave duality,” SN: 5/12/07, p. 292). As the beams pass increasingly closer to the surface, the plate will induce a small (but increasingly larger) spread of energies (hence wavelengths) in the electrons within the beam, possibly explaining the […]