Science News Magazine:Vol. 169 No. #11
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More Stories from the March 18, 2006 issue
Viral building blocks
Proteins taken from a spherical virus and combined with pieces of DNA can form tubular nanostructures, researchers report.
Small difference factored big in rice domestication
A change in a single letter of a rice plant's genetic code gave it the ability to hold onto grains until harvest.
Evolution persisted in agricultural era
Natural selection has continued to propagate survival-enhancing gene variants in human populations over the past 10,000 years, according to a new genetic analysis.
Manufacturers agree to phase out nonstick chemical
Complying with a request from the Environmental Protection Agency, the companies that make the likely carcinogen perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA) have agreed to phase out its release worldwide by 2015.
Cosmic Triumph: Satellite confirms birth theory of universe
The most detailed portrait ever taken of the radiation left over from the Big Bang provides fresh evidence that the universe began with a tremendous growth spurt, expanding from subatomic scales to the size of a grapefruit in less than a trillionth of a second.By Ron Cowen
Health & Medicine
Stent Repair: Coated replacements better than radiation
To clear clogged stents, the small mesh cylinders that doctors implant to prop open blood vessels, inserting a second, specially-coated stent works better than treatment with radiation.By Nathan Seppa
Shaken but Not Stirred: Rock formations reveal past quakes’ size limit
Dozens of precariously balanced rocks in southern California tell a consistent story that earthquakes at nearby faults in recent millennia haven't exceeded magnitude 7.By Sid Perkins
Networking with Friends: Nanotech material reconnects severed neurons
A new material made of nanometer-sized protein particles appears to be able to bridge the gap between severed nerves.
Grown-Up Connections: Mice, monkeys remake brain links as adults
Two new studies offer a glimpse of extensive remodeling of nerve connections in the brain's outer layer, or cortex, during adulthood in mice and monkeys.
Can You Hear Me Now? Frogs in roaring streams use ultrasonic calls
A small frog living beside Chinese hot springs may be the first amphibian known to use ultrasound in its calls.By Susan Milius
The art of the fold
With DNA origami, researchers can make complex nanostructures.
Science’s New Guard: Winners of annual competition get honors and hefty scholarships
For her water-quality research project, an 18-year-old from Utah earned top honors among 40 competitors in the final phase of the annual Intel Science Talent Search.
Prescription for Controversy
Increasing concerns about the efficacy and safety of a popular class of antidepressant drugs, selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors, especially in depressed youth, has sparked regulatory action and scientific debate.
Light All Night
New digital images demonstrate that artificial light from urban areas penetrates deep into some of America's most remote wild places, where it may disrupt ecosystems that have evolved with a nightly quota of darkness.
Out of the Shadows
An ongoing flurry of fossil finds is triggering a reevaluation of how early mammals and their close kin eked out an existence during the Age of Dinosaurs.By Sid Perkins
Letters from the March 18, 2006, issue of Science News
Comfort zones Just because living organisms were found in extreme conditions does not necessarily mean they were created in these localities (“Is Anybody out There?” SN: 1/21/06, p. 42). Another possibility is that the creation of life took place under more amenable conditions and that these organisms, through evolution, gradually adapted as the conditions changed. […]By Science News