Vol. 173 No. #10
Download PDF Modal Example Archive Issues Modal Example

More Stories from the March 8, 2008 issue

  1. Eau de fruit fly

    A single scent moves female fruit files to swoon and males to flee. The difference, new research shows, is in the brain’s wiring. Male flies on the prowl put out a pheromone called cis-vaccenyl acetate (cVA) that both sexes detect with scent-sensing cells on their antennae. To explain how cVA prompts such different reactions in […]

  2. Earth

    Manifest dirt

    Nineteenth-century settlers left a dusty mark on the West. Rocky Mountain lake deposits reveal that America’s westward expansion kicked huge amounts of dirt into the air—probably from livestock grazing. A team led by Jason Neff, a biogeochemist at the University of Colorado in Boulder, examined soil cores from the beds of tiny mountain lakes in […]

  3. Health & Medicine

    Fungi aid immune system’s fight

    Scientists have discovered that white button mushrooms, the plain Janes of edible fungi, are actually quite stimulating. Their powder seems to jump-start the immune response of cells taken from mice, a new study finds. MUSHROOM MIGHT. Adding white button–mushroom powder to incubating immune system cells from mice revved up the cells’ development and their response […]

  4. Health & Medicine

    Raising doubts about Crohn’s treatment

    The conventional drug regimen prescribed for people with Crohn’s disease might not be the best strategy, a new study shows. Crohn’s disease is marked by inflammation and ulcers in the intestines. It has no cure, but patients often get relief from corticosteroids, such as prednisone, the standard medication for flare-ups. If those don’t work, doctors […]

  5. Humans

    Encyclopedia of Life starts online—at times

    The project to create an online Encyclopedia of Life with a Web page for every species has taken its first, baby steps. The free-access, scientifically vetted encyclopedia, headquartered at the Smithsonian Institution in Washington, D.C., opened its first portal to preliminary Web pages (www.eol.org) Feb. 26. Some 11 million hits in the first few hours […]

  6. Earth

    Some corals buffered from warming

    Corals in the western Pacific have escaped bleaching linked to rising ocean temperatures.

  7. Humans

    Calling all clues …

    Add flip-open cell phones to the list of crime-scene items that might harbor a suspect's DNA.

  8. Tech

    Finding mass graves from on high

    Aerial surveys that scan the ground at many wavelengths, some visible and some not, may offer a way to quickly and easily detect mass grave sites.

  9. Health & Medicine

    Cancer Risk: Colon growths might not be so obvious

    Some colorectal growths that are precancerous aren't polyps.

  10. Earth

    Ancient Chasm: Parts of Grand Canyon may be 17 million years old

    The chemical composition of mineral formations in caves along the Grand Canyon may provide fresh insight into the chasm's history, including its age and the rate at which it was carved.

  11. Riff Riders: Brain scans tune in to jazz improvisers

    Accomplished jazz pianists are able to improvise musical passages thanks in part to a set of reactions at the front of the brain that free self-expression from conscious monitoring and self-censorship.

  12. Aging Factor: Gene mutations may be key to long life

    Some centenarians carry mutations in a pathway associated with longevity in worms and fruit flies.

  13. Physics

    Black Hole of Light: Laser pulses create model of event horizon

    Physicists have created the optical analog of a black hole's surface of no return, a setup that could help test whether actual black holes glow.

  14. Plants

    Promiscuous orchids

    When pollinators aren't loyal to a single species of orchid, the plants maintain their species integrity by stymieing reproduction.

  15. Health & Medicine

    A Way Forward: Releasing the brakes on cancer vaccines

    A new way to overcome tumors' defenses against the immune system marks an important step toward effective cancer vaccines.

  16. Earth

    Ocean ups and downs—the long view

    Sea level has dropped about 170 meters in the past 80 million years, thanks in part to the thinning of ocean crust and the formation of land-based ice sheets.

  17. Astronomy

    Supernova Outbreak: X rays signal earliest alert

    Thanks to a lucky break and an overactive galaxy, astronomers report the earliest detection yet of a normal supernova—the explosive death of a massive star.

  18. Health & Medicine

    Rotten Remedy

    The gas well-known for its smell of rotten eggs is, recent studies show, a ubiquitous concoction in the body. New studies suggest that the hydrogen sulfide occurring naturally inside us can be both friend and enemy to our health.

  19. Paleontology

    Twice upon a Time

    New fossil finds suggest that the complex features of mammals originated earlier than previously thought and might even have evolved independently in different mammalian lineages.

  20. Humans

    Letters from the March 8, 2008, issue of Science News

    No cure yet “Growing Up to Prozac: Drug makes new neurons mature faster” (SN: 2/9/08, p. 83) suggests that growth of new brain cells, along with increasing connections, may mediate some of the effect of some SSRIs. Since these new cells would likely persist significantly longer than the drugs themselves, do we see a “cure” […]