Vol. 184
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More Stories from the November 30, 2013 issue

  1. Anthropology

    Hunting boosts lizard numbers in Australian desert

    Reptiles prefer to live in places aboriginal people have burned.

  2. Quantum Physics

    Single electron caught in action

    Researchers have found a way to isolate the behavior of one particle.

  3. Life

    Scorpion venom kills pain in mice

    Toxin works with nerve proteins to block distress signals’ journey to brain.

  4. Environment

    Mercury contamination in California to last 10,000 years

    Toxic remnants of gold rush will seep into San Francisco area waterways for millennia.

  5. Chemistry

    Floating beads of water act as tiny test tubes

    Chemists exploit pH and ion charge in superheated water drops to create nanoparticles.

  6. Health & Medicine

    Antibodies show progress against HIV

    Proteins suppress disease in monkeys, but don’t cure it.

  7. Genetics

    People’s genes welcome their microbes

    In mice and humans, genetic variants seem to control the bacterial mix on and in bodies.

  8. Health & Medicine

    Evidence mounts for bat origins of SARS

    New viruses in the mammals closely match the human form of the infection.

  9. Cosmology

    Candidates for dark matter particles bite the dust

    Most sensitive experiment yet determines that earlier findings were just artifacts.

  10. Cosmology

    Dark energy search gets murkier

    Supernova measurements muddle scientists’ efforts to explain universe’s accelerating expansion.

  11. Life

    Steroids boost muscles for the long haul

    Experiments in mice suggest that effects don’t end when doping does.

  12. Astronomy

    Billions and billions of Earth-sized planets call Milky Way home

    Using Kepler data, astronomers estimate that a sizeable fraction of the galaxy’s sunlike stars have Earth-sized planets that could support liquid water.

  13. Planetary Science

    Meteor explosions like this year’s Russian fireball more common than thought

    Chelyabinsk-sized rocks may come to Earth every 30 years, on average.

  14. Physics

    Cruise through a collider

    Now anyone can tour the Large Hadron Collider and other CERN experiments in 360-degree photo panoramas online.

  15. Tech


    A True Story of Invention, Automotive Daring, and the Race to Revive America by Jason Fagone.

  16. Life

    Fungal fight club

    Combat between fungal individuals is a bit like war between heaps of spaghetti.

  17. Plants


    A newly discovered structure where mouth-puckering compounds called tannins form inside plant cells.

  18. Health & Medicine

    Drug use on the rise in older set

    The use of illicit drugs has declined slightly over the last decade among teens but is growing more common in people over age 50.

  19. Environment

    World’s worst polluted

    A new report by Green Cross Switzerland and the Blacksmith Institute lists places posing the greatest risk to human health.