Vol. 188 No. 8
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More Stories from the October 17, 2015 issue

  1. Environment

    Molting seals shed mercury along with fur

    Seals spew amassed mercury when they shed, creating hotbeds of pollution in otherwise pristine coastal environments.

  2. Genetics

    Bad Karma can ruin palm oil crops

    Missing epigenetic mark makes for Bad Karma and poor palm oil crops.

  3. Animals

    Loss of vision meant energy savings for cavefish

    Novel measurement feeds idea that tight energy budgets favored vision loss in cavefish.

  4. Animals

    Dogs flub problem-solving test

    Confronting a tough task, dogs are more likely than wolves to give up and gaze at a human

  5. Environment

    Home fires, farm fumes are leading causes of air-pollution deaths

    Deadly air pollution comes from surprising sources, but toxicity of different types is still up in the air.

  6. Health & Medicine

    Caffeine resets body’s clock

    Caffeine can push the body’s clock back.

  7. Planetary Science

    Mars’ ionosphere mystery explained

    A decades-old disagreement between the Viking landers and spacecraft buzzing around Mars might come down to what time of day each was investigating the Red Planet’s ionosphere.

  8. Life

    Old stem cell barriers fade away

    Barrier that keeps aging factors out of stem cells breaks down with age.

  9. Health & Medicine

    Study finds benefits from lowering blood pressure, but questions remain

    Preliminary results from NIH clinical trial suggest that lower blood pressure is better, but scientists have not yet published the data and open questions remain.

  10. Earth

    Shortcut math predicts tsunami height quickly

    The September 16 earthquake that rattled Chile proved an unexpected test for new numerical calculations that could provide quicker forecasts of incoming tsunamis.

  11. Tech

    Early satellite TV predictions highlighted instant communication potential

    Satellite communication started as science fiction but soon became reality.

  12. Materials Science

    Invisibility cloaks slim down

    A new invisibility cloak offers more stealth in a thinner package.

  13. Animals

    What really changes when a male vole settles down

    Bachelor prairie voles can’t tell one female from another, but saying “I do” means more than just settling down.

  14. Science & Society

    Special Report: Gravity’s Century

    After years of pondering the interplay of space, time, matter and gravity, Einstein produced, in a single month, an utter transformation of science’s conception of the cosmos: the general theory of relativity.

  15. Animals

    Invading Argentine ants carry virus that attacks bees

    The first survey of viruses in the globally invasive Argentine ant brings both potentially bad and good news.