Vol. 164 No. #14
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More Stories from the October 4, 2003 issue

  1. Plants

    Bean plants punish microbial partners

    In a novel test of how partnerships between species can last in nature, researchers have found that soybeans punish cheaters.

  2. Paleontology

    Some trilobites grew their own eyeshades

    The 380-million-year-old fossil of a trilobite strongly suggests that members of at least some trilobite species were active during the daytime, a lifestyle that scientists previously had only suspected.

  3. Archaeology

    Ancient tunnel keeps biblical date

    Radiocarbon dating of material from an ancient tunnel in Jerusalem indicates that the passage was built around 700 B.C., supporting a biblical account of the tunnel's construction.

  4. Health & Medicine

    Broken arms way up

    Broken arms among adolescents have risen sharply from 30 years ago, possibly because of the popularity of high-risk sports such as skateboarding and a combination of less milk intake and more soft drink consumption.

  5. Health & Medicine

    Scientists retract ecstasy drug finding

    Scientists have recanted a controversial report on the dangers of the drug commonly called ecstasy.

  6. Health & Medicine

    Amid bleak outlook, antibiotic shines

    Encouraging research on a novel antibiotic offers a rare shot of optimism at a time when existing microbe-killing compounds are losing effectiveness and efforts to develop replacements are flagging.

  7. Toronto travelers wash their hands of disease

    Air travelers in Toronto, which experienced an outbreak of severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) outbreak earlier this year, are more likely to wash their hands after using public restrooms than are travelers in other major North American airports.

  8. Health & Medicine

    Resistant staph spreads in communities

    Antibiotic-resistant Staphylococcus aureus—once a problem limited mainly to health care settings—has become a menace in communities around the world.

  9. Health & Medicine

    Drug combination unexpectedly flops

    A combination of therapies that researchers anticipated would work well against HIV failed to stop the virus from replicating in more than half the volunteers who received it.

  10. Health & Medicine

    One bug’s bane may be another’s break

    People who carry pneumococcus bacteria in their nasal passages may be partially protected against having their noses colonized by Staphylococcus aureus.

  11. Animals

    Carnivores in Captivity: Size of range in wild may predict risk in zoo

    A survey of zoo reports of troubled animals suggests that the minimum size of a species' range predicts how well it will adapt to captivity.

  12. Earth

    Volcanic Legacy: Tortoises chronicle eruption in their genes

    An ancient volcanic eruption in the Galápagos Islands left its legacy in the diminished genetic diversity of one subspecies of the archipelago's famed giant tortoises.

  13. Anthropology

    Y Trail of the First Americans: DNA data point to late New World entry

    Scientists identified a gene variant on the Y chromosome that allowed them to estimate that people first reached the Americas no earlier than about 18,000 years ago.

  14. Health & Medicine

    Timing That First Spoonful: Diabetes risk reflects when cereals enter infant diet

    The timing of cereals' introduction into children's diets may affect their risk of developing type 1 diabetes, two studies suggest.

  15. Earth

    North vs. Northwest: Lewis and Clark diaries provide directional clue

    Observations from the Lewis and Clark expedition may offer insight into Earth's magnetic field.

  16. Planetary Science

    News Splash: Strong evidence of lakes on Titan

    Using Earth-based radar to penetrate the thick atmosphere of Saturn's moon Titan, planetary scientists have the best evidence yet that the smog-shrouded moon has lakes or oceans of hydrocarbons over large stretches of its surface.

  17. Health & Medicine

    Coronary Fix: Coated inserts keep vessels unclogged

    Mesh cylinders called stents, which doctors use to prop open coronary arteries, work better when they are coated with sirolimus, a drug that inhibits the accumulation of cells along the device.

  18. Earth

    On Thinning Ice

    Although some of Earth's glaciers seem to be holding their own in the face of global warming, most of them are on the decline, many of them significantly.

  19. Physics

    Hot Crystal

    In seeming violation of one of the laws of physics, a new type of metal microstructure promises to lead to far more efficient incandescent light bulbs and also to boost the development of light-based microcircuits and heat-to-electricity generators.