Vol. 172 No. #13
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More Stories from the September 29, 2007 issue

  1. Physics

    Not flipping out

    A single atom on a surface has favored magnetic orientations that could allow it to encode a data bit.

  2. Health & Medicine

    Exhaust fumes might threaten people’s hearts

    Nanoparticles in diesel fumes thwart proteins that dissolve blood clots, perhaps increasing the risk of heart attacks.

  3. Animals

    Honeybee mobs smother big hornets

    Honeybees gang up on an attacking hornet, killing it by blocking its breathing.

  4. Plants

    Water-saving grain

    Rice with an added gene needs less water and can survive drought.

  5. Astronomy

    Out-of-focus find

    Blurry images yield estimates of the true width of glowing meteor vapor trails in Earth's upper atmosphere.

  6. Health & Medicine

    Malaria’s sweet spot

    The malaria parasite's reliance on a sugar in the gut of mosquitoes may offer a way to block the disease's transmission.

  7. Health & Medicine

    Tea compound aids dying brain cells

    A constituent of green tea rescues brain cells damaged in a way that mimics the effect of Parkinson's disease.

  8. Health & Medicine

    Distracted? Tea might help your focus

    An amino acid in tea combines with the brew's caffeine to enliven brain cells that aid concentration.

  9. Paleontology

    Unexpected Archive: Mammoth hair yields ancient DNA

    Hair from ancient mammoths contains enough genetic material to permit reconstruction of parts of the animal's genome.

  10. Health & Medicine

    Keep Out: Treated mosquito nets limit child deaths

    Mosquito nets treated with insecticides decrease death rates among children in Kenya's malarial zones.

  11. Jungle Down There: What’s a kelp forest doing in the tropics?

    Kelp, algae that grow in cold water, turn out to be surprisingly widespread in tropical seas.

  12. Double Trouble: Tumors have two-pronged defense

    By depleting an essential amino acid and releasing a toxin, cancer cells can ward off attack by the immune system.

  13. Bugs in Space: Genes explain why salmonella grow deadlier when freed from Earth’s gravity

    Bacteria that flew on a space shuttle became deadlier than their earthbound counterparts.

  14. Health & Medicine

    Lack of Evidence: Vaccine additive not linked to developmental problems

    Thimerosal, a mercury-containing vaccine preservative, shows no signs of causing memory, attention or other problems in children.

  15. Anthropology

    Sail Away: Tools reveal extent of ancient Polynesian trips

    Rock from Hawaii was fashioned into a stone tool found in Polynesian islands more than 4,000 kilometers to the south, indicating that canoeists made the sea journey around 1,000 years ago.

  16. Physics

    Electron Superhighway

    The remarkable strength and electrical properties of graphene, a chicken-wire network of carbon atoms, make it a promising new material for computer chips.

  17. Earth

    Clearly Concerning

    The toxicity of a chemical that leaches from a widely used plastic receives conflicting evaluations in two new reviews.

  18. Humans

    Letters from the September 29, 2007, issue of Science News

    Questioning the surge “The Power of Induction” (SN: 7/21/07, p. 40) was written as if this was a newly discovered technology. I have been using an electric shaver with induction recharging for years. Mike YorkPhoenix, Ariz. The ability to project electrical power some distance suggests a possible method to detonate or disable improvised explosive devices. […]