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‘Nanoreactor’ works like a virtual chemistry set

In 1952, a famous experiment mixed together chemicals that were present early in Earth’s history, then approximately replicated the environmental conditions on the planet at that time.

Loss of elephants (and their poop) devastates forests

Elephants in Thailand have traditionally been hunted, mostly for fabled properties of their organs, teeth, and tusks.

Long, bad marriages really do break hearts

Older people in bad marriages, particularly women, have a higher risk of heart disease, report researchers.

Safe laser treats macular degeneration

A new, low energy laser safely treats patients with early age-related macular degeneration (AMD) without damaging the retina.

Who should get antibiotics before the dentist?

As fewer people in the UK get preventative antibiotics for trips to the dentist, scientists are seeing a significant rise in the number of people diagnosed with a serious heart infection.

Gene regulation splits mice and men

The lab mouse has long been considered one of the best models for researching disease in humans, thanks to the genetic similarity between the two mammals.

Can toenails ‘teach’ other body parts to regrow?

Most of our body parts don’t grow back when we lose them. So, why do our nails? Researchers have identified a new population of nail stem cells, which have the ability to either self-renew or undergo specialization or differentiation into multiple tissues.

Why diet advice should be based on your DNA

Diet advice is more persuasive—and more effective—when it’s based on genetic makeup rather than generalized run-of-the-mill dietary recommendations.

Horses are likely related to this animal from India

Working at the edge of a coal mine in India, scientists have unearthed a treasure trove of teeth and bones.

Carbon cycle shifts as corn ‘explodes’

As plants inhale in the summer, levels of atmospheric carbon dioxide drop in the North Hemisphere. As plant exhale and decompose after the growing season, those levels climb up again.

5 ways parents can help teens excel in school

Parents who think they can take a step back from interacting with teachers once their kids are in high school should think again.

Can coconut fat keep brains from aging too fast?

Mice placed on a high-fat diet appear to fight off symptoms of aging that affect the brain. The mice had a defect in their DNA repair system.

What climate models can learn from fossils

Ancient short-tailed shrews and flying squirrels are complicating efforts to use models of past climates to predict future habitats.

Dash of turmeric with breakfast improves memory

A single gram of turmeric in the morning can improve the memory of people in the very early stages of diabetes who are at risk of cognitive impairment.

Cord blood protects baby’s brain from Hurler syndrome

Babies with a rare inherited disease may be spared permanent brain damage if they receive umbilical cord blood transplantation before they are 9 months old.

3D-printed actuators built to swim in your body

Tiny magnetic actuators can swim through liquid, and scientists would like to use them one day to deliver drugs or sensors inside the human body.

How do math prodigies define success at 50?

Researchers have studied a group of mathematically talented people since they were adolescents in the early 1970s.

Survey: Americans worry about Ebola abroad, but not at home

A majority of Americans are worried about the spread of Ebola abroad, but say they aren’t concerned it will affect their own families or people in the United States.

Climate change may blunt China’s effort to fight disease

Access to tap water and sanitation services has led to a sharp decline in the number of water-related infectious diseases in China during the past two decades.

These tiny swimmers relax and let Newton drive

Single-celled paramecia don’t get around on flat surfaces thanks to their own behavior—they owe it all to Newton’s Third Law of Motion.