94 articles from FRIDAY 4.11.2022

As Musk reshapes Twitter, academics ponder taking flight

Mark McCaughrean has been moving his online home in steps. McCaughrean, an astronomer at the European Space Agency, has had a profile on Twitter for many years. In spring, when Elon Musk first suggested buying the social media platform used by nearly 240 million worldwide, many were concerned that such a purchase would increase the nastiness of Twitter and allow misinformation to drown...

Fecal microbial transplants show lack of predictability when no prior antibiotic treatment is given to recipient

Fecal microbial transplants have been given to alter a recipient's metabolism to reduce obesity or alter immunity to fight cancer, and in those transplants recipients are not given suppressive antibiotics to eliminate the microbial community prior to the transplant. Researchers now report there is a lack of predictability for fecal microbial transplants to change the gut microbial community to...

Team adds powerful new dimension to phenotyping next-gen bioenergy crop

Miscanthus is one of the most promising perennial crops for bioenergy production since it is able to produce high yields with a small environmental footprint. This versatile grass has great potential to perform even better, as much less effort has been put into improving it through breeding relative to established commodity crops such as maize or soybean.

Third Time’s a Charm? NASA Sets a New Date to Launch Its Mega-Moon Rocket

NASA’s Space Launch System (SLS) moon rocket has been in development for more than 18 years and has never flown so much as an inch. But that might change on Nov. 14 at 12:07 a.m. ET, when the massive 32-story machine blasts off for a 25-day mission around the moon. That mission, known as Artemis 1, will be preparatory to a similar crewed mission that could be flown as early as 2024. Twice...

China Sends Yet Another Rocket Stage Hurtling Uncontrollably Toward Earth

There’s a lot that China would like you to pay attention to when it comes to its just completed Tiangong (“Palace in the Sky”) space station—and there’s one thing the country would very much like you to ignore. On the upside, there’s the thousand or more scientific studies that crew members hope to carry out over the decade or so the station will be in...

Great leaps forward in vaccine history | Letter

Lucy Ward on the roles played by Edward Jenner and Thomas Dimsdale in the development of inoculation against diseaseYour article on challenge trials raises fascinating questions, as the world seeks to address the risk of new pandemics (Should we give people diseases in order to learn how to cure them?, 31 October). It refers to Edward Jenner, who did indeed “challenge” his patient James...

Fluorescence achieved in light-driven molecular motors

Rotary molecular motors were first created in 1999, in the laboratory of Ben Feringa, Professor of Organic Chemistry at the University of Groningen. These motors are driven by light. For many reasons, it would be good to be able to make these motor molecules visible. The best way to do this is to make them fluoresce. However, combining two light-mediated functions in a single molecule is quite...

Examining why parties in conflict cease fighting

The path to peace usually leads through a ceasefire. In an international project, ETH Zurich researchers have shown the conditions under which parties to civil wars are willing to stop fighting—and why they decide to do so.

Parallel alignment of dressing fibers accelerates wound healing

A team of researchers from Singapore has reported the development of a skin-mimicking scaffold by parallelly aligning nanofibers made up of a mixture of polycaprolactone (PCL) and gelatin that enhances wound healing. Their research has recently been published in Advanced Fiber Materials.

Europe is warming at twice the rate of the rest of the world

Temperatures in Europe have increased at more than twice the global average over the past 30 years—the highest of any continent in the world. As the warming trend continues, exceptional heat, wildfires, floods and other climate change impacts will affect society, economies and ecosystems, according to a new report from the World Meteorological Organization (WMO).