No kittens required: Scientists find new way to study toxoplasmosis parasite in lab
20,105 articles from ScienceNOW
Giant array of low-cost telescopes could speed hunt for radio bursts, massive black holes
One of the most widespread parasites on the planet can also be one of the most difficult to study.
—a single-celled protozoan—is capable of infecting almost every mammal and bird species,
, and in severe cases causes blindness, birth defects, and death. Yet it only sexually...
When the immense Arecibo radio telescope in Puerto Rico collapsed in 2020, it
left gaping holes in astronomy
. Now, a team from the California Institute of Technology (Caltech) hopes to address some of the gaps with a very different instrument: a tightly packed array of relatively inexpensive radio dishes that aims to quickly image radio sources across wide swaths of the...
THURSDAY 30. MARCH 2023
T. rex had lips, new study suggests
News at a glance: A particle’s weighty measurement, Marburg in Africa, and a fossil called “the blob”
may be about to get a makeover. A new study finds that
and its relatives did not look like crocodiles, with teeth jutting from their maws in all their full, razor-sharp glory. Instead, these dinosaurs covered their chompers with lips, more like today’s lizards.
“This is a nice, concise answer to a question that has...
Ancient people lived among ruins too. What did they make of them?
Particle mass dispels hint of new physics
A fleeting, weighty elementary particle called the W boson has just the mass predicted by theory, physicists working with Europe’s Large Hadron Collider (LHC) reported this week at a conference in Italy. The finding comes from ATLAS, one of four large particle detectors fed by the LHC,...
Horse nations: Animal began transforming Native American life startlingly early
Around 500 C.E., a new government arose in the community now called Río Viejo, near the coast of the Mexican state of Oaxaca. It was once the largest city in the region, but it had shrunk by half and lost its political authority. The new rulers aimed to step into that power vacuum. But they had one problem: the ruins of a complex of ceremonial buildings built by Río Viejo’s last...
Chinese researchers release genomic data that could help clarify origin of COVID-19 pandemic
Sweeping new study based on archaeological evidence, chemical isotope analysis, and ancient DNA
NASA lays out vision for robotic Mars exploration
In the face of intense pressure and criticism from many in the scientific community, Chinese researchers today released a trove of new genetic data that may offer fresh clues to the origin of the COVID-19 pandemic. They also substantially revised a related study they first posted online 13 months ago to include this evidence, which some scientists say gives more credibility to the thesis...
Rover by rover, NASA’s exploration of Mars is building to an expensive climax: a multibillion-dollar mission later this decade to collect the rock samples
currently being gathered by the Perseverance rover
and return them to Earth. But then what?
NASA offered a partial answer to that question today. It envisions a series of lower cost Mars missions, costing up to...
WEDNESDAY 29. MARCH 2023
Binge eating brain circuits similar to those associated with drug use, other habit-forming behaviors
China is cracking down on its wildlife trade. Is it enough?
Scientists have uncovered the brain circuits that may underlie binge eating disorder and related conditions. The neural wiring is the same as that tied to psychiatric conditions such as drug addiction and obsessive-compulsive disorder.
The work could lead to new ways to understand and treat eating disorders, says Rebecca Boswell, a clinical psychologist at Princeton University...
DNA shows ‘Persian Princes’ helped found medieval African trading culture
For years, scientists and conservationists have urged China’s government to crack down on a thriving trade in wild animals that they say both threatens the nation’s rich biodiversity and increases the risk that a dangerous disease will jump from wildlife to humans. Now, some of those pleas are being answered: On 1 May, officials will begin to enforce
a strengthened Wildlife...
Dispute simmers over who first shared SARS-CoV-2’s genome
The Swahili coast, stretching more than 3000 kilometers from southern Ethiopia to Tanzania, was a hub of medieval trade, exporting ivory and other resources from the African interior to South Asia, the Arab world, and Persia. Its cultural legacy remains potent: Swahili is now spoken across large parts of Africa, and the ruins of ancient towns, many with mosques and other buildings cut...
Scientists suggest GISAID, a virus sequence database, is rewriting pandemic history
TUESDAY 28. MARCH 2023
Fast-growing open-access journals stripped of coveted impact factors
Promising Alzheimer’s therapy and related drugs shrink brains
Nearly two dozen journals from two of the fastest growing open-access publishers, including one of the world’s largest journals by volume, will no longer receive a key scholarly imprimatur. On 20 March, the Web of Science database said it delisted the journals along with dozens of others, stripping them of an impact factor, the citation-based measure of quality that, although...
Earliest galaxies challenge ideas about star birth in infant universe
A class of Alzheimer’s drugs that aims to slow cognitive decline, including the antibody lecanemab that was granted accelerated
approval in the United States in January
, can cause brain shrinkage, researchers report in a new analysis. Although scientists and drug developers have documented this loss of brain volume in clinical trial participants for years, the scientific...
White House science adviser welcomes more agile research agencies with ‘big bold goals’
Charlotte Mason, an astrophysicist at the University of Copenhagen, had modest expectations 9 months ago, when she and her collaborators began to use JWST, the giant new space telescope, to
look back in time for the universe’s first galaxies
. Modeling suggested the patch of sky they were examining would hold just 0.2 galaxies—none, in other words, unless they got...
When female cockroaches lost their sweet tooth, courting males cooked up a new confection
Arati Prabhakar has been part of the U.S. research establishment for 3 decades. Now, the 64-year-old applied physicist stands at its epicenter, as science adviser to President Joe Biden and director of the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy. Last week, in her first extended media interview since being confirmed by the Senate on 3 October 2022, she laid out her vision for...
Male cockroaches try to woo females with sugary treats. But a preponderance of poisoned bait traps has thrown an evolutionary wrench into this classic courting strategy, making some cockroaches lose their sweet tooth. Now, scientists behind a study published today in the
Proceedings of the Royal Society B
report that some crafty male roaches appear to have cooked up a new...
MONDAY 27. MARCH 2023
Slave trade records help reveal when first yellow fever mosquitoes bit humans
Some 500 years ago, a city-living, human-biting form of the yellow fever mosquito
began to hitch rides out of West African ports during the Transatlantic Slave Trade. It spread to the Americas and then to Asia, causing centuries of disease outbreaks to ripple through the colonial world. Today, its globally invasive descendants act as the main disease vector...
FRIDAY 24. MARCH 2023
Mutation behind night blindness in humans helps whale sharks see in the dark
‘Great news.’ Survey will test counting LGBTQ Ph.D. recipients
Even a fisher’s yarn would sell a whale shark short. These fish—the biggest on the planet—stretch up to 18 meters long and weigh as much as two elephants. The superlatives don’t end there: Whale sharks also have one of the longest vertical ranges of any sea creature, filter feeding from the surface of the ocean to nearly 2000 meters down into the inky abyss.
Each year, thousands of newly minted U.S. Ph.D. recipients complete the Survey of Earned Doctorates (SED), providing information about their race, gender, disability status, educational background, postgraduate plans, and more. The long-running census is critical for understanding which groups are underrepresented in the U.S. science,...
THURSDAY 23. MARCH 2023
Compact x-ray laser would shrink billion-dollar machines to the size of a room
News at a glance: Modernizing bed nets, IDing a Solar System visitor, and health lessons from Beethoven’s hair
When the first x-ray free-electron laser (XFEL) opened in 2009 at SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory in California, it provided a new way to look at the atomic-scale world, revealing details about biochemical processes such as photosynthesis and exotic materials such as superconductors. But since then, only four other such billion-dollar facilities have been built worldwide, and getting...
Pall of suspicion: NIH’s secretive ‘China initiative’ has destroyed scores of academic careers
Next-gen bed nets get go-ahead
A new type of malaria-fighting bed net
received a major endorsement
from the World Health Organization (WHO) last week. The net combines two chemicals to more effectively kill the mosquitoes that transmit the parasite behind malaria, a disease that killed an estimated 619,000 people...
More than 100 U.S. biomedical scientists whose collaborations with China were once encouraged have lost their jobs
WEDNESDAY 22. MARCH 2023
Deadly parasite threatens California sea otters
Mystery of our first interstellar visitor may be solved
Melissa Miller knew something was off when she began to examine a sea otter that had died in San Simeon, a coastal California town about halfway between San Francisco and Los Angeles, in the winter of 2020. Nearly all of the animal’s body fat was inflamed. “It felt like there were little bumps all through it,” she says—a condition the veterinary pathologist had never seen in her...
Was it an asteroid, comet, or even an
? For years, astronomers have been perplexed by ‘Oumuamua, a mysterious object up to 400 meters long that entered the Solar System in 2017. No such object from beyond our Sun’s reaches had visited us before, with this interloper moving so fast it could not be bound to the Sun. ‘Oumuamua, as scientists christened...