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Map reveals paths to and from brain’s ‘sadness center’


A new, finely detailed map depicts the neural pathways leading to and from the “sadness center” of the brains of nonhuman primates.

Tools that test for life in Arctic could work on Mars

Existing miniature low-cost, low-weight instruments could detect and analyze micro-organisms in extreme environments like those on Mars and other places in the solar system, research in the Canadian high Arctic shows.

Buckyballs give huge boost to see-through solar cells


Researchers have found a way to get electrons to travel much farther than was previously thought possible in materials for organic solar cells.

How subpoenas work in the Russia investigation

Investigations by Congress and special counsel Robert Mueller looking into whether the Russian government interfered with the 2016 US presidential election took a dramatic turn this week when Steve Bannon, former chief strategist to President Trump, refused to comply with a subpoena from the US House Intelligence Committee to answer questions about his time in the White House.

Once we geoengineer the climate, we can’t stop abruptly

In the future, should we try to fight climate change by spraying sulfur dioxide into the upper atmosphere to form a cloud that cools the Earth (a process called geoengineering), ending that plan abruptly could have severe, planet-wide effects on animals and plants, researchers argue in a new paper.

New cellulose could cut fuel costs and treat infections

Researchers have discovered a new type of cellulose in bacteria that has properties that could make it an improvement over traditional cellulose for fuels and other materials, or for better understanding and treating bacterial infections.

Chameleon-like material could unleash more powerful computers

Researchers have made advances in understanding a material that could be key to the next generation of computers, more powerful than today’s silicon-based machines.

What does the law say about homeschooling?

Last week, law enforcement officials in Riverside County, California discovered 13 siblings, malnourished and allegedly held captive, living in squalid circumstances in their parents’ home.

We say these relationships are our most difficult

Participants surveyed for a new study were more apt to report that the most difficult people in their lives were female family members such as wives, mothers, and sisters, researchers report.

DNA is key ingredient in color-changing metamaterial

Researchers have developed a technique for creating new kinds of optical materials and devices that could lead to light-bending and cloaking devices.

Mice can mimic human breast cancer genes

Mice can mimic human breast cancer tissue and its genes, even more so than previously thought, as well as other cancers including lung, oral, and esophagus, a new study suggests.

Brightening neutron-star collision stumps astrophysicists


New observations from NASA’s orbiting Chandra X-ray Observatory suggest that the gamma ray burst unleashed by the distant neutron-star merger detected last August is more complex than scientists first believed.

Genetic analysis clarifies stomach cancer risk factors

Researchers have used genomic technologies to better understand intestinal metaplasia (IM), a known risk factor for gastric (stomach) cancer.

Algorithm matches refugees with best place to resettle

As the world faces its largest crisis of displaced people since World War II, a new algorithm could help countries resettle refugees in a way that boosts their employment success and overall integration.

Book collects French monk’s forgotten animal drawings

More than three centuries ago, a French monk named Father Charles Plumier made thousands of drawings of plants and animals, traveling under the authority of King Louis XIV to the French Antilles to collect and document the natural history of the islands.

This parasitic plant hijacks its victim’s genes

A parasitic plant called dodder can silence the expression of genes in the host plants from which it obtains water and nutrients, new research suggests.

Ocean ‘bathtub drains’ pull flotsam together


Marine debris, or flotsam, clumps together as it moves on the surface of the ocean, new research featuring the largest flotilla of sensors ever deployed in a single area suggests.

Blood test screens for 8 common kinds of cancer

Researchers have developed a single blood test that screens for eight common cancer types and helps identify the location of the cancer.

Babies do stuff in bursts but actually learn over time

While babies often amaze their parents when they seemingly learn new skills overnight—how to walk, for example—but new research suggests that their brains were probably prepping for those tasks long before those first steps occurred.

Hydrogels for future drug delivery use Boolean logic

Scientists have long sought specificity in drug delivery systems: A package that can encase a therapeutic and will not disgorge its toxic cargo until it reaches the site of treatment—be it a tumor, a diseased organ, or a site of infection.


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