• ONE SCOOP A photo transmitted from Mars shows the Curiosity rover’s first drilled rock sample. Analyses of the rock powder suggest that the area being explored by the rover was once hospitable to life. more >>
  • NASA, JPL-Caltech, MSSS
Latest News
  • WASHINGTON — Microbial life could have thrived on Mars billions of years ago, researchers from NASA’s Curiosity mission reported March 12. An analysis of the rover’s first drill sample on the Red Planet revealed a nonacidic, slightly salty aquatic environment with plenty of energy-rich minerals. There is no evidence of past life, the researchers said, but the sample revealed the most hospitable environment ever detected beyond Earth. 03.12.13 | more >>

  • WASHINGTON — Sara Volz gasped in amazement when she heard her name called. The 17-year-old finalist had just been named the grand-prize winner at the March 12 awards gala of the 2013 Intel Science Talent Search awards. She was going home with $100,000. 03.12.13 | more >>

  • Surgeons have replaced 75 percent of a man’s skull with a custom-designed polymer cranium constructed with a 3-D printer. The surgery took place on March 4 and is the first U.S. case following the FDA’s approval of the implants last month. The patient’s reason for needing such extensive replacement surgery has not been revealed. 03.11.13 | more >>

  • A contagious cancer decimating Tasmanian devils makes itself invisible to the animals’ immune systems, which might otherwise fight it off, a new study shows. 03.11.13 | more >>

  • You might predict that most fans of the satirical, Fox News–mocking show “The Colbert Report,” are Democrats. But it turns out that liking rapper Nicki Minaj and enjoying cuddling also hint at leftward political leanings. A new study finds that the things someone “likes” on Facebook can predict personal attributes such as political leaning, age, gender and sexual orientation. 03.11.13 | more >>

  • Melt from Arctic Archipelago will raise sea levels by 35 millimeters 03.11.13 | more >>

  • D meson’s switch between matter and antimatter could help uncover new particles 03.08.13 | more >>

  • The Stone Age could just as easily be called the Roam Age. 03.08.13 | more >>

  • Alcohol may give heavy drinkers more than just a buzz. It can also fuel their brains, a new study suggests. 03.08.13 | more >>

  • Bees apparently have their own version of Starbucks and may even get hooked on the joe: Honeybees are more likely to remember a flower that laces its nectar with a hit of caffeine, a new study shows. 03.07.13 | more >>

  • Life is hard in hot volcanic pools laden with salt, acid, sulfur and toxic metals, but a red alga called Galdieria sulphuraria thrives in such environments with a little genetic help from some microbial buddies. The alga borrowed at least 5 percent of its genes from bacteria and archaea that live in extreme conditions, Gerald Schönknecht of Oklahoma State University in Stillwater and his colleagues report in the March 8 Science. 03.07.13 | more >>

  • Transplanting human brain cells into mice makes the mice smarter, a new study shows. 03.07.13 | more >>

  • Planetary systems in our galaxy are packed to the brim, according to a new study — throw in another orb and all hell will break loose. The study, posted February 28 at arXiv.org, argues that planets around other stars share an evolutionary history similar to that of the solar system’s eight planets. 03.06.13 | more >>

  • Protein sends message to brain that tongue has detected sweet, bitter or umami flavor 03.06.13 | more >>

  • View the video Swirling rings of fluid have for the first time been tied in a knot. Physicists accomplished the feat with the help of some unlikely lab tools: YouTube videos of dolphins and a 3-D printer. 03.05.13 | more >>

  • Zombies aren’t the only things that feast on brains. Immune cells called microglia gorge on neural stem cells in developing rat and monkey brains, researchers report in the March 6 Journal of Neuroscience. 03.05.13 | more >>

  • The desert’s most iconic creature may be a snow lover at heart. Scientists have unearthed fossils of a giant camel that roamed the Arctic more than 3 million years ago, when the region was warmer than today and blanketed by a boreal forest. The discovery, reported online March 5 in Nature Communications, suggests modern camels probably descended from a cold-dwelling ancestor. 03.05.13 | more >>

  • An infant born with HIV has cleared her body of the virus with the help of three medications started shortly after birth, scientists reported March 3 at the Conference on Retroviral and Opportunistic Infections in Atlanta. 03.04.13 | more >>

  • Having HIV may boost a man’s risk of heart attack, a study of more than 82,000 veterans suggests. 03.04.13 | more >>

  • Pregnant women who took an omega-3 fatty acid supplement had bigger babies 03.04.13 | more >>

  • Honeybees may be busy, but they may not be efficient: Native pollinators could help farms worldwide produce bigger harvests. 03.01.13 | more >>

 

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