nature

This adorable black-footed ferret is a rare cloning breakthrough

This adorable black-footed ferret is a rare cloning breakthrough

The first endangered US species to be successfully cloned, a black-footed ferret, could pave the way for at-risk animals to be brought back from the brink of extinction, scientists and conservationists hope as details of the breakthrough are shared this week. Elizabeth Ann may look like any other black-footed ferret, but the roughly two month old animal was actually created from frozen cells of an animal that lived three decades ago.

Continue Reading

Bluebot robots demo surreal “Blueswarm” like a school of fish

Bluebot robots demo surreal “Blueswarm” like a school of fish

A swarm robotic fish donned the cover of Science Robotics this week courtesy of researchers from Harvard University. Florian Berlinger, Melvin Gauchi, and Radhika Nagpal delivered a paper on "Implicit coordination for 3D underwater collective behaviors in a fish-inspired robot swarm." These little robots are very, very cute, too.

Continue Reading

Reactivated Yellowstone geyser isn’t an indication of pending volcanic eruptions

Reactivated Yellowstone geyser isn’t an indication of pending volcanic eruptions

Something rather strange has been going on in Yellowstone National Park. The park is home to some of the most famous geysers in the world, and in 2019 a geyser known as the Steamboat Geyser in the Norris Geyser Basin at the park erupted. That was notable because this particular geyser had its first documented activity in 1878 and has only erupted sporadically since then.

Continue Reading

Kilauea volcano erupts in three places, new lava lake formed

Kilauea volcano erupts in three places, new lava lake formed

Lava appeared after the U.S. Geological Survey's Hawaiian Volcano Observatory (HVO) announced detection of a a magnitude-4.4 earthquake located beneath Kīlauea Volcano's south flank. This event was officially detected on Sunday, December 20 at 10:36 PM HST. A lava lake grew overnight at tremendous speed, and plenty of video and photos were recorded as liquid fire spewed forth from the depths.

Continue Reading

Mount Everest is officially taller now

Mount Everest is officially taller now

The most official calculation of the height of the world's highest mountain has been updated. Nepal and China jointly announced an adjustment - or rather an agreement of a calculation - of the official height of the mountain. Before this announcement, China's government marked the mountain's height at 8,844.43 meters. That's nearly four meters lower than the surveyed height counted by Nepal.

Continue Reading

Study clears up shark “sword” battle mystery

Study clears up shark “sword” battle mystery

A shark washed ashore this year in Libya, on the Mediterranean coast. It was April, and a group of citizen scientists captured photos and video of the creature as it appeared DOA at the edge of the water. The shark was a bigeye thresher (Alopias superciliosus), and it had (what appeared to be) a sword embedded in its back. NOTE: Photos above and below were captured by The Ichthyological Society of Japan, 2020.

Continue Reading

Your elderly cat’s tooth disease may soon be treatable

Your elderly cat’s tooth disease may soon be treatable

If your old cat is on the path to tooth resorption (TR), the only viable cure is tooth extraction. If your cat shows signs of TR, your cat's veterinary specialist will almost certainly recommend that they remove the affected teeth before TR goes too far. A study published this week worked with a set of feline teeth, sequencing extracted RNA to characterize transcriptomic changes involved in feline TR. Scientists involved in the study aimed to learn more about feline TR so that they might eradicate the disease before tooth extraction becomes necessary.

Continue Reading

Researchers successfully extract DNA from insects trapped in resin

Researchers successfully extract DNA from insects trapped in resin

A study published this week showed how DNA could be extracted from bugs trapped in resin. If that sounds familiar, you've likely seen the film Jurassic Park. Before now, the business "Mr. DNA" speaks about in the film (and the original novel) wasn't technically possible. Early attempts at replicating the whole "extracting DNA from a million-year-old mosquito" process failed - so why did this more recent DNA extraction from bugs in resin succeed?

Continue Reading

Dinosaur egg study shows surprising and new skull features

Dinosaur egg study shows surprising and new skull features

Today were taking a peek at a dinosaur egg that was part of a study published today in Current Biology. This dinosaur egg is one of a collection of eggs that were found in Patagonia, Argentina. The difference between this egg and the other eggs that were discovered and analyzed in the past is the near-intact embryonic skull inside.

Continue Reading

New theory says supernovae caused extinction events on Earth

New theory says supernovae caused extinction events on Earth

According to a new study published this week by researchers at the University of Illinois, a nearby star's supernova may've caused one of out planets mass extinctions millions of years ago. The event studied here took place in the Late Devonian, "culminating in extinction events near the Devonian-Carboniferous boundary." Evidence shown in the study published this week suggests that asteroids weren't the only thing that killed massive amounts of life on Earth in the distant past.

Continue Reading

The world’s first gene-edited squid and why it’s historic

The world’s first gene-edited squid and why it’s historic

Researchers have revealed this week that they've been successful in gene-editing a squid for the first time in human history. Cephalopods are used to study Alzheimer's and Parkinson's due to their significantly large brains. Using the DNA editing tool CRISPR, a genetically altered squid will potentially jump-start major advances in the study of neurodegenterative diseases of many sorts.

Continue Reading

New DNA analysis says you’ve got more pre-human ancestors

New DNA analysis says you’ve got more pre-human ancestors

This week a research paper published in PLOS Genetics revealed a newly developed algorithm for analyzing genomes. Researchers used their new system on the genomes of two Neanderthals, two humans of African descent, and a Denisovan. Approximately 1% of the genome of the Denisovan came from an "unsequenced, but highly diverged, archaic hominin ancestor."

Continue Reading

1 2 3 4 Next