A scanning electron microscope (SEM) image of the polymer network that makes up mucins. Credit: Katharina Ribbeck pecialized sugar molecules called glycans can disarm opportunistic pathogens and prevent infection. More than 200 square meters of our bodies — including the digestive tract, lungs, and urinary tract — are lined with […]

The joint NASA/ESA Cassini-Huygens mission revealed some amazing things about Saturn and its system of moons. In the thirteen years that it spent studying the system – before it plunged into Saturn’s atmosphere on September 15th, 2017 – it delivered the most compelling evidence to date of extra-terrestrial life. And years later, […]

Naturalistic auditory stories synchronize “visual” cortices across congenitally blind but not sighted individuals. Credit: Loiotile et al., JNeurosci (2019) Listening triggers synchronized activity in the ‘visual’ cortex in blind adults. In adults that are born blind, the “visual” cortex is activated in a similar way during a listening task, according […]

An inside look of an ultra-high vacuum reaction chamber that simulates chemical reactions in an interstellar cloud environment. Credit: Hokkaido University An experiment shows that one of the basic units of life­­­ — nucleobases — could have originated within giant gas clouds interspersed between the stars. Essential building blocks of DNA – […]

‘Death Star’ bacterial syringe structure — Metamorphosis Associated Contractile structures (MACs) discovered by SDSU marine microbiologist Nicholas Shikuma and his lab team. It injects a protein into animal cells that leads to metamorphosis, it may also be in the human gut, and could be tapped to deliver targeted drugs in […]

The extraordinary case prompted one woman to sue her sperm bank. (Image: © Shutterstock) A single sperm donor is the biological father of at least 12 children who all developed autism — an extraordinary case that prompted one woman to sue her sperm bank, according to news reports. The case came to […]

Stephanorhinus skull from Dmanisi. Credit: Mirian Kiladze, Georgian National Museum By looking into fossil teeth from almost 2 million years old rhinos, researchers from the University of Copenhagen and Cambridge launch a new molecular method for studying the evolutionary history of fossil species dating back millions of years. An evolution […]

Researchers have engineered gold-based molecules that target cancer cells and leave healthy cells unharmed, in a critical step towards precision cancer drugs with fewer toxic side effects. Pre-clinical studies have shown the molecules were up to 24 times more effective at killing cancer cells than the widely used anti-cancer drug […]