Research News

  • 1:00pm Jan 25, 2013
    Science Science

    Shakespeare's Sonnets, Encoded In DNA

    Reporting in Nature, researchers write of encoding a variety of files--jpg, mp3, txt and pdf--in strands of DNA. Lead author Nick Goldman says DNA is extraordinarily long-lasting, compared to today's hard drives and magnetic tapes. And if all the world's information were written in DNA, he says, it would fit in the back of a station wagon.
  • Health workers in Nepal culled chickens and destroyed eggs following an outbreak of bird flu in Kathmandu in October 2012.
    Prakash Mathema / AFP/Getty Images
    8:53pm Jan 23, 2013
    World News World News Science Health & Safety

    Scientists Put An End To Moratorium On Bird Flu Research

    After researchers created versions of the bird flu virus that could spread more easily, critics began to worry that the work could spawn a pandemic if a virus escaped from the lab. After halting their work for more than a year, scientists now say the benefits outweigh the risks, and they are set to restart their experiments.
  • Two chimps groom each other at the Save the Chimps facility in Florida. The National Institutes of Health owns about 360 chimpanzees that aren't yet retired and that are living at research facilities; new guidelines say most of its chimps should be retire
    Save the Chimps
    3:56pm Jan 23, 2013
    Science Science Health & Safety

    Rules Would Retire Most Research Chimps

    An NIH working group recommends that most of the agency's 360 research chimpanzees be sent to a sanctuary — a non-laboratory setting where chimps can live more natural lives. But even if the NIH accepts the recommendations, putting them into effect won't be easy.
  • 1:03pm Jan 18, 2013
    Science Science Arts

    Edward Tufte Wants You to See Better

    Data scientist Edward Tufte (dubbed the "Galileo of graphics" by BusinessWeek) pioneered the field of data visualization. Tufte discusses what he calls "forever knowledge," and his latest projects: sculpting Richard Feynman's diagrams, and helping people "see without words."
  • 1:03pm Jan 11, 2013
    Science Science

    Simulating The Red Planet, On The Pale Blue Dot

    What's it like to live--and cook--on Mars? To find out, researchers are simulating Mars missions in Russia, and on the slopes of a Hawaiian volcano. Kim Binsted talks about her study to whip up tastier space food. Porcini mushroom risotto, anyone? And sleep expert Charles Czeisler talks about how humans adapt to the 24.65-hour Martian day.
  • Top schools like Harvard, seen here in 2000, often offer scholarships and other financial incentives, but they are finding it hard to increase the socioeconomic diversity on campus.
    Darren McCollester / Getty Images
    6:26am Jan 09, 2013
    National National Science Education

    Elite Colleges Struggle To Recruit Smart, Low-Income Kids

    Top schools often offer scholarships that not only include free tuition, but also free room and board for top students from poor families. Each year, however, colleges are confronted with a paradox: No matter how many incentives they provide, enrollment of highly talented, low-income student barely seems to budge.
  • The Shell Oil Jackpine open pit mine uses trucks that are 3 stories tall, weigh 1 million pounds and cost $7 million each. There is explosive growth in the oil field areas around Fort McMurray, Alberta, Canada.
    The Washington Post/Getty Images
    6:43pm Jan 08, 2013
    Science Science Environment

    Deep In Canadian Lakes, Signs Of Tar Sands Pollution

    The contaminants researchers found at the bottom of Alberta lakes are from air pollutants coming from tar sands oil production and processing facilities. The pollution wasn't picked up by the industry-funded monitoring program that was supposed to track environmental risks from tar sands over recent decades.
  • 12:23pm Jan 07, 2013
    Science Science

    Negative Temperatures That Are Hotter Than The Sun

    Scientists have cooled potassium gas to one billionth of a degree below absolute zero. But in the quantum world, that's actually hotter than the Sun. It's hotter, even, than infinity degrees Kelvin. Vladan Vuletić, a quantum physicist at MIT, talks about this 'Bizarro World' temperature.
  • 12:23pm Jan 07, 2013
    Science Science

    Cold-Water Fish Break The Ice With Antifreeze

    Cold-water fish, snow-dwelling bugs and some grasses have evolved natural antifreeze proteins to avoid turning to ice cubes. Peter Davies, a biologist at Queen's University in Ontario, discusses how these antifreeze substances work, and their applications for human problems--like keeping the ice out of ice cream.