Microbes may once have happily existed on the surface of Mars, according to chemical analysis of a sedimentary rock in the Red Planet's Gale crater. NASA geologist and exobiologist David Blake discusses evidence for an ancient freshwater lake in the crater, and describes the mineral-chomping microbes that may have thrived there.
By combing through 100 million search queries on Bing, Yahoo and Google, Microsoft Research Lab co-director Eric Horvitz and his colleagues were able to discover a previously unknown interaction between two commonly prescribed drugs. Horvitz says the method might detect dangerous drug interactions earlier than the FDA's warning system.
Kathy Reichs, the writer and scientist behind the TV show Bones, is back with a new novel for young adults. Code: A Virals Novel stars Tory Brennan, great-niece of Reich's famed crime-solving heroine Tempe Brennan. Reichs discusses the book, co-written with Brendan Reichs.
What do you do when you're a scientist and you have no job and no money for your research? If you're Ethan Perlstein, you try crowd funding. He raised $25,000 to investigate where the drug methamphetamine is stored in the brain.
For those who rely on technology to speak, there are a limited number of voices. "Perfect Paul" sounds robotic, and "Heather" can seem too old for some. Now, a researcher is using sound samples from people who have never been able to speak to create new, personalized voices for them.
The tiny, speckled eggs of Japanese quail should be easy targets for hungry predators. But these quail have a survival advantage — each goes out of her way, research suggests, to choose a nesting location that best matches the particular color pattern of her eggs.
Under pressure from the New York state comptroller — who oversees one of its largest shareholders — the doughnut chain has agreed to set a goal of using only 100 percent sustainable palm oil to make its doughnuts. Production of palm oil has caused serious deforestation in Indonesia.
At its best, the Web is a place for unlimited exchange of ideas. But the uncivil discourse that unfolds in comments sections can be poisonous. A study in the Journal of Computer-Mediated Communication suggests that rude comments on articles can change the way we interpret the news.
Science journalist Emily Anthes talks about how scientists are engineering mice with tumors and working to create pigs that can grow organs for human transplant and insects that could serve as drones for the military.
The recent meteor blast in Russia has brought renewed attention to the risk posed by meteors on a collision course with Earth. NASA and the European Space Agency are working on a plan to develop a rocket that could collide with an asteroid and knock it off course. Dr. Andrew Cheng of the John Hopkins Applied Physics Lab, who is leading the initiative, talks about it with host Jacki Lyden.