For the first time, scientists have discovered evidence of a human DNA fragment in the genome of bacteria, shedding light on why this particular bug is so adept at surviving in human hosts. The bacteria in question is Neisseria gonorrhoeae, which causes gonorrhea.
A Nobel prize winning scientist who shared the 2008 prize for medicine for his role in establishing the link between HIV and AIDS has stirred up a good deal of both interest and skepticism with his latest experimental results, which more or less show that DNA can teleport itself to distant cells via electromagnetic signals. If his results prove correct, they would shake up the foundations upon which modern chemistry rests. But plenty of Montagnier’s peers are far from convinced.
Dutch scientists have come up with a DNA test that can determine a person’s natural hair color, using no more than a drop of blood or saliva. They say their method can predict hair color with up to 90 percent accuracy, helping forensic investigators identify an unknown person’s characteristics.
Apparently these guys are unfamiliar with hair dye.
At first, the controversy over NASA’s arsenic-loving bugs centered on whether the space agency had found aliens. A week later, the debate has ping-ponged the other way, with scientists questioning whether the bacteria even love arsenic at all.
Forensic scientists have a new tool to help them reconstruct the identities of persons at the scene of crime, at least the kind of crime scene where things got physical. Dutch researchers have devised a method for estimating the age of a suspect or missing person by simply examining blood collected from the scene, even if that blood isn’t particularly fresh.
When hypothesizing about life that may exist elsewhere in the universe, the tendency is to visualize something far different from life here on earth. But here in our galactic neighborhood, a team of MIT researchers argues, life it just as likely related to us. Following that line of thought, the team is developing a prototype alien DNA decoder that it hopes to send to Mars aboard a NASA-ESA mission slated for launch in 2018.
Four ounces of shampoo is enough to send the Transportation Security Administration into a tizzy, but the U.S. government does not have any rules governing the making of custom sequences of DNA to order, for sale to any interested would-be bioterrorists. Until now, anyway.
You know those lizards that spray blood from their eyes as a defense mechanism? This Dutch McDonald's is pretty much like that, only replace "blood" with "synthetic DNA visible under ultraviolet light."
Age-related memory loss—the kind where you remember friends from decades ago but can’t remember your grandchildren—is largely a mystery, but a class of com-pounds used to treat cancer has given neuroscientists clues to its molecular underpinnings. Scientists also suspect that the compounds responsible for this insight, called histone deacetylase inhibitors, could significantly slow memory loss—perhaps for years.
An artificial cornea can integrate with the human eye and regenerate nerve tissue, restoring sight to people with impaired vision, researchers announced today.
It’s the first study to show an artificially fabricated material can help regrow damaged eye tissue. The breakthrough could help millions of people worldwide who would otherwise have to rely on transplanted corneas from donors.
A new generation of e-nose uses a DNA scaffolding and molecular fluorescence to distinguish among various vapors, in a breakthrough that could make electronic sniffers more powerful and simpler to produce, according to researchers at Stanford University.
The method could conceivably detect anything from spoiled milk to explosives, the researchers say -- a major advancement over existing e-noses, which search for only a couple of specific molecules.
Perhaps the only thing scarier than the living dead is finding out that they're already inside the house. Geneticists recently found that non-coding genes -- some of the many dotting the human genome -- can rise from the dead. When they do they can cause problems, including one of the most common forms of muscular dystrophy.
A Nature paper co-authored by Steven Chu, Nobel laureate and Energy Secretary of the United States, describes a big breakthrough in the science of the very small: a method of optical microscopy that can image at resolutions as small as half a nanometer, a full order of magnitude smaller than the previous finest optical resolution.
Five amazing, clean technologies that will set us free, in this month's energy-focused issue. Also: how to build a better bomb detector, the robotic toys that are raising your children, a human catapult, the world's smallest arcade, and much more.