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Category Archives: Life Sciences


DNA can now store data. (Pixabay/Public Domain)

  Columbia University scientists used gene editing to encode the phrase “hello world!” into the DNA of living bacteria, demonstrating their new framework for storing data in one of the world’s most information-dense materials. In a paper recently published in Read more…


Overfishing has catastrophically reduced the population of sharks and rays. (AP Photo/Ariel Schalit)

  The number of sharks and rays roaming the world’s open seas and oceans plummeted by 71% during the half-century ending in 2018, according to an unprecedented global analysis indicating that overfishing pushed three-quarters of the ecosystem-balancing species toward extinction. Read more…


A new process makes vaccines more durable and easier to store. (AP Photo/Natacha Pisarenko)

  Researchers from Northwestern and Cornell Universities have produced a platform that can be freeze-dried to create inexpensive, portable, expedited conjugate vaccines, aiming to circumvent a years-long, multimillion-dollar manufacturing process that often results in inequitable distribution. Their study, published Wednesday Read more…


Gold has antibacterial properties, potentially making for a very expensive hand soap. (Unsplash/Sharon McCutcheon)

  Gold’s well-known antibacterial properties are derived from mechanical stress it applies to cells, according to a study published in Advanced Materials, in which bacteria were exposed to nanoparticles of the precious metal and had their cell walls stretched beyond Read more…


A new process may reprogram skin cells. (Pixabay/Beeki)

  Korean scientists changed end-of-life human skin cells back into a state in which they can reenter the cell cycle, a process they say could be used to stop or reverse symptoms of aging and cancer.  Researchers from Korean university Read more…


In the near future, forests may not be able to sequester as much carbon as previously. (Unsplash/Sebastian Unrau)

  Plants’ ability to keep absorbing close to one-third of human-caused carbon emissions could be slashed in half by 2040, as forests and other land ecosystems start releasing more carbon than they store, according to the first study to identify Read more…


Midlife depression may lead to serious physical ills. (Pixabay/Gerd Altmann)

  People who experience depressive symptoms by midlife may end up with long-lasting physical health consequences, including diabetes, sleep apnea and hypertension, a new study suggests. The research, published Jan. 12 in Psychological Medicine, took a longitudinal approach to the topic by Read more…


The two possible folds of human signaling protein XCL1. It directs the migration of white blood cells when in the red fold and directly kills invading pathogens in the gold fold. (Acacia Dishman)

  A search through evolutionary time led scientists to learn how and why a particular human protein can fold into a second structure to fulfill a different role, a phenomenon rarely found in proteins. Their findings, shared in a paper Read more…


Zebrafish are just one of a range of tropical fish at risk because of climate change. (AP Photo/Steven Senne)

  Zebrafish are unlikely to evolve fast enough to adapt to rising water temperatures caused by climate change, leaving them vulnerable to deadly heat waves predicted in the future. A new study in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Read more…


Cells can take damage from being squeezed, not broken, new research shows. (Pixabay/PublicDomainPictures)

  Cells moving through small gaps can damage their DNA even without rupturing their nuclei by causing problems with DNA replication, a possible outcome for cancer cells as they move throughout the body during metastasis. The authors of a study Read more…

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