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Discovery of quadruple helix DNA could lead to cancer breakthrough

Scientists at the University of Cambridge reported Sunday that they have discovered quadruple helix DNA inside human cells by creating synthetic molecules that seek it out — raising the potential that future medicines may be able to pinpoint and shut down DNA replication within cancerous tumors. Although the findings, published…

Harvard scientist seeks ‘adventurous female’ to give birth to cloned Neanderthal

Professor George Church not only believes that he can clone a Neanderthal, but that a extremely adventurous female human” would be able to give birth to one. According to The Daily Mail, Church, a geneticist and professor of synthetic biology at Harvard University, said he can use fossil samples to…

When black holes collide: gamma-ray burst blasted Earth in 8th century, according to study

A mystery wave of cosmic radiation that smashed into Earth in the eighth century may have come from two black holes that collided, a study published on Monday says. Clues for the strange event were unearthed last year by Japanese astrophysicist Fusa Miyake, who discovered a surge in carbon-14 —…

Scientists find evidence of ancient Martian lake

A US spacecraft orbiting Mars has provided evidence of an ancient crater lake fed by groundwater, adding further support to theories that the Red Planet may once have hosted life, NASA said Sunday. Spectrometer data from NASA’s Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter (MRO) shows traces of carbonate and clay minerals usually formed…

On the trail of dinosaur fossil swindlers

Dinosaur fossils are big business, with complete skeletons fetching millions. And that much cash attracts swindlers, science writer Brian Switek reports Fossils are priceless. I mean that in both senses: they are invaluable clues about vanished lives and their worth should never be measured in dollars. But Eric Prokopi made…

‘Forgotten man of evolution’ gets his moment

Alfred Russel Wallace formed the theory of natural selection, but Darwin’s connections ensured he got the glory, writes Robin McKie Alfred Russel Wallace is far from a household name, but he changed the world. Recovering from a bout of malaria on the remote Indonesian island of Halmahera, the young British…

Mercury treaty adopted in Geneva by 140 countries

Delegations from some 140 countries have agreed to adopt a ground-breaking treaty limiting the use of health-hazardous mercury, the Swiss foreign ministry said. The world’s first legally binding treaty on mercury, reached after a week of thorny talks, will aim to reduce global emission levels of the toxic heavy metal…

Amazon rainforest showing signs of degradation due to climate change, NASA warns

Rainforest area twice the size of California experiencing drought rate that is unprecedented in a century, study shows The US space agency Nasa warned this week that the Amazon rainforest may be showing the first signs of large-scale degradation due to climate change. A team of scientists led by the…

European space agency considers smashing spacecraft into asteroid

European space officials are considering sending a spacecraft to smash into a small asteroid — one of the pair of orbiting rocks, named Didymos, that will sail closely past the Earth in 2022 — to see if they can throw them off course, according to Ars Technica. The idea behind…

Spotted salamander first solar-powered vertebrate discovered

While scientists have known about multiple animals that can turn sunlight into energy, they haven’t been sure that any vertebrate could do so — until now. As far back as 1888, a biologist found that the eggs of a spotted salamander contained a kind of green algae, but now firm…

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