Follow World Science On Twitter!

E‑newsletter:   subscribecancel


"Long before it's in the papers"
July 01, 2015



* * * LATEST * * *

Study: Nazi propaganda still influences those who grew up with it
Find­ings de­mon­strate how offi­cial policy can shape be­liefs, re­search­ers say.


Green space may make city kids smarter
Ex­po­sure to green spaces may help boost chil­dren’s cog­ni­tive de­vel­op­ment, ac­cord­ing to a stu­dy.


Study links war, global warming—in Syria
Re­search­ers have pub­lished the first ma­jor study to draw a link be­tween glob­al warm­ing, drought and on­go­ing civ­il un­rest.


Smarter mice with a “humanized” gene?
In­tro­duc­ing a “hu­man­ized” ver­sion of a lan­guage-linked gene in­to mice ac­cel­er­ates their learn­ing, ac­cord­ing to a stu­dy.

At least one in 25 death-sentenced people are innocent, study claims
In new work, re­search­ers argue that the false-con­vic­tion rate is not every­where as un­know­able as is some­times said.

Scientists take step toward usable fusion energy
Sci­en­tists are clos­er than ever to us­ing the pro­cess that pow­ers the Sun to pro­duce en­er­gy, says a re­port to ap­pear in the re­search jour­nal Na­ture.

An evolutionary role for “Jackass”-like stunts?
Risk-prone people are per­ceived as larg­er and strong­er, new re­search finds.


DNA “markings” may transmit learned experiences
So-called epige­net­ic changes have gar­nered in­creas­ing at­tent­ion as a route by which na­ture trans­mits traits across gen­er­a­tions.

Love your enemy? Hormone spray may help with that, too
Inhaling the hor­mone oxy­to­cin may make peo­ple em­pa­thize more with out­siders, a stu­dy sug­gests.


Scientists probe how Inca kids were drugged for sacrifice
Chil­dren of the an­cient In­ca Em­pire may have con­sumed in­ten­si­fying doses of al­co­hol and co­ca leaf for as long as a year be­fore a ri­tual slaugh­ter.

A reputation sealed? Finding suggests T. rex hunted for real
A toothy dis­cov­ery sug­gests the icon­ic di­no­saur Ty­ran­no­saur­us rex was a real hunt­er af­ter all—not a mere scav­en­ger.


Study explores how power gets to the brain
Pow­er may or may not cor­rupt, but it does change you. New re­search ex­plores what hap­pens in the brain as that takes place.

Studies may have overestimated our generosity
Scientists recre­ated a game of­ten used to as­sess peo­ple’s al­tru­ism—but this time there was a twist, and a darker re­sult.


Already-approved drug tied to longer, healthy lives in mice
The first drug to suc­cess­fully ex­tend the life­span of nor­mal lab mice al­so does so in a way that pro­longs their healthy ex­ist­ence, a stu­dy sug­gests.

Men want status from romantic relationships, research finds
A set of surveys suggests men and women get self-es­teem from rela­t­ion­ships in dif­fer­ent ways.


Killed twice in 1600s, hoax “dragon” slain again—in creationism dispute
Scient­ists say they’ve proven what some suspected three centuries ago: the swamp dra­gon from Rome was a hoax. And maybe now it mat­ters more.

Yes, gentlemen, size matters—but something else matters more, study finds
Scientists as­sessed how pe­nis size, body height and body shape inter­act to in­flu­ence fe­male rank­ings of male al­lure.


Babies may be drawn to those who mistreat the “different”
Re­searchers report new evi­dence that hard-to-eradi­cate bia­ses based on race, sex and other diff­er­ences take root early in life.

Your brain cells may be capable of outliving you—by a lot
New findings make scient­ists hope­ful that if hu­man life­span is increased, brain cells will coop­erate by liv­ing long­er accord­ing­ly.


Chimps found to play fairness game like people
In some im­por­tant ways, chimps may have more hu­man-like con­cepts of fair­ness than pre­vi­ously rec­og­nized, bi­ol­o­gists say.

For signs of life, some strange planetary systems may be most promising
Atmos­pheric chem­icals be­tray­ing the pre­sence of alien life might be de­tect­able around white dwarf stars, a study says.

Did some Neanderthals learn advanced skills from “moderns”?
Sur­pris­ing­ly, some Ne­an­der­thal peo­ple seem to have made body or­na­ments and soph­is­t­icated tools, a study re­ports.

Theory that cooking gave us big brains gains support
New research backs up a the­o­ry that the ad­vent of cook­ing al­most two mill­ion years ago en­abled hu­mans to get smart­er.

Friendliness to minorities may often be a performance—a fragile one
Many whites be­have ex­tra nicely to mi­nor­i­ties, but it’s often an act that ar­ises from a sense of obli­ga­t­ion, new re­search sug­gests.


Gospel of Matthew linked to trail of bizarre self-mutilations
A particu­lar set of verses from a book in the Bi­ble has crea­ted con­stern­ation among some med­i­cal pro­fes­sionals.

“Racial purity” DNA testing slammed as perversion, but halting practice might not be easy
A pol­i­ti­cian has sparked out­rage af­ter re­port­ed­ly tak­ing a DNA test for a shock­ing pur­pose. But just where the red line lies is not wide­ly agreed up­on.

Moral “taint” still seeps along familial lines
We are still blamed to some de­gree for the mis­deeds of our rel­a­tives, ac­cord­ing to a set of newly re­ported sur­veys.

American heads have been changing shape, but why?
White people’s heads in the Unit­ed States have got­ten taller and nar­row­er since the days the steam­ship was king, re­search indi­cates.

Cold case solved? Study probes riddle of sinking beer bubbles
Bub­bles in dark beer are seen to slide down­ward, iron­ic­ally, be­cause they’re trying to head up­ward, a study re­ports.

Move elephants into Australia, scientist proposes
Does the Land Down Under need an in­fu­sion of large mam­mals to solve its ec­o­log­i­cal and wild­fire prob­lems?

Was blackmail essential for marriage to evolve?
A study takes a cold new look at a cus­tom as ancient and firmly estab­lished as it is sa­cred to mil­lions.

A human bias against creativity is hindering science, research claims
Most of us love crea­ti­vi­ty—until it ac­tually comes knock­ing, some psy­cho­lo­gists say.

Pluto has even colder “twin” of similar size, studies find
A “d­warf plan­et” or­bit­ing our sun three times fur­ther away than Plu­to is about the size of that better-known, frig­id world, as­tro­no­mers say.


Could simple anger have taught people to cooperate?
A new study chal­lenges one of the lead­ing the­o­ries as a sol­u­tion for an evo­lu­tion­ary puz­zle.



Bird said to re-arrange sounds to create meaning—like people
Only hu
­mans were thought ca­pable of mak­ing new mean­ing by re­ar­rang­ing mean­ing­less el­e­ments, scient­ists say.

Rats may dream about finding treats
When rats rest, their brains sim­u­late jour­neys to a de­sired fu­ture such as a treat, new re­search finds.

Universe may be ringing like crystal glass, scientists say
The expansion of the uni­verse seems to be re­peat­ed­ly speeding up and slowing back down, cos­mol­o­gists claim.


Planet zips around its sun sporting comet-like tail: study
Sci­en­tists at­trib­ute the ef­fect to high-energy light from the star that is push­ing hy­dro­gen off the plan­et’s up­pe­r at­mos­phere.

Consciousness no “decider,” just “interpreter,” theory claims
Con­scious­ness is like the In­ter­net in a way, ac­cord­ing to a team of scient­ists.


Human may have had Neanderthal great-great-grandparent
An anatomi­cal­ly mo­dern per­son known only from a jaw­bone had re­cent Ne­an­der­thal an­ces­try, scien­tists say.

Study could solve controversy over ancient skeleton
An 8,500-year-old ske­l­e­ton found in 1996 in Wash­ing­ton State has been the fo­cus of a bit­ter dis­pute.


Ancient Mars mostly icy, not wet, study claims
Despite lots of water, the Mars of 3 to 4 bil
­lion years ago might have been in­hosp­it­able to life.

Pedophilia may be innate
A study linked pedo­philia to a higher like­li­hood of certain types of facial flaws as­sociated with pre­natal develop­ment.

New analysis downsizes record-breaking dino
A study re-evaluates a fossil hailed last year as representing the heaviest dinosaur whose weight could be reliably calculated.


Newfound dino resembles Triceratops with frills
Scientists are reporting the discovery of a close relative of the horned dinosaur Triceratops.

Glass in Martian crater could trap bits of past life, study says
Meteor strikes often form glass in the searing heat of the impact.

Why do political disagreements get nasty while others don’t?
A group of social scientists say answers may lie in their new research.


The oldest evidence of murder?
Lethal wounds on a Neanderthal skull may point to a bloody encounter some 430,000 years ago, scientists say.

For homely men, a pass—but less room for error
Women don’t mind a phys­ically un­attract­ive man, but woe to that man if he does some­thing wrong, a study sug­gests.

Robot is designed to learn actions through trial and error
Researchers turned to a new branch of artificial intelligence known as deep learning.


New action plan to save rarest ape
A new report outlines steps needed to save the Hainan gibbon, of which only 25 remain.

Stone tools pre-dated “man,” study finds
Scientists dated the artifacts, found in Kenya, to 3.3 million years ago.

School cell phone bans found to raise test scores
Banning cell phones reaps the same benefits as extending the school year by five days, according to a study in the U.K.


Scientists weigh in on optical illusion that went viral
Psychologists claim to have an explanation for why viewers see sharply different colors in a photo that spread across the Internet.

Astrology not so off the mark about personality types, study claims
Correlations between birth season and personality really exist, though not necessarily for the reasons astrologers claim, a study says.


Scientists re-engineer bird beak to ancestral “dino” state
Research aimed to retrace some of the evolutionary steps that gradually transformed dinosaurs into birds.

Chemical process in Saturn moon could help spark life, scientists say
The sixth planet’s sixth largest moon, Enceladus is thought to have a liquid water ocean beneath its icy surface.


Image said to show planets forming, in first
A recent and famous image from space is the first that shows planets forming, according to a study.

Peer bullying may cause more damage than adult maltreatment: study
Children bullied by peers have similar or worse long-term mental health outcomes, a study says.


First evidence of changes on a “super-Earth” reported
Massive volcanism may be disrupting a rocky planet in the constellation Cancer, astronomers think.

“Runaway galaxies” found
We know of runaway stars and a run­away star cluster, but whole ga­la­xies would be some­thing new.


Scientific “outsider” anticipated Darwin’s ideas, research finds
The Scots­man Pat­rick Mat­thew de­scribed evo­lu­tion in 1831 but got lit­tle credit, ac­cord­ing to a new stu­dy.

Brain glitch causes people to live “in the third person”
Peo­ple with the con­di­tion can learn any­thing about their own past—they just can’t per­son­al­ly rec­all it, sci­ent­ists say.

Some Neanderthals chopped up their dead—reasons unknown, study says
Scientists are considering can­nib­al­ism or cere­mony as possible ex­plan­ations, but say evidence for can­ni­bal­ism is thin.


Study looks at why we have chins
Humans are the only spe­cies with chins, an en­dur­ing puzzle that re­search­ers claim to have now solved.

Hunt for alien-filled galaxies yields nothing “obvious,” but some “interesting”
Astronomers are continuing a search for galaxies that might be thoroughly populated by aliens.

Persistent “warm blob” in Pacific linked to strange weather
Global warm­ing isn’t the whole rea­son for strange weather that has struck the United States in re­cent months, some scien­tists say.


Re­instate Bronto­saurus as its own di­no, study de­clares
The so-called “thun­der liz­ard” has long been con­sidered wrong­ly named, but some sci­ent­ists now dis­pute that.

Women and men may answer moral dilemmas differently
Would it be right to kill Adolf Hitler when he was still a young artist to save millions of lives? Wo­men and men have different takes on such ques­tions, a study finds.

Scientists claim to rescue early- aging mice with new method
Wheth­er the find­ings would apply to hu­mans, and even nor­mal ag­ing, is un­clear, but there are some prom­is­ing signs, they add.


Galaxies may have formed in groups as “fireworks”
Astronomers ident
­ified dra­ma­tic act­i­vity in pos­sible pre­curs­ors of vast galaxy clusters seen today.

Global warming doesn’t cause extreme winters, study says
That a warm­
ing trend doesn’t cause cold snaps might seem ob­vious, but re­cent events had raised the ques­tion.

Study ties education, not just genes, to IQ
A study com­pared the in­tel­li­gence test scores of Swed­ish twins raised in dif­fer­ent en­vi­ron­ments.


Colliding stars could explain 17th-century mystery explosion
A “new star” that Eu­ro­pe­an as­tro­no­mers saw in 1670 was ac­tu­ally a stel­lar smash­up, a study pro­poses.

Little fish found to kill smaller ones by posing as family
The dusky dot­ty­back’s dis­guise—ac­com­plished by chang­ing col­ors—al­so helps pro­tect it from its own preda­tors, ac­cord­ing to the stu­dy.


Jupiter moon may conceal ocean with more water than Earth’s
Glowing ribbons of gas called au­ro­rae give it away, scien­tists claim.

Music can affect your genes, study finds
Lis­ten­ing to clas­si­cal mu­sic can en­hance the ac­ti­vity of genes in­flu­enc­ing the flow of brain chem­i­cals, learn­ing and mem­o­ry.


New findings suggest Mars had an ocean
A study sought to measure how much wa­ter must have been lost to space, based on char­act­er­ist­ics of Mar­tian wa­ter now.

Do heroes win sexiness points? Only if they’re soldiers, male—and decorated, study finds
Perhaps any
­one can be a hero. Get­ting re­warded for it is an­other mat­ter.

Millions of modern men found to be descendants of 11 kingpins
Ge­neti­cists have found that mil­lions of mod­ern Asians de­scend from 11 pow­er­ful dy­nas­tic lead­ers who lived up to 4,000 years ago.


First-ever photo said to capture light acting as both particle and wave
Quan­tum me­chan­ics tells us that light can be­have as a par­t­i­cle or a wave, but both aspects have never been seen at once.

Thoughts of “God” found to increase risk-taking
Find­ings sug­gest peo­ple are will­ing to take these risks be­cause they think of God as a pro­tect­or, re­search­ers say.


A land where strange crocs proliferated
The swampy wa­ters of what is now north­east­ern Pe­ru were very different 13 mil­lion years ago, new re­search finds.

Mystery of early black holes deepens with huge new find
The discovery of a too-large, too-ancient black hole does­n’t square with stand­ard the­o­ries of cos­mic ev­o­lu­tion.

Study: publicizing hospital ratings doesn’t always spur improvement
The well-intentioned idea of rating health cent­ers is having show­ing dis­ap­point­ingly lit­tle bene­fit so far, sci­ent­ists say.


Little star probably grazed our solar system, astronomers conclude
The event could have trig­gered a deadly “com­et show­er” had the star come much clos­er, a study sug­gests.

Fire ants spread globally on 17th-century ships, study finds
Some lit­tle ant con­querors, too, put hu­man­kind’s Age of Disc­overy to good use, scient­ists re­port.

Strange cloudy features high over Mars baffle scientists
Sci­en­tists can’t fig­ure out the cause of mys­te­ri­ous plumes pho­to­graphed high over Mars by am­a­teur as­tro­no­mers.


Dogs can tell apart human facial expressions, study finds
Ev­i­dence also sug­gests dogs pre­fer to ap­proach “hap­py” rath­er than “an­gry” pho­tos, ac­cord­ing to the re­search.

Study finds first stars were born “late”
New findings are based on the cosmic micro­wave back­ground, light believed to have been tra­vel­ing toward us since almost the dawn of time.


Satellite to check alien skies for traces of life
It’s the “first mis­sion ded­i­cat­ed” to study­ing these at­mo­spheres, said pro­ject leader Gio­van­na Tinetti of Uni­vers­ity Col­lege Lon­don.

Student scientists find partially drug-resistant germs, scraps of anthrax DNA—all in subway
High school students sam­pled some of the smaller liv­ing things crowded into New York City's sub­way system.


Sea slug turns itself into plant-like creature by eating algae
A bright green sea slug man­ages to live like a plant and skip meals thanks to genes it steals from the al­gae it eats, sci­en­tists say.

Zoo chimps said to learn grunt for “apple” from each other
Cap­tive chimps can learn grunts from each oth­er that re­fer to spe­cif­ic foods, a study has found.

Mining the Moon becomes a real prospect, report says
Companies and nations dream of obtain­ing rocket fuel and rare-earth ele­ments from the Moon's re­sources.


New find spotlights super-long-necked dinos
An unusual dino­saur lin­eage known as ma­men­chi­saur­ids may be more di­verse than pre­viously realized.

Study: war-for-oil “conspiracy theorists” are often right
While many claims are simp­lis­tic, research­ers say, sta­tis­tics show oil does mo­ti­vate coun­tries to inter­fere in conflicts.


Star found to have little planets over twice as old as our own
Find­ings raise the poss­i­bil­ity of life far more ancient than Earth it­self, scientists say.

“Kindness curriculum” may boost success in preschoolers
An experimental pro­gram was de­signed to cul­ti­vate “mind­ful­ness” and com­pas­sion in 4-to-6-year olds.


Craft closes in on dwarf planet, takes pictures
NASA is pre­par­ing for what would be a space­craft’s first visit to a dwarf plan­et.

Jellyfish not just drifters, study finds
At least some jel­ly­fish can swim strong­ly ag­ainst a cur­rent, researchers re­port.

Could our galaxy be a wormhole?
It could conceiv­ably be a short­cut through space­time, a study con­cludes, though that path may or may not be nav­i­ga­ble.


Brain wiring may reflect gender identity
A study ex­am­ined our self-per­cep­tions as male or fema­les, as dis­tinct from our phys­i­cal form.

Top U.S. research institute accused of coverup
A professor's law­suit claims Cal­tech pro­tected an aca­demic sus­pected of ille­gally shar­ing U.S. Defense De­part­ment-funded tech­nol­ogy.

Ocean wildlife may collapse soon, study warns
The same pat­tern of events that led to the col­lapse of wild­life popula­t­ions on land is now hap­pen­ing in the sea, a report says.


Study links lifespan, solar activity
Talk about a rough start in life. Be­ing born when the sun is stormy might cut your lifespan, research says.

Study: a computer can figure you out as well as your spouse
A com­put­er can read your per­son­al­ity as well as your spouse if you give it 300 Face­book “Likes” to an­a­lyze, a study has found.

Part of our reactions to music may be “universal”
Wheth­er you’re from the Con­go­lese rain­for­est or a big city, some as­pects of mu­sic will tou­ch you in the same ways, a study sug­gests.


Scientists study whale that lives 200 years for clues
Changes in genes linked to cell di­vi­sion, DNA re­pair and more may help the bow­head live long, researchers say.

Is warfare linked to evolution?
In one farming society, males who par­ti­ci­pate in live­stock raids also may have more wives and child­ren, a study finds.


Study finds police body-cameras can prevent violence
Research­ers are work­ing to re­peat the stu­dy with 30 po­lice forc­es across the globe.

Light human skeleton may have come after agriculture
The rel­a­tively light skele­tons of mod­ern hu­mans arose late in our ev­o­lu­tion­ary his­to­ry, re­search­ers re­port.


Crows found able to reason by “analogy”
Crows in a study were said to re­cog­nize how dif­fer­ent pairs of ob­jects have si­m­i­lar rela­t­ion­ships.

Quantum physics may have just gotten simpler
New research claims to un­ite two strange fea­tures of the quan­tum world, or na­ture at the small­est scales.

Impact that killed dinos may have nearly snuffed mammals too
The di­no­saurs’ extinction 66 mil­lion years ago is thought to have opened the way for mam­mals to dom­i­nate the land.


Mars crater may be belching organic gas; biological origin not ruled out
Lev­els of meth­ane are per­i­od­ic­ally spik­ing at the Gale Crat­er on Mars, NASA sci­ent­ists say.

World Science Archive
 Download high-resolution image from NSF website

Blue sunflower? This is really a mi­cro­scope im­age of liq­uid drop­let res­i­due from water-based chem­i­cals, one-half mil­li­me­ter wide. The drop­lets on the out­er edges are 50 times less wide, and sev­en times less wide than a hu­man hair. This im­age, ti­tled "Blue Sun Flow­er," was cre­at­ed by Devin Brown, sen­ior re­search en­gi­neer at the In­sti­tute for Elec­tron­ics and Nan­otech­nol­ogy at the Geor­gia In­sti­tute of Tech­nol­o­gy. The im­age won grand prize in the 2013 EIPBN (Elec­tron, Ion and Pho­ton Beam Tech­nol­o­gy and Nanofab­ri­ca­tion) mi­cro­graph con­test. (Cred­it: Devin K. Brown, In­sti­tute for Elec­tron­ics and Nan­otech­nol­ogy, Geor­gia Tech)

Wondering how to support World Science for free? Just put a link to our home page,
on your site!

* More Science in Images
* More World Science
* Comments
* About World Science
* Tell a friend about World Science
* Supporters
* Links (1, 2, 3)

News alerts
* Scientists still waiting for clear signs of ozone hole healing (Reuters)

* 3 in US win chemistry Nobel for computer models (AP)

* Nobel prize for Higgs boson discovery (
* NASA Mars rover finds no sign of methane, telltale sign of life (Reuters)

WS Archives

Links  (World Sci­ence not qres­pon­si­ble for con­tent of out­side pages)  
A Few Things Ill Considered
African Journal of Environmental Science & Technology
Cliff Pickover's Reality Carnival 
Gravity Control
How To Save the World
Numericana physics & more
Reference Frame
Science and Reason
Science and Society
Sum Over Histories
The Disgruntled Chemist
The Eyes Have It
Physics and music
About the WS backgrounds


©2004-2013 World Science. Any article on this site may be reproduced on another website, on condition that that page provides a link to this homepage, Linking to the page of the original article is optional. 

Site best viewed in Internet Explorer.
Return to top of page

hit counter code