"Long before it's in the papers"
June 06, 2013


PAST NEWS - 2006

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Oldest known ritual: python worship, archaeologist says
Snake-wor­ship in Stone-Age Af­rica might have been the first hu­man ri­tu­al, if new find­ings are correct. (Nov. 30, 2006)


Genes may help predict infidelity, study finds
Could DNA tests tell you your risk of being cuck­olded? Sci­ent­ists think they might. (Nov. 30, 2006)

Human, chimp lineages interbred after splitting, study suggests
Darwin’s claim that we descend from ape-like creatures, shocking to some, may seem easy to stomach compared with new findings. (May 17, 2006)

Another universe may have preceded ours, researchers claim
Physicists say they have calculated what might have happened before the Big Bang. (May 14, 2006)

Studies find logic lurking in madness
A wide­spread sus­pi­cion that in­san­ity and ra­tion­al­ity are re­la­ted is not with­out bas­is, re­search­ers have found. (May 4, 2006)

“Missing link” walking-fish fossils awe scientists
Paleontologists say a newly discovered organism could become an evolutionary icon. (April 5, 2006)

One universe or many? A panel debates
Phys­i­cists brawled over a ques­tion that’s near­ly un­an­swer­able, yet some­how very alive in sci­ence to­day.
(March 30, 2006)

Can mice succumb to Mozart?
Few if any peo­ple would claim that ro­dents like Mo­zart. But three re­search groups say this much: his mu­sic does some­thing for them.
(March 25, 2006)

~ Special Report ~

Scientists to probe ethical complaint over “hand-walkers” research
A Turk­ish sci­ent­ists’ group an­nounced plans to look in­to eth­i­cal com­plaints against three U.K. re­search­ers, who mean­while broke a long sil­ence on the case. (March 15, 2006)

Reverse human evolution plausible, testable, U.S. biologist says
More ex­perts weigh in on a de­bate over whe­ther back­ward ev­o­lu­tion is mak­ing a few peo­ple walk on hands and feet. (March 6, 2006)

Earlier stories:
* Misconduct claim fuels clash of “wrist-walker” researchers 
* Claim of reversed human evolution sparks skepticism, interest 
“Backward evolution” spawns ape-like people


To 3-month-olds, race matters, studies find
Early in life, many of us start to prefer faces of people from our own race to others, researchers say. (Feb. 12, 2006)

Robot maps ancient shipwreck
Researchers have used an underwater robot to map remains of an ancient Greek cargo ship. (Feb. 2, 2006)

Baboons seek “comfort” after deaths in the family
When a lion killed Sierra the baboon, her mother looked to friends for support. (Jan. 30, 2006)

Explaining “stolen” memories
Are all your memories really yours? Researchers are exploring why you can’t necessarily count on it. (Jan. 21, 2006)

Skepticism greets claim of possible alien microbes
A paper to appear in a scientific journal is raising eyebrows, claiming a strange red rain may have recently brought cells from space to Earth. (Jan. 5, 2006)

- Other highlights -

Bush administration proposes to list polar bears as “threatened”
Environmentalists hailed the move as a pos­si­ble major shift in dir­ec­tion for U.S. pol­icy on glo­bal warm­ing. (Dec. 27, 2006)

Even rats may dream in pictures, study finds
Re­search­ers re­ported some of the strong­est ev­i­dence to date that an­i­mals, like hu­mans, have sleep ima­gery. (Dec. 19, 2006)

Surprises in comet dust
Dust gathered from a comet and brought to Earth tells a tale of a so­lar sys­tem that par­tial­ly turned itself in­side out, re­search­ers say. (Dec. 14, 2006)

“Trust hormone” now tied to “mind reading”—and increasingly, autism
An unusual hor­mone has a grow­ing list of doc­u­ment­ed pow­ers, some of them sur­p­ris­ing—and int­ri­guing to sci­ent­ists hunt­ing aut­ism treat­ments. (Dec. 13, 2006)


Mammals might have flown before birds, scientists claim
An ancient squirrel-like, glid­ing beast dif­fered from all known or­ders of mam­mals, a study sug­gests. (Dec. 13, 2006)

~ Special report ~

Why laughter is contagious
You can catch it with­out ask­ing for it, or even nec­es­sar­i­ly want­ing it. Now, sci­en­tists say they have an idea of why. (Dec. 12, 2006)


Humor beats disease, researchers find
Sci­en­tists are re­port­ing what they call most di­rect ev­i­dence yet that abi­li­ty to laugh saves lives. (Dec. 12, 2006)

Hysteria is real: study
Hitherto un­ex­plained cases of par­tial pa­ral­y­sis or numb­ness may have a phys­i­cal cause after all, scientists say. (Dec. 11, 2006)

Drastic speedup in Arctic melting forecast
Arc­tic sum­mers could be near­ly ice-free by 2040, new re­search sug­gests—much soon­er than pre­vious fore­casts have pre­dicted. (Dec. 11, 2006)

Drastic speedup in Arctic melting forecast
Arc­tic sum­mers could be near­ly ice-free by 2040, new re­search sug­gests—much soon­er than pre­vious fore­casts have pre­dicted. (Dec. 11, 2006)


Water may still flow on Mars, scientists say
NASA pho­tos have re­vealed bright new de­posits in two gul­lies on the red pla­net. (Dec. 6, 2006)

Galactic evolution both “nature” and “nurture”
Galax­ies e­volve as a re­sult of in­flu­ences from their sur­round­ings, as­tro­no­mers have found. (Dec. 6, 2006)


NASA announces lunar base plan
The space agency has an­nounced plans to build a per­ma­nent lu­nar base by 2024. (Dec. 4, 2006)

City birds sing their own tune
Members of a bird spe­cies that have adapted to city life sing a shorter, sharp­er, faster song than their for­est kin, a study has found. (Dec. 4, 2006)


Hard, brutal lives for Neanderthals
Ne­an­der­thal re­mains from Spain speak of mal­nu­tri­tion and pos­si­ble can­ni­bal­ism, re­search­ers re­port. (Dec. 4, 2006)

Gene “archaeology” sheds light on male pregnancy
A gene might help ex­plain why males get preg­nant among mem­bers of the sea­horse fam­i­ly, ac­cord­ing to bi­ol­o­gists. (Dec. 4, 2006)

Ancient sky calculator awes scientists
A 2,000-year-old com­put­er could trans­form our view of the an­cient world, ac­cord­ing to re­search­ers. (Nov. 29, 2006)


Success may be a “family affair”
A study has led re­search­ers to spec­u­late that career suc­cess may be partly ge­ne­tic. (Nov. 29, 2006)

Science teachers’ association accused of oil company influence
After the top U.S. sci­ence teach­ers’ group spurned some free DVDs, a con­tro­ver­sy erupted over a rea­son they gave for the de­ci­sion. (Nov 27, 2006)

Backache? Sitting upright could be culprit
“Dignified” might not al­ways equal healthy, a stu­dy sug­gests. (Nov. 27, 2006)

Pot may be good and bad, researchers propose
The truth about ma­ri­ju­a­na might be more com­p­lex than ei­ther its foes or its cham­p­ions sug­gest, some sci­ent­ists argue. (Nov. 25, 2006)


We’re more genetically diverse than thought: study
Re­search has found that at least one in 10 hu­man genes vary in the num­ber of cop­ies of cer­tain DNA se­quences. (Nov. 23, 2006)

A step toward quantum computers
Physi­cists say they’ve tak­en a step to­ward mak­ing com­put­ers that work at blind­ing speeds thanks to the weird real­i­ties of quan­tum phys­ics. (Nov. 22, 2006)


One cell makes almost any heart tissue, study finds
New re­search could be a stride for­ward for ther­a­py to re­build hearts, but its use of em­bry­on­ic cells may stir con­tro­ver­sy. (Nov. 22, 2006)

Molecules may “anchor” memories in brain
Our brains nail down mem­o­ries by us­ing spe­cial pro­teins as an­chors, a study sug­gests. (Nov. 21, 2006)


Extreme black hole pushes spin “limit”
A black hole’s blind­ing­ly fast ro­ta­tion could help ex­p­lain some strange phe­no­me­na, phys­i­cists say. (Nov. 21, 2006)


Monkeys using perfume? Study investigates
Some wild spi­der mon­keys dab on a chewed-leaf paste that may act as a sort of co­logne, researchers say.
(Nov. 17, 2006)

Red wine ingredient found to boost endurance
A substance ear­li­er linked to long life in an­i­mals, al­so “re-pro­g­rams” mus­cle to dou­ble en­du­rance, a mouse stu­dy in­di­cates. (Nov. 16, 2006)


“Dark energy” an age-old phenomenon, study finds
A weird force push­ing our uni­verse out­ward has ex­ist­ed since near the be­gin­ning, ast­ro­phys­i­cists say. (Nov. 16, 2006)

Neanderthal DNA partially sequenced
Sci­en­tists have pre­li­mi­na­ri­ly mapped out when the stocky hu­man cousins di­verged from our spe­cies. (Nov. 16, 2006)


Cleansing nuclear fallout from the body
A U.S. gov­ern­ment sci­ent­ist en­vi­sions purg­ing the body of fall­out with a com­pound from crab shells. (Nov. 13, 2006)

Physical activity might explain vets’ risk for wasting disease
A re­port has found “lim­ited and sug­ges­tive ev­i­dence” that mil­i­tary ser­v­ice raises the risk for Lou Geh­rig’s dis­ease. (Nov. 10, 2006)

Gay men likelier to gamble addict­ively, study suggests
A small study may fuel a charged de­bate over why ho­mo­sex­u­als, as grow­ing ev­i­dence sug­gests, suf­fer ad­dic­tions un­u­su­al­ly of­ten. (Nov. 9, 2006)


Laser reveals hidden earthquake “time bombs”
Us­ing an air­craft-mount­ed la­ser, sci­en­t­ists say they’ve found quake-prone fault lines con­cealed by woods. (Nov. 8, 2006)

Mystery of sudden infant deaths solved?
“Sud­den in­fant death syn­drome” re­sults from ab­nor­mal­i­ties in the brain stem, a pri­mi­tive brain region, a study suggests. (Nov. 8, 2006)

Pollution may impair brain development worldwide, researchers say
A “si­lent pan­demic” may have boost­ed the num­ber of re­tard­ed people while sapping the ranks of the in­tel­li­gent, au­thors of a new stu­dy claim. (Nov. 7, 2006)


Saturn moon resembles Earth at life’s birth, study finds
Ha­zy skies on ear­ly Earth, si­mi­lar to those on Sat­urn’s moon Ti­tan, could have pro­vid­ed the in­g­re­di­ents for life, chem­ists say. (Nov. 6, 2006)

Testosterone levels dropping, research finds
Scientists cited a “sub­stan­tial,” un­ex­plained drop in Amer­i­can men’s tes­tos­ter­one lev­els in the past two decades. (Nov. 4, 2006)

Almost no more seafood after 2048 at current rates, study warns
Sea­food will be all but a me­m­ory if fish­ing and pol­lut­ion go on at cur­rent rates, a study warns. (Nov. 2, 2006)


Brain scans examine “speaking in tongues”
Peo­ple lose con­trol of their speech in a mys­te­ri­ous re­li­gious prac­tice, sci­en­tists re­port. (Nov. 11, 2006)

Antimatter rays studied as medical treatment
Sci­en­tists are stu­dy­ing what could ar­guably be the first use of an ex­ot­ic sub­stance, an­ti­mat­ter, in med­i­cal treat­ment. (Nov. 2, 2006)

Study: red wine substance extends life, counteracts bad diet
A com­pound found to extend life­spans in va­ri­ous small an­i­mals, does so even in mice on fatty di­ets, re­search­ers say. (Nov. 1, 2006)


Elephants recognize mirror image; elephant ancestor found
Two new stud­ies make strides in el­e­phant bi­ol­o­gy, ac­cord­ing to sci­entists. (Oct. 30, 2006)

More evidence for Neanderthal-human mixing claimed
A study has con­c­luded that some long-ig­nored fos­sils are blends of hu­man and Ne­an­der­thal. (Oct. 30, 2006)

The newborn mind’s not-quite “blank slate”
New find­ings may shed light on the old na­ture-nur­ture de­bate, re­search­ers say. (Oct. 30, 2006)


Report: dinos took repeat pounding before final exit
A new ac­count of the rep­tiles’ de­mise de­motes a fa­mous me­te­or im­pact to a sec­ond­ary role. (Oct. 26, 2006)

Oldest complex organic molecules found in fossils
An­cient mo­le­cules from crea­tures known as sea lil­ies of­fer a new way to map ev­o­lu­tion, sci­en­tists say. (Oct. 25, 2006)

Exotic new particles reported found
Sci­en­tists have re­ported dis­cov­er­ing two new sub­a­tom­ic par­ti­cles, rare but im­por­tant rel­a­tives of the com­mon­place pro­ton and neu­tron. (Nov. 16, 2006)


Math vs. vampires: vampires lose
Re­search­ers have laid to rest one source of Hal­low­een night­mares. (Oct. 25, 2006)

A wild, and gay, kingdom
Na­ture is pranc­ing, flut­ter­ing and al­to­geth­er teem­ing with gay an­i­mals, say or­ga­niz­ers of the first mu­se­um ex­hi­bi­tion on the to­pic. (Oct. 24, 2006)

Bizarre under­world microbes raise hopes for alien life
Bac­te­ria found deep in a gold mine re­ly on ra­di­o­ac­t­ive ura­ni­um’s energy to live, sci­en­tists say. (Oct. 19, 2006)


Pot against Alzheimer’s?
Re­search sug­gests the wide­ly ma­l­igned drug may pro­tect against a de­vas­tat­ing brain ill­ness. (Oct. 18, 2006)

Facial expressions may be inherited: study
The blind make si­mi­lar fa­cial ex­pres­sions as their re­l­a­tives, re­search­ers have found. (Oct. 16, 2006)


Yes, we have no blue bananas
Col­or per­cep­tion de­pends part­ly on ex­pec­ta­tions, a stu­dy sug­gests. (Oct. 15, 2006)


Paper challenges bed­rock law of nature
The conserva­tion of en­er­gy law states, in es­sence, that there’s no free lunch. But is there?
(Oct. 14, 2006)

The science of dough
The squishy bread in­gre­di­ent has be­come an ob­ject of en­gi­neer­ing stud­ies. (Oct. 14, 2006)


Tiny genome may be melting away, study suggests
Re­search­ers have iden­ti­fied the small­est cel­lu­lar ge­nome, and say it may suf­fer a strange fate. (Oct. 12, 2006)

Earth’s wobbles may explain some extinctions, research finds
Wob­bles in Earth’s or­bit may ex­plain a puz­zl­ing cycle of ex­tinc­tions, sci­en­t­ists say. (Oct. 11, 2006)


Strongest evidence yet that planets form from “disks”
The phi­los­o­pher Em­ma­n­u­el Kant got it right 200 years ago, re­search­ers pro­claim. (Oct. 9, 2006)

For ants, one playbook fits many situations
Sci­en­tists are in­ter­est­ed in the “al­go­rithms,” or step-by-step rules, by which or­gan­isms make de­ci­sions. (Oct. 9, 2006)

Fitness, childhood IQ may affect old-age brain function
Mental func­tion in old age de­pends more on fit­ness than on child­hood IQ, a stu­dy has found. (Oct. 9, 2006)


Computers help churn out cancer remedies
Sci­en­tists are work­ing on ways to make com­put­ers churn out new can­cer treat­ments, with no need to fi­gure out how they work. (Sept. 29, 2006)

Beauty: that which is easy to understand
Beau­ti­ful faces may be that way be­cause our brains pro­cess them eas­i­ly, a study has found. (Sept. 28, 2006)

Burglars found to be as skilled as pilots
Bur­glars are so good at rob­bing hous­es, they can be con­si­dered ex­perts in their field, two psych­o­lo­gists say. (Sept. 27, 2006)


Scientists attack mysteries of Mona Lisa
For cen­turies she has given us mys­te­ri­ous looks. Now re­search­ers claim to have cracked some mys­ter­ies of the paint­ing itself. (Sept. 26, 2006)

Cancer-free suntans coming?
Sci­en­tists are test­ing a lo­tion that they say gives a nat­u­ral sun­tan while low­er­ing can­cer risk—rather than rais­ing it. (Sept. 26, 2006)

Physicists seek to put one thing in two places
Researchers say they’ve made an ob­ject move just by watch­ing it, which is in­spir­ing them to a still bold­er proj­ect. (Sept. 25, 2006)

Earth hottest in 5,000 years, study suggests
A further slight in­c­rease will pro­duce dan­ger­ous sea le­vel ri­ses and spe­cies ex­ter­mi­na­tions, sci­en­tists warn. (Sept. 25, 2006)

Chemistry defeats the “Godzilla of odors”
Chemicals known as iso­ni­triles have a stench so vile, its vic­tims claim to suf­fer men­tal scars for a while. (Sept. 25, 2006)

“Lucy’s Baby”: pre-human fossil dazzles scientists
Human-like be­low the waist, ape-like above, an an­cient child is gal­va­n­iz­ing the stu­dy of our origins. (Sept. 20, 2006)

Woman gets “bionic arm”
A new device is meant to let am­p­u­tees move ar­ti­fi­cial arms just by think­ing. (Sept. 14, 2006)

Planet “lighter than cork” baffles astronomers
An un­known me­ch­a­n­ism may heat some pla­nets in­ter­nal­ly, puf­fing them up, re­search­ers say. (Sept. 14, 2006)

Ancient writing system said to be found
Arch­ae­o­lo­gists re­port the old­est writ­ing system known in the New World. (Sept. 14, 2006)

Neanderthals hung on tough, study finds
Ne­an­der­thals did­n’t give up on ex­ist­ence eas­i­ly, sci­ent­ists re­port. (Sept. 13, 2006)

Arctic meltdown?
Arc­tic sea ice is hitting re­c­ord lows, pro­b­ab­ly due to glo­b­al warm­ing, NASA re­search­ers say. (Sept. 13, 2006)

Voices in your head might be good
Psy­chol­o­gists have launched a stu­dy to learn why some people con­si­der voi­ces in their heads help­ful. (Sept. 13, 2006)

Green tea may save lives, researchers find
A Ja­panese stu­dy links the be­v­er­age to low­er death rates. (Sept. 12, 2006)

Baby bugs team up for sex scam
The mo­ment they’re born, bee­tles of one spe­cies join forces for a cu­ri­ous drill. (Sept. 11, 2006)

“Vegetative” patient thinks, study suggests
Brain im­ag­ing peers in­to the in­ner lives of peo­ple thought to be to­tal­ly un­re­spon­sive. (Sept. 11, 2006)

Eye photos might deter crime, police say following research
An un­u­sual ex­per­i­ment is the in­spi­ra­tion for a new po­lice cam­paign. (Sept. 8, 2006)

Paintings really can be “heard,” scientist says
It seems the art­ist Kan­din­sky was­n’t talk­ing non­sense when he said his pic­tures could be heard. (Sept. 7, 2006)

Gene fights cancer by aging us, studies find
Bi­ol­o­gists say they’ve found a gene that pro­tects against can­cer by sup­press­ing cell di­vi­sion—making us age faster. (Sept. 6, 2006)

~ Focus: PLANETS  ~

Livable worlds abound, simulations find
Computer stu­dies in­di­cate Earth-like pla­n­ets, warm and wet enough for life, should be plen­ti­ful. (Sept. 7, 2006)


Lost planet, or vastest system?
A plan­et thought to drift alone may in­stead help form the most far-flung pla­n­etary sys­tem known, sci­en­tists say. (Sept. 5, 2006)

Protest over new planet definition
More than 300 as­tro­no­mers have signed a pe­ti­tion pro­test­ing a re­def­i­ni­tion of “plan­et” adopt­ed of­fi­cial­ly last month. (Sept. 5, 2006)

Most dino­saurs still un­ac­counted for, stu­dy finds
Re­search­ers say 71 per­cent of di­no­saur types have yet to be dis­cov­ered.  (Sept. 5, 2006)

Invisible 9/11 victims: the unborn
Stress over the 2001 at­tacks ap­par­ent­ly trig­gered hun­d­reds of mis­car­riages if not more, stu­dies have found. (Sept. 1, 2006)

NASA awards contract for moon craft
Lock­heed Mar­tin Cor­p. won a con­tract to build a manned space­ship. (Aug. 31, 2006)

Bird attacks a force in human evolution?
Pre­his­tor­ic rap­tors may have rou­tine­ly tar­get­ed our an­ces­tors for meals, sci­en­t­ists say.  (Aug. 29, 2006)

A trip to cannibal country
A jour­nal­ist ven­tures in­to one of the last places on Earth where hu­mans eat each oth­er, and like it. (Aug. 29, 2006)

Researchers create permanently “happy” mice
A breed of per­ma­nently “cheer­ful” mice is pro­vid­ing hope for dep­res­sion treat­ment, sci­en­tists re­port. (Aug. 24, 2006)

Pluto no longer a planet
A newly ad­op­ted de­fi­ni­tion of “pla­net” shuts out a longtime mem­ber of the pla­ne­tary club. (Aug. 24, 2006)

New stem cell technique would avoid killing embryos
Sci­en­t­ists say they’ve ma­n­aged to grow hu­man em­bry­onic stem cells by a meth­od that can leave em­b­ryos in­tact. (Aug. 23, 2006)

Jilted dogs feel intense jealousy, study finds
New re­search chal­lenges long-held sci­en­ti­fic be­liefs about ani­mal emo­tions. (Aug. 22, 2006)

Stupendous crash proves “dark matter” exists, astronomers claim
The most force­ful known col­li­sion in the uni­verse has torn apart nor­mal and dark mat­ter, re­search­ers say. (Aug. 21, 2006)

Ants’ Olympic jumps caught on tape
New high-speed vi­d­eo­clips show how cer­tain ants ma­nage to jump 40 times their own length. (Aug. 21, 2006)

“Artificial muscles” to liven TV color
Sci­en­t­ists are ex­plor­ing a tech­no­l­ogy that they say could pro­duce more life­like colors. (Aug. 17, 2006)

A gene that makes us human?
A new­found gene might help ex­plain why our brains are so big, re­search­ers say. (Aug. 16, 2006)

Bringing back the extinct
Mouse ex­pe­r­i­ments are re­viv­ing the idea that some ex­tinct spe­cies can be re­sur­rec­ted. (Aug. 14, 2006)

Now downloadable: “music” of the stars
The an­cient Greeks be­lieved the stars par­t­i­ci­pate in a sort of ce­l­es­t­ial sym­phony. They had it wrong—but not to­tally. (Aug. 13, 2006)


“Toxic en­vi­ron­ment” mak­ing kids fat, study claims
Un­healthy, ad­dic­tive food is be­hind to­day’s obes­ity epi­de­mic, a sci­en­t­ist says. (Aug. 11, 2006)

No black holes after all?
One of the uni­verse’s bright­est and furth­est known ob­jects might not be a black hole as tra­di­tion­ally thought, a study suggests. (Aug. 11, 2006)

New robot rolls on ball
“Ballbot” ba­lan­ces and moves on a me­tal ball in­stead of legs or wheels. (Aug. 11, 2006)

Human-animal mixing going too far, report says
An org­a­ni­za­tion is warn­ing that the creat­ion of fused or­g­an­isms rais­es grave eth­i­cal ques­tions. (Aug. 9, 2006)

Driverless cars to unclog traffic
Authorities in Eu­rope are push­ing a plan to ease traf­fic and pol­lu­tion through au­to­ma­ted ve­hi­cles. (Aug. 9, 2006)

Call for proposals to help save Earth
A group is of­fer­ing grants to am­a­teur and pro­fess­io­nal as­tro­no­mers to help find er­rant as­ter­oids. (July 27, 2006)

Lowly graphite stirs new excitement
Graph­ite, the com­mon ma­ter­ial used in pen­cils, can be­have in sur­pri­s­ing ways, re­search­ers have found. (July 25, 2006)

Diet changes may not help fight cancer, studies find
New re­search sug­gests healthy diets have lim­ited ben­e­fits in can­cer treat­ment. (July 23, 2006)

Ancient “apartheid” leaves modern imprint
Genetic evi­dence re­veals a sys­tem of of­fi­cial dis­cri­m­in­a­tion in an­cient Eng­land, sci­en­t­ists say. (July 19, 2006)

Animals teach pups with surprising skill, scientists say
Meer­kats in­s­truct and en­cour­age their young in food-catch­ing, ac­cord­ing to a study. (July 15, 2006)

Climate change boosting wildfires, study finds
Global warm­ing may be driv­ing wild­fires in the West­ern U.S., re­search­ers claim. (July 11, 2006)

Strange musical sounds draw scientific scrutiny
An ac­claimed vio­lin­ist con­jures sounds from her in­stru­ment that shouldn’t be pos­sible. (July 14, 2006)


Sites under review for telescope that could detect alien TV
Ast­ro­n­o­mers are work­ing to choose a site for a gi­ant tel­e­scope that could read TV sig­nals from distant ci­v­il­iz­a­tions.
(July 10, 2006)

Form of “empathy” found in mice
Researchers say mice can feel each oth­ers’ pain, in a way. (June 29, 2006)

Startling variety in planetary birthplaces
Astronomers once thought the dusty clouds that spawn plan­ets all looked pretty much the same. But no more. (June 28, 2006)

Best way to build brains of children: play with them
Love beats trendy toys, classes or music as brain food for pre­school­ers, a re­port says.

Radio­active scorpion venom deemed safe cancer treat­ment
Sci­en­tists are ex­plor­ing an un­us­ual new ther­apy for an ag­gres­sive brain can­cer. (June 26, 2006)

Human-dolphin partnership inspires gov’t protection
The gov­ern­ment of Myan­mar has moved to safe­guard a dol­phin-fisher­man col­la­bo­ra­tion. (June 26, 2006)

The science of sniping on eBay
A des­pised prac­tice of pla­cing last-sec­ond bids is ac­tu­al­ly the best stra­t­e­gy in on­line auc­tions, ac­cord­ing to sci­en­tists. (June 25, 2006)

Oldest known beads reported found
The find­ing may change sci­en­tists’ views of how hu­man cul­ture e­merged, re­search­ers claim. (June 22, 2006)

Plant has sex with it­self
Ma­ny plants can fer­ti­lize them­selves, but bi­o­lo­gists in Ch­ina say they’ve found one that takes things a step fur­ther. (June 21, 2006)

Earth hottest in 400 years, report says
A re­port draft­ed by re­quest of U.S. Con­gress paints a stark picture of glo­bal warm­ing. (June 22, 2006)

Arrests lead to “origins” of Western painting
Au­tho­ri­ties say a new­found, an­cient tomb high­lights the need to pro­tect Ita­ly’s vul­ner­a­ble her­i­tage. (June 17, 2006)

Ego traps us in costly, losing battles, study finds
Failure. Why does it hap­pen? A com­mon thread runs through many of our most pain­ful, drawn-out fias­cos, re­search­ers say.
(June 15, 2006)

AIDS deadliness might be evolutionary accident, researchers say
AIDS would be a much milder con­di­tion, sci­en­tists claim, were it not for a mu­ta­tion af­fect­ing some forms of the virus. (June 15, 2006)

In study, two species become one
Re­search­ers stu­dy­ing but­ter­flies say they have the first clear evi­dence that ani­mal spe­cies can merge. (June 14, 2006)

Study links migraines, sex drive
Con­tra­ry to the cli­ché, “Not to­night, I have a head­ache,” a study has found mi­graine suf­ferers re­port grea­ter sex­ual de­sire than peo­ple with other types of head­aches. (June 13, 2006)

Expedition to study alien-like glacier
An Arc­tic is­land that has yielded sen­s­a­tio­nal fos­sils is now grab­bing sci­en­tists’ at­ten­tion for an­other rea­son. (June 13, 2006)

Giant “ball of fire” hurtling through space
Astronomers say they have found a vast, comet-like fire­ball plow­ing into a dis­tant clus­ter of ga­l­ax­ies. (June 12, 2006)

Fish may avoid “sexual harassment,” researchers say
Fe­male guppies seem to risk their lives to flee a bar­rage of male ad­van­ces, sci­en­tists have found. (June 9, 2005)

First cancer vaccine approved
U.S. regulators have approved a vaccine designed to cripple the virus responsible for cervical cancer. (June 9, 2006)

“Miniature” dinosaurs surprise researchers
The biggest land animals that ever lived had some diminutive cousins, a study has found. (June 7, 2006)

Cosmic blasts could point to strange state of matter
Some mysterious explosions in space may signal the birth of bizarre objects known as quark stars, researchers claim. (June 5, 2006)

Professor unmasks “666” superstition
Prophesies of evil abound for dates or places where the number 666 occurs, including Tuesday, June 6: “6/6/06.” (June 4, 2006)

Mega-crater linked to mass extinction before dinosaurs
Scientists say they have found the Earth’s biggest known crater, and have linked it to the planet’s worst die-off.

Machine might detect “dark matter”
A device due to switch on next year might detect the enigmatic substance that pervades all galaxies, physicists say.
 (June 4, 2006)

Researchers trace origin of an “altruism gene”
Prob­ing an evo­lu­tion­ary mys­tery, sci­en­tists say they have penned the first his­tory of a gene for coo­per­a­tion.
(May 29, 2006)

Humanoid robot is a crowd-pleaser
Korean researchers have presented an “android” that can simulate four emotions and knows 400 words. (May 25, 2006)

Invisibility cloaks near?
Scientists have published equations showing how the science-fiction devices could work. (May 25, 2006)

Race of tiny people didn’t exist, scientists say
More and more researchers are disputing a 2004 study concluding that miniature humans evolved on an island. (May 18, 2006)

Animals may plan ahead, studies find
The investigations may be important for understanding the evolution of foresight, according to an expert. (May 18, 2006)

Shedding light on the origin of flowers
New research may help clarify a question that Darwin called an “abominable mystery.” (May 17, 2006)

Bananas could die out, group warns
Humans are wiping out wild bananas, and commercial varieties may not be able to survive, U.N. officials say. (May 17, 2006)

One gene change turns “cheating” microbe to role model
A discovery shows that simple mutations can transform complex forms of social behavior, biologists say. (May 17, 2006)

Light’s most exotic trick yet: so fast it goes backwards?
Physicists have managed in recent years to make light go faster and slower than its normal speed limit. Now they report going further.
(May 12, 2006)

New monkey genus created, first time in 83 years
A newfound monkey species is so unique, it requires a new genus—but it’s gravely threatened, experts say. (May 11, 2006)

Fungus said to attack iconic cave paintings
A mold spreading at the site of the famous Lascaux Cave paintings has begun reaching the artworks themselves, a magazine reports. (May 11, 2006)

Humans may be off the hook for some ancient extinctions
New evidence has come to light in one of prehistory’s greatest “whodunnit” stories. (May 11, 2006)

“Black” features can sway jurors toward death penalty: study
Men who look stereotypically “black” are much likelier to be executed than light-skinned blacks for similar crimes, researchers say. (May 9, 2006)

Dolphins may “name” themselves
Some dolphin whistles appear to convey information revealing their identity, scientists claim. (May 8, 2006)

Lesbians respond differently to human scents, study finds
New studies are expanding scientists’ investigations into brain-influencing chemicals called pheromones. (May 8, 2006)

Ultra-fast light pulses capture subatomic world
Researchers say they have used some of the shortest pulses of laser light ever produced to better understand electrons. (May 8, 2006)

Fossil may lie near root of fish, land animal lineages
Scientists are reporting a fossil that may represent a bridge between land vertebrates and most of today’s fish species.

World’s media duped by “pyramid” find, experts claim
Some prominent archaeologists are asking why newspapers worldwide fell for what they call an absurd report of a Bosnian pyramid. (May 3, 2006)

Polar bears, hippos join list of threatened species
The list of species facing extinction is growing, a global network of environmental groups and scientists announced. (May 2, 2006)

Engineered virus makes cancer cells “eat themselves”
Researchers say they’ve created a virus that tracks down tumor cells and forces them to devour themselves. (May 3, 2006)

Men more jealous when lover most fertile, researchers say
Men become more jealous of dominant males when their female partner is near ovulation, a study has found. (May 2, 2006)

From sick kids, new insight into causes of aging
Scientists say they have found a key link between a devastating “early-aging” syndrome and normal aging. (April 27, 2006)

Surprising relationship between order, chaos
One of nature’s deepest puzzles is illustrated by some surprisingly common events in which disorder seemingly helps produce its opposite. (April 26, 2006)

Birds grasp key rule of grammar, study finds
The European starling has an unsuspected ability to pick up “human-only” language skills, researchers suggest. (April 26, 2006)

Face transplant patient said to be healing
The world’s second face transplant, performed in China, has been a success so far, Chinese media reported. (April 25, 2006)

Brain cells that track values of objects
Researchers say they may have found some brain cells that participate in our purchasing choices. (April 24, 2006)

Gene found in disease that turns victims to “statues”
Scientists are unraveling
secrets of a devastating condition that turns muscle to bone. (April 24, 2006)

Evidence of pyramid reported in Bosnia
Archaeologists have unearthed stone slabs that they say could be part of an ancient pyramid buried under a tall hill. (April 20, 2006)


Wall of galaxies tugs on us, astronomers find
Sci­en­tists say they’re clo­sing in on an un­der­stand­ing of the long-sought “Great At­tract­or.”
(April 19, 2006)

Huge dinosaur may have hunted in “packs”
A newly described beast rivaling T. rex in size may shed light on the social side of dinosaurs, researchers say. (April 18, 2006)

Frigid lakes not the “life labs” they were thought to be?
Antarctic lakes locked under ice were thought to be totally isolated, and thus to house exotic life forms. Maybe not. (April 19, 2006)

“Mediterranean” diet linked to lower Alzheimer’s risk
A study tied fruit- and vegetable-rich diets to lower Alzheimer’s disease rates among Americans. (April 18, 2006)

“Crying” walrus pups may be orphaned thanks to global warming
Melting ocean ice may be leaving walrus pups stranded, according to researchers. (April 16, 2006)

Premature babies feel pain—but fetuses don’t, researchers claim
Two new reports shed light on some of the latest thinking on a charged question: whether the unborn feel pain. (April 14, 2006)

Drug trial disaster prompts call for new procedures
A medical journal has called for changing approval processes for early-stage drug trials in the U.K. (April 13, 2006)

Newly authenticated, ancient text claims Judas was no traitor
Researchers unveiled an ancient Christian manuscript that was called heretical in its own time. (April 6, 2006)

Giant black holes to collide, astronomers say
Two distant “supermassive” black holes are believed to be spiraling into each other, and to a violent union. (April 6, 2006)

Evidence of stone-age dentistry reported
Teeth as old as 9,000 years betray prehistoric trips to the dentist, anthropologists say. (April 5, 2006)

Jesus walked on ice, researcher says
A scientist has offered a provocative new account of the biblical tale that Jesus walked on water. (April 5, 2006)

Scientists rebuild bladders in lab
Researchers report for the first time successfully rebuilding complex organs using lab-cultivated tissue. (April 3, 2006)

People don’t recognize their obesity, study finds
Obese people tend to know their own weight, but they don’t realize it constitutes obesity, scientists report. (April 4, 2006)

Differences between men, women? The news they choose can be one
Both sexes sometimes use news reading as an anger-management strategy, but they do so in opposite ways, a study suggests. (April 3, 2006)

Study: Insects contribute $57 billion to U.S. economy
The low-end estimate highlights what insects provide through pollination, pest control and other services, researchers say. (April 3, 2006)

Ocean “dead zones” cause fish sex changes, scientists say
Pollution-induced lack of oxygen in parts of the oceans could lead to sex changes that threaten fish with extinction, according to a study. (March 31, 2006)

Saturn “moonlets” suggest smashup created rings, study finds
Researchers also say there’s growing evidence of parallels between ring formation and planet formation. (March 31, 2006)

Evolutionary principles used to predict cancer
Like a diverse ecosystem, a tumor with highly diverse cells will evolve more quickly—to cancer, a study has found. (March 29, 2006)


Brain found to mature faster in highest-IQ kids
The thinking part of the brain thickens and thins faster as high- intelligence youth grow, researchers say. (March 29, 2006)

Loneliness linked to health risk
U.S. health officials say they’re seeking ways to ease loneliness nationwide, as a study has tied it to to high blood pressure and other health risks. (March 29, 2006)

New type of comet may be source of our oceans, study finds
Three objects reported to look like comets, but act like asteroids have grabbed scientists’ interest. (March 23, 2006)


Global warming yields “glacial earthquakes”
Researchers are warning of dramatic sea level rises and a newfound phenomenon, glacial earthquakes. (March 23, 2006)


Space rock risk underreported, researchers say
Growing numbers of astronomers are questioning traditional estimates of how often comets or asteroids hit Earth. (March 21, 2006)

In new state of matter, echoes of an old symbol
A medieval emblem of three interlocking circles is finding new life as a description of some special atomic interactions. (March 16, 2006)

Was “extinct” woodpecker sighting real?
Scientists debate whether a long-lost bird was really caught on videotape. (March 16, 2006)

Astronomers peer into the “first trillionth of a second”
New data help confirm that the newborn cosmos underwent a stupendous growth spurt, scientists say. (March 16, 2006)

Hormone inspires animal “babysitting”
Researchers have long turned to animals to study how cooperation evolved. New findings highlight the role of hormones. (March 15, 2006)

Scientists develop method to view Sun’s far side
A new technique is said to make the Sun’s hidden face fully visible for the first time. (March 15, 2006)

Saturn moon may have liquid water, researchers say
Researchers say evidence of water reservoirs erupting in geysers on the moon Enceladus may expand the search for alien life. (March 9, 2006)

Study examines how humans are still evolving
Scientists report finding
more than 700 genetic variants that evolution may have favored in the past 10,000 years. (March 8, 2006)

Baby dino reveals secrets of its horns
Side by side, skull casts of an adult and baby Triceratops emphasize the features that scientists say have made infants lovable over the ages.
(March 7, 2006)

Pompeii destruction wasn’t worst Vesuvius had to offer: study
Thousands of footprint trails attest to a mass flight from a prehistoric village, geologists say. (March 6, 2006)

Scientists predict solar storms with “unprecedented” accuracy
The next cycle of solar storms will be up to 50 percent stronger than the last one and begin several months late, researchers report. (March 7, 2006)

How mega- vortices form: energy theft, researchers say
Energetic swirling structures, vortices, often form where fluids flow irregularly or turbulently. (March 2, 2006)

Redrawn “tree of life” favors hot-origins theory
A newly detailed map of evolutionary relationships suggests the ancestor of all life forms dwelt somewhere hot, according to researchers. (March 2, 2006)

Chimps cooperate strategically, study finds
Chimps can assess how and when to work together, according to scientists.
(March 2, 2006)

Molecule blamed for “scar” in brains of the depressed
Using mice, researchers say they may have found molecules related to a psychological “scar” that haunts depressed people. (March 1, 2006)

Jurassic “beaver” from China found
A fossil shows mammals conquered the water earlier than we thought, researchers say. (Feb. 27, 2006)

Oldest known remains of sea-faring ships reported
The discoveries include goods from the “lost” land of Punt, a fabled Red Sea trading center, according to archaeologists. (Feb. 27, 2006)

Scientists report new kind of cosmic explosion
Astronomers say they have detected a new type of blast that has sent scientists worldwide scrambling to telescopes. (Feb. 26, 2006)

Galaxy smashups littered early universe, study finds
The biggest galaxies formed through repeated mergers billions of years ago, astronomers say.

Acidifying oceans could cause mass extinction, scientist warns
Researchers have found that Earth’s oceans are gradually becoming a mild acid. (Feb. 21, 2006)

Your DNA may reveal your last name
A study in Britain has found that men who share a surname are often related, which could be useful to police. (Feb. 21, 2006)


Rats found to understand cause and effect
The discovery contradicts common assumptions among scientists, according to researchers. (Feb. 16, 2006)

Sex, cleaner of genomes
Sometimes, evolution needs a little help erasing harmful mutations. Sex may come to the rescue, a new study has found. (Feb. 16, 2006)

Complex decisions best left to your unconscious, study finds
It may be best to forget about a decision temporarily before making it, scientists say. (Feb. 16, 2006)


Next dinosaur news likely to come from small packages
Dinosaurs seem bigger than life. But the next big answers about them may come from tiny remains, scientists predict. (Feb. 16, 2006)

Study: stock market acts oddly before a crash
Before and after crashes, stock prices behave in some ways like heartbeats and earthquakes, physicists have found. (Feb. 15, 2006)

“Dark energy” might not exist, scientists say
Corrections to the law of gravity might explain effects usually attributed to a mysterious force, some researchers propose. (Feb. 14, 2006)

Tomb discoveries stun
Archaeologists report the largest ancient Greek tomb found, as well as the first tomb uncovered in Egypt’s Valley of the Kings since that of King Tut. (Feb. 14, 2006)

Predicting the next hit
Why are some songs so much more popular than others? A study has found quality has a bit to do with it, but peer influence much more. (Feb. 9, 2006)

For women, eating “good” fats found more important than eating less fat
A popular theory that cutting fat intake alone helps prevent cancer and heart disease is in question, a study has found. (Feb. 7, 2006)

T. Rex “Granddaddy” described as vicious little monster
Fossils suggest Tyrannosaurus Rex’s earliest known ancestor was a fierce hunter who wore a crown for the ladies, researchers say. (Feb. 7, 2006)

“Lost World” of wildlife found in jungle
An expedition to an isolated Asian jungle revealed new species, giant flowers and exotic animals unafraid of humans, scientists report. (Feb. 7, 2006)

Making “Pavlov’s Cockroach”
Scientists are trying to get cockroaches to drool on demand, as dogs did in a famous Russian experiment. (Feb. 4, 2006)

“Ongoing galaxy formation” detected
Astronomers report finding a blob of gas around a spiral galaxy, evidence of the galaxy formation process. (Feb. 3, 2006)

Study finds our cells may get old with us
A new finding could make it easier for scientists to study the aging process. (Feb. 2, 2006)

When déjà vu becomes unbearable
If you can’t watch TV because everything seems to be a repeat—even the news—you may have a problem. Researchers are looking into it. (Jan. 30, 2006)

Possible “earliest” slave remains found
Researchers are studying remains of what they say may be some of the earliest slaves brought to the Americas from Africa. (Jan. 30, 2006)

Can you catch obesity?
If some researchers are right, you may soon be hearing a surprising piece of advice to avoid obesity: wash your hands. (Jan. 30, 2006)

Vaccine gives “100%” bird flu protection in animal study
Mass vaccinations of livestock could help stop the avian flu that is causing global concern, scientists suggest. (Jan. 28, 2006)

Searching for extra dimensions
A new detector of elusive particles called neutrinos might provide evidence for extra dimensions, researchers say. (Jan. 26, 2006)

New lakes found beneath Antarctic ice
Scientists report finding the second and third largest known of nearly 150 lakes locked under Antarctic ice. (Jan. 26, 2006)

Many “Earths” out there, scientists say after planet find
A discovery is raising astronomers’ hopes that an Earth-like planet will turn up before long. (Jan. 25, 2006)

Newfound Roman tomb said to predate empire
A tomb found
beneath the Roman Forum could pre-date the ancient empire by hundreds of years. (Jan. 21, 2006)

Love and madness not that different?
Research over the past several years has clarified what happens in the brain when we fall in love. (Jan. 20, 2006)

Volcano plumes found to well from unsuspected depths
The liquid rock spewed by volcanoes originates much deeper than previously thought, geologists say. (Jan. 20, 2006)

Pluto mission launched
The spacecraft would rendezvous with the ice planet in 2015. (Jan. 19, 2006)

Brain scans betray our joy in others’ suffering
The satisfaction we sometimes feel if someone we dislike suffers has an evolutionary role, some biologists argue. (Jan. 18, 2006)

Divorce shreds wealth, study finds
A slide in wealth starts four years before divorce becomes official, on average, according to research. (Jan. 18, 2006)

Smoking in pregnancy may deform fingers, toes, researchers find
The effect, while uncommon, can occur even before a woman knows she’s pregnant, doctors say. (Jan. 15, 2006)

Capsule brings comet dust to Earth
Astronomers hope the dust will reveal facts about the origin of our Solar System. (Jan. 15, 2006)

Study: eating less may delay human aging
Scientists report the first evidence that a phenomenon long noted in some animals may be true of humans. (Jan. 15, 2006)

Penguins’ wide stride tapped for movement improvement
The comical waddling motion of penguins may help humans and robots walk better, a researcher says. (Jan. 13, 2006)

Global warming sowing disease, extinction, researchers say
Climate change is promoting diseases that have killed off dozens of amphibian species, and such illnesses could affect humans, findings suggest. (Jan. 11, 2006)

Ants teach each other to find food, study finds
Scientists say they may have the first documented case of teaching among non-humans. (Jan. 11, 2006)

~ Spotlight: Galaxies & Black Holes ~

Milky way “vibrating like a drum”
Our galaxy is warped, and vibrates like a drum playing three deep, deep notes, a study suggests. (Jan. 10, 2006)

Unsuspected violence in the hearts of galaxies
Supermassive black holes are wreaking havoc in galaxies that look peaceful, astronomers say. (Jan. 10, 2006)

Galactic mergers feed growing monster black holes: study
Mergers of galaxies provides a feast for giant black holes lurking in them, astronomers have found. (Jan. 10, 2006)

Black hole “dents” space and time
Researchers report evidence that a black hole is bending space and time, as Einstein predicted it should. (Jan. 10, 2006)

Songbirds remember dad’s tunes
Researchers say they have learned which brain area zebra finches use to remember what their fathers sang. (Jan. 10, 2006)

Dogs can detect lung, breast cancer early: study
Canines could help fight the leading killers among cancers worldwide, researchers say. (Jan. 5, 2006)

Thriving under our noses, stealthily: coyotes
Major U.S. cities are full of coyotes and the people don’t even know it, researchers say. The beasts may even be quietly helping us. (Jan. 5, 2006)

A molecule that won’t sit still
Chemists say they have finally figured out the shape of a molecule whose furious jiggling thwarted past attempts to study it. (Jan. 5, 2006)

First baby reported born from frozen commercial egg bank (Jan. 3, 2006)

- More -

New music-search system would do the "listening" for you (Jan. 8, 2006)