This month, a drilling platform will rise in the Gulf of Mexico, but it won’t be aiming for oil. Scientists will try to sink a diamond-tipped bit into the heart of Chicxulub crater—the buried remnant of the asteroid impact 66 million years ago that killed off the dinosaurs, along with most other life on the planet.
The University of California, Berkeley, is considering disbanding the university’s College of Chemistry to help cope with a cash crunch at one of the country’s most prominent public universities. According to an article in the Daily Californian, the university’s flagship campus is $150 million in debt, and is facing flat income from tuition and rising costs.
Ever wonder why your hair goes gray? Researchers have long known that a slowdown in the production of melanin, the pigment that colors hair, is to blame. But they don’t know precisely what starts the slowdown. Now, researchers have identified 18 genes that appear to influence hair traits, including the first ever to be associated with graying.
The archetypal U.S. innovator is not a young white college dropout building a startup in his garage, argues a wide-ranging new study of the demographics of U.S. innovators. Rather than Steve Jobs or Bill Gates, a middle-aged male Ph.D. toiling at a large U.S. firm—and perhaps born abroad—is more likely to be behind the next big thing.
A fungal disease that is killing amphibians worldwide may be spreading by making the mating calls of infected males more attractive to females. The finding—one of the first to show that the pathogen can alter a species’s reproductive behavior—could explain why frogs and related animals are continuing to disappear across the globe.
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