Science & Health

NPR Story
10:46 am
Fri April 5, 2013

President Obama Calls For A 'BRAIN Initiative'

Originally published on Mon April 8, 2013 1:15 pm

Transcript

IRA FLATOW, HOST:

Early this week, President Obama announced a new research initiative focused on the human brain. Here he is talking about it at the White House.

(SOUNDBITE OF SPEECH)

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NPR Story
10:46 am
Fri April 5, 2013

'Drunk Tank Pink' Finds Clues To Behavior

Originally published on Fri April 5, 2013 3:54 pm

Transcript

IRA FLATOW, HOST:

If you're looking for a date on Match.com, does it matter what color your shirt is in your profile picture? Or if you're trying to make a partner, you want to make partner at a law firm, yeah, does having a hard-to-pronounce last name hurt your chances? Does staring at a pile of money, even phony Monopoly money, make you more selfish?

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NPR Story
10:46 am
Fri April 5, 2013

Amyloid Proteins Help Paralyzed Mice Walk Again

Originally published on Fri April 5, 2013 3:54 pm

Reporting in Science Translational Medicine, researchers write that amyloid-forming proteins, traditionally thought of as enemies to the nervous system, may actually be protective 'guardians' instead. Study author Lawrence Steinman, a neurologist at Stanford University, explains how amyloid injections helped paralyzed mice with a multiple-sclerosis-like disease walk again.

The Salt
10:04 am
Fri April 5, 2013

Freezing Food Doesn't Kill E. Coli And Other Germs

The NPR Science Desk freezer: now we know we can't presume it's germ-free.
Daniel M.N. Turner NPR

Think that freezing food kills E. coli and other nasty microbes? Think again.

That's the lesson from the new E. coli outbreak caused by frozen chicken quesadillas and other snacks that has sickened 24 people in 15 states.

Freezing does slow down the microbes that cause food to spoil, but it's pretty much useless for killing dangerous bugs.

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Krulwich Wonders...
8:27 am
Fri April 5, 2013

Monty Python's John Cleese Almost Explains Our Brains

YouTube

Originally published on Fri April 5, 2013 9:50 am

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Research News
3:31 am
Fri April 5, 2013

Brain Scans Can Predict Who's Likely To Be A Repeat Offender

Originally published on Fri April 5, 2013 8:51 pm

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

Imagine using mind technology to arrest and convict people before a crime actually happens. Sounds like something out of the movie "Minority Report."

(SOUNDBITE OF MOVIE, "MINORITY REPORT")

TOM CRUISE: (as Chief John Anderton) I'm placing you under arrest for the future murder of Sarah Marks and Donald Dubin that was to take place today, April 22nd, at 0800 hours and four minutes.

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Research News
5:00 pm
Thu April 4, 2013

Some Deep-Sea Microbes Are Hungry For Rocket Fuel

This bacterium-like microbe, Archaeoglobus fulgidus, seen here in a false-color image, can live in the high temperatures found near deep-sea vents. They can also survive by consuming perchlorate, a chemical used in rocket fuel.
Alfred Pasieka Science Source

Originally published on Fri April 5, 2013 8:36 am

It's life, but not as we know it. Researchers in the Netherlands have found that a microbe from deep beneath the ocean can breathe a major ingredient in rocket fuel. The discovery suggests that early life may have used many different kinds of chemicals besides oxygen to survive and thrive.

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Shots - Health News
1:57 pm
Thu April 4, 2013

Researchers Use Brain Scans To Reveal Hidden Dreamscape

A window into dreams may now be opening.
Silver Screen Collection Getty Images

Originally published on Fri April 5, 2013 1:57 pm

Scientists say they have found a way to get a glimpse of people's dreams.

"Our results show that we can predict what a person's seeing during dreams," says Yukiyasu Kamitani, a researcher at the ATR Computational Neuroscience Laboratories in Kyoto, Japan.

Philosophers, poets and psychologists have long shared a fascination with dreams. But Jack Gallant, a neuroscientist at the University of California, Berkeley says solving the mystery of our dreams is one tough problem.

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Research News
4:11 am
Thu April 4, 2013

Study: Record Number Of People Are Cohabitating

More and more Americans are opting to live together before they get married. That's according to new federal data. And on average, cohabitations last about 22 months compared to 13 months in 1995.

Environment
2:21 am
Thu April 4, 2013

Arkansas Oil Spill Sheds Light On Aging Pipeline System

A worker cleans up oil in Mayflower, Ark., on Monday, days after a pipeline ruptured and spewed oil over lawns and roadways.
Jeannie Nuss AP

Originally published on Thu April 4, 2013 9:45 am

Amber Bartlett was waiting last Friday for her kids to come home from school. One of them called from the entrance to the upscale subdivision near Little Rock, Ark., to tell her the community was being evacuated because of an oil spill. Bartlett was amazed by what she saw out her front door.

"I mean, just rolling oil. I mean, it was like a river," she says. "It had little waves in it."

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Space
4:38 pm
Wed April 3, 2013

Sensor On Space Station May Have Seen Hints Of Elusive Dark Matter

Astronauts work to install the alpha magnetic spectrometer on the International Space Station on May 26, 2011.
NASA

Originally published on Wed April 3, 2013 7:50 pm

An international team of researchers announced in Switzerland on Wednesday that an experiment on the International Space Station may have seen hints of something called dark matter. The finding could be a milestone in the decades-long search for the universe's missing material.

Only a tiny sliver of stuff in the universe is visible to scientists; the rest is dark matter. Researchers don't know what it is, but they know it's there. Its gravity pulls on the things we can see.

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Science
1:18 pm
Wed April 3, 2013

The Remarkable Biodiversity Of Belly Buttons

Originally published on Thu April 4, 2013 9:42 am

Transcript

NEAL CONAN, HOST:

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Environment
1:09 pm
Wed April 3, 2013

Why Farms Plan To Plant So Much Corn This Year

Originally published on Wed April 3, 2013 1:48 pm

U.S. farmers anticipate planting the most corn since 1936, a total of 97.3 million acres. Farmers are hoping to rebuild their corn supplies after last year's drought. Chad Hart, economics professor at Iowa State University, explains why farmers intend to plant high amount of corn this season.

Shots - Health News
11:26 am
Wed April 3, 2013

Administration Hits Pause On Health Exchanges For Small Businesses

Shops and other small firms may be open, but health insurance exchanges will take a little longer before they're ready to offer a full range of health plans for small business customers.
iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Fri April 5, 2013 1:58 pm

The Obama administration is delaying the start of a key piece of the Affordable Care Act. Workers in small businesses will have to wait an additional year to be able to choose from more than one plan in the marketplaces that start next January.

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Krulwich Wonders...
10:21 am
Wed April 3, 2013

Daring, Dangerous DIY: Pants With Benefits?

Vimeo

Originally published on Wed April 3, 2013 5:34 pm

They are pants. Or maybe we should call them Pants with Benefits. Some of you — especially parents of young teens — will find them totally inappropriate. The folks at Instructables.com find them totally silly, which is why they invented them.

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