Unprecedented Close-Up View of Asteroid Shows Rocks That Look Surprisingly Familiar

On 3 October 2018, the Hayabusa2 spacecraft dropped a lander toward the surface of the asteroid Ryugu from 135 feet up. The lander, MASCOT, hit a boulder, bounced backward, and tumbled 55 feet along the asteroid’s surface before coming to rest upside down in a hole. Read More >>

Scientists Reveal Brain Structure of 20-Million-Year-Old Monkey

Palaeontologists operating CT scanners have revealed the structure of a 20-million-year-old primate brain, thanks to an extremely well-preserved fossil skull. Read More >>

Dirty Air May Increase Your Risk for Depression and Bipolar Disorder

With every breath you take, you’re inhaling a lot more than just the oxygen your lungs crave. Particulate matter, sulfur dioxide, ozone—all pollutants known to damage the heart and lungs—probably enter your body, too. Read More >>

To Pet Owners, a Dog’s Whimpering Sounds Just as Sad as an Infant’s Cry

Devoted pet owners are often said to treat their furry friends like children. A new study out Thursday seems to show that’s not too far from the truth. The study found, among other things, that pet owners rated the sounds of a dog whimpering to be sad as cries coming from a human baby. Read More >>

Air Pollution From Cars Linked to Degenerative Eye Disease

The effects of pollution on human health are often subtle yet wide-reaching. Case in point, a new study out Tuesday seems to show that heavy exposure to certain automobile fumes can raise the risk of developing a degenerative disease that steadily erodes eyesight. Read More >>

Scientists Create a Healthier Butter-Like Spread Made from 80 Per Cent Water

As delicious as butter is—adding flavour and texture to almost any food—it’s not the healthiest thing to smear on toast. Oil-based spreads like margarine are often considered a better heart-smart alternative, but food scientists at Cornell University have come up with what could be the ultimate butter substitute made primarily from water. Read More >>

NASA Mission to Visit Jupiter’s Moon Europa Moves to Final Construction Phase

A mission to sample Jupiter’s moon Europa for signs of life will move into its final design and construction phase, according to a NASA announcement. Read More >>

MDMA-Assisted Therapy Shows Promise as Treatment for Alcohol Addiction

Supplementing psychotherapy with small doses of MDMA could be an effective strategy to prevent relapses of alcohol addiction in patients, an ongoing small clinical trial suggests. The research is yet another example of how scientists and doctors are finding or rediscovering therapeutic uses for recreational and illicit drugs. Read More >>

The Moon Shines Brighter Than the Sun… in Gamma Rays

The Moon is brighter than the Sun, if you’re measuring it in gamma rays. Sort of. Read More >>

Hurricanes and Climate Change Might Make Spiders More Aggressive

Hurricanes could make spider colonies more aggressive over time, according to a new paper. Let’s add “avoiding extra-evil spider colonies” to our list of reasons to fight climate change, please and thanks. Read More >>

climate change
Icelanders Mourn Loss of Okjökull Glacier With Ceremony, Plaque

Politicians, scientists, and others gathered in Borgarfjörður, Iceland, northeast of Reykjavik on Sunday to mourn the loss of the Okjökull glacier, laying a plaque warning of the impact of climate change, the BBC reported. Read More >>

Dozens of People Have Lung Disease Linked to Vaping, and No One Knows Why

The number of people afflicted and hospitalised with serious lung disease connected to vaping continues to grow. This week, multiple states in the US reported similar cases, and the toll of confirmed and possible victims has climbed into the dozens. Right now, health officials and outside experts still seem to be in the dark as to what exactly is going on. Read More >>

Portugal Is Using Goats to Prepare for Wildfires, But There’s Not Enough Shepherds

Portugal, which has been ravaged by wildfires of increasing severity and duration in the era of climate change, is turning back to the goat to clear underbrush in the hopes of limiting potential fuel sources for the blazes, the New York Times reported on Saturday. Read More >>

A Girl Lived with a ‘Twin’ Inside Her for 17 Years Without Knowing

A girl in India unknowingly lived with one of the rarest and most unsettling medical conditions for nearly two decades, her doctors say. According to a case report out this week, the girl had a sac containing her still-growing “twin” lodged in her abdomen for 17 years. The twin had hair, teeth, and even a spine. Read More >>