biology

The Many Ways We're Using Mutant Mosquitos To Eradicate Disease

Mosquitos suck. It’s not just because of those itchy red bites we all get in the summer, either. Mosquitos suck because they’re the deadliest animals on the planet, and none of our classic strategies from combatting the threat seem to be working. That’s why we’re turning the mosquitos against themselves.


The Quest To Resurrect An Extinct Animal Without Cloning

Before there was the cow, there was the auroch, a sinewy beast that roamed Eurasia by the millions. And over thousands of years, humans bred the creature into the millions of milk-and-steak-machines we have today. The last auroch, however, died in the 17th century. A group of scientists now want to bring back the auroch by selectively breeding modern cows — domestication, but in reverse.


How Long Humans Can Live In Space -- And What Happens If We Stay Too Long

How long can humans live in space? We don’t know the answer to that. But every crew that resides on the International Space Station provides us information that we use to adjust our protocols and extends that period of time.


Why You Fart

A normal person passes wind between 10 and 20 times a day. Obviously, some of us keep that average high, but you still have to wonder: where does all that flatulence come from?


How Long You Can Survive In Space Without A Suit

Getting blown out of an airlock and into space without a suit is not a pleasant experience. But if it were to happen, just how long could you survive?


How Lizard Tails Could Help Scientists Study Human Limb Regeneration

Prosthetic technology is getting insanely good. But what if we just didn’t need it any more? What if we could simply program our genes to regrow human limbs as easily as lizards regrow lost tails? Well, scientists are getting closer to that fantastic future.


Australian Study: Our Hot, Bright Cities Are Spawning Gigantic Spiders

File this one under: Oh HELL no. While we know that our ever-industrialising lifestyles make survival tough for animals like birds and mountain lions, in at least one case urbanisation is helping a species to thrive. Thanks to the artificial conditions we create, our cities are growing ultrafertile megaspiders.


DIY Diagnosis: How One Woman Uncovered Her Own Genetic Flaw

When Kim Goodsell discovered that she had two extremely rare genetic diseases, she taught herself genetics to help find out why.


A Common Bacteria Can Be Injected Directly Into Tumours To Fight Cancer

In its natural form, Clostridium novyi is at best benign (it lives in the soil) and at worst harmful (it can cause infections). But a slightly modified version of the bacterium could be a completely new treatment for cancer. Injecting thousands of spores of a modified C. novyi into rats, dogs, and one human patient shrank or even eradicated their tumors.


Crayfish Can Turn Ordinary Blood Cells Into Neurons

Whatever you happen to call them — crawfish, crawdads, mudbugs — crayfish are pretty tasty. They also have a pretty remarkable ability to regenerate neurons from blood cells. Understanding brain regeneration in these little crustaceans might one day help us understand how it could work in humans.


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