Science


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How a handful of scientists developed Oxford vaccine at breakneck speed

Team’s coronavirus work built on decades of research pioneered by Sarah Gilbert and Adrian HillOxford AstraZeneca Covid vaccine ‘has up to 90% efficacy’Coronavirus – latest updatesSee all our coronavirus coverageAt the heart of Oxford’s effort to produce a Covid vaccine are half a dozen scientists who between them brought decades of experience to the challenge of designing, developing, manufacturing and trialling a safe vaccine at breakneck speed.Prof Sarah Gilbert, the Kettering-born project le...
Tags: Health, Science, Biology, Society, UK News, Medical Research, Infectious Diseases, Microbiology, Oxford, Vaccines and immunisation, Sarah Gilbert, Kettering, Adrian Hill, Coronavirus, Adrian HillOxford AstraZeneca Covid


Meave Leakey: 'Definitely, Africa is where it all began'

The renowned fossil hunter on the anti-African prejudice in palaeontology, her dream discovery, and bathing her daughter beside a baby hippoFor over 50 years, British-born palaeoanthropologist Meave Leakey has been unearthing fossils of our early ancestors in Kenya’s Turkana Basin. Her discoveries have changed how we think about our origins. Instead of a tidy ape-to-human progression, her work suggests different pre-human species living simultaneously. Leakey’s new memoir, The Sediments of Time:...
Tags: Science, Biology, Africa, Anthropology, Kenya, Evolution, Fossils, Mary, Louis, Samira, Leakey, Turkana Basin, Richard Leakey, Meave Leakey


Covid vaccine technology pioneer: 'I never doubted it would work'

Katalin Karikó’s mRNA research helped pave way for Pfizer/BioNTech and Moderna’s successful workCoronavirus – latest updatesSee all our coronavirus coverageThe Hungarian-born biochemist who helped pioneer the research behind the mRNA technology used in the two Covid-19 vaccines showing positive results believes it was always a no-brainer.“I never doubted it would work,” Katalin Karikó told the Guardian. “I had seen the data from animal studies, and I was expecting it. I always wished that I woul...
Tags: Health, Science, Biology, Society, UK News, World news, Chemistry, Medical Research, Vaccines and immunisation, Biochemistry and molecular biology, Moderna, Coronavirus, Pfizer BioNTech, Katalin Karikó


Chinese flower has evolved to be less visible to pickers

Fritillaria delavayi, used in traditional medicine, turning grey to blend into rocksFor thousands of years, the dainty Fritillaria delavayi has grown slowly on the rocky slopes of the Hengduan mountains in China, producing a bright green flower after its fifth year.But the conspicuous small plant has one deadly enemy: people, who harvest the flower for traditional Chinese medicine. Continue reading...
Tags: Science, Biology, China, Environment, World news, Asia Pacific, Conservation, Plants, Evolution, Hengduan


Coronavirus is evolving. Whether it gets deadlier or not may depend on us | Laura Spinney

There’s now evidence that ignoring social distancing rules could help more lethal strains of Covid-19 to win outCoronavirus – latest updatesSee all our coronavirus coverageLetting the virus that causes Covid-19 circulate more-or-less freely is dangerous not only because it risks overwhelming hospitals and so endangering lives unnecessarily, but also because it could delay the evolution of the virus to a more benign form and potentially even make it more lethal.Though the data is still sketchy an...
Tags: Science, Sweden, Biology, World news, Medical Research, Infectious Diseases, Microbiology, Norway, Laura Spinney, Coronavirus


Covid-19 antibodies reduce faster in men than women – study

Finding has implications for one-size-fits-all approach to vaccine developmentAntibody levels against the virus that causes Covid-19 appear to fall faster in men than women, a study suggests, in a finding that could have implications for vaccine research.Historically, medical research has often taken a one-size-fits-all approach, lumping women and men together despite growing evidence that the sexes differ in how they catch and fight disease. Covid-19 seems to be a case in point, with women more...
Tags: Health, Science, Biology, Society, World news, Medical Research, Infectious Diseases, Microbiology, Vaccines and immunisation, Coronavirus


Scientists captured video of a rare squid with tentacles as long as a human

A bigfin squid spotted 2 miles underwater in Australia's Great Bight. Courtesy of Deborah Osterhage/CSIRO Bigfin squid have tentacles 11 times longer than their bodies. The creatures are camera shy: They've only been spotted a dozen times since the 1980s. Scientists recently captured new, underwater footage of five bigfin squid off the coast of southern Australia — the first time they've been spotted in Australian waters.  Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories. The squid w...
Tags: Science, News, Biology, Australia, Animals, Africa, Trends, Hawaii, Brazil, Squid, Great Australian Bight, Aylin Woodward, Deborah Osterhage CSIRO Bigfin, Deborah Osterhage, Osterhage, CSIRO Bigfin


The long game: the race for a vaccine against all coronaviruses

There is hope that Covid-19 immunisation might soon be a reality, but some scientists are aiming for a broader solutionCoronavirus – latest updatesSee all our coronavirus coverageHopes have been raised worldwide this week that a Covid-19 vaccine is getting closer, after one version was shown to be 90% effective in reducing disease symptoms, but a handful of scientists are working on an ambitious plan for a different sort of vaccine.Their project, which is fraught with technical and financial cha...
Tags: Health, Science, Biology, Research, Society, World news, Medical Research, Infectious Diseases, Microbiology, Vaccines and immunisation, Coronavirus, COVID


Explorers revisit a whale carcass one year later

You may recall that last year, Nautilus EV discovered a whale fall being actively scavenged. One year later they returned to see what happens a year after a baleen whale dies and sinks to the bottom of the sea. Whale falls are of great interest to scientists because they have not been easy to document before the advent of undersea craft. — Read the rest
Tags: Video, Science, News, Biology, Marine Biology, Oceanography, Ocean Biology, Nautilus EV


Remains of new flying reptile species spotted in UK museum drawer

Student finds mislabelled fragment of pterosaur, which flew over eastern England up to 66m years agoA fossil that been had languishing in a museum drawer in Brighton, wrongly labelled as a shark fin skeleton, has now been identified as a completely new species of prehistoric flying reptile that soared majestically over what are now the Cambridgeshire fens.Roy Smith, a University of Portsmouth PhD student, identified the creature after realising was much more unusual and interesting than its labe...
Tags: UK, England, Science, Biology, UK News, Culture, Museums, Brighton, Cambridge, Archaeology, Dinosaurs, Evolution, Zoology, Cambridgeshire, Fossils, Reptiles


Jair Bolsonaro claims 'victory ' after suspension of Chinese vaccine trial

Critics say halt in testing of Covid vaccine CoronaVac is politically motivatedCoronavirus – latest updatesSee all our coronavirus coverageThe Brazilian president, Jair Bolsonaro, has sparked outrage by gloating over the suspension of clinical trials of the Chinese coronavirus vaccine after a volunteer’s death.“Another victory for Jair Bolsonaro,” read a comment posted by the official Facebook account of Brazil’s far-right leader on Monday night after the country’s health regulator, Anvisa, anno...
Tags: Facebook, Science, Biology, World news, Medical Research, Infectious Diseases, Microbiology, Brazil, Anvisa, Jair Bolsonaro, Coronavirus


Covid vaccine: NHS England sets out plans for GP clinics

Plan for dedicated practices to run from 8am to 8pm seven days a weekCoronavirus – latest updatesSee all our coronavirus coverageDedicated GP clinics are being set up to deliver coronavirus vaccines across England at a minimum of 975 doses per week each, according to new documents.NHS England has told the country’s 1,250 primary care networks to designate a single practice to administer vaccines in their area capable of delivering shots from 8am to 8pm seven days a week, including on bank holida...
Tags: England, Science, Biology, UK News, Medical Research, Infectious Diseases, NHS, Microbiology, Gps, Vaccines and immunisation, NHS england, Coronavirus


Hopes rise for end of pandemic as Pfizer says vaccine is 90% effective

Global stocks surge and experts optimistic as Covid vaccine exceeds expectations Explainer: what has Pfizer found and is this a breakthrough?Coronavirus – latest updatesSee all our coronavirus coverageHopes are soaring that a Covid vaccine is within reach, following news that an interim analysis has shown Pfizer/BioNTech’s candidate was 90% effective in protecting people from transmission of the virus in global trials. The vaccine performed much better than most experts had hoped for, according ...
Tags: Health, Science, Biology, Society, World news, Medical Research, Infectious Diseases, Microbiology, Vaccines and immunisation, Pfizer, Coronavirus


Covid-19 vaccine candidate is 90% effective, says Pfizer

Interim analysis of vaccine by Pfizer/BioNTech far exceeds expectations of most expertsCoronavirus – latest updatesSee all our coronavirus coverageA vaccine against Covid-19 is in sight, with the announcement of the first interim results in large-scale trials showing the Pfizer/BioNTech candidate is 90% effective, according to the manufacturers.Their analysis shows a much better performance than most experts had hoped for and brings into view a potential end to a pandemic that has killed more th...
Tags: Health, Science, Biology, Society, World news, Medical Research, Infectious Diseases, Microbiology, Vaccines and immunisation, Pfizer, Coronavirus


A new book of dicks, human and otherwise

"Nothing gets clicks like a story about dicks," writes biologist Emily Willingham. "Even if it's about a penis that's 1.5 millimeters long and millions of years old." The quote is from Willingham's new book Phallacy: Life Lessons from the Animal Penis. — Read the rest
Tags: Post, Books, Science, News, Biology, Anatomy, Penises, Willingham, Emily Willingham


Wombat's deadly bums: how they use their 'skull-crushing' rumps to fight, play and flirt

Research offers insights into marsupial’s rearguard defences and ‘brutal’ mating rituals Australia is known for its strange and deadly wildlife, with plenty of attention given to venomous snakes and bird-eating spiders. But it seems one terrifying aspect of outback fauna has been thoroughly ignored: the wombat’s deadly bum.The rump of the wombat is hard as rock, used for defence, burrowing, bonding, mating and possibly violently crushing the skulls of its enemies against the roof of its burrow. ...
Tags: Science, Biology, Australia, Animals, Environment, Australia news, Wildlife, Animal behaviour


Wombats' deadly bums: how they use their 'skull-crushing' rumps to fight, play and flirt

Research offers insights into marsupial’s rearguard defences and ‘brutal’ mating rituals Australia is known for its strange and deadly wildlife, with plenty of attention given to venomous snakes and bird-eating spiders. But it seems one terrifying aspect of outback fauna has been thoroughly ignored: the wombat’s deadly bum.The rump of the wombat is hard as rock, used for defence, burrowing, bonding, mating and possibly violently crushing the skulls of its enemies against the roof of its burrow. ...
Tags: Science, Biology, Australia, Animals, Environment, Australia news, Wildlife, Animal behaviour


Platypus fur glows greenish-blue under UV light, new research found

An adult male platypus named Millsom is carried by his keeper at an animal sanctuary in Melbourne, May 8, 2008. Mick Tsikas/Reuters Scientists discovered that platypus fur glows greenish-blue under ultraviolet light.  It's the first time biofluorescence has been discovered in monotremes, one of three living types of mammals. The discovery may indicate that mammals evolved biofluorescent fur more than 150 million years ago. This glowing fur could help nocturnal mammals camouflage, or it cou...
Tags: Science, Biology, Australia, Virginia, Trends, Earth, New South Wales, Melbourne, Tasmania, Platypus, North America, Tasmania Australia, Mick Tsikas, Field Museum, Reuters Scientists, Anich


Are humans wired for conflict? Lord of the Flies vs. Charles Darwin

The iconic novel "Lord of the Flies" paints a picture of human beings as naturally selfish and prone to conflict, but that is not the most accurate depiction of humanity, argues historian Rutger Bregman.Bregman shares a true story from his research about a group of Tongan students who survived on an island together for 15 months in 1965, not through brutal alliances, but by working together and forming a functional community.Darwin's observation of domestication syndrome is apparent in humans, a...
Tags: Psychology, Science, Biology, Children, Relationships, Sociology, Innovation, Collaboration, Community, Literature, Evolution, Charles Darwin, Humanity, Darwin, Evolutionary Psychology, Bregman


Treat artificial light like others forms of pollution, say scientists

Impact of human illumination has grown to point of systemic disruption, researchers findArtificial light should be treated like other forms of pollution because its impact on the natural world has widened to the point of systemic disruption, research says.Human illumination of the planet is growing in range and intensity by about 2% a year, creating a problem that can be compared to climate change, according to a team of biologists from the University of Exeter. Continue reading...
Tags: Science, Biology, Climate Change, Animals, Environment, World news, Birds, Pollution, Wildlife, Animal behaviour, Insects, University of Exeter Continue


T-cell Covid immunity 'present in adults six months after first infection'

Study suggests white blood cell levels higher in people who had symptomsCoronavirus – latest updatesSee all our coronavirus coverageCellular (T-cell) immunity against the virus that causes Covid-19 is likely to be present within most adults six months after primary infection, with levels considerably higher in patients with symptoms, a study suggests.The data offers another piece of the puzzle that could be key to understanding whether previous Sars-CoV-2 infections – the virus behind Covid-19 –...
Tags: Health, Science, Biology, Society, World news, Chemistry, Medical Research, Infectious Diseases, Microbiology, Vaccines and immunisation, Immunology, Biochemistry and molecular biology, Coronavirus


Tiny variants in genes may dictate severity of coronavirus

Scientists are tracking small differences in DNA to explain why the disease has different effectsCoronavirus – latest updatesSee all our coronavirus coverageIt has been one of the most baffling aspects of the Covid-19 pandemic. Healthy young men and women have become infected with the virus and developed life-threatening side effects. But at the same time, many of their contemporaries have simply shrugged off the condition.Unknown factors are clearly leaving some people vulnerable to the pandemi...
Tags: Science, Biology, UK News, World news, Genetics, Medical Research, Infectious Diseases, Microbiology, Coronavirus


Why a digital Christmas goes against our instincts

What can science tell us about our urge to celebrate with loved ones this festive season despitethe dangers?Coronavirus – latest updatesSee all our coronavirus coverageEven at the best of times, Christmas can be a season of contradictory feelings. There is a yearning to enjoy the season of goodwill with our relatives and yet their proximity often creates friction. For many families, it is the only time of year we get to spend together, yet we resent the stress that this creates.The Covid-19 pand...
Tags: Psychology, Family, Science, Biology, Christmas, Life and style, Genetics, Boris Johnson, Patrick Vallance, Coronavirus


Octopuses can taste with their arms — here's how their tentacles distinguish food from toxic prey

A common octopus moves across the seabed in Marseille, France, on August 2, 2017. Alexis Rosenfeld/Getty Octopuses use their eight tentacles to envelop and shovel prey into their mouths. Special receptors on their tentacles help octopuses taste objects just by touching them, a new study found. This touch-taste sense helps an octopus detect hidden prey and retreat from objects that taste toxic. Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories. Octopuses are famous for being intelligent es...
Tags: Science, News, Biology, California, Trends, Harvard, Harvard University, Taste, Tentacles, Octopus, Marseille France, Aylin Woodward, Alexis Rosenfeld Getty Octopuses, Lena van Giesen, Nicholas Bellono, Bellono


'It's possible': the race to approve a Covid vaccine by Christmas

At least three companies close to revealing results of phase three trials, but to be approved for use safety has to be ensuredCoronavirus – latest updatesSee all our coronavirus coverageThe race for a Covid vaccine is reaching a crucial stage, with the glimmer of a possibility that one of the leading contenders will be approved by Christmas.In an interview with the Guardian, Kate Bingham, who heads the UK’s vaccine taskforce, said the UK was in “a very good place”. Continue reading...
Tags: Health, UK, Science, Biology, Society, World news, Medical Research, Infectious Diseases, Microbiology, Vaccines and immunisation, Kate Bingham, Coronavirus


Covid vaccine tracker: when will a coronavirus vaccine be ready?

More than 170 teams of researchers are racing to develop a safe and effective vaccine. Here is their progressResearchers around the world are racing to develop a vaccine against Covid-19, with more than 170 candidate vaccines now tracked by the World Health Organization (WHO). Continue reading...
Tags: Health, Science, Biology, World news, Medical Research, Infectious Diseases, Microbiology, Vaccines and immunisation, Coronavirus, COVID, World Health Organization WHO Continue


Humans aren't the only species who get choosier about their friends as they age. Chimps do it too, new research suggests.

A group of male chimpanzees grooms together in Uganda's Kibale National Forest. Kakama, on the left, is the dominant male in the group. Ronan Donovan Humans tend to cultivate fewer, more meaningful friendships as we grow older. A prevailing psychological theory suggests this is because we recognize our impending mortality and seek to prioritize emotionally fulfilling connections in the time we have left. A new study found that male chimpanzees similarly winnow their friendships as they...
Tags: Science, News, Biology, Animals, Friendship, Trends, Earth, Uganda, Friendships, Young, Silk, Arizona State University, University Of Michigan, Brown, Johnny, Kibale National Park


Physicists 3D Print a Boat That Could Sail Down a Human Hair

Researchers at Leiden University have 3D printed the smallest boat in the world: a 30-micrometer copy of Benchy the tug boat, a well-known 3D printer test object. This boat is so small, it could float down the interior of a human hair.Read more...
Tags: Science, Biology, 3d Printing, Leiden University


Diabolical ironclad beetles can get squished under 39,000 times their weight and survive. Scientists figured out how.

A diabolical ironclad beetle, or Phloeodes diabolicus. David Kisailus/University of California, Irvine The diabolical ironclad beetle can withstand forces up to 39,000 times its body weight. They can do that, researchers discovered, thanks to hardened casings on each wing that interlock and support the beetle's exoskeleton. By mimicking the interlocking nature of these protective layers, scientists could build better planes and armored vehicles.  Visit Business Insider's homepage for more ...
Tags: Europe, Science, News, Biology, Animals, US, Trends, Taiwan, Toyota, Beetles, Npr, North America, Pacific, US Air Force, Bae Systems, Armor


New analysis of a saber-toothed cat fossil reveals the ancient animals were ruthless, highly skilled hunters

An illustration of the saber-toothed cat Homotherium latidens hunting in a pack. University of Copenhagen Scientists mapped the genome of a saber-toothed cat species named Homotherium for the first time. The ancient cat's genes reveal that it was a highly skilled pack hunter that could pursue its prey over vast distances.  Homotheriums lived on five continents and roamed for millions of years before it went extinct. Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories. Before the end of the ...
Tags: UK, Science, News, Biology, Australia, Animals, Trends, Earth, Antarctica, North America, Fossils, North Sea, Paleontology, Westbury, Dawson City, Ross Barnett



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