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South Africa to be put on England's travel red list over latest Covid variant
Variant causing concern because of 'extremely high' number of mutations feared present across South Africa Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage South Africa will be placed under England's red list travel restrictions after scientists raised the alarm over what is thought to be the worst Covid-19 variant ever identified. Hundreds of people who have recently returned from S
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Extraordinary Roman mosaic and villa discovered beneath farmer's field in Rutland, UK
Archaeologists have unearthed the first Roman mosaic of its kind in the UK. Today (Thursday 25th November 2021), a rare Roman mosaic and surrounding villa complex have been protected as a Scheduled Monument by DCMS on the advice of Historic England. The decision follows archaeological work undertaken by a team from University of Leicester Archaeological Services (ULAS), working in partnership with
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LATEST

The System Only Worked Because It Was Pushed
The men who killed Ahmaud Arbery will not get away with it. Yet the most surprising aspect of the trial is not the verdict, but the fact that the trial happened at all. On Wednesday, a Georgia jury convicted Travis McMichael; his father, Gregory McMichael; and their friend William Bryan of felony offenses after the trio chased down and then shot Arbery in Brunswick, Georgia, in February of last y
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What do we know about the new 'worst ever' Covid variant?
UK places South Africa on red travel list over B.1.1.529 variant picked up by scientists in country South Africa to be put on England's travel red list See all our coronavirus coverage What is the new variant and why is it a concern? Scientists have detected a new Covid-19 variant called B.1.1.529 and are working to understand its potential implications. About 50 confirmed cases have been identif
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A doubly magic discovery
A team of researchers, including scientists from the National Superconducting Cyclotron Laboratory (NSCL) and the Facility for Rare Isotope Beams (FRIB) at Michigan State University (MSU), have solved the case of zirconium-80's missing mass.
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Novel color photography using a high-efficiency probe can super-focus white light into a 6-nanometer spot
Scientists have developed new materials for next-generation electronics so tiny that they are not only indistinguishable when closely packed, but they also don't reflect enough light to show fine details, such as colors, with even the most powerful optical microscopes. Under an optical microscope, carbon nanotubes, for example, look grayish. The inability to distinguish fine details and difference
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Researchers study factors that impact degree of pleasure derived from hugs
A small team of researchers at the University of London has attempted to measure the factors that influence the amount of pleasure a person receives from hugging another person. In their paper published in the journal Acta Psychologica, the group describes two separate experiments they conducted to learn more about the experience of hugging, at least in the U.K.
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This Thanksgiving, Remember the Curse of Ham
This article originally appeared in Imani Perry's newsletter, Unsettled Territory, free through November 30 and available with an Atlantic subscription after that. Sign up here . Charles Waddell Chesnutt would hardly qualify as a representative of late-19th-century Black experience. Born in 1858 in Ohio to parents who had been free people of color in Fayetteville, North Carolina, his skin was so
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It Wasn't a Hoax
If Donald Trump had been supported only by people who affirmatively liked him, his attack on American democracy would never have gotten as far as it did. Instead, at almost every turn, Trump was helped by people who had little liking for him as a human being or politician, but assessed that he could be useful for purposes of their own. The latest example: the suddenly red-hot media campaign to en
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Walmart Removes Listing for Kids' Toy That Sings About Cocaine
Caustic Cactus Ania Tanner, a grandmother from Ontario, Canada, was shocked when an innocent-looking dancing cactus toy she bought for her granddaughter at Walmart started swearing and singing about doing cocaine in Polish, CTV News reports . "This toy uses swear words and talking about cocaine use," Tanner told the broadcaster. "This is not what I ordered for my granddaughter." Unsurprisingly, W
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JPMorgan's Yelp Page Bombed with 1-Star Reviews After Elon Tweet
Review Bombed Never underestimate the power of having your own personal Stan Army. After being sued by JPMorgan for his infamous 420 tweet , Tesla CEO Elon Musk joked about giving the bank a one-star review on Yelp . That's when his most ardent fans decided to bombard the bank's Yelp page with bad reviews, as first spotted by Insider . "One star only for their frivolous lawsuits against their bus
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Find vet before buying pets for Christmas, Britons warned
Increase in dog and cat ownership in lockdown and Brexit standards issues have led to vet shortage People who are considering buying dogs and cats for Christmas are being asked to check if they have access to a vet before they buy due to shortages caused by Brexit and Covid. The British Veterinary Association (BVA) is urging caution after a rise in demand for vets due to the increase in pet owner
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What Slavery Looked Like in the West
E arly travelers to the American West encountered unfree people nearly everywhere they went: on ranches and farmsteads, in mines and private homes, and even on the open market, bartered like any other tradable good. Unlike on southern plantations, these men, women, and children weren't primarily African American; most were Native American. Tens of thousands of Indigenous people labored in bondage
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UK public urged to get Covid booster by 11 December if eligible to avoid waning immunity
New research shows the risk of infection increases significantly six months after a second dose of the Pfizer vaccine Ministers are urging millions of Britons to get their Covid booster jab by 11 December to ensure they have "very high protection against Covid by Christmas Day" as new evidence shows the risk of infection increases with the time since the second dose. The fresh warning comes after
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How to Talk to Your Family About Elon Musk
If your family is anything like this reporter's, chances are you have at least one relative who thinks "that Elon Musk guy" might have some good ideas. This topic is as fraught as the SpaceX founder himself — an enigma who manages to encapsulate a ton of different identities ( troll , world's richest Iron Man , and father of six , to name a few) into one infuriatingly fascinating persona. It's ha
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The Crypto-Trading Hamster Has Died of Unknown Causes
RIP The crypto-savvy hamster known as Mr. Goxx, whose portfolio beat out some of the biggest traders, has tragically passed away. "We feared this day like no other and are truly shocked for it to happen just now," the hamster's owners lamented in a tweet this morning. "In deep sorrow, we have to announce the loss of our beloved furry friend." It's a sad day for hamster lovers and cryptocurrency e
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NASA wants to use the sun to power future deep space missions
In August 2022, a NASA probe called Psyche will set out to explore a giant metallic asteroid called Psyche 16, to help scientists learn more about how planets form. The way Psyche reaches its target, though, will be different from typical NASA missions. Building on technology used in previous missions, including Dawn and Deep Space 1 , solar power will help propel Psyche into deep space. If that
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Philip Yancey's Message of Grace
O n a Sunday in late February 2007, Philip Yancey was driving on a remote highway near Alamosa, Colorado. As he came around an icy curve, his Ford Explorer began to fishtail; the tire slipped off the asphalt and the Explorer tumbled down a hillside. The windows were blown out; skis, boots, luggage, and a laptop computer were strewn over the snow. Yancey suffered minor cuts and bruises on his face
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Nasa delays James Webb space telescope launch after 'sudden' incident
Technicians were preparing to attach spacecraft to launch vehicle when unplanned event took place The launch of the $10bn (£7.5bn) James Webb space telescope has been delayed again , after an incident during the final preparations to place the telescope on top of its launch vehicle. The spacecraft was scheduled to be sent into orbit on 18 December but now it will not launch before 22 December . C
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The Atlantic Daily: Our Future With COVID
Coronavirus cases are on the rise again in the United States. Here's what we know. Not this again. As U.S. coronavirus cases creep upward once more, you might feel a justified sense of déjà vu. We still don't totally know where this pandemic is headed— too many variables are too hard to measure —but a second winter surge remains a distinct possibility. All that's left to do is wait and see (and,
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Earliest evidence of humans decorating jewelery in Eurasia
A new multidisciplinary study by an international team reports the discovery of an ivory pendant decorated with a pattern of at least 50 punctures, creating an irregular looping curve. The direct radiocarbon date of the ornament yields an age of 41,500 years. This result indicates that the Stajnia Cave jewelry is the oldest punctate ornament known to date in Eurasia, predating other instances of t
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Scans can detect brain injury after repeated head impacts in sport
Study of former American footballers offers hope that damage could be diagnosed more easily Brain scans of former American football players reveal signs of white matter injury, according to research into the lasting effects of repetitive head impacts in sport. The finding is viewed as significant because until now it has been difficult to identify such damage in the brain until after death. The l
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Action over variant shows government keen to avoid Christmas calamity of 2020
Analysis: variant provides test of whether relaxation of rules and booster push is effective policy South Africa to be put on England's travel red list Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage Last Christmas, as ministers rashly promised five days of festive family gatherings while a new variant gathered pace, Boris Johnson held out until the final hours until he bowed to the
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New Covid-19 variant in South Africa raises concern
The World Health Organization is holding an emergency meeting on Friday to review the variant. While it's too soon to tell exactly how the new variant functions, virologists are rushing to learn more. (Image credit: Rajesh Jantilal /Getty Images)
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Clear as (quasi) crystal: Scientists discover the first ferromagnetic quasicrystals
Since the discovery of quasicrystals (QCs), solids that mimic crystals in their long-range order but lack periodicity, scientists have sought physical properties related to their peculiar structure. Now, an international group of researchers report a long-range magnetic order in QCs with icosahedral symmetry that turn ferromagnetic below certain temperatures. This groundbreaking discovery opens do
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Gold-based cancer therapy could face competition from other substances
The gold complex auranofin has traditionally been used for treating rheumatism but is also being evaluated as a treatment for certain forms of cancer. Researchers now show that other molecules that inhibit the same biological system have a more specific effect than auranofin and therefore may have greater potential as cancer therapies.
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Start Black Friday Off Right With A Sam's Club Membership For Just $20
Black Friday is nearly upon us, and there are a lot of possible gifts to buy . Yet with supply chain problems and high demand, you probably won't see many sales. That's where a membership to Sam's Club can help you save on your holiday shopping, and our early Black Friday discount and food bonuses pay dividends before you buy a single gift. How Sam's Club Works Sam's Club gets discounts by using
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Getting quantum dots to stop blinking
Quantum dots have many possible applications, but they are limited by their tendency to blink off at random intervals. Chemists have come up with a way to control this unwanted blinking without requiring any modification to the formulation or the manufacturing process.
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Sir Eric Ash obituary
Leading figure in the field of electrical engineering whose work played a huge role in modern electronics The electrical engineer Eric Ash, who has died aged 93, made major contributions to controlling and manipulating electrical, optical and acoustic waves for signal processing and imaging applications. Already established as a leading figure in this field when he arrived at University College Lo
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How jellyfish control their lives
Nature, Published online: 24 November 2021; doi:10.1038/d41586-021-03510-6 Transgenic jellyfish reveal how these fragile creatures get by without a brain.
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Tvillingstudie ger nya ledtrådar om mekanismerna bakom typ 2-diabetes
Enäggstvillingar delar samma DNA, men är inte identiskt lika. En tvilling kan vara sjuk i typ-2 diabetes, medan den andra tvillingen inte utvecklar sjukdomen. En studie som har letts av Lunds universitet har nu upptäckt att det finns skillnader i genernas aktivitet hos tvillingar med och utan typ 2-diabetes. Forskarnas upptäckt kan bidra till utvecklingen av nya behandlingsmetoder.
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Humans Didn't Invent Mathematics, It's What the World Is Made Of
Many people think that mathematics is a human invention . To this way of thinking, mathematics is like a language: it may describe real things in the world, but it doesn't "exist" outside the minds of the people who use it. But the Pythagorean school of thought in ancient Greece held a different view. Its proponents believed reality is fundamentally mathematical. More than 2,000 years later, phil
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Naked in Cambodia and Arguing the Whole Time | Naked and Afraid
Stream Naked and Afraid on discovery+ ► https://www.discoveryplus.com/show/naked-and-afraid About Naked and Afraid: What happens when you put two complete strangers – sans clothes – in some of the most extreme environments on Earth? Each male-female duo is left with no food, no water, no clothes, and only one survival item. #NakedAndAfraid #Discovery #Survival Subscribe to Discovery: http://bit.l
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Gemensam ekonomi ger färre konfliker
Par som har gemensam ekonomi har färre ekonomiska konflikter än de som har delad ekonomi. Men det gäller främst för par som levt ihop länge. För yngre par är det tvärtom. Gemensam ekonomi ger färre ekonomiska konflikter för par i de flesta åldrar, i jämförelse med par som har delad eller delvis delad ekonomi. Det visar en studie av sambanden mellan pars ekonomiska konflikter och deras sätt att or
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Start Black Friday Early With Deep Savings On Babbel
Language is constantly evolving, and the future promises even more changes . Fortunately, it's never been easier to learn a new language with Babbel , and right now, for an early Black Friday Sale, you can lock in a lifetime subscription for this top-rated app at just $179 (reg. $499) for a limited time. A Language Institution First launched in 2008, Babbel has become an institution for language
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Light helicity detector based on 2D magnetic semiconductor CrI3
Nature Communications, Published online: 25 November 2021; doi:10.1038/s41467-021-27218-3 Two-dimensional magnetic semiconductors hold promise for spin- and valleytronic applications. Here, the authors report the realization of light helicity detectors based on graphene/CrI3 van der Waals heterostructures, exhibiting a photocurrent behaviour determined by the magnetic state of CrI3.
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Breaking the symmetry to suppress the Plateau–Rayleigh instability and optimize hydropower utilization
Nature Communications, Published online: 25 November 2021; doi:10.1038/s41467-021-27237-0 Satellite drops formed on droplet impact hinder applications from inkjet printing to drop energy harvest. Here, authors reveal that patterned-wettability surfaces can break the symmetry of droplet impacts and suppress the Plateau–Rayleigh instability, preventing satellite drop generation and improving the hy
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Visible-light-mediated catalyst-free synthesis of unnatural α-amino acids and peptide macrocycles
Nature Communications, Published online: 25 November 2021; doi:10.1038/s41467-021-27086-x To address the shortcomings in the application of bioactive peptides as drugs, incorporation of unnatural amino acids (UAAs) has been used. Here, the authors report an ionic compound-promoted C-N cleavage of alkyl pyridinium to generate alkyl radicals upon excitation by visible light, and apply it for deamin
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Giant single-crystal-to-single-crystal transformations associated with chiral interconversion induced by elimination of chelating ligands
Nature Communications, Published online: 25 November 2021; doi:10.1038/s41467-021-27282-9 Crystalline materials that undergo large structural changes in response to external stimuli remain rare. Here the authors report a Zinc(II) complex that undergoes a two-step reversible single-crystal-to-single-crystal transformation via thermal removal of ethylene glycol chelating ligands; this results in la
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Hydrothermal plumes as hotspots for deep-ocean heterotrophic microbial biomass production
Nature Communications, Published online: 25 November 2021; doi:10.1038/s41467-021-26877-6 Hydrothermal vents are biogeochemically important, but their contribution to the carbon cycle is poorly constrained. Here the authors build a biogeochemical model that estimates autotrophic and heterotrophic production rates of microbial communities within hydrothermal plumes along mid-ocean ridges.
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Self-activating anti-infection implant
Nature Communications, Published online: 25 November 2021; doi:10.1038/s41467-021-27217-4 Bone implants with antibacterial and osteogenic properties are important for clinical applications, but creating both properties simultaneously remains challenging. Here, the authors demonstrate a self-activating implant using a hydroxyapatite and molybdenum disulfide coating which accelerates bone regenerat
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Tuning organic crystal chirality by the molar masses of tailored polymeric additives
Nature Communications, Published online: 25 November 2021; doi:10.1038/s41467-021-27236-1 Hierarchically ordered chiral crystals have attracted intense research efforts but the need of enantiomeric pure building blocks and difficulties in the precise control of chirality transfer poses a barrier to their application. Here, the authors describe a process which allows preferred formation of one ena
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Danskerne: Lægers troværdighed er i top
Analyse af forskellige faggruppers troværdighed i 2021 placerer lægerne på en solid andenplads blandt 26 udvalgte faggrupper, hvor politikerne skraber bunden. Lægerne opnår den højeste karakter i den tid, undersøgelsen er gennemført.
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It's Time to Rethink the 12-hour Nursing Shift
With the nursing profession suffering through a worker shortage and tremendous burnout, now seems like a good time to ask: Is the traditional 12-hour shift still worth it? Increasingly, evidence is showing that the marathon work sessions pose serious risks to nurses and patients alike.
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Så farliga är de levande ljusen
Snart tändas tusen juleljus. Varje år bränner svenskarna cirka 18 000 ton ljus, de flesta runt jul. Men är det så klokt egentligen? Vi frågade Aneta Wierzbicka, forskare vid Lunds universitet som länge har studerat hur levande ljus påverkar inomhusluften. Hur farliga är de levande ljusen? – Det går inte att ge ett exakt svar på den frågan. Men jag har forskat länge om förbränning och luftburna pa
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The Experiment Podcast: The Wandering Soul
Listen and subscribe: Apple Podcasts | Spotify | Stitcher | Google Podcasts As the Vietnam War dragged on, the U.S. military began desperately searching for any vulnerability in its North Vietnamese enemy. In 1964, it found one: an old Vietnamese folktale about a ghost, eternal damnation, and fear—a myth that the U.S. could weaponize. And so, armed with tape recorders and microphones, American fo
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Thanksgiving advice, 2021: How to deal with climate change-denying Uncle Pete
This is a re-post from the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists by Richard Somerville "Birds of a feather flock together," so I am sure that nearly all of those reading this article accept the main findings of climate science. Yet many people don't. Instead, they believe a variety of climate myths. These include claims that the world isn't warming; or if warming is occurring, it is natural and not h
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Do lobsters have feelings? – podcast
Last week the UK government confirmed it would be extending its animal welfare (sentience) bill to include decapods (such as crabs, lobsters and crayfish), and cephalopods (such as octopuses, squid and cuttlefish). The move followed a government-commissioned review of the scientific evidence, which found strong evidence that cephalopods and decapods do have feelings. Madeleine Finlay spoke to Dr J
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What You're Doing Right Now Is Proof of Quantum Theory – Issue 108: Change
Nobody understands quantum mechanics," Richard Feynman famously said. Long after Max Planck's discovery in 1900 that energy comes in separate packets or quanta, quantum physics remains enigmatic. It is vastly different from how things work at bigger scales, where objects from baseballs to automobiles follow Newton's laws of mechanics and gravitation, consistent with our own bodily experiences. Bu
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What Impossible Meant to Richard Feynman – Issue 108: Change
I mpossible! The word resonated throughout the large lecture hall. I had just finished describing a revolutionary concept for a new type of matter that my graduate student, Dov Levine, and I had invented. The Caltech lecture room was packed with scientists from every discipline across campus. The discussion had gone remarkably well. But just as the last of the crowd was filing out, there arose a
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Fantastic Beasts Brought to Life by the Wind – Issue 108: Change
Many of us hit the beach to enjoy some sunshine or catch a wave. But for Dutch artist Theo Jansen it's all about the wind. Jansen's been working with this limitless natural resource for 30 years to create a fabulous array of giant beach creatures—brought to life by the wind. With every gust, his wondrous seaside sculptures become more lifelike, ambling along the coast like creatures in their own
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Sleep Better With This Pre-Black Friday Doorbuster Deal On VitalSleep
Sleep is one of the few places where we're completely at peace ( for now, anyway ), and snoring can keep you and others from needed rest. Fortunately, for a limited time, you can get a Pre-Black Friday Doorbusters deal on the VitalSleep Anti-Snoring Mouthpiece , no coupon needed. Stopping Snoring When you sleep, your muscles relax, including the muscles in your throat and neck. In turn, this allo
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Joseph LeDoux on animal anxiety/consciousness vs humans
Reading what he says that he is not sure if animals have the same anxiety/consciousness as humans, he isn't saying they don't.. just that no study says they do. I've seen people use the theory of animals unlike humans when confronted by a predator get scared and run, but once they have ran away and aren't in danger anymore, they no longer have fear anxiety etc and just get back to normal relaxed
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A new way to generate electricity from waste heat: Using an antiferromagnet for solid devices
Researchers have discovered a giant thermoelectric effect in an antiferromagnet. The study shows, surprisingly, that antiferromagnets can have the same value of the anomalous Nernst effect as conventional ferromagnets, but without any stray magnetic fields that would otherwise affect surrounding devices. The newly discovered recipe for generating large Nernst voltages opens a new research directio
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Tracing mechanisms of large exon splicing during vertebrate evolution
In vertebrates, large exons often skip splicing events and are evolutionarily conserved. Scientists from Nagoya University, Japan, have recently identified the mechanism behind regulated splicing of large constitutive exons which are rich in disordered regions, and their potential involvement in the assembly of transcription factors. They also explained how dual-regulation by two distinct groups o
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A stealthy way to combat tumors
Researchers uncovered a new way to indirectly activate T cells that can target tumors, by recruiting a population of helper immune cells called dendritic cells.
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New link between diet, intestinal stem cells and disease discovered
Obesity, diabetes and gastrointestinal cancer are frequently linked to an unhealthy diet. However, the molecular mechanisms responsible for this are not fully understood. Researchers have gained some new insights that help to better understand this connection. These findings provide an important basis for the development of non-invasive therapies.
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Breaking down cancer's defenses
Researchers have developed a new probiotic bacteria designed to break down solid cancer cell walls and make other therapies more effective.
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Phages kill dystentery-causing bacteria and reduce virulence in surviving bacteria
Phages are viruses that infect bacteria and can also be used to treat human infections. However, as with antibiotics, bacteria can readily evolve resistance to phage attack, highlighting a key limitation to the use of phages as therapeutics. Now, researchers have shown that the naturally occurring phage A1-1 kills Shigella flexneri, a major cause of dysentery in sub-Saharan Africa and southern Asi
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Suffering from psoriasis? Blame this trio of proteins
About 7.5 million Americans suffer from psoriasis, an autoimmune disease that shows up as patches of red, inflamed skin and painful, scaly rashes. Although there are effective treatments for psoriasis, not everyone responds to these therapies — and for many, the relief is temporary. Scientists have discovered how a key protein called TWEAK damages skin cells in psoriasis patients. Their findings,
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Cystic fibrosis faithfully modeled in a human Lung Airway Chip
Despite advances in patient screenings and breakthrough therapies that allow CF patients now to live into their mid- to late 30s or 40s, sometimes even longer, all patients are plagued by bacteria settling in their mucus, which causes inflammation in their lungs, and eventually causes their respiratory systems to fail. A major barrier to developing new and urgently needed treatments is the lack of
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