Science

5:03pm

Fri October 18, 2013
Shots - Health News

Why Scientists Are Trying Viruses To Beat Back Bacteria

Clostridium difficile, a bacterium that causes severe diarrhea, can be difficult to treat with antibiotics.
Stefan Hyman University of Leicester

Not all viruses are bad for us. Some of them might even help up us fight off bacterial infections someday.

Naturally occurring viruses called bacteriophages attack specific types of bacteria. So researchers at the University of Leicester decided to try and take advantage of phages' bacteria-destroying powers to treat infections with Clostridium difficile, a germ that that can cause severe diarrhea and inflammation of the gastrointestinal tract.

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3:58pm

Fri October 18, 2013
The Salt

A Fight Over Vineyards Pits Redwoods Against Red Wine

Originally published on Fri October 18, 2013 6:18 pm

Environmental groups are fighting to stop the leveling of 154 acres of coast redwoods and Douglas firs to make way for grapevines.
Courtesy Friends of the Gualala River

In the California wine mecca of Sonoma County, climate change is pitting redwood lovers against red wine lovers.

This Friday morning, a coalition of environmental groups are in a Santa Rosa, Calif., courtroom fighting to stop a Spanish-owned winery from leveling 154 acres of coast redwoods and Douglas firs to make way for grapevines.

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1:48pm

Fri October 18, 2013
Science

Vines Choking Out Trees in the Tropics

Transcript

JOHN DANKOSKY, HOST:

This is SCIENCE FRIDAY. I'm John Dankosky.

If you've ever walked through the jungle, you'll know it can be surprisingly dark down on the forest floor. You see trees soaring up all around. You're creating a dense canopy overhead. And climbing toward that canopy, snaking up the trees are the vines.

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1:48pm

Fri October 18, 2013
NPR Story

Making Sense of Science Infographics

Transcript

JOHN DANKOSKY, HOST:

This is SCIENCE FRIDAY. I'm John Dankosky. Chances are, without even realizing it, you've seen at least one infographic today. Did you catch the weather forecast this morning? Maybe you saw a rain cloud moving across a map of the U.S. Maybe you opened the paper to find pie charts of the latest poll results. Now those are infographics.

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1:48pm

Fri October 18, 2013
NPR Story

With Shutdown Over, Scientists Assess the Damage

Transcript

JOHN DANKOSKY, HOST:

This is SCIENCE FRIDAY. I'm John Dankosky. Ira Flatow is away. After nearly three weeks, the shutdown is finally over. The Smithsonian is open, national parks have opened up their gates, and federal labs all over the country are turning on their lights. But not everyone is back to business as usual. Many scientists who were about to start their field season in Antarctica had their trips cancelled or postponed.

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1:48pm

Fri October 18, 2013
NPR Story

Promising New Treatment for the Deadly Ebola Virus

Transcript

JOHN DANKOSKY, HOST:

Now, for many of us, we first heard about the Ebola virus from the movie "Outbreak," Dustin Hoffman trying to contain an outbreak of an Ebola-like virus in a small California town. Well, in the 18 years since that movie came out, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has documented 18 known outbreaks of Ebola, with the most recent happening last fall in the Congo.

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1:48pm

Fri October 18, 2013
NPR Story

Logging In to the Brain's Social Network

Does the pain we feel from rejection and loss have the same effect as physical pain? How does our brain respond to social interactions? In his new book Social: Why Our Brains Are Wired to Connect , social neuroscientist Matthew Lieberman describes the biology behind how our brains engage with the social world.

1:48pm

Fri October 18, 2013
NPR Story

New Fossil May Trim Branches of Human Evolution

Writing in Science , researchers say a 1.8 million-year-old skull found in Dmanisi, Georgia indicates that early humans may have evolved from a single lineage rather than from multiple species. Anthropologist Adam Van Arsdale tells us what this could mean for the way we view human evolution.

12:27pm

Fri October 18, 2013
13.7: Cosmos And Culture

Getting The Point

Originally published on Fri October 18, 2013 3:21 pm

An elephant in Kenya's Tsavo East National Park, home to some 13,000 of these remarkable animals.
Ivan Lieman AFP/Getty Images

According to an article published last week in Current Biology, African elephants in captivity "can use human pointing clues to find hidden food." Elephants aren't great at this. But they are as good as human 2-year-olds. And that's pretty good.

The bottom line: You can show an elephant where you hid the food by pointing.

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12:18pm

Fri October 18, 2013
The Salt

Scratch 'N' Sniff Your Way To Wine Expertise ... Or At Least More Fun

Originally published on Fri October 18, 2013 8:58 pm

Scratch 'n' sniff technology hasn't changed much in the last few decades. So the peach cartoon still smells artificial and not what you'll find in a glass of sauvignon blanc.
Text copyright 2013 by Richard Betts. Illustrations copyright (c) 2013 by Wendy MacNaughton. Reproduced by permission of Houghton Mifflin Harcourt. All rights reserved.

Knock wine off its pedestal. That's the goal of wine expert Richard Betts. And he has come up with a brilliant way to do it: a scratch n' sniff guide to the aromas and flavors of the wine world.

With beautiful illustrations from Wendy MacNaughton, the 10-page board book looks like it belongs with your kid's toys instead of next to The Joy of Cooking.

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