Science

6:07pm

Wed March 18, 2015
Goats and Soda

How Malaria In The Brain Kills: Doctors Solve A Medical Mystery

Originally published on Thu March 19, 2015 12:16 pm

The effects of malaria in the brain are clear: A healthy brain, right, has many grooves and crevices. But when the brain swells up, left, these crevices smooth out.
Courtesy of Michigan State University

Malaria is one of the oldest scourges of mankind. Yet it's been a mystery how the deadliest form of the disease kills children.

One doctor in Michigan has dedicated her life to figuring that out. Now she and her team report their findings in this week's issue of the New England Journal of Medicine. The key to solving the mystery was looking inside the brain.

Read more

5:14am

Wed March 18, 2015
Humans

The Dangerous Distractions Of Spring Break

Originally published on Wed March 18, 2015 12:23 pm

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

March Madness is upon us and also for many college students spring break. On that subject, there's new research that might give some students and their parents something to think about. NPR's Shankar Vedantam joined our colleague David Greene to tell us about it.

Read more

3:15am

Wed March 18, 2015
All Tech Considered

SXSW Debuts Robot Petting Zoo For A Personal Peek Into The Future

Originally published on Wed March 18, 2015 6:43 pm

DAR-1 is one of the many social robots with facial recognition abilities on display for the robot petting zoo at the South by Southwest interactive festival.
Jack Plunkett AP

Robots can be scary. Dystopian films such as The Terminator tell the story of a world where robots take over.

But for some, robots are more like R2-D2, the cute bot from Star Wars. At this year's South by Southwest interactive festival, a petting zoo is aiming to evoke those same feelings. But, not just any petting zoo: a robot one.

BlabDroid is a small robot, less than a foot high, with bulldozer wheels, a cardboard body and a smile on his face. He's cute, but asks tough questions.

Read more

3:12am

Wed March 18, 2015
The Salt

Do TV Cooking Shows Make Us Fat?

Originally published on Wed March 18, 2015 1:37 pm

Celebrity chef Giada De Laurentiis during a guest appearance on ABC's The Chew last fall. She can cook rich foods and keep her trim figure, but new research suggests that's a difficult feat for amateur cooks watching along at home.
Lou Rocco ABC/Getty Images

If you've ever watched Giada de Laurentiis make gooey chocolate-hazelnut spread or a rich carbonara pasta dish, you may have wondered: How can she cook like this and maintain her slim figure?

Read more

3:08am

Wed March 18, 2015
13.7: Cosmos And Culture

Much Rests On The Enhanced Large Hadron Collider

Originally published on Wed March 18, 2015 1:11 pm

Part of the Large Hadron Collider.
iStockphoto

Get ready to look at the universe through a new window.

Read more

6:36pm

Tue March 17, 2015
Goats and Soda

Breast-Feeding Boosts Chances Of Success, Study In Brazil Finds

Originally published on Wed March 18, 2015 12:23 pm

Brazilian mothers participate in a demonstration in 2011 for the right to breastfeed in public, in Sao Paulo, Brazil.
Eduardo Anizelli/STF LatinContent/Getty Images

Babies who are breast-fed may be more likely to be successful in life, a provocative study published Tuesday suggests.

The study followed more than 3,000 babies into adulthood in Brazil. The researchers found those who were breast-fed scored slightly higher in intelligence tests in their 30s, stayed in school longer and earned more money than those who were given formula.

Read more

3:55pm

Tue March 17, 2015
13.7: Cosmos And Culture

How A Soggy Solar System Can Spark A New Human Future

Originally published on Tue March 17, 2015 4:50 pm

S. Jastrzebski iStockphoto

Let's begin with your great-great-great-etc.-grandparents. I'm talking eight or nine of those "greats," meaning your ancestors living around the first decades of the 1800s.

Read more

5:34am

Tue March 17, 2015
World

Four Tropical Cyclones At Once: How Unusual Is That?

Originally published on Tue March 17, 2015 7:25 am

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

Read more

3:17am

Tue March 17, 2015
Science

Are Humans Really Headed To Mars Anytime Soon?

Originally published on Tue March 17, 2015 9:15 am

Mars, anyone? Six researchers from the Mars Society sport their best space duds during this 2014 simulation of the conditions that explorers of the Red Planet might face. (From left) Ian Silversides, Anastasiya Stepanova, Alexandre Mangeot and Claude-Michel Laroche.
Micke Sebastien Paris Match via Getty Images

With recent news headlines proclaiming that dozens of people have been selected as finalists for a Martian astronaut corps, it might seem like a trip to this alien world might finally be close at hand.

But let's have a little reality check. What are the chances that we really will see people on the Red Planet in the next couple of decades?

Read more

6:31pm

Mon March 16, 2015
Shots - Health News

Clues To Autism, Schizophrenia Emerge From Cerebellum Research

Originally published on Tue March 17, 2015 4:27 pm

Jonathan Keleher talks with a colleague, Rafael Wainhaus, at work. Keleher was born without a cerebellum, but his brain has developed work-arounds for solving problems of balance and abstract thought.
Ellen Webber for NPR

A new understanding of the brain's cerebellum could lead to new treatments for people with problems caused by some strokes, autism and even schizophrenia.

That's because there's growing evidence that symptoms ranging from difficulty with abstract thinking to emotional instability to psychosis all have links to the cerebellum, says Jeremy Schmahmann, a professor of neurology at Harvard and Massachusetts General Hospital.

Read more

Pages