Fatima Sheriff

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Night Vision Without the Goggles

The tantalizing promise—and practical pitfalls—of eyedrops that let a person see in the dark.<p>In March, Gabriel Licina pinned his eyes open and had his friend, Jeffrey Tibbetts, place several drops of a carefully calibrated liquid into his eyes. After a few minutes, to let the drops settle in, they …

Distressing

New Dissolving Ring Delivers Drugs Through Your Stomach For Seven Days

Safer, stretchier, and coming soon to a stomach near you<p>In recent years researchers have been looking for more efficient ways to deliver medicine over an extended period of time. To prevent drastic changes in hormone levels, for example, or make sure people don’t stop taking medication too early, …

Engineering

Alzheimer's Drugs In The Works Might Treat Other Diseases, Too

Efforts to find a treatment for Alzheimer's disease have been disappointing so far. But there's a new generation of drugs in the works that researchers think might help not only Alzheimer's patients, but also people with Parkinson's disease and other brain disorders.<p>Previous efforts to treat …

Dementia

Hard to bear: pandas poorly adapted for digesting bamboo, scientists find

Adding to their extinction woes, study finds pandas have a carnivorous digestive system and lack the gut flora for extracting maximum energy from plants<p>The panda’s woes are well-documented. Their habitat is shrinking, they are incredibly fussy eaters and they have an unusually lacklustre approach …

Biology

£100 million boost to scientific heritage

The investment will preserve Britain's rich scientific and technological history<p>Almost £100 million in funding has been announced for a series of heritage sites that include projects to preserve Britain's rich scientific and technological history.<p>The world's largest medical collection in London's …

She's Got One Of The Toughest Diseases To Cure. And She's Hopeful

Drug-resistant tuberculosis is not only airborne and lethal; it's one of the most difficult diseases in the world to cure.<p>In Peru, 35-year-old Jenny Tenorio Gallegos wheezes even when she's sitting still. That's because of the damage tuberculosis has done to her lungs. The antibiotics she's taking …

Medicine

Brain-Controlled Bionic Legs Are Finally Here

No, really. Amputees have been testing them for over a year<p>For a full decade, Gudmundur Olafsson was unable to move his right ankle. That's because it wasn't there. Olafsson's amputated lower leg was the delayed casualty of an accident from his childhood in Iceland, when he was hit by an oil truck. …

Robotics

The very first snakes had tiny ankles and toes - Futurity

The earliest snakes kept late hours and kept their hind legs, say paleontologists. They were also serious predators.

Snakes

7 Close-Up Pictures Reveal the Beauty of Bees

They pollinate our flowers and crops and pervade popular culture, but you've never seen bees like this before.<p>"Busy as a bee" isn't just a saying. When they aren't supplying us with honey or pollinating the flowers that brighten our days, these humble insects play an integral role in the …

My dad asked me to eat McDonald's for 10 days. This is what happened

Genetics student Tom Spector explains why his father asked him to eat junk food for every meal - and what the effects were on his body<p>The idea was hatched on a family holiday in Brazil, two Christmases ago. My father was researching microbes in the gut, which make up as much as three pounds of our …

MRI ‘wire map’ might predict schizophrenia - Futurity

New MRI methods that map the wiring of the brain could provide a valuable new tool to predict a person’s risk of developing schizophrenia.

Brain complexity starts early in life - Futurity

The process that allows the cerebral cortex—what most people imagine when they think of the word “brain”—to develop complexity begins before we are …

The Brain

Tiny Living Colons Grown From Cancer Cells

Hardier cells would help evaluate cancer treatments<p>Even though cancer cells grow out of control in the body, they are hard to keep alive in the lab. That makes it really difficult for researchers to understand how they work, and to test the efficacy of cancer-fighting treatments. Now an …

Cancer

Add Graphene To Spider Silk To Create The Strongest Fiber Yet

Web slingers get a high-tech upgrade<p>Your move, limpets. Earlier this year, the long-reigning champion of the Strongest Biological Material Competition, spider silk, was usurped by the upstart limpet teeth. But we all knew that the arachnids would not go quietly into the night.<p>In an unorthodox move, …

Nanotech

Can The Microbes You Leave Behind Be Used to Identify You?

When you touch a surface, you leave behind fingerprints—distinctive swirling patterns of oils that reveal your identity. You might also deposit traces of DNA, which can also be used to identify you. And you leave microbes. You are constantly bleeding microbes into your surroundings, and whenever …

Water: the weirdest liquid on the planet

The more scientists examine H2O, the stranger it starts to seem. Water bends all the rules – but if it didn’t, ice would sink and firefighters’ hoses would be useless<p>Water is the only substance on Earth whose chemical formula has entered the vernacular. We all know H2O, even if we don’t understand …

Weird

How Do We Tell The Difference Between Male And Female Faces?

Scientists pinpoint the neurons behind facial recognition—in monkeys, at least<p>Humans, like other primates, aren’t born with the ability to discriminate between faces--it takes time for the brain to develop enough to do so. Though researchers have long hypothesized that the inferior temporal cortex, …

Monkeys

A Darwin Finch, Crucial to Idea of Evolution, Fights for Survival

One of the world's rarest birds, the mangrove finch has dwindled to a habitat the size of just 12 city blocks. Here's how scientists are trying to bring it back from near-extinction.<p>Francesca Cunninghame prepared for a sea voyage on a recent afternoon with some strange cargo: eight fledglings of …

New test can predict cancer up to 13 years before disease develops

People who develop cancer have shorter telomeres, the caps at the end of chromosomes which protect the DNA<p>Genetic changes can predict cancer up to 13 years in the future, according to new research.<p>Harvard and Northwestern University discovered that tiny but significant changes are already happening …

Hacking North Korea

It can be hard listening to the stories of people who have escaped from North Korea -- or, to give its official name, the Democratic People's …

North Korea

Laser-Controlled And See-Through Brains Get Biomedical Prize

In addition to being scientifically important, Karl Deisseroth's research makes for some really cool-looking pictures<p>The scientist who figured out how to make organs see-through and how to control brain cells with laser light is getting a shiny new award today. Psychiatrist Karl Deisseroth, a</i> …

Stanford University

11 Remarkable Health Advances From 2014

From groundbreaking new drugs to doctor-assisted suicide, 2o14 was full of historic moments that are bound to play on in a big way throughout 2015 …

West Africa

The 15 Best Cameos Of The Year

Even discounting the inevitable blizzard of Stan Lee cameos — the Marvel icon popped up in Captain America: The Winter Soldier as a museum janitor, …

Bill Murray

Three ways cats can control our minds

Greg Foot visits Battersea Cats and Dogs Home to get up close and personal with our feline friends, and see how they have the ability to manipulate and control humans.<p>Cats… aren’t they lovely, cute and fluffy? Think again. These loveable pets are fantastic at being able to control the human mind. …

Pets

Evolution: Why are most of us right-handed?

Right-handed people are dominant worldwide – but why? Jason G Goldman investigates.<p>We humans don’t typically agree on all that much, but there is at least one thing that an impressive amount of us accept: which hand is easiest to control. If you use one hand for writing, you probably use the same …

Anthropology