Hitarth Dalal

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The First Steps Toward An Artificial Cell

Scientists create a synthetic, membrane-bound vesicle that mimics some of the functions of a living cell.<p><b>Life depends on imbalance</b>—biological systems capitalize on the give and take between stability and instability to move, breathe, and eat. The cell and its components are never static.<p>This fact …

Chemistry

Biofuels: E Coli Modified To Make Engine-Ready Propane

<i>E coli</i> bacteria have been genetically modified to produce engine-ready propane for the first time.<p>“This opens up possibilities for future sustainable production of renewable fuels that at first could complement, and thereafter replace fossil fuels like diesel, petrol, natural gas and jet fuel,” …

Wrap Your Head Around This One: Potentially Immortal Bacteria That Eat Electricity and Could Become Living Batteries

One of the stranger (and little known) facts of nature is that our living cells are electric, or can carry electricity. Every thought, feeling and …

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Does Alcohol Kill Brain Cells?

Deep-sea creature shaped like a mushroom may be in a phylum all its own

You've heard of a sea cucumber, but how about a sea mushroom? This week, scientists described a mushroom-shaped sea creature that may be in a phylum all its own.<p>Two species of the newly described animal were found along the bottom of the ocean as deep as 3,200 feet beneath the surface. One is a …

If A Fish Grows Up On Land, Will It Learn To Walk?

Flipping your fins actually does get you pretty far.<p>The old idiom about “being a fish out of water” just lost some of its luster. Researchers from McGill University in Canada successfully trained a group of fish to live on land and strut around.<p>The idea was to simulate what might have happened 400 …

Engineered Bacteria Excrete Propane Fuel

Researchers want to harness your stomach bugs in the service of your barbecue<p>Propane, the gas that fuels your barbecue (and perhaps one day your car), may soon have a new, renewable source.<p>Researchers in Finland and England developed a genetic process that puts <i>E. coli</i> bacteria to work producing the …

Natural Gas

Scientists Send Messages Directly From One Brain To Another

But the cumbersome experimental setup won’t replace Facebook's Messenger app anytime soon.<p>So a team of neuroscientists sent a message from the brain of one person in India, to the brains of three people in France, using brainwave-reading equipment and the Internet. Yes, really.<p>The process is slow …