Science class

By Zach Morrow | Articles related to 8th grade NC science standards

San Diego is a salt mover and shaker in desalination campaign

San Diego may be known as "America's Finest City," but — at least this week — it's also the epicenter of the desalination and water reuse movement.

More than a thousand water experts from around the globe are gathered at the waterfront convention center for the International Desalination Assn. World …

San Diego

Battle Over Alaska's Bristol Bay Pits Salmon Against Gold

A battle between salmon fishermen, environmentalists and the gold mining industry has been brewing for more than a decade in a remote part of Southwest Alaska where the Arctic tundra meets the wetlands, grizzly bears and caribou roam and rivers rich with fish spill out into Bristol Bay.

Alaskans are …


A 6-foot-long 'sea scorpion' swam and scuttled in ancient seas

Scientists have found evidence of a giant scorpion-like animal that roamed the seas hundreds of millions of years before the dinosaurs.

The research team named the newly discovered creature Pentecopterus decorahenis because it looks like early Greek warships known as penteconters. "Decorahenis" is a …


Tickborne Diseases: Widespread, Serious, and Taking Us By Surprise

I spent most of last week at the International Conference on Emerging Infectious Diseases, a 1,500-person meeting of epidemiologists, physicians and microbiologists that is co-sponsored by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the American Society for Microbiology. The ICEID, as it’s …


GM embryos: time for ethics debate, say scientists

Leading UK research funders are calling for an urgent national debate on the ethics of genetically modifying human embryos and other tissues to prevent serious diseases.

The plea has been prompted by scientists’ rapid progress in developing a powerful tool called genome editing, which has the …

Medical Technology

India Virtually Eliminates Tetanus as a Killer

A year after eliminating polio, India has scored another public health victory. Following a 15-year campaign, the country has virtually eliminated tetanus as a killer of newborns and mothers.

Tetanus, caused by a bacterium common in soil and animal dung, usually infects newborns when the umbilical …

World Health Organization

Texas teen dies of rare brain-eating amoeba infection

(Reuters) - A Texas teenager who contracted a rare brain-eating disease after swimming in a lake about 70 miles (110 km) north of Houston has died, according to his family and local media.

The 14-year-old Michael Riley Jr., a junior Olympian and honor student, seemed to have contracted the disease …


Prison scrambles as Legionnaires' disease sickens inmate

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — Officials at California's oldest state prison scrambled to provide safe drinking water to thousands of inmates after waterborne Legionnaires' disease hospitalized one inmate and was suspected of sickening more than two dozen others.

Water was quickly shut off at San Quentin …

Legionnaires' Disease

The Slow Process of Countering the Emerald Ash Borer

In 2001, ash trees began dying in Detroit, and no one could say why. Then glittering green beetles were discovered crawling out of an ash log.

American scientists had never seen the beetles, and they reached out to experts around the world for help. A Slovakian entomologist named Eduard Jendek …

Utah man dies of bubonic plague in fourth US death this year

A man in his 70s in Utah has died after contracting the plague, bringing to four the number of deaths from the disease reported in the United States this year, health officials have said.

Officials said they believed the victim might have contracted the disease from a flea or contact with a dead …

Bubonic Plague

CDC reports 11 cases of human plague since April

(CNN) — Since April 1, there have been 11 cases of human plague in the United States, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said Thursday. Three of those patients have died. This is according to a new report from the CDC putting doctors on alert that the number of cases this year seems to …

New Mexico

Melbourne salmonella outbreak blamed on mayonnaise at Langham hotel

Raw egg mayonnaise has been blamed for a salmonella outbreak during high tea at a luxury Melbourne hotel.

Mayonnaise from The Langham hotel kitchens tested positive for the same strain of salmonella that was found in 90 people who ate at the hotel on 11 and 12 July, Victoria’s acting chief health …


Evolving a Defense, Mimics Save Themselves

The Canadian tiger swallowtail caterpillar is a plump green creature that spends all its time munching leaves. It ought to be an easy meal for a bird, yet many birds pass it by.

The caterpillar is protected by a remarkable defense, researchers have found: It tricks birds into thinking it’s a …


Genetically modified trees are being 'strangled' by red tape

US researchers say it has become "virtually impossible" to plant genetically modified trees in any part of the world.

They argue that the GM trees are desperately needed to deal with an upsurge in forest diseases and pests.

What they term "misguided" concerns about genetic engineering have slowed …

Public Broadcasters

Treatment-Resistant Lice Are Now In 25 States

Kyong Yoon, Ph.D. Lice populations in the states in pink have developed a high level of resistence to some of the most common treatments.

Just in time for the new school year, head lice have become literal superbugs.

Lice have developed a high level of resistance to the most common over-the-counter …


Unprecedented NYC law signed after deadly Legionnaires’ outbreak

New York City Mayor Bill De Blasio signed an unprecedented law regulating cooling towers throughout the city on Tuesday following an outbreak of Legionnaire’s disease that killed 12 people in the city’s South Bronx area.

City health officials said the outbreak, which sickened 124 people, was caused …

New York City

Biotech Company Is Developing Transplantable Pig Organs For Humans

Pigs are good for more than just bacon

Every year, around 8,000 people die waiting for an organ transplant. There just doesn't seem to be enough human organs available for those who need them. Biotech company United Therapeutics has been investigating ways to grow pig organs to be used in humans, …

Life Sciences

Better Know A Plague: Legionnaires’ Disease

The old-timey-sounding illness has now infected more than 100 people in New York. What is it?

Over the past month, an outbreak of Legionnaires’ disease has spread in the south Bronx in New York City, infecting at least 113 people and killing 12. NBC reports that health workers have traced the …


Body-hackers: the people who turn themselves into cyborgs

When the director of a research institute called the Alternate Anatomies laboratory says he’s got something up his sleeve, you can safely assume it’s not just a figure of speech.

For Professor Stelarc, an Australian performance artist whose previous party tricks have included using a robotic third …


For fat loss, low-fat diets beat low-carb diets handily, new research finds

It is a central dogma of the low-carb lifestyle: that while avoiding carbohydrates will force the human body into fat-burning mode, any diet that fails to suppress insulin will trap body fat in place and thwart a dieter's hope of shifting to a leaner, healthier body type.

But researchers from the …


Man dies from brain-eating amoeba in Oklahoma lake

An Oklahoma man has died after contracting a waterborne disease while swimming in a local lake, the Oklahoma State Department of Health told

The man, referred to only as a Carter County resident, contracted Primary Amebic Meningoencephalitis (PAM), a rare infection that derives from …

The Brain

Robot mother builds 'cube babies' then watches them take first steps

Cambridge University has built evolution by natural selection into a robot for the first time

A ‘mother’ robot which can build its own ‘children’, test which ones do best, then modify their design, has been developed by scientists at Cambridge University.

In an astonishing video released by the …


Bike-and-Hike: The 3,350-Mile Microplastics Transect

In nearly every direction she looks, all Julie Hotz can see are mountains.

Here, atop Idaho’s 6,727-foot Lookout Mountain, Hotz and her hiking partner are 300 miles into their 1,200-mile bid at the Pacific Northwest National Scenic Trail. They have just covered nine miles of rugged off-trail terrain …

Glacier National Park

Sierra Leone celebrates lifting of ban on public gatherings due to Ebola

Celebrations broke out all over Sierra Leone at the weekend after a ban on public gatherings prompted by the outbreak of Ebola more than a year ago was lifted.

Sierra Leoneans were allowed to go to sporting events and nightclubs, and stay out in restaurants after 9pm, following the decision by the …


An outbreak of Legionnaires' disease in New York has killed at least 8 people — now officials think they've found the source

This video indicates the origin of the New York outbreak of Legionnaires' disease as the Bronx. The disease, which is a severe kind of pneumonia, is contracted by breathing in mist from cooling towers contaminated with the bacteria Legionella.

Produced by Jacqui Frank. Video courtesy of Next Media

Legionnaires' Disease

Death toll, overall cases in New York Legionnaires' disease outbreak rises

New York (CNN) — The number of those affected by the Legionnaires' disease outbreak in New York City rose yet again Wednesday -- with 11 more reported cases and one more death.

Eight people total have died from in the outbreak, the mayor's office said Wednesday. It was not immediately clear where …

Legionnaires' Disease

Mine Cleanup Team Releases Millions of Gallons of Waste Into River

A million-gallon mine waste spill that sent a plume of orange-ish muck down a river in southwest Colorado on Thursday was caused by a federal mine cleanup crew.

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency said that a cleanup team was working with heavy equipment Wednesday to secure an entrance to the …

New Mexico

Snail Venom Yields Potent Painkiller, But Delivering The Drug Is Tricky

Researchers are increasingly turning to nature for inspiration for new drugs. One example is Prialt. It's an incredibly powerful painkiller that people sometimes use when morphine no longer works. Prialt is based on a component in the venom of a marine snail.

Prialt hasn't become a widely used drug …


How New Jersey Tamed The Wild Blueberry For Global Production

Nearly every plant that we now depend on for food — from wheat to beans to tomatoes — comes from ancestors that once grew wild on hills and in forests.

In most cases, we don't know who, exactly, tamed those plants. We don't know which inventive farmer, thousands of years ago, first selected seeds …