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Chemistry3496 articles archived since 1845

Skinny Genes Tell Fat to Burn

A gene whose mutated form is associated with cancer in humans turns out to have a role in burning calories over a long evolutionary history.

May 22, 2020 — Karen Hopkin

Lemur Flirting Uses Common Scents

To entice female ring-tailed lemurs, males rub wrist secretions, which include compounds we use in perfumes, onto their tail and then wave it near the gals.

May 11, 2020 — Jason G. Goldman

Where Is Everybody Else in the Universe?

Guest host W. Wayt Gibbs talks with Jason Wright, a professor of astronomy and astrophysics at Pennsylvania State University’s Center for Exoplanets and Habitable Worlds, about what’s known as the Fermi paradox: In a universe of trillions of planets, where is everybody?...

April 27, 2020 — W. Wayt Gibbs

COVID-19: The Need for Secure Labs—and Their Risks

Coronavirus research requires high-containment labs. Journalist Elisabeth Eaves talks with Scientific American contributing editor W. Wayt Gibbs about her article “The Risks of Building Too Many Bio Labs,” a joint project of the New Yorker and the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists ...

April 3, 2020 — W. Wayt Gibbs and Steve Mirsky

Wasp Nests Help Date Aboriginal Art

Art created by Australian Aboriginal people used organic carbon-free pigments, but wasp nests above or below the art can be used for radiocarbon dating that supplies boundaries for the age of artworks...

February 19, 2020 — Susanne Bard

The Supercool Materials That Send Heat to Space

Paints, plastics and even wood can be engineered to stay cool in direct sunlight—but their role in displacing power-hungry air conditioners remains unclear

February 17, 2020 — XiaoZhi Lim and Nature magazine
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