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The Guardian (U.K.) 

Virotherapy: skin cancer successfully treated with herpes-based drug

‘Virotherapy’ uses modified herpes virus to attack melanoma cells and has potential to overcome cancer even when disease has spread throughout the bodyPatients with aggressive skin cancer have been treated successfully using a drug based on the herpes virus, in a trial that could pave the way for a new generation of cancer treatments.The findings mark the first positive phase 3 trial resul

Staffordshire hoard: experts piece together rare warrior's helmet

Anglo-Saxon headgear reconstructed from more than 1,500 pieces as £400,000 grant is announced to fund further work on the treasure More than 1,500 scraps of silver gilt foil from the Staffordshire hoard of Anglo-Saxon treasure, including strips stamped with designs of warriors and beasts and other fragments the size of a fingernail, are being pieced together by archaeologists and conservators

Thorny frog and dementor wasp among new species discovered in Mekong

139 new species were identified in South East Asian region in 2014, including four moths named after Thai princesses and a new mammalA “dementor” wasp named after the Harry Potter creatures, a stick insect more than half a metre long, and a colour-changing thorny frog are among new species discovered in South East Asia’s Greater Mekong region.The discoveries also include a bent-toed gecko

Mediterranean-style diet may halve womb cancer risk, study suggests

Italian researchers claim women with a diet comprised mainly of nine key elements and only moderate alcohol are at a lower risk of developing the diseaseA Mediterranean-style diet, already associated with good health and prevention of heart disease or a stroke, could also significantly cut the risk of womb cancer, an Italian study suggests.Researchers who looked at the eating habits of ove

How to solve it! Cheryl's birthday puzzle part two: Denise's revenge

The last word onAlbert, Bernard, Cheryl and Denise. With workings. Guzzlers, how did you get on? Let me first restate the problem. Albert, Bernard and Cheryl became friends with Denise, and they wanted to know when her birthday is. Denise gave them a list of 20 possible dates._Albert: I don’t know when Denise’s birthday is, but I know that Bernard does not know.__Bernard: I still don

Uncomfortably numb: The people who feel no pain

Researchers have identified a third gene that causes congenital insensitivity to pain when mutatedBeing unable to feel pain may sound appealing, but it would be extremely hazardous to your health. Pain is, for most of us, a very unpleasant feeling, but it serves the important evolutionary purpose of alerting us to potentially life-threatening injuries. Without it, people are more prone to hur

Does paracetamol do you more harm than good?

GPs write millions of prescriptions for this painkiller each year and millions more packets are bought over the counter. It has generally been considered cheap, safe and effective. But should we think harder before we pop another pill?You have a headache after a glass of wine too many. Your back aches from another day hunched over a keyboard. That old shoulder injury is playing up again. What

Google a step closer to developing machines with human-like intelligence

Algorithms developed by Google designed to encode thoughts, could lead to computers with ‘common sense’ within a decade, says leading AI scientist Computers will have developed “common sense” within a decade and we could be counting them among our friends not long afterwards, one of the world’s leading AI scientists has predicted. Professor Geoff Hinton, who was hired by Google two years a

Why can't we all sing well? Eurovision and the science of song

The Eurovision final raises many questions, but here’s a scientific one: why, when we’re all capable of song, are some of us are Abba whilst others are Scooch? The Eurovision Song Contest, the continent’s annual carnival of the wacky and the weird, celebrates its 60th birthday in Vienna on Saturday night. Without it we would never have seen Russia in uproar over an Austrian drag queen, been i

Brain implant controls robotic arm - with the power of thought

Breakthrough as neuro-prosthetic device implanted in “higher” brain region, allows paralysed man to control robotic arm just by thinking about itErik Sorto, a 34-year old American, has been unable to move his arms or legs for more than a decade, since a gunshot wound left him paralysed from the neck down. Even now, he misses the little things.“I want to be able to drink my own beer - to be

Could extinct species be brought back to life? Podcast

Is de-extinction scientifically viable? Continue reading...

First images of collisions at 13 TeV in CERN's Large Hadron Collider

At first glance they look much like previous proton-proton collisions recorded by the detectors at the world’s biggest particle accelerator, but in fact no one has seen such events beforeLast night we passed another milestone in the continuing adventure of the Large Hadron Collider. Quick update, the story so far: after a very successful first running period (2009-2012) - in which amongst

Spacecraft sailing on sunbeams begins test flight

Craft financed by crowd-funding piggy-backs on the launch of an Atlas 5 rocketA tiny spacecraft designed to sail on sunbeams has been launched in a test flight that could transform long-distance space exploration. The probe, called LightSail, is equipped with a huge silver sail that will unfurl in the coming weeks and use the momentum of sunlight to propel it smoothly through space. Cont

Study of attitudes to same-sex marriage retracted over 'fake data'

Prof Donald Green ‘embarrassed’ over claims of errors by his co-author in study that found a conversation with a gay canvasser could soften attitudesThe senior author of a studyclaiming to find that a brief, face-to-face conversation with a gay political canvasser had the ability to soften the opinions of those opposed to same-sex marriage has retracted its findings, claiming there were error

Watch the skies: the season for rare and mysterious noctilucent clouds is here

Noctilucent clouds shimmer in the twilight summer sky on the very edge of space itself. These rare apparitions could be warning us about climate change Continue reading...

Birds identify good nuts by listening to them

Wild birds identify “good” seeds without first opening the shells by weighing them and by listening to the sound produced when clicking their beaks on the shell, according to a recent study Continue reading...

Cheryl's birthday puzzle part two, Denise's revenge - can you solve it?

Exclusive: all was well with Albert, Bernard and Cheryl until Denise showed up ... that’s right, it’s another birthday brainteaser from SingaporeHow to solve it! Cheryl’s birthday puzzle part two: Denise’s revenge Continue reading...

Why government censorship [in no way at all] carries greater risks than benefits

Recent revelations show that Theresa May hoped to censor TV shows using anti-extremism laws, and the government seem keen to pursue this strategy. But the actual evidence presents a few [made up by lefties] problems Continue reading...

Why the bad science of the no campaign shouldn't sway Ireland's voters

In the run-up to the referendum on marriage equality, there has been a considerable abuse of research to bolster arguments Continue reading...

How to solve the maths puzzle for Vietnamese eight-year-olds that stumped parents and teachers

I set this maths puzzle yesterday. Now for the solution. It wasn’t pretty, folks, but we got there in the end Continue reading...

Does scientific evidence support a reduction in the drink-driving limit?

The Police Federation have called for the drink-driving limit to be reduced to levels seen in Scotland. What effects does alcohol have on driving ability? Continue reading...

Be mindful of mindfulness: drug-free doesn't mean side-effect free

When it comes to psychiatric treatments, it’s not just mood-altering drugs that can have side-effects Continue reading...

The octopus can see with its skin

Octopus skin contains a light-sensitive pigment found in eyes, suggesting that these clever cephalopods can “see” without using their eyes Continue reading...

Can you do the maths puzzle for Vietnamese eight-year-olds that has stumped parents and teachers?

All you need to do is place the digits from 1 to 9 in the the grid. Easy, right?Stumped? Here’s the solution Continue reading...

No, there is no evidence for a link between video games and Alzheimer’s disease

Another day, another ridiculous headline about the apparently disastrous consequences of playing video games on the brain Continue reading...

Smarter regulation for the sharing economy

Technology-based sharing platforms are touching more and more people’s lives, but policy and regulation can struggle to cope with new technologies. We need to rethink our notion of the sharing economy in order to make better regulation Continue reading...

Innovation and equity in an age of gene editing

As experts gather in Atlanta to discuss the rights and wrongs of editing human genomes, four of the attendees (Charis Thompson, Ruha Benjamin, Jessica Cussins and Marcy Darnovsky) explain why it is vital to put social justice at the heart of the debate. Continue reading...

Equality and polyamory: why early humans weren't The Flintstones

A study released last week presented evidence that prehistoric men and women lived in relative equality. But is the truth even further from the nuclear narrative? Continue reading...

Abel Prize 2015: John Nash, Louis Nirenberg and the maths of ice cream

Today King Harald of Norway will present John Nash and Louis Nirenberg with the £500,000 Abel Prize, one of the top honours in mathematics. Here Norwegian mathematician and TV presenter Jo Røislien explains their groundbreaking work Continue reading...

Water surprise: The Water Book reviewed

Alok Jha’s _The Water Book_ tells the fascinating and unexpected story of the ubiquitous liquid of life Continue reading...


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