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  • Pluto’s heavy 'heart' may have led to depression. Seriously

    Pluto’s heavy 'heart' may have led to depression. Seriously

    Ever since NASA’s New Horizons spacecraft sent back the first high-resolution images of Pluto’s great white heart, scientists have been puzzling over its origin. Some have suggested that the planet rolled over to ensure this particular feature wound up in this particular spot; others say its location...

  • NASA's Cassini spacecraft is about to get a taste of Saturn's rings

    NASA's Cassini spacecraft is about to get a taste of Saturn's rings

    It’s the beginning of the end. On Nov. 30, NASA’s Cassini mission will begin the ring-grazing final chapter of its career at Saturn, one that will end with the spacecraft’s terminal plunge into the gas giant’s unforgiving atmosphere. The second half of this chapter, in which the spacecraft will...

  • Scientists design living organisms that make chemical bonds not found in nature

    Scientists design living organisms that make chemical bonds not found in nature

    Move over, chemists. Thanks to proteins from Icelandic bacteria, scientists at Caltech have managed to coax microbes into making silicon-carbon bonds, a feat that until now has been achieved only by humans in the lab. The findings, published last week in the journal Science, could open the door...

  • For a long life, consider picking up a tennis racket

    For a long life, consider picking up a tennis racket

    You probably know that exercise is good for you, but do you know whether you’re better off riding a bike or swimming laps in the pool?   Actually, if you want to get the biggest bang for your exercise buck, you should pick up a racket, new research reveals. An analysis of more than 80,000 adults...

  • For high school football players, just a season of play brings brain changes

    For high school football players, just a season of play brings brain changes

    Without sustaining a single concussion, a North Carolina high school football team showed worrisome brain changes after a single season of play, a new study has shown. A detailed effort to capture the on-field experiences of 24 high school football players showed that, at the end of a single season...

  • Why yo-yo dieters often can't keep the weight off

    Why yo-yo dieters often can't keep the weight off

    For those who have lost the same 10, 20 or 50 pounds not once but many times over, new research may help explain why yo-yo dieters so often fail to maintain their hard-won weight loss.  The community of microorganisms that inhabit the gut are a key culprit, experiments in mice suggest. After being...

Health & Medicine

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Space

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  • Pluto has a cold, wandering heart, and maybe a hidden ocean too

    Pluto has a cold, wandering heart, and maybe a hidden ocean too

    Scientists looking deep into the “heart” of Pluto have discovered more evidence that the dwarf planet could be hiding a liquid ocean beneath its icy surface. In two papers published this week  in the journal Nature, researchers say Sputnik Planitia, the bright left lobe of a giant heart-shaped...

  • Supermoon 2016: The brightest supermoon in almost 70 years rises tonight

    Supermoon 2016: The brightest supermoon in almost 70 years rises tonight

    An extra-super supermoon is rising this evening, and you don’t want to miss it. Tonight’s full moon will appear bigger and brighter in the night sky than it has in nearly 70 years, and all you have to do to witness its shining glory is look up.  “Supermoon” is a non-technical term for a moon that...

  • In the motions of distant solar system objects, astronomers find hints of Planet Nine

    In the motions of distant solar system objects, astronomers find hints of Planet Nine

    The case for Planet Nine is growing. Two new findings presented at a planetary science meeting in Pasadena have uncovered hints for the existence of this distant, mysterious world in the motions of known solar system objects. The results could help astronomers home in on their otherworldly target,...

Environment

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Nutrition & Obesity

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Human Behavior

  • Accepting more Facebook friend requests is linked to lower mortality, study says

    Accepting more Facebook friend requests is linked to lower mortality, study says

    Think online social networks have no bearing on your real life? Think again. Scientists who studied Facebook activity and mortality rates of registered California voters found that people who received many friend requests were far less likely to die over a two-year period than those who did not....

  • Neuroscientists show how tiny fibs snowball into big lies

    Neuroscientists show how tiny fibs snowball into big lies

    A little dishonesty goes a long way. Scientists who studied the brain activity of people who told small lies for their own benefit found that these fibs appeared to pave the way to telling whoppers later. The findings, published this week in the journal Nature Neuroscience, demonstrate how self-serving...

  • Here's the latest advice from pediatricians for managing your kids' screen time

    Here's the latest advice from pediatricians for managing your kids' screen time

    The American Academy of Pediatrics released new guidelines Friday to help parents manage their kids’ screen time. Here is some of their advice: Children under the age of 2 should avoid all digital media use except for video chatting via apps like Skype and Facetime. If you must introduce digital...

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