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Nature is the international weekly journal of science: a magazine style journal that publishes full-length research papers in all disciplines of science, as well as News and Views, reviews, news, features, commentaries, web focuses and more, covering all branches of science and how science impacts upon all aspects of society and life.
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The discovery of Homo floresiensis: Tales of the hobbit

Thu, 10/23/2014 - 09:00

The discovery of Homo floresiensis: Tales of the hobbit

Nature 514, 7523 (2014). http://www.nature.com/doifinder/10.1038/514422a

Author: Ewen Callaway

In 2004, researchers announced the discovery of Homo floresiensis, a small relative of modern humans that lived as recently as 18,000 years ago. The ‘hobbit’ is now considered the most important hominin fossil in a generation. Here, the scientists behind the find tell its story.

Categories: Literature

Human evolution: Small remains still pose big problems

Thu, 10/23/2014 - 09:00

Human evolution: Small remains still pose big problems

Nature 514, 7523 (2014). doi:10.1038/514427a

Author: Chris Stringer

Ten years after the publication of a remarkable find, Chris Stringer explains why the discovery of Homo floresiensis is still so challenging.

Categories: Literature

Emergency planning: Be prepared

Thu, 10/23/2014 - 09:00

Emergency planning: Be prepared

Nature 514, 7523 (2014). doi:10.1038/514430a

Authors: Jennifer K. Pullium, Gordon S. Roble & Mark A. Raymond

Scenario-based training for disasters is better than just drawing up a paper plan, say Jennifer K. Pullium and colleagues.

Categories: Literature

A ripe time for gaining ground

Wed, 10/22/2014 - 00:00

A ripe time for gaining ground

Nature 514, 7523 (2014). doi:10.1038/514403a

After three years of heated debate, the advocates and critics of gain-of-function research must work to agree on how best to regulate the work.

Categories: Literature

The ice bucket

Wed, 10/22/2014 - 00:00

The ice bucket

Nature 514, 7523 (2014). doi:10.1038/514403b

Social-media fun for medical research bypasses animal sensitivities.

Categories: Literature

Solar physics: Solar atmosphere is a hotbed of activity

Wed, 10/22/2014 - 00:00

Solar physics: Solar atmosphere is a hotbed of activity

Nature 514, 7523 (2014). doi:10.1038/514406a

Explosions of plasma in the Sun's atmosphere can reach temperatures of nearly 100,000 °C, much hotter than scientists had expected.The finding is one of several about the region between the solar surface and the uppermost edge of the Sun's atmosphere, or corona, revealed by

Categories: Literature

Microbiology: Obesity link to jet-lagged microbes

Wed, 10/22/2014 - 00:00

Microbiology: Obesity link to jet-lagged microbes

Nature 514, 7523 (2014). doi:10.1038/514406b

Disrupted sleep patterns alter the composition of gut bacteria, leading to metabolic problems.Eran Elinav at the Weizmann Institute of Science in Rehovot, Israel, and his team found that the abundance of gut microbes in mice fluctuates daily in sync with host feeding times. But

Categories: Literature

Conservation: Horn trade could save rhinos

Wed, 10/22/2014 - 00:00

Conservation: Horn trade could save rhinos

Nature 514, 7523 (2014). doi:10.1038/514406c

Wild southern white rhinoceroses could go extinct in just nine years because of poaching, but could be saved if trade in their horns were to be carefully managed.Poachers killed almost 1,000 southern white rhinoceroses (Ceratotherium simum simum; pictured) for their horns

Categories: Literature

Stem cells: Cell transplants enhance vision

Wed, 10/22/2014 - 00:00

Stem cells: Cell transplants enhance vision

Nature 514, 7523 (2014). doi:10.1038/514406d

Implanted retinal cells derived from stem cells seem to be improving vision in some people in two early-stage clinical trials.Steven Schwartz at the University of California, Los Angeles, Robert Lanza at Advanced Cell Technology in Marlborough, Massachusetts, and their team grew retinal pigmented epithelial

Categories: Literature

Photonics: Laser moves items long distances

Wed, 10/22/2014 - 00:00

Photonics: Laser moves items long distances

Nature 514, 7523 (2014). doi:10.1038/514407a

A laser beam can move matter tens of centimetres and in two directions.Such tractor beams have been used to shift small objects very short distances. To scale this up, Wieslaw Krolikowski at the Australian National University in Canberra and his team fired a laser

Categories: Literature

Meteorology: Tornadoes growing more clustered

Wed, 10/22/2014 - 00:00

Meteorology: Tornadoes growing more clustered

Nature 514, 7523 (2014). doi:10.1038/514407b

Tornadoes in the United States have been happening on fewer days since the 1970s, but more tornadoes have touched down (pictured) on those days.The overall number of US tornadoes has not changed in recent decades. However, in analysing the national tornado database,

Categories: Literature

Neuroscience: Molecule boosts brain rewiring

Wed, 10/22/2014 - 00:00

Neuroscience: Molecule boosts brain rewiring

Nature 514, 7523 (2014). doi:10.1038/514407c

Blocking a brain-cell receptor boosts the brain's ability to form new neuronal connections as it adapts to changing stimuli.Carla Shatz at Stanford University in California and her colleagues disrupted the receptor, PirB, in the visual centre of mouse brains by either genetically deleting it

Categories: Literature

Palaeontology: Strange fossil is a vertebrate cousin

Wed, 10/22/2014 - 00:00

Palaeontology: Strange fossil is a vertebrate cousin

Nature 514, 7523 (2014). doi:10.1038/514407d

Bizarre 500-million-year-old sea creatures called vetulicolians are relatives of vertebrates.Palaeontologists have struggled to identify the relationship between living animals and these extinct organisms, because of their odd combination of features such as gill slits and a segmented abdomen. A team led by Diego García-Bellido

Categories: Literature

Cancer: Immunotherapy beats leukaemia

Wed, 10/22/2014 - 00:00

Cancer: Immunotherapy beats leukaemia

Nature 514, 7523 (2014). doi:10.1038/514407e

Engineering certain immune cells to kill cancerous cells in leukaemia has driven the disease into remission for up to two years in more than half of participants in an early-stage clinical trial.Stephan Grupp at the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, and his co-workers tested

Categories: Literature

Pros and cons of the PhD glut

Wed, 10/22/2014 - 00:00

Pros and cons of the PhD glut

Nature 514, 7523 (2014). doi:10.1038/514407f

Amid increased competition for faculty jobs in biomedicine, some have suggested cutting the number of PhD students. So when a senior scientist advised against this, the online world took notice. Eve Marder, a neuroscientist at Brandeis University in Waltham, Massachusetts, argued in the journal eLife

Categories: Literature

Seven days: 17–23 October 2014

Wed, 10/22/2014 - 00:00

Seven days: 17–23 October 2014

Nature 514, 7523 (2014). http://www.nature.com/doifinder/10.1038/514408a

The week in science: Snail discovery revives publishing spat; proposed nuclear-waste site passes key US safety evaluation; and biopharmaceutical firm AbbVie cools on US$54-billion takeover deal.

Categories: Literature

US suspends risky disease research

Wed, 10/22/2014 - 00:00

US suspends risky disease research

Nature 514, 7523 (2014). http://www.nature.com/doifinder/10.1038/514411a

Author: Sara Reardon

Government to cease funding gain-of-function studies that make viruses more dangerous, pending a safety assessment.

Categories: Literature

Oldest-known human genome sequenced

Wed, 10/22/2014 - 00:00

Oldest-known human genome sequenced

Nature 514, 7523 (2014). http://www.nature.com/doifinder/10.1038/514413a

Author: Ewen Callaway

DNA shows a group of modern humans roamed across Asia.

Categories: Literature

Data bank struggles as protein imaging ups its game

Wed, 10/22/2014 - 00:00

Data bank struggles as protein imaging ups its game

Nature 514, 7523 (2014). http://www.nature.com/doifinder/10.1038/514416a

Author: Ewen Callaway

Hybrid methods to solve structures of molecular machines create a storage headache.

Categories: Literature

In retrospect: On the Connexion of the Physical Sciences

Wed, 10/22/2014 - 00:00

In retrospect: On the Connexion of the Physical Sciences

Nature 514, 7523 (2014). doi:10.1038/514432a

Author: Richard Holmes

Richard Holmes finds Mary Somerville's breakthrough science best-seller thrillingly fresh, 180 years on.

Categories: Literature

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