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Brain-Invading Tapeworm That Eluded Doctors Spotted by New DNA Test

Brain-Invading Tapeworm That Eluded Doctors Spotted by New DNA Test

Doctors at Zuckerberg San Francisco General Hospital could not figure out what was wrong with the 29-year-old man sitting before them. An otherwise healthy construction worker from Nicaragua, the patient was suffering from a splitting headache, double vision and ringing in his ears. Part of his face was also numb. The cause could have been anything—from an infection to a stroke, a tumor or some kind of autoimmune disease. The Emergency Department (ED) staff took a magnetic resonance imaging scan of the man’s brain, performed a spinal tap and completed a series of other tests that did not...

June 22, 2017
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Scientists Demonstrate Direct Brain-to-Brain Communication in Humans

Scientists Demonstrate Direct Brain-to-Brain Communication in Humans

We humans have evolved a rich repertoire of communication, from gesture to sophisticated languages. All of these forms of communication link otherwise separate individuals in such a way that they can share and express their singular experiences and work together collaboratively. In a , technology replaces language as a means of communicating by directly linking the activity of human brains. Electrical activity from the brains of a pair of human subjects was transmitted to the brain of a third individual in the form of magnetic signals, which conveyed an instruction to perform a task in a...

November 2, 2019
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The Science Is Clear: Gun Control Saves Lives

The Science Is Clear: Gun Control Saves Lives

Some editorials simply hurt to write. This is one.At least 19 elementary school children and two teachers are dead, many more are injured, and a grandmother is fighting for her life in Uvalde, Tex., all because a young man, armed with an AR-15-style rifle, decided to fire in a school.By now, you know these facts: This killing spree was the since Sandy Hook. Law enforcement couldn’t immediately subdue the killer. In Texas, it’s alarmingly easy to buy and . In the immediate hours after the shooting, President Biden , again. Legislators , again. And progun politicians turned to weathered...

May 28
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Will COVID-19 Make Us More Socialist?

Will COVID-19 Make Us More Socialist?

The views expressed are those of the author(s) and are not necessarily those of Scientific American.PreviousNextDiscover world-changing science. Explore our digital archive back to 1845, including articles by more than 150 Nobel Prize winners.Support science journalism.Thanks for reading Scientific American. Knowledge awaits.Already a subscriber? Thanks for reading Scientific American. Create your free account or to continue.Continue reading with a Scientific American subscription.You may cancel at any time.

April 26, 2020
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China Shatters “Spooky Action at a Distance” Record, Preps for Quantum Internet

China Shatters “Spooky Action at a Distance” Record, Preps for Quantum Internet

In a landmark study, a team of Chinese scientists using an experimental satellite tested quantum entanglement over unprecedented distances, beaming entangled pairs of photons to three ground stations across China—each separated by more than 1,200 kilometers. The test verifies a mysterious and long-held tenet of quantum theory and firmly establishes China as the front-runner in a burgeoning “quantum space race” to create a secure, quantum-based global communications network—that is, a potentially unhackable “quantum Internet” that would be of immense geopolitical importance. The findings...

June 16, 2017
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Is the human race evolving or devolving?

Is the human race evolving or devolving?

A similar question was previously answered by Meredith F. Small, associate professor in the anthropology department at Cornell University.This time we asked Michael J. Dougherty, assistant director and senior staff biologist at Biological Sciences Curriculum Study in Colorado Springs, Colo., to offer his opinion.From a biological perspective, there is no such thing as devolution. All changes in the gene frequencies of populations--and quite often in the traits those genes influence--are by definition evolutionary changes. The notion that humans might regress or "devolve" presumes that there...

June 9, 2019
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Space Telescope Director Says Best Is Yet to Come for Hubble

Space Telescope Director Says Best Is Yet to Come for Hubble

Thirty years ago a team of NASA astronauts tipped the Hubble Space Telescope out of a space shuttle’s cargo bay and into low-Earth orbit. High above our planet’s starlight-smearing atmosphere, Hubble could study phenomena across the cosmos that ground-based observatories could never hope to see. It was not the first space telescope, but it is by far the longest-lived and most productive—thanks in large part to an innovative design that allowed Hubble to be visited, repaired and upgraded. Today it has irreversibly transformed astronomy, leading not only to profound new discoveries about the...

April 27, 2020
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Second Ever Interstellar Comet Contains Alien Water

Second Ever Interstellar Comet Contains Alien Water

Astronomers have spotted signs of water spraying off comet 2I/Borisov, which is flying towards the Sun on a journey from interstellar space. It is the first time scientists have seen water in our Solar System that originated somewhere else.“There’s water—that’s cool, that’s great,” says Olivier Hainaut, an astronomer at the European Southern Observatory in Garching, Germany. The discovery isn’t surprising, he says, because most comets contain a lot of water. But confirming its presence in an interstellar comet is an important step towards understanding how water might travel between the...

November 3, 2019
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Health Concerns Mount as More Old Sewer Pipes Are Lined with Plastic

Health Concerns Mount as More Old Sewer Pipes Are Lined with Plastic

Earlier this year Nicole Davis arrived at one of the San Antonio, Tex., offices of the audiology practice she co-owns ready to see the day’s patients. But upon entering her office, Davis says she quickly noticed a noxious odor that smelled like paint thinner. Her eyes started burning. By noon, she felt nauseated and dizzy, with the burning sensation spreading to her nose and throat. Her mouth went numb. Co-workers in the building told Davis that they felt ill, too. By the evening, she says, she was vomiting.Two days later, Davis received an e-mail from an employee for a construction firm...

December 3, 2019
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Algorithmic Foreign Policy

Algorithmic Foreign Policy

Last year, China unveiled its development of a new artificial intelligence system for its foreign policy. It’s called a “geopolitical environment simulation and prediction platform,” and it works by crunching huge amounts of data and then providing foreign policy suggestions to Chinese diplomats. According to one source, China has already used a similar AI system to vet almost every foreign investment project in the past few years.Consider what this development means: Slowly, foreign policy is moving away from diplomats, political-risk firms and think tanks, the “go-to” organizations of the...

August 31, 2019
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