MI weekly selection #35

Aristocholia baetica | Credit: Wikimedia Commons
Aristocholia baetica | Credit: Wikimedia Commons

Herbal remedy has cancerous side effect

Aristolochia plants, which have been used in China for herbal remedies, have been found to cause cancer, according to two studies published in Science Translational Medicine. The plants contain a naturally carcinogenic compound called aristolochic acid, which causes more cell mutations than those caused by tobacco smoke and UV light, researchers say.

The Scientist

A mammal or not a mammal: That is the question

Two almost complete skeletons of haramiyids, rodentlike animals that first appeared around 212 million years ago, are stirring up controversy about whether it belongs in the mammal family tree. One study suggests the group belongs to the mammal family, while the other believes it predates mammals.

Nature News

Cactus-like needles show promise for oil-spill cleanup

A synthetic needle modeled after those of a cactus may help soak up oil droplets in the ocean to clean up spills. A team of scientists at the Chinese Academy of Science in Beijing developed the needles as an economic alternative to current ways to clean up oil spills.

Science Now

Stellar Abundances: Better Measured Than Predicted

The masses of exotic nuclei must be measured or calculated very precisely to explain how they led to the formation of heavy elements.

APS – Physics

Human Cells Make Mice Smarter

Implanting astrocytes, our larger support cells, allowed the rodents’ brains to work faster

Scientific American Mind

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