MI weekly selection #432
Early Homo groups once trekked to a well-watered Arabia
The Arabian Peninsula was once a green oasis that attracted ancient Homo groups as early as 400,000 years ago during wet periods. Researchers have found evidence of animals migrating to the area’s lakes, rivers and wetlands as well as stone tools.
Amputees feel sensations with new prosthetic arm
Researchers have developed a prosthetic arm that helps users feel sensations. The arm utilizes small robots to send information between the brain and the arm.
Implantable cell-based therapy developed using CRISPR
Researchers used CRISPR-Cas9 gene editing technology to develop induced pluripotent stem cells that were implanted under the skin of mouse models of rheumatoid arthritis to deliver an anticytokine biologic drug for the treatment of inflammation. “The cells sit under the skin or in a joint for months, and when they sense an inflammatory environment, they are programmed to release a biologic drug,” senior investigator Farshid Guilak said.
Genetic Engineering & Biotechnology
Dark matter search could be aided by quantum crystal
A quantum crystal composed of beryllium ions could help future researchers track down dark matter particles known as axions. Researchers circumvented the Heisenberg uncertainty principle by using entangling the movements of beryllium ions with their spins.
Volcanoes may help stabilize climate
Researchers say in Nature Geoscience that chains of volcanoes may influence Earth’s surface temperature by moderating carbon dioxide in the atmosphere. Martin Palmer, professor of geochemistry at the University of Southampton, notes that volcanoes emit large amounts of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere, but also act as necessary components in removing carbon via weathering reactions.