Scientists use poop to retrace famed invasion against Rome
Historians consider Hannibal’s campaign one of the most brilliant military feats of antiquity.
Competition may have killed off largest shark ever
The ancient shark C. megalodon was in some cases over twice as long as the fictional “Jaws.”
Distant planet said to be half-melted
Astronomers have obtained what they call the most detailed “fingerprint” of a rocky planet outside our solar system to date.
Not “freaks”: doc charges colleagues with mistreating sex-change patients
A prominent U.K. doctor launched the broadside in an editorial in a major medical journal.
Blind people found to gesture like sighted ones when speaking
Findings suggest gestural variations don’t emerge from watching others speak, but from learning a language itself.
The Moon’s spin axis shifted, scientists say
The Man in the Moon might not have looked quite the same from Earth before three billion years ago.
Science-religion conflict may lie in our brains
The conflict between science and religion may originate in our brain structure, researchers have found.
Study questions much-hyped benefits of moderate drinking
Countless news stories have reported on research tying moderate drinking to a range of health benefits.
Photo said to show possible embryonic planet
New images from a radio observatory appear to show a clump of material circling a young star.
Bizarre findings on Americans: Less religion but more afterlife belief
Some researchers are citing a something-for-nothing mentality to explain the head-scratching results.
Hyenas said to join wolf packs in unusual alliance
Animals of different species sometimes lean on each other in times of adversity—just as humans do, according to a new study.
Old stars might form second crop of planets, imaging study suggests
Astronomers have snapped the sharpest picture yet of a dusty disc around a close pair of old stars.
Study suggests why fasting diet may not work in humans
Strict low-food diets may hurt the immune system, counteracting the lifespan-boosting effects they show in lab animals, research suggests.
Being short or overweight linked to reduced life chances
Being a short man or an overweight woman may lead to lower chances in areas such as education and income, a study finds.
New evidence of language-like abilities in birds
Scientists are reporting new evidence that birds can communicate by re-arranging the same sounds in different ways.
New signs that Zika virus may cause microcephaly
Researchers suspect they’ve found out how Zika probably causes microcephaly, or abnormally small heads, in fetuses.
Near-suicidal trips said to make dragonfly a champion long-distance flier
One species of little insect seems to keep outposts that just about span the globe.
Huge volcanoes may have twisted whole Martian surface
Mars long ago swiveled around its own core by 20 to 25 degrees, according to a study.
Scientists propose: let’s search part of sky where aliens could have seen us
A narrow strip of the sky might be more promising for E.T. searches, two researchers say.
Go-slow cancer treatment might actually work better, study suggests
Can we learn to live with—rather than kill—cancer?
“Loneliest places” in cosmos may be less empty than thought
New research looks at cosmic voids, vast tracts of the universe thought to be almost empty.
Warming may be raising seas faster than anytime in at least 2,800 years
A new study estimates sea-level changes over the past three millennia.
Pluto moon may have an ancient, frozen ocean, scientists say
New images are said to suggest that the moon Charon once had a subsurface ocean that has long since frozen and expanded.
Strange galaxy found to have huge tail of gas
A spectacular feature found with a bright spiral galaxy might turn out to characterize others as well, some predict.
New cancer predictor: aging too fast, scientists claim
A new study also attempts to point the way to medical tests and lifestyle improvements that could mitigate the problem.
Ancient flowering plant was beautiful—and likely poisonous, scientists say
A newly identified species is attributed to a type that ultimately gave rise to some of the most famous poisons.
Atmosphere of a “super-Earth” analyzed; possible poisons turn up
Scientists are trying to learn some general characteristics of the big, rocky planets thought to be common throughout our galaxy.
Promising safety results for “lifespan-boosting” drug
A drug used to treat organ transplant rejection has also drawn growing interest for its effects on lifespan in animals.
Ripples in spacetime detected after long search
Scientists say they have detected ripples in the fabric of spacetime called gravitational waves, generated by a collision of black holes.
That slime can see you—somewhat
Some microbes basically use their whole tiny, globular bodies as eyeballs, according to research.
Motorboat noise may literally scare fish to their deaths
Noise can double the rate at which some fish become someone else’s lunch underwater, a study finds.
Photos of black boys young as 5 make whites think of guns: study
A study suggests people are more likely to mistake a toy for a gun after seeing a black face than a white face—even when that face belongs to a five-year-old.
Head-on crash produced our moon, study says
A collision between Earth and a planetary embryo called Theia was head-on, not glancing, research concludes.
Study: protective gear may make people more reckless
Participants in a study, unaware it was measuring risk-taking, played a computer game more recklessly when helmeted, researchers said.
Astronomers report finding widest known solar system by far
One planet is so far from its host star that it will take almost a million Earth years to go all around the star, scientists say.
Schizophrenia tied to excess trimming of connections in brain
New research may shed light on the origins of a devastating mental illness.
The aliens are silent because they died out, study says
Life on other planets would likely be brief and go extinct quickly, some scientists argue.
“Solid evidence” of ninth planet claimed
Researchers say there’s an unseen, giant planet tracing a bizarre orbit in the outer solar system.
Review finds little evidence behind speed reading claims
A new report says the claims put forth by many speed reading programs and tools are probably too good to be true.
Dinos may have made “love nests” to show off
Dinosaurs engaged in mating behavior similar to modern birds, according to new research.
People prone to rage attacks found to have smaller “emotional brains”
Data confirm the condition is a brain disorder, scientists say.
Scientists plan to test whether plants can learn like Pavlov’s dog
German researchers have received funding for an unconventional study.
Super-ape may have been doomed by changing landscape—and own size
Gigantopithecus, up to three times heavier than a large gorilla, died out about 100,000 years ago.
Could star clusters nurture interstellar civilizations?
Globular clusters—tightly packed bunches of very old stars—may be ideal place to look for spacefaring civilizations.
“Promising” findings for treatment of age-related muscle decline
A “proof-of-concept” trial examined a type of drug called a myostatin antibody.
Chatting may serve evolutionary need to bond
For some ancestors of humans, exchange of vocal calls is proposed to have served as “grooming at a distance.”
Doomed-to-fail products may appeal to one type of buyer
Some people are so drawn to doomed products that their buying activity may be a bad sign, researchers say.
“Networks” of intelligence-linked genes reported found
Scientists want to learn whether the networks have master switches that could be manipulated to boost brainpower.
Study: investors often deal with portfolio slumps by just looking away
An “ostrich effect” applies even in an era of 24/7 access to financial data, researchers say.
Parrots seen using pebble-tools in new way
Captive parrots were filmed using pebbles or date pits to grind calcium powder from seashells.
Whether genes affect intelligence may depend on class, country
Past research suggests that both genes and environment shape intelligence.
Dinos arose quickly from predecessors, study finds
Dinosaurs may have evolved from their smaller predecessors much faster than was previously thought.
Happiness level found to have no direct effect on mortality
Results of a study of a million U.K. women challenge a widespread belief.
LSD found to act by reorganizing brain networks
It hasn’t been clear what causes the drug’s profound effects on consciousness.
Strange, early ecosystems found more complex than once thought
Scientists have used simulations to work out how a 555-million-year-old creature, with no known modern relatives, ate.
No definite structural difference between male, female brains, study says
Most brains are “mosaics” of features, some of which are more common in one sex or the other, researchers say.
Scientists accidentally extend young adulthood in worms using drug
The investigators plan to test the effect in mice next.
Disintegrating Martian moon could become a ring
The demise of Phobos is expected to occur in 20 million to 40 million years.
Asteroid mining could begin within a few decades, scientists claim
Researchers have developed a sensor to sniff out valuable materials from asteroids and other space objects.
Fossil forest may shed light on the first big trees
A peculiar, thickly packed forest adds to evidence that even the earliest trees were remarkably diverse.
Children from different cultures may react differently to unfairness
Only in a few countries do young children reject deals for being unfair to others, a study found.
Radiation is slamming the “most Earth-like planet,” scientists say
Radiation may be preventing life on a planet considered the most Earth-like known outside our solar system.
Which country’s people are most honest? It may depend on the test
A study yielded two rankings, both quite different, but both with the U.K. near the top and China near the bottom.
Martian moon said to be slowly falling apart
Grooves lining Phobos may be early signs of structural failure.
“Pandemonium” seen in Pluto’s moon system
One moon is spinning so fast that things are close to flying off its surface, scientists say.
Scientists could aid in new discovery by betting, study suggests
Large numbers of scientists could engage in “prediction markets” to help identify errors in new research.
Sleepwalkers feel no pain even when badly injured, study finds
One patient slept through jumping out of a third-floor window and taking severe fractures, scientists said.
T. rex may have been a cannibal
A tyrannosaur bone has revealed a nasty little 66-million-year-old family secret, scientists claim.