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Innovative toilets flush away disease, not water

Perhaps it's somehow easier to talk about infectious disease than toilets. But the unfortunate truth is that more children die every year from illnesses caused by poor water and sanitation than from HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria combined...

August 24, 2009 — Lynne Peeples

Chevron plans to pump oil with solar power

Chevron will tap sunlight to help it get more oil out of the ground in California. The company will partner with BrightSource Energy—a solar start-up that Chevron helps fund—to develop 29 megawatts of thermal power from the sun's rays...

August 24, 2009 — David Biello

Very old and very young are quicker than many assume

Humans have long enjoyed crowing about their intellectual superiority in the animal kingdom. But just as some studies—of tool-wielding birds and language-discerning rodents—have begun to chip away at our cognitive place in the sun, others have set their sights on two human groups whose intelligence might have been underestimated—the very young and the very old...

August 21, 2009 — Katherine Harmon

Deadly dangers of medical helicopters

Although they have saved thousands of lives, the medical choppers that rescue and transport patients have also claimed the lives of hundreds of crew members in the past 29 years.

August 21, 2009 — Katherine Harmon

Caster Semenya and the issue of gender ambiguity

The controversy over South African athlete Caster Semenya's gender has given the public a view into the complexities of gender. At first blush, the issue should be fairly straightforward: a person is either a male (with an X and a Y chromosome) or a female (with two X chromosomes)...

August 21, 2009 — Larry Greenemeier

Bat Killer: White-Nose Syndrome [Video]

Since it was first observed in New York in 2006, a bat-killing infection known as white-nose syndrome has spread across the eastern seaboard. More than a million bats of six different species have perished so far and infected caverns continue to be discovered...

August 21, 2009 — David Biello

Synthetic biology advance: Genome transferred between two bacteria via yeast

Microbes can be resistant to genetic engineering. There's simply not enough DNA in some of them to permit significant alteration. But by building a bacterial genome inside yeast—a more complex and information-rich eukaryote that is one of mankind's oldest genetic engineering projects—scientists have successfully created new, synthetic bacterial strains, according to a paper published today in Science...

August 20, 2009 — David Biello

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