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Abstractions blog

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Abstractions blog

Nobel Prize Awarded for Biological Clock Discoveries

October 2, 2017

Three U.S. biologists share the Nobel Prize in Medicine for their research into the molecular mechanism that drives circadian rhythm.

Lucy Reading-Ikkanda/Quanta Magazine
Abstractions blog

The Math That Promises to Make the World Brighter

September 6, 2017

The color of LED lights is controlled by a clumsy process. A new mathematical discovery may make it easier for us to get the hues we want.

Neurons and astrocytes
Abstractions blog

The Oldest Mini-Brains Have Lifelike Young Cells

August 29, 2017

“Organoid” brain tissue models grown in a lab for two years can help scientists study a critical period of development just before and after birth.

Abstractions blog

For Astronomers, Neutron Star Merger Could Eclipse Eclipse

August 25, 2017

Even as the solar eclipse was mesmerizing millions, astronomers were training their space- and land-based telescopes on a far more violent astrophysical event.

Classes of geometric structures
Abstractions blog

Why Mathematicians Like to Classify Things

August 15, 2017

It’s “a definitive study for all time, like writing the final book,” says one researcher who’s mapping out new classes of geometric structures.

cerebral organoid, or mini-brain
Abstractions blog

Mini-Brains Go Modular

August 9, 2017

To create a good living replica of the human brain, your best hope may be to let “organoid” components assemble it for you.

Abstractions blog

Cookie-Cutter Supernovas Might Come in Different Flavors

July 31, 2017

Astronomers thought that all Type Ia supernovas shine with the same brightness, making them incredibly useful cosmic yardsticks. But uncertainty over what causes these explosions has led researchers to reconsider their assumptions.

GFAP staining in glial cells, neurofilament protein in axons and DNA in cell nuclei
Abstractions blog

Cell Atlases Reveal Biology’s Frontiers

July 12, 2017

New techniques expose unexpected diversity within seemingly uniform tissues.

Marjorie Rice
Abstractions blog

Marjorie Rice’s Secret Pentagons

July 11, 2017

A California housewife who in the 1970s discovered four new types of tessellating pentagons is dead at 94.