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Biology

Breakthrough DNA Editor Born of Bacteria

Interest in a powerful DNA editing tool called CRISPR has revealed that bacteria are far more sophisticated than anyone imagined.

cosmology

Joint Dust Analysis Deflates Big Bang Signal

No definitive evidence for cosmic inflation is found, but support remains strong for the theory even as critics highlight its shortcomings as an explanation for how and why the universe began.

Biology

Networks Reveal the Connections of Disease

Disease is the result of failure somewhere along the line in a complex dance of biological components. Now statistical physicists are using enormous databases of medical records to study connections between illnesses.

Q&A

Quantum Computing Without Qubits

A quantum computing pioneer explains why the near future of quantum computation may lie in simulators, not general-purpose quantum machines.

Mathematics

A Proof That Some Spaces Can’t Be Cut

Mathematicians have solved the century-old triangulation conjecture, a major problem in topology that asks whether all spaces can be subdivided into smaller units.

geometry

Scientists Conjure Curves From Flatness

Researchers have found a set of rules for imbuing flat surfaces with curvature, enabling them to form a virtually unlimited range of three-dimensional structures.

genetics

Machine Intelligence Cracks Genetic Controls

Scientists have begun to decipher the most difficult-to-read parts of the genome — the parts that don’t code for proteins. The new work reveals how errors in these genetic instructions can lead to disease.

Mathematics

Prime Gap Grows After Decades-Long Lull

A year after tackling how close together prime number pairs can stay, mathematicians have now made the first major advance in 76 years in understanding how far apart primes can be.

Computer Science

A Common Logic to Seeing Cats and Cosmos

New research suggests physicists, computers and brains employ the same procedure to tease out important features from among other irrelevant bits of data.