Cataract Surgery Linked to Lower Risk of Developing Dementia, Even 10 Years Later

Cataract surgery is often undertaken to reverse the natural decline in vision as we get older. Now, a new association study underscores the wider benefits such a procedure can have on one’s health – especially when it comes to reducing dementia risk.   Cataracts are cloudy areas that develop in the lens of the eye … Read more

Reprogrammable Eutelsat Quantum Satellite Shifts Missions on the Fly

Companies, governments and other customers will soon be able to directly access instruments on a satellite and assign them new missions on the fly. According to program manager Frédéric Piro, the Eutelsat Quantum, which blasted into space from Kourou in French Guiana this summer, is the world’s first commercial satellite that can be fully reprogrammed … Read more

Ancient Greeks didn’t kill ‘weak’ babies, new study argues | Science

In his biography Life of Lycurgus, written around 100 C.E., Greek philosopher Plutarch recounted how the ancient Spartans submitted newborns to a council of elders for inspection. “Fit and strong” babies survived, but those found to be “lowborn or deformed” were left outside to die, Plutarch wrote, “on the grounds that it is neither better … Read more

Dogs Understand an Average of 89 Unique Words And Phrases, New Research Shows

The way dogs have come to understand the nuances of human language is incredibly impressive for an animal that doesn’t speak words itself. Just a fraction of a second after we start saying a word – like ‘walk’ or ‘treat’ – dogs can predict and respond to what we are trying to say. To some … Read more

Our Sun May Have Been Born With a Trouble-Making Twin Called ‘Nemesis’

A recent model on how stars are formed adds weight to the hypothesis that most – if not all – stars are born in a litter with at least one sibling. Our own star at the center of the Solar System is probably no exception, and some astronomers suspect that the Sun’s estranged twin might … Read more

Deadly Indonesia Eruption Was Triggered by Heavy Rains

The following essay is reprinted with permission from The Conversation, an online publication covering the latest research. The eruption of Mount Semeru in Indonesia on Saturday tragically claimed the lives of 22 people, with another 22 still missing and 56 injured. More than 5,000 people have been affected by the eruption, and more than 2,000 people have taken … Read more

Scientists Say We Should Rethink Moons as Planets… And Reinstate Pluto

The International Astronomical Union (IAU) has a very strict definition of the word “planet”. According to the definition – drafted, tweaked, and agreed upon in August 2006 – an astronomical body is officially a planet if it orbits the Sun, has sufficient mass to be spherical, and has cleared the neighborhood around its orbit.   … Read more

Snapshots from high in the sky allow new insight into ecosystems around the world | Science

Country: Country *AfghanistanAland IslandsAlbaniaAlgeriaAndorraAngolaAnguillaAntarcticaAntigua and BarbudaArgentinaArmeniaArubaAustraliaAustriaAzerbaijanBahamasBahrainBangladeshBarbadosBelarusBelgiumBelizeBeninBermudaBhutanBolivia, Plurinational State ofBonaire, Sint Eustatius and SabaBosnia and HerzegovinaBotswanaBouvet IslandBrazilBritish Indian Ocean TerritoryBrunei DarussalamBulgariaBurkina FasoBurundiCambodiaCameroonCanadaCape VerdeCayman IslandsCentral African RepublicChadChileChinaChristmas IslandCocos (Keeling) IslandsColombiaComorosCongoCongo, The Democratic Republic of theCook IslandsCosta RicaCote D’IvoireCroatiaCubaCuraçaoCyprusCzech RepublicDenmarkDjiboutiDominicaDominican RepublicEcuadorEgyptEl SalvadorEquatorial GuineaEritreaEstoniaEthiopiaFalkland Islands (Malvinas)Faroe IslandsFijiFinlandFranceFrench GuianaFrench PolynesiaFrench Southern TerritoriesGabonGambiaGeorgiaGermanyGhanaGibraltarGreeceGreenlandGrenadaGuadeloupeGuatemalaGuernseyGuineaGuinea-BissauGuyanaHaitiHeard Island and Mcdonald IslandsHoly See (Vatican City State)HondurasHong … Read more

NIH Director Francis Collins to hand reins to acting Director Lawrence Tabak on 20 December | Science

Lawrence Tabak, principal deputy director of the National Institutes of Health (NIH), will become the agency’s acting director on 20 December—the day after current Director Francis Collins leaves his post, the Department of Health and Human Services said today. Collins, the physician-geneticist who has served as head of the $43 billion NIH for 12 years, … Read more

Congress drops U.S. ban on foreign talents programs from defense bill, but it’s not dead | Science

Congress has dropped language from a must-pass bill governing U.S. defense policy that would have effectively prevented U.S. scientists from participating in Chinese programs aimed at attracting foreign scientific talent. But a similar provision applying to such programs may be tucked into a second bill aimed at outcompeting China that is now being hammered out … Read more