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May 18, 2019

Tiny Human Brains Inside Rats Are Sparking Ethical Concern

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, neuroscience

Clusters of human brain cells can integrate into rat brains, and that’s raising concerns about giving animals some form of human consciousness.

Researchers can grow stem cells into tiny clumps of cells, called organoids, that display similar activity and structure to human brains. To find out more about how exactly that works, read our primer from when we made the technique one of our Ten Breakthrough Technologies of 2015.

Now, though, reports Stat, several labs have inserted those organoids into rat brains and connected them to blood vessels; some of the organoids have even grown physical links with the rat brains. From Stat’s report:

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May 18, 2019

Scientists create a four-winged robot insect that flies with grace

Posted by in category: robotics/AI

Researchers have built a tiny insect-like robot that can fly with realistic poise.

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May 18, 2019

Who needs Copernicus if you have machine learning?

Posted by in category: robotics/AI

It took humanity centuries to decide that Earth orbits the sun. Now a neural network has come to the same conclusion, using the same data, in just a few hours.

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May 18, 2019

Samsung at foundry event talks about 3nm, MBCFET developments

Posted by in category: computing

“The nanometer process deals with the space between the transistors mounted on a substrate at a nanometer level,” said Pulse.

“The narrower the distance, the more chips can be squeezed in to boost computing power and energy efficiency. One nanometer corresponds to one ten-thousandth the diameter of a human hair.”

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May 18, 2019

Teen astronomer finds a planet with two suns

Posted by in category: space

Brian Wu, a teen researcher from New York City, has discovered a handful of distant planets, including a massive world that orbits two suns.

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May 18, 2019

How Uber and other digital platforms could trick us using behavioral science – unless we act fast

Posted by in category: science

This is one of the reasons Uber will soon be among the most valuable companies in the world after its shares began trading on the New York Stock Exchange.

Denys Prykhodov / Shutterstock

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May 18, 2019

Mapping historical changes in dark matter

Posted by in categories: cosmology, mapping

Combining Einstein’s theory of relativity with one of the most powerful telescopes in the world has helped an international team of researchers measure where and how dark matter structures grow in the universe. Their analysis suggests cosmic structures might be evolving more slowly than previously predicted.

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May 18, 2019

Tesla driver killed after smashing into truck had just enabled Autopilot – US crash watchdog

Posted by in categories: robotics/AI, transportation

A.I. is yet to prove the safety of self-driving cars.

“Shortly following the accident, we informed the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration and the National Transportation Safety Board that the vehicle’s logs showed that Autopilot was first engaged by the driver just 10 seconds prior to the accident, and then the driver immediately removed his hands from the wheel,” a Tesla spokesperson told The Register in an emailed statement. “Autopilot had not been used at any other time during that drive. We are deeply saddened by this accident and our thoughts are with everyone affected by this tragedy.”

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May 18, 2019

Scientists ‘went rogue’ and genetically engineered two human babies—or at least claimed to

Posted by in categories: bioengineering, biotech/medical, genetics

In the past 24 hours, a story of potentially world-changing import has surfaced. First reported by the MIT Technology Review and then not long after by the Associated Press, who seem to have been sitting on the story for a while, the news that a Chinese scientist named He Jiankui led an unprecedented experiment to edit human embryos and see them carried to term rocked the genetics community. Here’s what you need to know about this evolving story.

The science

Besides He, the most important players in this story may be twin baby girls named Nana and Lulu. As far as we know the twins were edited as embryos using CRISPR-cas9, a gene editing tool. The stated purpose of the edit was to disable CCR5, a gene involved in allowing HIV to invade cells, which is how a virus infects a host.

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May 18, 2019

BioHiTech supplies food waste digesters to grocery chain

Posted by in category: food

Chestnut Ridge, New York-based company to install Sapling digesters at six locations.


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