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27 truths and myths about COVID-19, from Christian healing to Bill Gates conspiracy theories

Due to popular demand (well, two polite requests, actually), I have decided to create a clean version of my post ...
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Fighting cancer by boosting the body’s immune system with genetically engineered bacteria

Our immune system can defeat cancer. Immune cells can directly attack cancer cells or produce proteins that don’t let tumors ...
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Viewpoint: Stanford epidemiologist John Ioannidis’ COVID-19 controversy illustrates the politicization of science

The critical questions the Stanford professor is raising about Covid-19 have gotten lost amid partisan bickering ...
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Lefty or righty? Is handedness genes or chance?

Many geniuses, from Einstein to Bill Gates were lefties. But left-handedness remains a rarity--only 1 in 10 of us are ...
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Video: How can we figure out the real fatality rate of COVID-19 and how lethal it is?

Dr. Wessam Atif breaks down what we do and don't know about the worldwide death rate, or case fatality rate, ...
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It started with rocks: How we developed belief, our ‘most creative and destructive’ ability

About 20 years ago, the residents of Padangtegal village in Bali, Indonesia, had a problem. The famous, monkey-filled forest surrounding ...
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How a rare bird and the coronavirus remind us that our safety depends on science—not wishful thinking

There are worse places to spend a COVID-19 lockdown than next to a sanctuary with one of the world’s rarest ...
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‘Valuable feedback’: Coronavirus conspiracy theories and rumors illustrate ‘legitimate anxieties’

The tactic of simply throwing facts at the misinformation problem can be ineffective, and even counterproductive ...
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Viewpoint: Lawyers win and science loses in Johnson & Johnson decision to halt US baby powder sales

Scientists say that talcum baby powder doesn't cause cancer. Trial lawyers say it does. As usual, the lawyers win. Scientists, ...
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Podcast: Out standing in the field – the highs and lows of fieldwork

We talk to the researchers studying genetics and evolution in action, from chasing butterflies up mountains to artificially inseminating kakapos ...
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Seeking a big break: How ‘brain-on-a-chip’ devices are revolutionizing brain disorder research

How do we pick apart an organ as complex as the brain and gain a better understanding of what goes ...
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‘Humanized mice’: Chimeras fuel quest to treat chronic diseases, cancer and even COVID-19

Some medical conditions can't be ethically investigated in humans, so researchers are finding interesting ways to grow people parts in ...
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Using ‘genomic breadcrumbs’ to track the coronavirus—and predict how to cope with it

Rapid sequencing of viral genomes can help public health officials figure out the origins, spread and nature of quickly moving ...
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Viewpoint: Believing that we’ll have a COVID-19 vaccine anytime soon is naive

The odds that we will have a safe, effective vaccine by January are vanishingly small ...
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Defying conventional wisdom: How did these Italian sisters live past 100?

Recently in my endless email about COVID-19 popped up a new paper analyzing the health of two Italian sisters who ...
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‘Sugar is the villain’: Biohacking and synthetic biology do battle against diabetes and heart disease

Here’s a look into the next generation of low-calorie sugar alternatives and continuous glucose monitoring systems set to change the ...
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Understanding why the coronavirus can make some people so sick

Why is the coronavirus deadlier than the flu? ...
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Viewpoint: Time to stop thinking of testosterone as a ‘magic male molecule’

Aggression is not correlated with high levels of testosterone ...
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What we can learn from Sweden’s controversial—and seemingly effective—coronavirus strategy

Life in lockdown is slowly becoming a rather grim norm for millions of citizens across the globe as the response ...
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Coronavirus immunity passports could create a world of ‘us and them’. But here’s why they make sense

Dividing groups of people into “us” and “them” isn’t usually a good idea, but in the scary new world of ...
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If we want to go to Mars, we’ll need to figure out how to feed our astronauts. Synthetic biology can help.

Revolutionary food production and closed-loop biomanufacturing could transform human space travel and address the growing food crisis on Earth ...
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Podcast: Tracing humanity’s roots: uncovering history and genetic diversity in Africa

We explore the genetic diversity in the birthplace of humanity and discover the cultural and historical stories written in the ...
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Stanford’s John Ioannidis refines study suggesting coronavirus global lockdown “may be totally irrational,” acknowledging “more uncertainties”

John Ioannidis answers Undark’s questions on his controversial antibody study and participation in partisan media ...
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Viewpoint: Darwin’s ‘Descent of Man’ is both deeply disturbing and more relevant than ever

Charles Darwin’s Descent of Man is full of unexpected delights — such as the trio of hard drinking, chain-smoking koalas ...
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The tricky path for using stem cells to treat coronavirus-ravaged lungs

The coronavirus pandemic has unleashed a wave of repurposing efforts, from old malaria drugs prescribed off-label to anti-virals stalled in ...
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Viewpoint: ‘We can’t afford miscommunication or bureaucratic foot-dragging’ in the quest for a coronavirus vaccine

A draft government report forecasts the possibility of about 200,000 new cases of COVID-19 each day by the end of ...
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Podcast: We need a vaccine ‘Manhattan Project’ to defeat COVID-19

The only way to truly end the novel coronavirus pandemic is to develop an effective vaccine. And while there are ...
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‘Denial, blame, and conspiratorial thinking’: Anti-vaxxers’ dangerous rhetoric during coronavirus pandemic

So far, the responses from major players wear down a familiar path of conspiratorial thinking and government mistrust ...