Scientists Create E. Coli With Entirely Synthetic Genome
May 17, 2019

By Ryan F. Mandelbaum Scientists created a variant of the E. coli bacteria with an entirely synthetic genome, according to a new paper. Building and replacing the large entire genome yet was just one goal of the team from the Medical Research Council Laboratory of Molecular Biology in Cambridge, UK. They hoped that the resulting bacteria would …

Octopuses May Go Blind As Climate Change Sucks Oxygen Out of the Ocean
May 17, 2019

By Brandon Specktor Turning light particles into visual information is hard work, and your body relies on oxygen to get the job done. This is true whether you walk the land on two limbs or swim through the sea with eight. In fact, according to a recent study in the Journal of Experimental Biology, the amount of oxygen …

Missouri Republicans Rush to Criminalize Abortion Care
May 17, 2019 · 1 

By Auditi Guha Missouri Gov. Mike Parson (R) praised Alabama Republicans’ passage of the country’s most restrictive abortion ban and said that he would sign a Missouri bill placing draconian new limits on abortion. The anti-choice omnibus bill, known as the “Missouri Stands for the Unborn Act,” contains a cascade of abortion bans at various …

Support for Same-Sex Marriage is Highest Among the Non-Religious. (As Usual.)
May 17, 2019

By Hemant Mehta According to a new survey from the Pew Research Center, the majority of Americans (61%) support same-sex marriage and the number remains virtually unchanged from 2017. That’s not too surprising — more people have accepted it as a reality and the issue hasn’t changed much over the past two years — but what’s …

Could a Single Live Vaccine Protect against a Multitude of Diseases?
May 16, 2019

By Melinda Wenner Moyer The heat of the sun, a blazing basketball in the West African sky, was softened by a breeze one afternoon last spring. Every so often the wind whisked a mango off a tree branch and dropped it with a thud on the corrugated iron roof that covered the health center in …

The Moon’s mantle unveiled
May 16, 2019

By Patrick Pinet The Moon is a small planetary body that has separated into a crust, a mantle and a core, but has not been disturbed by plate tectonics. It is therefore of tremendous value for understanding the evolution of planetary interiors. However, the composition of the lunar mantle remains uncertain. In January, the Chinese …

Televangelist Pat Robertson: Alabama’s abortion ban is ‘extreme’ and has ‘gone too far’
May 16, 2019

By Sarah Pulliam Bailey Longtime televangelist Pat Robertson decried Alabama’s new abortion ban as “extreme,” saying on his show on Wednesday that the state legislature has “gone too far.” Alabama’s law, which has been passed by the legislature and signed by the governor, includes a penalty of up to 99 years in prison for doctors who perform abortions …

‘The Time Is Now’: States Are Rushing to Restrict Abortion, or to Protect It
May 16, 2019

By Sabrina Tavernise WASHINGTON — In April, Indiana placed a near-total ban on the most common type of second-trimester abortion in the state. Days later, Ohio passed a bill banning abortion in the very early weeks of pregnancy after a fetal heartbeat is detected. Now on Wednesday, Gov. Kay Ivey of Alabama signed a bill …

This Bird Evolved into Existence Twice — Thousands of Years Apart
May 15, 2019

By Yasemin Saplakoglu On a ring-shaped reef in the Indian Ocean, a species of bird evolved to be flightless — twice. Hundreds of thousands of years ago, white-throated rails (Dryolimnas cuvieri) flew from their native home in Madagascar to the Aldabra atoll, a ring-shaped reef among the Seychelle Islands. The reef, free of predators for …

Despite Measles Warnings, Anti-Vaccine Rally Draws Hundreds of Ultra-Orthodox Jews
May 15, 2019 · 1 

By Kimiko de Freytas-Tamura MONSEY, N.Y. — An ultra-Orthodox rabbi falsely described the measles outbreak among Jews as part of an elaborate plan concocted by Mayor Bill de Blasio of New York to deflect attention from “more serious” diseases brought by Central American migrants. A pediatrician questioned whether Jews were being intentionally given “bad lots” …

Pat Robertson: God Is “Going To Get Rid” of America if the Equality Act Passes
May 15, 2019

By Hemant Mehta Pat Robertson is the latest Christian to denounce the Equality Act, which would add explicit non-discrimination protections for LGBTQ people to federal civil rights law. We’ve already seen Liberty Counsel’s Mat Staver pretend it’ll lead to pedophilia. The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints said yesterday they also opposed the Act because they wanted “fairness for all.” …

Alabama Lawmakers Vote to Effectively Ban Abortion in the State
May 15, 2019

By Timothy Williams and Alan Blinder MONTGOMERY, Ala. — The Alabama Senate approved a measure on Tuesday that would outlaw almost all abortions in the state, setting up a direct challenge to Roe v. Wade, the case that recognized a woman’s constitutional right to end a pregnancy. The legislation bans abortions at every stage of pregnancy and …