Category Archives: General Science

Mouse Embryos

in spaaaaaaaace:

According to the pictures sent back from a high-resolution camera, the 600 embryos, which were put under the camera, developed from the 2-cell stage, an early-on embryonic cleavage stage, to blastocyst, the stage where noticeable cell differentiation occurs, around 72 hours after SJ-10’s launch. The timing was largely in line with embryonic development on Earth, according to CAS.

But we still have no idea what happens in partial gravity. And they didn’t bring them to term.

Gravitational Waves

This is a huge day for Kip Thorne (and others). Nadia Drake has a comprehensive story up already.

[Update a few minutes later]

Here’s another write up by Matthew Francis at The Atlantic.

[Update a few more minutes later]

Here‘s the paper itself.

[Update a while later]

And one from Miri Kramer.

[Update a while later]

And from Loren Grush.


Imagining a world without them:

“The ecological effect of eliminating harmful mosquitoes is that you have more people. That’s the consequence,” says Strickman. Many lives would be saved; many more would no longer be sapped by disease. Countries freed of their high malaria burden, for example in sub-Saharan Africa, might recover the 1.3% of growth in gross domestic product that the World Health Organization estimates they are cost by the disease each year, potentially accelerating their development. There would be “less burden on the health system and hospitals, redirection of public-health expenditure for vector-borne diseases control to other priority health issues, less absenteeism from schools”, says Jeffrey Hii, malaria scientist for the World Health Organization in Manila.

They kill more humans than any other animal species, by many orders of magnitude. I wouldn’t miss them.

[Update a few minutes later]

We have the technology to wipe out all Zika-spreading mosquitos.

Why stop there? Go after every species that vectors blood. As the article notes, though, gene drive is not without risk.