Science news, expert analysis and the latest discoveries (2024)

Why does the sun make people sneeze?ByCharles Q. Choi published 15 June 24People who sneeze in bright lights, like the sun, may have autosomal dominant compelling helio-ophthalmic outburst syndrome, or ACHOO.


1st-known human case of H5N2 bird flu remains under investigationByNicoletta Lanese last updated 14 June 24A man in Mexico died after catching the world's first laboratory-confirmed case of H5N2 bird flu in humans. However, authorities think he likely died of existing conditions, rather than the infection itself.


Melatonin may stave off age-related vision loss, study hintsByEmily Cooke published 14 June 24A large new analysis has tied the use of supplemental melatonin to a lower risk of developing one of the most common age-related causes of vision loss.

Florida shark attacks caused by heat, not scary orcas, experts sayByJacklin Kwan published 14 June 24People had linked recent shark attacks in the Florida panhandle to orca activity in the Gulf. But a combination of dry weather and heat was the real driving force.


Gen Xers will have higher cancer rates than boomers, study forecastsByEmily Cooke published 14 June 24A new modeling study predicts that cancer rates in people over 60 may be rising among successive generations.


Vera C. Rubin Observatory: The groundbreaking mission to make a 10-year, time-lapse movie of the universeByJamie Carter published 14 June 24Armed with the world's largest digital camera, the forthcoming Vera C. Rubin Observatory in Chile will take night-sky images that revolutionize astronomy.

Space Exploration

How long would it take to reach Planet 9, if we ever find it?ByHarry Baker published 14 June 24Some experts believe that the solar system's hypothetical ninth planet could be just a few years away from being discovered. If this is the case, how long would it take for humans to send probes to the elusive world?


Planet Nine: Is the search for this elusive world nearly over?ByHarry Baker published 14 June 24Astronomers have been scouring the outer solar system for signs of a hypothetical ninth planet for almost a decade, without success. However, we may finally be on the cusp of finding it, experts say.


Orangutan 'stoically waits' for tourists in award-winning photograph 'See No Evil'ByHannah Osborne published 14 June 24Aaron Gekoski's image of an orangutan sitting patiently at Safari World in Bangkok has won the 2024 Environmental Photography Award competition.


NASA will put a 'new star' in the sky by the end of the decade in 1st-of-its-kind missionByHarry Baker published 14 June 24The newly announced Landolt NASA Space Mission will launch a bread box-size "artificial star" satellite that will mimic stars by shining lasers directly at ground-based telescopes. This will enable astronomers to fine-tune instruments and potentially revolutionize how we study the universe.


Leatherback turtle dives deeper than a Navy sub, smashing world record in the processByPatrick Pester published 14 June 24A Western Pacific leatherback migrating from her nesting grounds in the Solomon Islands dove to a whopping 4,409 feet, conservationists say.


Hot Tub of Despair: The deadly ocean pool that traps and pickles creatures that fall inBySascha Pare published 14 June 24This stagnant brine pool at the bottom of the Gulf of Mexico is so toxic it kills and embalms any crabs and amphipods that are unlucky enough to stumble into it.

GPT-4 has passed the Turing test, researchers claimByDrew Turney published 14 June 24Most people couldn't distinguish ChatGPT from a human responder, suggesting the famous Turing test has been passed for the first time.

Artificial Intelligence

New RSV shots tied to rare nervous system disorder — should you worry?ByStephanie Pappas published 13 June 24There's been some reports of Guillain-Barré syndrome in older adults who got the vaccines. But health officials still recommend that this population get the shots, in consultation with their doctors.

James Webb telescope discovers most distant supernova ever seenByBen Turner published 13 June 24The James Webb Space Telescope has spotted a supernova dating to just 1.8 billion years after the Big Bang, as well as 80 others in the early universe. The ancient explosions could help scientists figure out the mysteries of how the cosmos evolved.


2,500-year-old slate containing drawings of battle scenes and paleo-alphabet discovered in SpainByJennifer Nalewicki published 13 June 24Archaeologists discovered the stone tablet at a Tartessian site in southwestern Spain.


Mifepristone: What to know about the drug in the Supreme Court's abortion pill caseByNicoletta Lanese last updated 13 June 24The Supreme Court of the United States has now issued a ruling about a widely used abortion pill. Here's what you should know.

Supreme Court preserves access to abortion pill mifepristone in unanimous rulingByNicoletta Lanese published 13 June 24In a 9-0 ruling, the court determined that an anti-abortion collective didn't have legal standing to raise the case against mifepristone to the Supreme Court.

Immunotherapy to treat cancer gave rise to 2nd cancer in extremely rare caseByMiriam Bergeret published 13 June 24Although very rare, past reports show some cancer patients may develop secondary cancers following lifesaving CAR T-cell therapy.


DeepMind experimenting with 'Shadow Hand' that can withstand a severe beating in the name of AI researchByBobby Hellard published 13 June 24The Shadow Hand robotic appendage is primarily built for machine learning projects with a focus on dexterity — but its creators want you to know just how tough it is.


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Science news, expert analysis and the latest discoveries (2024)
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