The best science stories across the web this week:
- Researchers have developed a method for detecting psychological illness using brain scans. They used a machine learning algorithm to detect patterns in the shapes of “healthy” brains and brains suffering from various mental disorders such as depression, bipolar disorder, ADHD, and schizophrenia.
- Genetically altered white blood cells are fighting off leukemia. All 13 human patients saw some improvement. Ten of 13 went into remission (versus 33 to 69 percent under normal treatment).
- A nanomesh boosts the efficiency of solar cells three times over.
- A 400 kilometer river is discovered on Titan. It’s not water, but it’s the only case of stable surface liquid in the solar system other than on Earth.
- A laser pulse can transform insulators into conductors.
- Cancer cells escape chemotherapy by going into a dormant state.
- While testing the toxicity of carbon nanotubes, scientists discover that they actually strengthens nerve cells.
- The IPCC’s predictions about global warming in 1990 have been independently verified to have come true with staggering accuracy. As predicted, global temperatures rose 0.55 degrees Celsius above the natural baseline, after fluctuations due to solar radiation etc. were taken into account.
- “Zombies” are actually surprisingly common in nature.
Featured Science Book This Week:
The Science of Consequences: How They Affect Genes, Change the Brain, and Impact Our World