Science community must become more resilient to global crises, says report

As the impacts of global crises such as war and natural disasters are felt around the world, a new report from the International Science Council (ISC) says that the scientific community should be better prepared to safeguard science and scientists in such challenging situations. ‘Critically, the report comes at a time when schools, universities, research […]

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Iron salts catalyse the creation of carbenes for cyclopropanation

A new synthetic strategy uses a simple salt – iron chloride – to catalyse the creation of carbenes from commercial aldehydes. The carbenes quickly react with different alkenes to yield a selection of cyclopropanes ‘with a remarkable structural diversity’, according to Marc Montesinos Magraner, an expert in synthetic chemistry at the University of Valencia, Spain, […]

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Creating reconfigurable fluidic devices from liquid building blocks

Reconfigurable functional liquid devices have been created by assembling and disassembling different types of liquid droplets. Liquid droplets such as silicone oil were printed into a range of structures and then liquids could be pumped through them, allowing bespoke fluidic devices to be made. Inspired by toy building blocks, the researchers from Southeast University in […]

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From τὰ φυσικά (ta physika) to physics – XVI

As astrology was one of the very first scientific disciplines to be adopted by the ‘Abbāsid in their assimilation of Persian cultural it followed automatically that that they also adopted astronomy; you need astronomy in order to do astrology. Also, the practice of Islam itself required both the determination of the times for the five daily prayers […]

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Kinky findings drive crystal growth paradigm shift claim

US chemists say that their new results ‘refute and replace the dominant idea’ of how individual molecules come together to form crystals. Peter Vekilov from the University of Houston and colleagues provide fundamental insights into how dissolved molecules add to growth sites, called kinks, once they get there. They provide new evidence that temporary bonds […]

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Pre-organising antibiotic structure could aid fight against resistance

A novel synthetic antibiotic with a structure preorganised for optimal ribosomal binding has been shown to be effective against several multi-drug resistant strains of bacteria. The researchers hope their findings will support the future discovery of antibacterial agents broadly effective against antimicrobial resistance. Lincosamide antibiotics, such as clindamycin, work by binding to the bacterial ribosome, […]

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Striking reptilian fossil discovered in 1931 found to be fake

A remarkable fossil reptile from the Alps in Italy has turned out to be a fake. What was thought to be soft tissue in the fossil is mostly just black paint daubed onto 280-million-year-old sandstone, an analysis has revealed. The ‘fossil’ of an intriguing lizard-like creature with a slender body and long neck was discovered […]

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Response to review of red tape in UK research arrives after 18 months

It’s taken 18 months for the government to respond to University of Birmingham vice-chancellor Adam Tickell’s review of bureaucracy in the UK’s research landscape, which found that unnecessary red tape – particularly within research institutions and funders – was impeding efficiency and productivity. The government’s response sets out ‘rapid action’ to alleviate some of the […]

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