A "mosquito factory" in China's Guangzhou city is breeding 20 million mosquitoes every week and releasing them into the world.
The male mosquitoes are infected with bacteria before they are set free to copulate with female mosquitoes in the wild. The aim of this project, according to the research team, is to reduce the mosquito population and eradicate mosquito-borne diseases.
On Monday, March 14, a group of scientists led by Xi Zhiyong of China's Sun Yat-sen University and Michigan State University announced that they are infecting the male mosquitoes with Wolbachia bacteria. When infected male mosquitoes breed with wild female mosquitoes, they produce infertile eggs. Though this may sound like a radical method of eliminating disease, the scientists believe that it is an effective way of reducing the risk of mosquito-borne diseases such as dengue fever, malaria, yellow fever, chikungunya, and the Zika virus. more >>
Contrary to previous findings, a new study conducted by researchers in France has found that infants know when they don't know something and are able to let others know even before they learn how to talk. This means that humans are, in fact, metacognitive at a much earlier age than was previously thought.
Though metacognition has been observed in other species, humans are the only ones that are able to communicate what they know - and what they don't. A new study published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America (PNAS) suggests that this is an ability that humans develop from a very early age. According to the study, which was conducted by Louise Goupil, Margaux Romand-Monnier, and Sid Kouider at Paris Sciences et Lettres Research University, even babies as young as twenty months are able to gauge their own knowledge of the location of a toy and are able to ask for help when they are unsure.
In the study, titled "Infants Ask For Help When They Know They Don't Know," the authors proposed that "explicit metacognition develops earlier than previously thought, enabling infants to communicate their own uncertainty nonverbally to gain knowledge from others." more >>
Creationist Ken Ham has taken aim at atheists who have criticized his views on the origins of creation by arguing that they are trying to impose their "anti-God religion" on children, an accusation he also threw at famous astrophysicist Neil deGrasse Tyson.
Ham wrote on his Facebook page that his recent Tweet criticizing the "Cosmos" TV series as imposing atheism on students made "secularists get overly emotional over their religion."
He pointed to responses to his argument on blog sites, with titles such as "Ken Ham is a Liar," "Creationist Ken Ham Fears New Cosmos Series Will Create Pandemic of Reason and Critical Thinking," "Ken Ham Disparages Schools Showing Cosmos in Class for 'Imposing Atheism on Students,'" and then went on to defend his position, saying that Tyson, who worked on the show, "basically tells students to worship the sun/the stars." more >>
A Vatican astronomer who embraces both science and religion has said there is no conflict between the two, arguing that scientist who reject religion are lacking in humility, while Christians who reject science believe they can tell God how he should have made the universe.
"To me (the issue) comes down to two problems: Scientists not having enough humility to understand, that they don't have all the answers and religion not having enough to recognize that they can't tell God how He should have made the universe," Jesuit Brother Guy Consolmagno, director of the Vatican Observatory, answered in response to a question regarding people who find conflict between science and religion, The Salt Lake Tribune reported.
Consolmagno said in a speech at Juan Diego Catholic High School in Draper that the Roman Catholic Church has been looking to bring a balance between science and faith since the 1580s, when Pope Gregory XIII committed the Church to scientific study. more >>
Media magnate Oprah Winfrey recently interpreted her favorite Bible verse, Psalm 37:4, for "The Late Show" host Steven Colbert, but Minnesota-based Bethlehem College & Seminary Chancellor John Piper questions Winfrey's understanding.
In a podcast last week for his website DesiringGod.org, Piper highlighted four major differences between the way he and Oprah explain the meaning of the verse.
1. Piper Focuses on Jesus, Oprah Focuses on Virtues more >>
Authoritarian personality, a mentality closely associated with fascism and even nazism, plays a strong factor in the support for Donald Trump, according to some researchers.
While many political experts have struggled to explain the electoral success of Trump in the Republican primary, researchers like University of Massachusetts, Amherst Ph.D. candidate Matthew MacWilliams have taken a psychological approach.
In a recent column for Politico, MacWilliams reported that in December he did a national poll of 1,800 voters to explain the support for Trump. more >>