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News

Cuttlefish
A study has found that cuttlefish can pass a fishy version of the ‘marshmallow test’ – and those that can delay gratification the longest are the most intelligent.
Artificial polaritons
Researchers from the University of Cambridge and Skoltech in Russia have shown that polaritons, the quirky particles that may end up running the quantum supercomputers of the future, can form structures that behave like molecules – and these ‘artificial molecules’ can potentially be engineered on demand. Their results are published in the journal Physical Review B Letters.
Coronavirus
New data from Addenbrooke's Hospital in Cambridge suggests that a single dose of the Pfizer BioNTech vaccine can reduce by 75% the number of asymptomatic SARS-CoV-2 infections. This implies that the vaccine could significantly reduce the risk of transmission of the virus from people who are asymptomatic, as well as protecting others from getting ill.
Fire at Sequoia National Park, California
Researchers have analysed decades’ worth of data on the impact of repeated fires on ecosystems across the world. Their results, published today in the journal Nature Ecology and Evolution, show that repeated fires are driving long-term changes to tree communities and reducing their population sizes.
Driving in fog
A computer network closely modelled on part of the human brain is enabling new insights into the way our brains process moving images - and explains some perplexing optical illusions.
Testing kit
The Healthcare Improvement Studies (THIS) Institute has today published an ethical framework for higher education institutions considering running asymptomatic COVID-19 testing programmes for their students.
Dr Robert Lee
Dr Robert Lee, University lecturer in American History, has been awarded a George Polk Award, one of the most prestigious in journalism, for his investigation into how the United States funded land-grant universities with expropriated Indigenous land.
Dimensional Lungs
A team of engineers has identified the ‘violent’ physical processes at work inside the lungs which cause wheezing, a condition that affects up to a quarter of the world’s population.
Surgeons at work in an operating theatre
A potential new treatment to protect immunosuppressed patients from human cytomegalovirus (HCMV) has been discovered by scientists at the University of Cambridge. Their study shows that certain epigenetic inhibitors expose and help to destroy dormant HCMV infections, which often reactivate to cause serious illness and death in these vulnerable groups. Subject to clinical trials, their proposed ‘shock and kill’ treatment strategy offers hope to transplant patients across the world.
Professor Sharon Peacock
The UK is a world leader in sequencing SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19. Of all the coronavirus genomes that have been sequenced in the world, nearly half have been sequenced by COVID-19 Genomics UK Consortium (Cog-UK). The consortium began life on 4 March 2020 when Sharon Peacock, a professor of public health and microbiology at the University of Cambridge, emailed a handful of scientists and asked for their help.

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