22 August, 2018 – Episode 684 – This Week in Science (TWIS) Podcast


Neander-sovans, We’re Melting, Water On Moon, CRISPR Edits, Lazy Efficiency, Pointy Eggs, Life Is Older, Out There Ideas, Marijuana Worms, Bacterial Blood, Nerve Agent Nanobots, Steve Sky Glow, And Much More…

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Not all plans play out like you plan them…
Leaving you muddled up.
This is why we plan things in the first place…
To avoid meandering about in the middle of a muddle without a map
And yet, even with the best laid plans…
We can wind up map-less in Muddlesville
But for the intellectually mindful,
even Muddlesville has its must see moments.
The unplanned adventure…
The unexpected detour…
The uncharted course…
All become potential gold mines for the otherwise inconceivable application of the unconventional opportunity to adapt…
In plain English if I must…
If there has ever been thing worth remembering,
it is this:
What you learn when things go wonky…
Teaches you more than you would ever learn if things just happened the way you had planned.
And nothing proves this more than the fact that you have meandered your way into another episode of…
This week In Science
Coming Up Next…

Or, Denisandertals? Looks like we have found the first hominid remains of a child with parents from different species.

Water On Moon
A new view of the moon’s shadowy craters finds proof of water ice on the moon.

Using CRISPR, Chinese researchers edited base-pairs in early embryos to treat MArfan syndrome.

We’re Melting
Permafrost lakes are making things worse.

Survival of the laziest
Or perhaps, the most energy-efficient? So take that, mom!

Survival of the pointiest
Pointy eggs are most likely to stay put on a cliffside nest. So my eggs look fine, it’s your freakishly round ones that look weird, KAREN!

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This Week in What Has Science Done for me Lately?!?
“What has science done for me lately? I am an ER technician, and we use “hovermats” at the hospital where I work to assist in patient handling. It uses a portable pump that inflates a mattress sized pad with perforations in the bottom that let out a small amount of air acting almost as a reverse air hockey table. It makes moving patients from one bed to another much safer, for both the patient and us. It also makes the transition much smoother for the patient. So what has science done for me lately? It helps keep me safe when providing medical care to people of all shapes sizes and abilities. -Brian P.”

Life gets older every day
And, it certainly finds a way according to a new study estimating the first common ancestor of all life on Earth to have lived pretty much right after the moon was formed, over 4 billion years ago.

Out There Ideas
Ghosts of black holes in the universe???

Marijuana worms
Helminth parasites like hookworms release cannabinoid compounds, just like we do, which probably act to allow them to infect and survive in their host more easily.

Bacterial Blood
A new family of enzymes that might be able to transform blood types A and B to O were discovered in gut microbes.

Nerve Agent Nanobots
Enzymes are being used as nanobots to deactivate organophosphorous nerve agents.

The Eclipse Waste
Wastewater supports the idea that people use drugs when celebrating special occasions like last year’s solar eclipse.

Most popular exotic pets are the most problematic.
And it’s not just because they are brought here in the largest numbers, it’s because they are most likely to get released into the wild… and we know how Blair feels about invasive animals!

Can’t you see that your contacts are killing all the fish??
Contact lenses are increasingly disposed of incorrectly, and it is starting to impact our waterways.

Steve Is Different
The auroral phenomenon known as Steve, is not produced in the same way as the aurora.

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I'm the host of this little science show.