Human brain artificially created in laboratory

Human embryonic stem cells spontaneously organize into neuroepithelial tissue containing multiple zones after growing for 70 days in culture. Via RIKEN.

Human embryonic stem cells can be induced into forming a developing brain tissue. The brain development process represents one of the most specific processes; during it, neuroepithelium, formed as a flat sheet by the nervous system, grows on the exterior layer of the embryo, after which it folds in to create a neural tube giving rise to the brain and the spinal cord. The process implicates the migration and proliferation of undeveloped nerve cells from the brain at one end and the spinal cord at the other. Continue reading

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NASA Space Assets Detect Ocean inside Saturn Moon

Gravity measurements by NASA’s Cassini spacecraft and Deep Space Network suggest that Saturn’s moon Enceladus, which has jets of water vapor and ice gushing from its south pole, also harbors a large interior ocean beneath an ice shell, as this illustration depicts. Image Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech

NASA’s Cassini spacecraft and Deep Space Network have uncovered evidence Saturn’s moon Enceladus harbors a large underground ocean of liquid water, furthering scientific interest in the moon as a potential home to extraterrestrial microbes. Continue reading

The Physics of Time Travel Is it real, or is it fable?

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In H.G. Wells’ novel, The Time Machine, our protagonist jumped into a special chair with blinking lights, spun a few dials, and found himself catapulted several hundred thousand years into the future, where England has long disappeared and is now inhabited by strange creatures called the Morlocks and Eloi. That may have made great fiction, but physicists have always scoffed at the idea of time travel, considering it to be the realm of cranks, mystics, and charlatans, and with good reason. Continue reading

Water detected in a planet outside our solar system

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Astronomers have recently discovered water in the atmosphere of a planet outside our solar system, using a novel technique – they believe that this new method could reveal more and more planets which feature water; so far, all life as we know it, is based on water. They made their discovery on a Jupiter-like planet that is orbiting the nearby star tau Boötis. Continue reading