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Updated: 18 min 58 sec ago

In The U.S., Flu Season Could Be Unusually Harsh This Year

Fri, 12/08/2017 - 3:32pm

Health officials fear the U.S. may have a nasty flu season because the main flu virus circulating this year tends to hit people hard and the flu vaccine may be weaker than normal.

(Image credit: PASCAL POCHARD-CASABIANCA/AFP/Getty Images)

Scientists Discover Grass Species With Intriguing 'Salt And Vinegar' Chip Flavor

Fri, 12/08/2017 - 10:00am

Alas, you wouldn't want to eat this native of Western Australia — Spinifex grasses are often so hard and spiky that scientists say collecting samples can be painful.

(Image credit: Courtesy of Matt Barrett)

Can Your Ceramic Cookware Give You Lead Poisoning?

Fri, 12/08/2017 - 7:00am

Mass-produced crockpots and other ceramic food containers are probably safe, but handmade earthenware might merit a home test.

(Image credit: Joy Ho for NPR)

Adults Can Get Type 1 Diabetes, Too

Fri, 12/08/2017 - 4:00am

It used to be called juvenile diabetes because the thought was it only started in childhood. But adults are just as likely to be diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes. Not knowing that can delay treatment.

(Image credit: Courtesy of David Lazarus)

Black Mothers Keep Dying After Giving Birth. Shalon Irving's Story Explains Why

Thu, 12/07/2017 - 6:51pm

Black women are three times more likely to die from complications of childbirth than white women in the U.S. Racism, and the stress it causes, can play a leading role in that disparity.

(Image credit: Becky Harlan/NPR)

Watch: N.J. Dashcam Captures Brilliant Nighttime Streak

Thu, 12/07/2017 - 6:11pm

A police officer on patrol in the pre-dawn hours saw a meteor and managed to record it, which has lit up social media.

Is The Tide Of Antibiotic Use On Farms Now Turning?

Thu, 12/07/2017 - 5:13pm

For the first time, government statistics show America's pigs, cattle, and poultry are getting fewer antibiotic drugs. Public health advocates call the new figures encouraging.

(Image credit: Don Ryan/AP)

Why Your Brain Has Trouble Bailing Out Of A Bad Plan

Thu, 12/07/2017 - 2:49pm

Researchers say it takes a lot of brainpower to stop an action, once it's underway. A study found that when people have to change a planned movement, 11 different brain areas have to get involved.

(Image credit: Aşkın Dursun KAMBEROĞLU/Getty Images)

Stressed-Out Narwhals Don't Know Whether to Freeze or Flee, Scientists Find

Thu, 12/07/2017 - 2:22pm

After being caught in a net, narwhals appear to get confused about what to do. Researchers say the whales' befuddlement could provide clues about how they will adapt to a changing Arctic.

(Image credit: Flip Nicklin/ Minden Pictures/Getty Images)

Researchers Look For Gun Violence Clues In Google Searches And Background Checks

Thu, 12/07/2017 - 1:01pm

After the 2012 mass shooting at an elementary school in Newtown, Conn., there was a spike in gun sales. A study examined the spike and links increased gun exposure to more accidental firearm deaths.

(Image credit: Julie Dermansky/Corbis via Getty Images)

Strange Parallels: Alternative Histories In Physics And Culture

Thu, 12/07/2017 - 12:10pm

Ideas of parallel universes and alternative histories, once confined to mere rumination about lost opportunities and fictional scenarios, are now a part of science, says guest writer Paul Halpern.

(Image credit: Getty Images/iStockphoto)

Even Low-Dose Contraceptives Slightly Increase Breast Cancer Risk

Wed, 12/06/2017 - 5:41pm

The absolute risk is very low. But low-dose formulations of birth control pills and other hormone-releasing contraceptives pose about the same risk to breasts as older formulations, a big study finds.

(Image credit: Katherine Streeter for NPR)

Senior Volkswagen Executive Sentenced In Diesel-Emissions Scandal

Wed, 12/06/2017 - 5:01pm

Oliver Schmidt admitted to conspiring to defraud the United States by misleading federal regulators about the emissions of diesel cars and violating clean air laws.

(Image credit: AP)

50+ Mayors Sign Pact To Reduce Greenhouse Gas Emissions

Wed, 12/06/2017 - 4:04pm

Mayors from across the country say a lack of leadership in Washington on climate change is prompting them to take action themselves.

(Image credit: Scott Olson/Getty Images)

Can Science Teach Us Something About How To Live?

Wed, 12/06/2017 - 12:37pm

In science, and in life, there is an artful balance between being cautious and adventurous; to find the balance takes experimentation, tolerance for mistakes, and humility, says Marcelo Gleiser.

(Image credit: Imgorthand/Getty Images)

Massive Black Hole Reveals When The First Stars Blinked On

Wed, 12/06/2017 - 12:01pm

Scientists have detected a black hole thought to be about 800 million times as massive as our sun that is helping to reveal when the universe filled with starlight.

(Image credit: Robin Dienel/Courtesy of the Carnegie Institution for Science/Nature)

Evaluating Smoking Bans

Wed, 12/06/2017 - 4:06am

A new study indicates that smoking bans, which were designed to affect adults' behavior, in fact improve children's health.

First Baby Born To U.S. Uterus Transplant Patient Raises Ethics Questions

Tue, 12/05/2017 - 4:15pm

A woman who received a uterus transplant recently delivered a healthy baby boy. NPR's Mary Louise Kelly talks with the doctors working on the experiment about its ethics, risk, and cost implications.

(Image credit: AP)

What Would Enrico Fermi Think Of Science Today?

Tue, 12/05/2017 - 11:12am

More than 60 years after the physicist won the Nobel Prize, author David N. Schwartz considers how Fermi would react to today's science of black holes, genetic engineering and climate change.

(Image credit: AP)

Ask The FCC

Tue, 12/05/2017 - 9:06am

What do you want to ask an FCC commissioner?

(Image credit: Dan Kitwood/Getty Images)

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