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Gene insertion technique makes blind mice see again

Scientists are providing a new ray of hope for those who are losing sight to retina degeneration: electronic eye implants. A UC Berkeley team has dabbled in mild and simple gene therapy, re-enabling vision in blind mice in a process that’s been around for a while and “could have been done 20 years ago”. More on Sacramento Bee here.

New species of killer whales spotted in southern hemisphere

Reports across the southern Indian Ocean, New Zealand, and especially south of Chile are emerging that point out the sightings and observation of a new kind of killer whale that looks different from the ones seen before. The new “Type D” killer whales, which have a more rounded snout, thinner eye patches and a more pointed dorsal fin, were even caught on video. Scientists think that these could potentially be the biggest undescribed animal in existence today. More on Time.

Scat-sniffing dog is aiding conservation

Dogs have been used by humans for centuries to aid in whatever work they do in all aspects of life. It wasn’t going to be too long before dogs helped save the world. This is what Train, an American dog is doing. He traces out animal excrement/scat which wild animals in the country leave behind. Scientists analyse this and then map out accurately the wild animal territories that humans should avoid. More on CNN.

Scientists go back to identify the first exoplanet Kepler discovered

The Kepler Space Telescope is a household name for those familiar with exoplanet or extra-solar planets. It was launched in 2009 and retired in October 2018. It observed over 530,506 stars and detected 2,662 planets. But nearly a decade later, it has now been found out that the first exoplanet Kepler scientists had thought of as an anomaly was actually a planet orbiting a star about 50 per cent more massive and thrice as large as the sun. More on Science Daily.

Check out My543, our comprehensive report card of all Lok Sabha MPs.


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