Love is in the air

In the first online-only feature from I, Science Issue 30, Jess Norris finds out how our genes and environment – and our smell – affect who we fall in love with

Malaria mutations underlying drug resistance discovered

New data from the Wellcome Trust Sanger Institute elucidates key mutations which allow the malaria parasite to develop resistance to the first line anti-malarial drug

Pain Less: the future of relief

We have all suffered the unpleasant sensation of pain, whether it’s caused by the intense throbbing of a stubbed toe or through deep emotional anguish. During years training as an elite artistic gymnast, I’ve experienced my fair share – after one awkward vault-landing my joints twanged and my back wailed. For seasons, I battled with […]

Knotty Developments with DNA

Karin Valencia is a PhD student in Imperial’s DNA Topology research group. The term ‘DNA structure’ may bring to mind any number of things, from the television drama CSI to the famous double helix. Perhaps less familiar are the ‘higher-order’ structural features of DNA, namely knots. DNA in nature can be found to be ‘knotted’ […]

Battle of the Sexes

Liger and male handler The battle of the sexes is as old as time itself. George Gilder commented that “differences between sexes are one of the most single important facts of human society”. These differences are also one of the most important foundations for human existence. Evolution has gradually crafted us from the humblest of […]

Video: GM from Scratch

Stop-motion genetic modification! Credit to Pen Hill, Lucy van Dorp, Sam Cavenagh, Vanna Barber and Luis Mulet Planelles. More > Got a taste for stop-motion science? Check out Edible CERN!

Multiple Kittens, Polydactyl Mittens

Welcome to The Dog & Pony Show! Let’s talk about cats. Not all cats are created equal. A couple of days ago, the BBC posted an article about a pair of polydactyl kittens. (If you’re wildly picturing a chimera of cat and pterosaur, you’ve headed off in the wrong direction. Come back.) Polydactyly is an […]

Fish Go GaGa For Ginger Gene

  There may be plenty of fish in the sea but the medaka knows what it likes. A single gene mutation that causes the Japanese Killifish to be born a drab grey colour has proved to be a turn-off to members of the opposite sex. By over-expressing the ‘ginger gene’ in the medaka ‘super attractive’ bright […]

Designer Deafness

One of the most common questions an expectant parent is likely to be asked is ‘so…do you want a boy or a girl?’ to which the answer, whether true or not, is often ‘we don’t care as long as it has ten fingers and ten toes’. Although this answer clearly means that all they wish […]

Politicians Used ‘Psychic Engineering’ To Make A Baby Messiah

Everybody’s mother tells them they are special. Children are doted on by their parents and made to feel they are the most important people in the world. However, for one individual there was a little more this. Henry Coombe-Tennant, born in 1913 was ‘engineered’ by his parents to be a messiah in a bizzarre story […]

Small change, large difference

Picking up a penny won’t make you an instant millionaire. But what if it was the penny that made up the exact price of a lottery ticket you were going to buy, and that ticket won you the lottery, and hence made you a millionaire? Small and singular changes can result in massive consequences. However, […]

An Optimist’s Tour of the Future by Mark Stevenson

A whistle stop tour of Mark Stevenson’s vision of the future, this book is a crash course in some of science’s hottest topics. Taking a journey around the world, Stevenson tries to get to grips with how science is set to change our lives beyond all recognition. Each pitstop along his journey introduces a new […]

Love at first scent

No, it’s not your personality that really matters, and neither is it your looks. The way that you smell is what really makes it or breaks it for you when it comes to attracting the opposite sex. There’s also no cheating – you can cover yourself with as much cologne as you like, but there […]

Genetically characterising the willingness to listen to music

In the run up to the release of I, Science’s Spring 2011 issue on the 11th March, you must excuse me for my lack of blog posts in the past fortnight. Andrew and I have trawled through the pages of the latest issue. After a final round of checks and corrections, we finally sent it […]