Watering the Air
Getting the dirt on carbon
Got Milk? How?
Poison Dart Frogs
G-Tunes with a Message
Cannibal Crickets
A Meal Plan for Birds
Fighting fat with fat
Between a rock and a wet place
Flower family knows its roots
Backyard Birds
Chemistry and Materials
Moon Crash, Splash
Music of the Future
Fog Buster
The science of disappearing
Getting in Touch with Touch
Computers with Attitude
Dinosaurs and Fossils
Dinosaur Eggs-citement
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Dino Babies
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Deep History
In Antarctica watch the heat (and your step)
Shrinking Glaciers
Little Bits of Trouble
Whale Watch
Plant Gas
Finding the Past
Oldest Writing in the New World
Stone Age Sole Survivors
A Plankhouse Past
Manta Rays
Bull Sharks
Food and Nutrition
Chew for Health
A Pepper Part that Burns Fat
Building a Food Pyramid
GSAT English Rules
Problems with Prepositions
Whoever vs. Whomever
Finding Subjects and Verbs
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Detecting True Art
Losing with Heads or Tails
Play for Science
Human Body
Workouts: Does Stretching Help?
What the appendix is good for
Taste Messenger
Sea Anemones
Giant Panda
Children and Media
Raise a Lifelong Reader by Reading Aloud
How children learn
Electric Backpack
Strange Universe: The Stuff of Darkness
Gaining a Swift Lift
Fungus Hunt
Bright Blooms That Glow
Fastest Plant on Earth
Box Turtles
Space and Astronomy
Asteroid Moons
Killers from Outer Space
Phantom Energy and the Big Rip
Technology and Engineering
A Micro-Dose of Your Own Medicine
A Light Delay
Searching for Alien Life
The Parts of Speech
Adjectives and Adverbs
What is a Noun
Countable and Uncountable Nouns
Are Propellers Fin-ished?
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Revving Up Green Machines
Warmest Year on Record
Recipe for a Hurricane
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Heart Revival

When your heart works like it's supposed to, it keeps you alive and well. But when the heart fails, people can get very sick or even die. Now, scientists have found a way to turn dead rat hearts into living ones. It's a medical first, and the technique may eventually allow doctors to make new hearts from patients' own cells. This should largely avoid the risk that the patient's body will reject the new heart, which often happens today. Researchers from the University of Minnesota in Minneapolis started with hearts from rats that had been dead for less than 18 hours. Led by Doris A. Taylor, the scientists put the hearts in glass beakers and used a liquid detergent to wash away the dead cells. Left behind was a heart-shaped mass of proteins that normally surround heart cells and hold them together. The mass was translucent, which means it lets light through, and it had the consistency of Jell-O. Next, Taylor and her colleagues took cells from hearts of newborn rats. They injected these living cells into the hollowed-out hearts. Eight days later, the hearts were pumping weakly. And the injected cells in each heart beat synchronously—that is, all at the same time. "The fact that we can get these cells to beat synchronously is incredibly encouraging," Taylor says. It will be years before doctors might consider using this method to repair hearts in people, the scientists warn. In the study, the rebuilt hearts could pump blood only about 2 percent as fast as a normal adult rat heart can. Eventually, scientists would like to be able to use primitive stem cells from a patient's blood or heart tissue to repair his or her own organs.—Emily Sohn

Heart Revival
Heart Revival

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