Skip to main content
Premium Trial:

Request an Annual Quote

Want to Inspire Kids' Interest in Science? Put Them to Work

The University of Cambridge's Andrew Conlan is trying to inspire young minds by turning 13 to 15 year olds into research assistants, according to Ed Yong at Not Exactly Rocket Science. After participating in the university's Motivate Project — which provides secondary schools with educational resources to show students how math connects to real life — Conlan, who uses mathematics to model the spread of infectious diseases, took his efforts a step further and turned his students into "field scientists," Yong says. The professor helped his young research team create and administer a questionnaire to assess how children at primary schools socialize with one other in order to understand how diseases — like the flu — can be transmitted. While the results of the study weren't groundbreaking, Conlan's students collected a huge data set that he suggests could prove useful for further studies. And, Yong adds, the students even paid the Cambridge department of applied mathematics a visit in order to share their results.

The Scan

Genome Sequences Reveal Range Mutations in Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells

Researchers in Nature Genetics detect somatic mutation variation across iPSCs generated from blood or skin fibroblast cell sources, along with selection for BCOR gene mutations.

Researchers Reprogram Plant Roots With Synthetic Genetic Circuit Strategy

Root gene expression was altered with the help of genetic circuits built around a series of synthetic transcriptional regulators in the Nicotiana benthamiana plant in a Science paper.

Infectious Disease Tracking Study Compares Genome Sequencing Approaches

Researchers in BMC Genomics see advantages for capture-based Illumina sequencing and amplicon-based sequencing on the Nanopore instrument, depending on the situation or samples available.

LINE-1 Linked to Premature Aging Conditions

Researchers report in Science Translational Medicine that the accumulation of LINE-1 RNA contributes to premature aging conditions and that symptoms can be improved by targeting them.