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12:27 pm
Fri January 20, 2012

How Tears Go 'Pac-Man' To Beat Bacteria

Tears contain an enzyme that eats bacteria the way Pac-Man eats Power Pellets.
iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Mon January 23, 2012 2:39 pm

The mystical healing properties of tears are invoked in fairy tales and fantasies from Rapunzel to Harry Potter. So it may surprise you to hear that tears really are pretty powerful, on the microbial level at least.

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The Two-Way
12:25 pm
Fri January 20, 2012

Not A Record, But Audubon Set Still Sells For A Tidy $7.9 Million

We wouldn't want to say that $7,922,500 isn't an awful lot to pay for one set of four books.

But we do have to point out that it's not a record.

Thursday, we previewed the Christie's New York auction of a rare set of John James Audubon's Birds of America. As we reported, there was talk that it might fetch more than the record $11.5 million paid for another full set of the books in 2010.

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The Two-Way
12:10 pm
Fri January 20, 2012

Megaupload Is Trying To Go Back Online Even As Execs Sit In Jail

Megaupload founder Kim Dotcom, also known as Kim Schmitz, in an Auckland, New Zealand, court today.
TV3/ AFP/Getty Images

A judge in New Zealand today ordered that Megaupload founder Kim Dotcom (a.k.a. Kim Schmitz) and three others remain in custody at least until a bail hearing on Monday as the legal process of possibly extraditing them to the U.S. to face copyright infringement and conspiracy charges got underway.

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NPR Story
12:00 pm
Fri January 20, 2012

How Large Ships Use Navigation Systems

The International Maritime Organization has decreed that by 2015, all large deep sea ships will be required to carry the latest in electronic navigation equipment. But does state-of-the-art navigation technology prevent shipwrecks like last week's off the Italian coast? University of Southern Mississippi hydrographer Max van Norden talks about the technology.

NPR Story
12:00 pm
Fri January 20, 2012

Science Diction: The Origin Of The Word 'Moon'

Science historian Howard Markel discusses the origins of the word moon and some of the lore surrounding it, including a 1638 book by the English bishop Francis Godwin entitled The Man in the Moone, which recounts a science fiction-style voyage to the moon.

Education
12:00 pm
Fri January 20, 2012

Defending Climate Science's Place In The Classroom

The National Center for Science Education has long defended educators' right to teach evolution in public schools. Now climate science too is under attack. NCSE executive director Eugenie Scott talks about how teachers and parents can fight the push to get climate change denial into the classroom.

Space
12:00 pm
Fri January 20, 2012

Newly Fallen Meteorites Offer Fresh Look At Mars

Scientists have confirmed that rocks collected recently in the Moroccan desert came from the Red Planet. University of Alberta meteorite expert Chris Herd, who has acquired one of the chunks, talks about how scientists analyze space rocks, and whether organic compounds might be found inside.

NPR Story
12:00 pm
Fri January 20, 2012

Seeing Super-Fast Animals

Originally published on Thu March 8, 2012 1:03 pm

Transcript

IRA FLATOW, HOST:

With us here now is Flora Lichtman and our Video Pick of the Week. Hi, Flora.

FLORA LICHTMAN, BYLINE: Hi, Ira.

FLATOW: What you got for us this week?

LICHTMAN: This week, we are taking a look at the secret speed demons of the animal kingdom. Forget, you know, forget the cheetahs.

FLATOW: That was immediately the one comes to mind, right?

LICHTMAN: Me, too.

FLATOW: Cheetahs.

LICHTMAN: I think speedy ones, I think cheetah, I think gazelle...

FLATOW: Sure.

LICHTMAN: ...something. No.

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Medical Treatments
12:00 pm
Fri January 20, 2012

Synthetic Windpipe Transplant Boost For Tissue Engineering

Surgeons in Sweden replaced an American patient's cancerous windpipe with a scaffold built from nanofibers and seeded with the patient's stem cells. Lead surgeon Dr. Paolo Macchiarini discusses the procedure and the benefits of tissue-engineered synthetic organs.

Health
12:00 pm
Fri January 20, 2012

Be Here Now: Meditation For The Body And Brain

Originally published on Thu March 8, 2012 1:03 pm

Transcript

IRA FLATOW, HOST:

Up next, mindfulness. Ever find yourself going through day stuck in autopilot mode, waking up at 7:15, wolfing down your usual hot cereal, really, without really tasting it, while you read the paper, your emails, your Facebook feed.

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