Meet the worm with a jaw of metal

Metal-like materials have been discovered in a very strange place.

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  • Bristle worms are odd-looking, spiky, segmented worms with super-strong jaws.
  • Researchers have discovered that the jaws contain metal.
  • It appears that biological processes could one day be used to manufacture metals.
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Ketamine infusion: The new therapy for depression, explained

The treatment is here, but are we ready?

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  • Ketamine is the first hallucinogen approved for therapeutic use in the U.S.
  • Research has shown ketamine is effective at treating depression.
  • Though ketamine infusion therapy is now being offered at hundreds of North American clinics, there are unaddressed dangers in the current ketamine gold rush.
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Study: Tripping might not be required for psychedelic therapy

Two different studies provide further evidence of the efficacy of psychedelics in treating depression.

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  • A phase 2 clinical trial by Imperial College London found psilocybin to be as effective at treating depression as escitalopram, a commonly prescribed antidepressant.
  • A different study by the University of Maryland showed that blocking the hallucinogenic effects of magic mushrooms in mice did not reduce the antidepressant effect.
  • Combined, these studies could lead to new ways of applying psychedelics to patient populations that don't want to trip.
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Neanderthals could produce and hear human speech, new study finds

Their ear structures were not that different from ours.

Credit: Mercedes Conde-Valverde/University of Binghamton
  • Neanderthals are emerging as having been much more advanced than previously suspected.
  • Analysis of ear structures indicated by fossilized remains suggests they had everything they needed for understanding the subtleties of speech.
  • The study also concludes that Neanderthals could produce the consonants required for a rich spoken language.
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Marine biologists discover 4 new types of photoreceptor

How do these little beasties detect light anyway?

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  • The ocean is full of simple single-celled organisms that somehow follow day-night cycles.
  • Researchers have just discovered four new groups of photoreceptors that help the organisms detect light.
  • The photoreceptors may find use in studies of the human brain.
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