May 2012

Volume 26 Issue 5

The Scientist May 2012 Cover

Featured Articles

Data Diving

By Kerry Grens | May 1, 2012

What lies untapped beneath the surface of published clinical trial analyses could rock the world of independent review.

image: Freezing Time

Freezing Time

By Vern L. Schramm | May 1, 2012

Targeting the briefest moment in chemistry may lead to an exceptionally strong new class of drugs.

image: Telomeres in Disease

Telomeres in Disease

By Rodrigo Calado and Neal Young | May 1, 2012

Telomeres have been linked to numerous diseases over the years, but how exactly short telomeres cause diseases and how medicine can prevent telomere erosion are still up for debate.


Capsule Reviews

Capsule Reviews

Masters of the Planet, Learning from the Octopus, Darwin’s Devices, and Psychology’s Ghosts



Meet some of the people featured in the April 2012 issue of The Scientist.


Designing Transition-State Inhibitors

A transition-state mimic has the power to bind an enzyme at its tipping point as strongly as any available inhibitor and more strongly than most, preventing enzymatic activity. 

Telomere Basics

Telomeres are repetitive, noncoding sequences that cap the ends of linear chromosomes. They consist of hexameric nucleotide sequences (TTAGGG in humans) repeated hundreds to thousands of times. 


Spot the Moth

It’s a well-known story: The peppered moth’s ancestral typica phenotype is white with dark speckles. 


With All Due Consideration

Scientists and their many hats

Speaking of Science

Speaking of Science

May 2012's selection of notable quotes


The Sound of Color

A completely colorblind musician and painter perceives the world in a new way with help from technology.


From Squeaks to Song

House mice sing melodies out of the range of human hearing, and the crooning is impacting research from evolutionary biology to neuroscience.

Mighty Moth Man

An evolutionary biologist’s posthumous publication restores the peppered moth to its iconic status as a textbook example of evolution.

It’s Raining Mice

A new brown tree snake control strategy takes to the skies as scientists scatter toxic rodents over Guam’s forest canopy.

Critic at Large

Cooking Up Creative Solutions

More collaborators and more data are the key ingredients.

Modus Operandi

Bubble Vision

Turning a liability into an asset, cryo-electron microscopists exploit an artifact to probe protein structure.

The Literature

The Sugar Lnc

Genes that react to cellular sugar content are regulated by a long non-coding RNA via an unexpected mechanism

Tumor Turnabout

A cytokine involved in suppressing the immune system may actually activate it to kill cancer cells.

Ginormous Genome

Researchers find organisms with huge genomes with high mutation rates, overturning a common expectation in evolutionary biology.


Burgers and Flies

Inspired by Darwin, Mohamed Noor has uncovered the molecular dance by which a single species becomes two.

Scientist to Watch

Robert Blelloch: Teacher, Doctor, Scientist

Associate Professor, Department of Urology, University of California, San Francisco. Age: 45

Lab Tools

SPRead Your Antibody Capabilities

Using surface plasmon resonance to improve antibody detection and characterization: four case studies

Pure Pursuits

Techniques for simpler, cheaper, and better antibody purification

Bio Business

Treating Fat with Fat

Is brown fat ready for therapeutic prime time?

Reading Frames

Dopamine: Duality of Desire

Being an ex-drug-addict turned neuroscientist brings a unique insight into the physiological and phenomenological realities of addiction.


Boyle’s Monsters, 1665

From accounts of deformed animals to scratch-and-sniff technology, Robert Boyle's early contributions to the Royal Society of London were prolific and wide ranging.

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