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SCIENCE IN THE NEWS WEEKLY

Facebook and Organ Donations

With demand for healthy organs for transplantation growing worldwide, Facebook has become a popular channel for people soliciting kidneys, livers and other potentially lifesaving organs. Earlier this month the social network began offering members the ability to identify themselves as organ donors on their Facebook pages and to locate state organ-donation registries if they would like to become donors.

In other news, Nature News reported that a loose coalition of eco-anarchist groups is increasingly launching violent attacks on scientists, including the non-fatal shooting of a nuclear-engineering executive on May 7 in Genoa, Italy.

The $1 million Shaw Prizes were announced last week for the discovery of trans-Neptune bodies, breakthroughs in understanding protein folding and pioneering work in a mathematical technique known as deformation quantization.

The New York Times explored the role of speculation in science through two recent publications -- about the misty depths of canine and human history.


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PODCASTS: From Balloons to Space Stations: Studying Cosmic Rays

CREAM Inflating

Cosmic rays have mysterious qualities about them that scientists continue to research in order to better understand their origins and composition. Dr. Eun-Suk Seo, a professor of physics at the University of Maryland, and her colleagues, fly enormous balloons as large as a football stadium and a volume of 40-million-cubic feet for extended periods over Antarctica to study particles coming from cosmic rays before they break up in the atmosphere.

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