The question of why we dream is a divisive topic within the scientific community: it's hard to prove concretely why dreams occur and the neuroscience field is saturated with hypotheses. Inspired by techniques used to train deep neural networks, Erik Hoel (@erikphoel), a research assistant professor of neuroscience at Tufts University, argues for a new theory of dreams: the overfitted brain hypothesis.

Scientists led by Michael Ackerson, a research geologist at the Smithsonian's National Museum of Natural History, provide new evidence that modern plate tectonics, a defining feature of Earth and its unique ability to support life, emerged roughly 3.6 billion years ago.

HOUSTON - (May 14, 2021) - Rice University bioengineers are fabricating and testing tunable electrospun scaffolds completely derived from decellularized skeletal muscle to promote the regeneration of injured skeletal muscle.

Climate change is known to negatively affect agriculture and livestock, but there has been little scientific knowledge on which regions of the planet would be touched or what the biggest risks may be. New research led by Aalto University assesses just how global food production will be affected if greenhouse gas emissions are left uncut. The study is published in the prestigious journal One Earth on Friday 14 May.

Scientists have used fibre-optic sensing to obtain the most detailed measurements of ice properties ever taken on the Greenland Ice Sheet. Their findings will be used to make more accurate models of the future movement of the world's second-largest ice sheet, as the effects of climate change continue to accelerate.

A microscope used by Antoni van Leeuwenhoek to conduct pioneering research contains a surprisingly ordinary lens, as new research by Rijksmuseum Boerhaave Leiden and TU Delft shows. It is a remarkable finding, because Van Leeuwenhoek (1632-1723) led other scientists to believe that his instruments were exceptional. Consequently, there has been speculation about his method for making lenses for more than three centuries. The results of this study were published in Science Advances on May 14.

In research made possible when COVID-19 sidelined other research projects, scientists at Johns Hopkins Medicine meticulously counted brain cells in fruit flies and three species of mosquitos, revealing a number that would surprise many people outside the science world.

The insects' tiny brains, on average, have about 200,000 neurons and other cells, they say. By comparison, a human brain has 86 billion neurons, and a rodent brain contains about 12 billion. The figure probably represents a "floor" for the number needed to perform the bugs' complex behaviors.

AMES, Iowa - The field photos show the hard, rough country that some glaciers slide over: rocky domes and bumps in granite, rocky steps and depressions in limestone. The glacier beds dwarf the researchers and their instruments. (As do the high mountains pictured on the various horizons.)

Better designed vaccines for insect-spread viruses like dengue and Zika are likely after researchers discovered models of immature flavivirus particles were originally misinterpreted.

Researchers from The University of Queensland and Monash University have now determined the first complete 3D molecular structure of the immature flavivirus, revealing an unexpected organisation.

UQ researcher Associate Professor Daniel Watterson said the team was studying the insect-specific Binjari virus when they made the discovery.

Tokyo, Japan - Oxygen is crucial to many forms of life. Its delivery to the organs and tissues of the body through the process of respiration is vital for most biological processes. Now, researchers at Tokyo Medical and Dental University (TMDU) have shown that oxygen can be delivered through the wall of the intestine to compensate for the reduced availability of oxygen within the body that occurs in lung diseases that cause respiratory failure.