Agriculture
Making the most of a meal
Vitamin D-licious Mushrooms
Springing forward
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Toads
Salamanders and Newts
Salamanders
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Sleep Affects a Bird's Singing
Who's Knocking?
Hearing Whales
Behavior
Fighting fat with fat
The case of the headless ant
Swine flu goes global
Birds
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A Meal Plan for Birds
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Sticky Silky Feet
Graphene's superstrength
When frog gender flips
Computers
Galaxies on the go
Batteries built by Viruses
The Shape of the Internet
Dinosaurs and Fossils
Battling Mastodons
Supersight for a Dino King
Teeny Skull Reveals Ancient Ancestor
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Results of GSAT are in schools this week
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Earth
Coral Gardens
Watering the Air
Rodent Rubbish as an Ice-Age Thermometer
Environment
Fungus Hunt
Toxic Cleanups Get a Microbe Boost
Plant Gas
Finding the Past
A Long Trek to Asia
Watching deep-space fireworks
Of Lice and Old Clothes
Fish
Lampreys
Perches
Tiger Sharks
Food and Nutrition
Packing Fat
A Pepper Part that Burns Fat
Symbols from the Stone Age
GSAT English Rules
Who vs. That vs. Which
Subject and Verb Agreement
Pronouns
GSAT Exam Preparation Jamaica
Preparing for the GSAT Exam
Mastering The GSAT Exam
Scotiabank Jamaica Foundation Grade Six Achievement Test (GSAT) Scholarships
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GSAT Scholarship
GSAT Exam Preparation
Results of GSAT are in schools this week
GSAT Mathematics
GSAT Mathematics Quiz, Teaching Math, teaching anxiety
Losing with Heads or Tails
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Human Body
Nature's Medicines
Running with Sneaker Science
A Long Haul
Invertebrates
Leeches
Ants
Cockroaches
Mammals
African Elephants
Lynxes
Sphinxes
Parents
Raise a Lifelong Reader by Reading Aloud
What Not to Say to Emerging Readers
Children and Media
Physics
Speedy stars
Einstein's Skateboard
Hold on to your stars, ladies and gentlemen
Plants
Plants Travel Wind Highways
Nature's Alphabet
Springing forward
Reptiles
Snapping Turtles
Komodo Dragons
Iguanas
Space and Astronomy
Pluto, plutoid: What's in a name?
Ringing Saturn
Return to Space
Technology and Engineering
Drawing Energy out of Wastewater
Bionic Bacteria
Algae Motors
The Parts of Speech
What is a Preposition?
Adjectives and Adverbs
What is a Verb?
Transportation
Ready, unplug, drive
Morphing a Wing to Save Fuel
Robots on a Rocky Road
Weather
Recipe for a Hurricane
Either Martians or Mars has gas
Where rivers run uphill
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Germ Zapper

You've probably experienced the power of antibiotics. These amazing medicines kill the bacteria that give you strep throat and other infections. Usually, you start feeling better after a day or two of treatment. Antibiotics have become so widely used, however, that many bacteria have developed ways to survive treatment. And when antibiotics stop working, sick people end up getting sicker. Tens of thousands of people die each year as a result. Now, scientists at Merck Research Laboratories in Rahway, N.J., may have found a new weapon against antibiotic-resistant bacteria. Lab tests in mice show that a compound called platensimycin attacks—and kills—certain bacteria in a new way. Antibiotics were developed more than 50 years ago, and most types currently available work the same way as the early kind did. They attack bacteria cell walls. Or, they disable bacteria by knocking out the parts of the cell that make DNA and proteins. Platensimycin takes a different approach. It attacks an enzyme that bacteria need to build and maintain membranes in their cells. Enzymes are types of proteins that make chemical reactions happen more quickly. The neat thing about platensimycin is that it exists in nature. It is, in fact, the fourth natural compound found that targets the same enzyme. It's also, by far, the most powerful of the four compounds. "Nature is telling us again and again that if you want to go after bacteria, go after this enzyme," says Charles O. Rock, a biochemist at St. Jude Children's Research Hospital in Memphis, Tenn. The Merck scientists found platensimycin by sorting through about 250,000 natural compounds. The search led to platensimycin, which is a small molecule made by a bacterium that lives in the soil in South Africa. Scientists aren't yet sure whether platensimycin will work as a drug in people. Still, the research is another example of how good nature can be at solving problems.—E. Sohn

Germ Zapper
Germ Zapper








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