Amino acid precursors on Enceladus, and beer glasses on Earth

Amino acid precursors on Enceladus, and beer glasses on Earth

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Full-body forensic reconstruction of a woolly dog ​​based on 160-year-old fur in the Smithsonian’s collection as well as archaeological remains. Credit: Karen Carr

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Full-body forensic reconstruction of a woolly dog ​​based on 160-year-old fur in the Smithsonian’s collection as well as archaeological remains. Credit: Karen Carr

This week, scientists report on beer drinking, the expulsion of Saturn, an ancient North American breed of dog, and cats playing dogs’ favorite game, fetch.

Flattering beer

Don’t let any boundaries go unexplored: It turns out that scientists have spent time over the years trying to determine the cause of increased sexual attraction while under the influence of alcohol. One theory for the “Google beer” effect relates to facial symmetry, which is considered a sign of attractiveness, suggesting that alcohol impairs the ability to detect facial asymmetry, thus enhancing other people’s personal appearance.

Researchers at the University of Portsmouth recruited volunteers at a pub in the Portsmouth area who judged 18 photos for attractiveness and symmetry. Each type of classification was performed twice, once with unaltered images and once with images of faces with enhanced asymmetry. In the second phase of the experiment, the volunteers judged which of the two faces was more attractive or more symmetrical, one face was normal and the other was completely symmetrical.

They found that volunteers who were very intoxicated had a reduced ability to distinguish between normal faces and perfectly symmetrical faces; But they did not rate the faces as more attractive. The researchers concluded that attractiveness is likely multifactorial, involving traits not found in photos alone, and that more research is needed to resolve the question of why beer makes other people attractive.

The moon is fertile

NASA researchers, analyzing Cassini data on plumes from Saturn’s moon Enceladus, found strong evidence for the presence of hydrogen cyanide, a key element for life, among previously identified organic compounds.

Hydrogen cyanide is one of the most important amino acid precursors. Enceladus is Saturn’s sixth largest moon, and hides a liquid ocean beneath its icy crust. Cassini discovered that cryovolcanoes near its south pole shoot jets of water vapor and molecular hydrogen into space, some of which snowfall back to the surface, most of which form one of Saturn’s rings.

In addition, the current study also determined that there is a powerful source of chemical energy within the moon’s oceans, which could serve as fuel for living organisms.

Good boy

Until the mid-19th century, Coast Salish tribal nations in Washington state and British Columbia raised woolly dogs that were sheared like sheep. Researchers recently conducted a genetic survey of dogs based on fur found in the Smithsonian Institution’s collection, collaborating with members of Coast Salish tribal communities who have knowledge of the now-extinct dog.

The researchers compared the dog’s genome with ancient and modern dog breeds, and found that woolly dogs diverged from other breeds 5,000 years ago. The Smithsonian’s mutton dog lived decades after European breeds were introduced to the Americas, so its ancient lineage was remarkable.

The Coast Salish people bred dogs in pens or on islands to prevent interbreeding, most likely to preserve the breed’s valuable wool. The breed suddenly became extinct, most likely due to factors of cultural genocide, displacement and forced assimilation.

The author has been verified

A long time ago, I had a cat named Tyrone who loved to fetch things. He would jump on the couch, drop a piece of paper, and stare until she threw it away. He then chases her back to the couch and drops it again. Man, oh man, do I love fetch.

One day, the ceiling in the living room of my rented house collapsed. Tyrone fled through the attic, and I never saw him again. Adding to the sadness of his loss was the fact that 60% of the people I told about Tyrone didn’t believe he actually liked fetching.

Thanks to researchers at Northumbria University and the University of Sussex, there is now experimental evidence, published in naturesome cats playing fetch, served as a walk of shame in “Game of Thrones” for all the doubters who questioned Tyrone’s focus and sportsmanship.

The researchers surveyed cat owners who reported fetch behaviors in 1,154 cats, and collected data on how often they fetch, what the cats preferred to fetch, and who started the game of fetch:

  • 59% of cats are brought in for up to 10 events per month.
  • 55% fetched up to five times in one session.
  • Cats started and ended fetch more often than their owners.
  • Cats tend to fetch for longer periods when they start playing fetch.

To further humiliate the haters, nature The publication provided an adorable video of cats playing fetch:

Credit: NPG Press

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