Australasian Science: Australia's authority on science since 1938

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Gannets Divorce for Real Estate

By Stephen Luntz

Australasian gannets prefer to stay in long-term “marriages” to increase their chance of breeding success. However, a gannet will “divorce” in favour of another mate if it’s the only way to hold onto a prime bit of land.

Plastinated People

By Michael Cook

Exhibits of "plastinated" human remains in garish poses raise issues of human dignity.

Quantum Dots Controlled

By Stephen Luntz

Developments in the production of magnetic quantum dots could increase the speed and power of computers.

Devil in the Genetic Detail

By Stephen Luntz

Genetic diversity may save the Tasmanian devil in the wild, with increasing evidence that a genetically distinct population in the north-west of the island may have natural immunity to the facial tumour disease that is ravaging its cousins.

The Taste of Fat

By Stephen Luntz

Australian and New Zealand researchers have challenged the traditional belief that humans can only detect five tastes. Their claimed sixth taste – fat – could hold the key to why some people have been able to resist the tide of obesity.

Alien Clusters Infiltrate Galaxy

By Stephen Luntz

The Milky Way is filled with stars that arrived as part of captured formations. Now an Australian/Canadian study has concluded that one-quarter of the globular clusters that ring the galaxy come from dwarf galaxies. Globular clusters are spherical islands of stars, usually a few hundred thousand strong, sitting offshore of galaxies like pilot fish around sharks.

Hormone Hinders Memory

By Stephen Luntz

Luteinising hormone (LH), which plays a role in regulating testosterone, has a strong correlation with poor memories in older men.

Volcanoes Boost Carbon Storage

By Stephen Luntz

Undersea volcanoes release iron, some of which eventually finds its way to the surface of the Southern Ocean where it boosts phytoplankton growth and the absorption of carbon dioxide.