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Cells use a variety of ways to eliminate their rivals, from kicking them out of a tissue to inducing cell suicide or even engulfing them and cannibalizing their components. It’s called cell competition, and it works a bit like natural selection, in that fitter cells win out over their less-fit neighbours. Biologists are looking for ways to fight cancer and ageing by reining in the process or helping it along.
Most of the parties battling in Canada’s general election have little to say about the country’s scientific future. That’s in contrast to the last election in 2015, when the Liberal party squeaked to victory on a platform that included boosting research funding, lifting a gag rule on government scientists and putting more focus on the environment. This time, only the Green Party has presented a comprehensive science platform, with the other parties focusing on policies that address climate change.
The University of Oxford is investigating whether classics scholar Dirk Obbink sold ancient Bible fragments to the Green family, which owns the Hobby Lobby craft store chain. The pieces ended up in the hands of the Museum of the Bible in Washington DC, which is bankrolled by the family. Hobby Lobby separately last year paid US$3 million in fines related to smuggled artefacts. Obbink denied the allegations when some of them were raised last year in The Daily Beast.
FEATURES & OPINION
In his new book, historian Frank Snowden argues that infectious diseases have shaped social evolution no less powerfully than have wars, revolutions and economic crises. Reviewer Laura Spinney notes that we still seem to be repeating many of the mistakes that triggered or exacerbated epidemics in the past.
Nature contacted three of the world’s largest international scientific networks that include academies of science in developing countries and asked if they had been invited to nominate people for the Nobel prizes. All three said no. The finding hints at one reason why the Nobels in chemistry, medicine and physics continually fail to acknowledge the achievements of diverse scientists, argues a Nature editorial. It’s time to open up the prize’s nomination process and its archives to get to the bottom of what’s going on.