Reviews & Analysis

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  • Strange forces and effects dominate the world at the microscopic level. One such force, rooted in the random fluctuations of matter, has only now been accurately measured — 30 years after it was first predicted.

    • Sébastien Balibar
    News & Views
  • How do you watch the evolution of something that doesn't evolve? In the classical world, even posing this question would provoke raised eyebrows. But where quantum physics is involved, no question is too silly.

    • Lev Vaidman
    News & Views
  • Studies of an old genetic puzzle in a little-known protozoan reveal a new frontier in the expanding world of RNAs: an RNA template guides genome-wide DNA rearrangements during sexual reproduction.

    • Meng-Chao Yao
    News & Views
  • Using silicon as a 'thermoelectric' material to convert heat into electricity would be a technological leap forward. But silicon conducts heat so well that nobody thought that could work — until now.

    • Cronin B. Vining
    News & Views
  • In many species, males have developed strategies to safeguard their genetic material from dilution by that of competing males. Fruitflies achieve this by altering the behaviour of their partners.

    • Leslie C. Griffith
    News & Views
  • Magnetic poles always come in twos, a north and a south. That received wisdom has not stopped physicists from searching for 'monopoles' in accelerators and cosmic rays. Theory now indicates a better place to look.

    • Oleg Tchernyshyov
    News & Views
  • Changes in the phasing of seasonal cycles of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere mark the time when a region becomes a source or a sink of CO2. One study of such changes prompts thought-provoking conclusions.

    • John B. Miller
    News & Views
  • A proposal for transporting photons invisibly between two unconnected points in space seems worthy of a Star Trek plot. But it is in principle wholly realizable, and could open up new vistas — literally.

    • Kosmas L. Tsakmakidis
    • Ortwin Hess
    News & Views
  • Having three copies of chromosome 21 reduces the incidence of solid tumours in people with Down's syndrome. Studies in mice provide clues to why, and highlight a complex gene–function relationship.

    • David W. Threadgill
    News & Views
  • Wild salmon stocks in Canadian coastal waters are being severely affected by parasites from fish farms. So intense are these infestations that some populations of salmon are at risk of extinction.

    • Andrew A. Rosenberg
    News & Views