Reviews & Analysis

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  • The origins of the Gamburtsev mountain range, which is hidden beneath Antarctic ice, are a long-standing mystery. Detailed geophysical data from the area form the basis of a comprehensive model that solves the mystery. See Letter p.388

    • John Veevers
    News & Views
  • A comparative analysis traces the trajectory of change in social organization among primates and establishes a firm foundation for modelling the origins of social complexity. See Letter p.219

    • Joan B. Silk
    News & Views
  • The differential rotation between the Moon's core and mantle may have powered the ancient lunar dynamo, either continuously over several hundred million years or intermittently after large impacts. See Letters p.212 & p.215

    • Dominique Jault
    News & Views
  • A study reveals that female promiscuity in a songbird, the dark-eyed junco, is explained by the greater reproductive success of offspring sired by males outside social pairs compared with offspring born within pairs.

    • Lawrence Bellamy
    • Andrew Pomiankowski
    News & Views
  • Age brings not just wisdom, but also, alas, many traits that to most of us are much less attractive. It now seems that, at least in mice, clearance of senescent cells delays some of the maladies associated with ageing. See Letter p.232

    • Daniel S. Peeper
    News & Views
  • Nanoscale systems designed to imitate functions from the macroscopic world lead to a new appreciation of the complexity needed to actuate motion at the limits of miniaturization. A nanoscale 'car' is the latest example. See Letter p.208

    • Paul S. Weiss
    News & Views
  • A recent surge in the intensity of tropical cyclones in the Arabian Sea has brought unprecedented damage and loss of life. Anthropogenic air pollution might be increasing the destructiveness of these storms. See Letter p.94

    • Ryan L. Sriver
    News & Views
  • Diamond-based quantum computers could potentially operate at room temperature with optical interfacing, but their construction is challenging. Silicon carbide, used widely in electronics, may provide a solution. See Letter p.84

    • Andrew Dzurak
    News & Views
  • Little is known about mammalian evolution in South America during the age of the dinosaurs. The discovery of 100-million-year-old skulls confirms that mammalian faunas were endemic in southern continents at this time. See Letter p.98

    • Christian de Muizon
    News & Views
  • Caspase-1 is one of the main culprits behind sepsis, a form of systemic inflammation. The related enzyme caspase-11 is also involved, but the relative roles of the two proteins have been confusing, until now. See Letter p.117

    • Douglas R. Green
    News & Views
  • The collapse of the Maya civilization is often attributed to drought, but is the explanation really as simple as that? On the basis of evidence from their respective fields, an archaeologist and a palaeoclimatologist call for a more nuanced assessment.

    • James Aimers
    • David Hodell
    News & Views Forum
  • Grid cells confer a spatial impression of an animal's environment on the brain. Their firing patterns in a cave-dwelling bat reopen old questions about how they do this, and pose some compelling new ones. See Letter p.103

    • Laura Lee Colgin
    News & Views