top ten research highlights

The following highlights are the top ten most viewed research highlights on the English website of during the past month.


Scientific community: Machine-learning model predicts potential impact of research

Nature Biotechnology, May 18, 2021

A machine-learning model can be used to predict the future ‘impact’ of work published in the scientific literature, according to a paper in Nature Biotechnology. The model, whose score is used to predict the ‘top 5% of papers’ published in any year, could complement existing bibliographic systems that rely on metrics employing paper citations to gauge the potential impact of a sc...

doi: 10.1038/s41587-021-00907-6

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Astrophysics: Nickel detected in 2I/Borisov and comets from our Solar System

Nature, May 20, 2021

Nickel detected in the coma cloud surrounding the interstellar comet 2I/Borisov could hint towards the origins of this comet and the conditions at the time of its birth. The finding, reported in Nature this week, is unexpected as the temperatures observed are too cold to facilitate the sublimation of metals, suggesting an alternative mechanism. However, the detection of nickel is in line...

doi: 10.1038/s41586-021-03485-4

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Climate science: Disproportionate exposure to heat stress in US cities

Nature Communications, May 26, 2021

Urban heat stress exposure may disproportionally affect people of colour and low-income households in the majority of cities across the United States according to a new study published in Nature Communications this week. Understanding where these disparities in heat exposure exist may inform future efforts to design policy interventions to reduce such inequalities.

The distribut...

doi: 10.1038/s41467-021-22799-5

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Paleontology: Prehistoric footprints suggest mammals did like to be beside the seaside

Scientific Reports, May 14, 2021

Fossilised footprint tracks, recently discovered within the Hanna Formation in Wyoming, USA, which have been dated to 58 million years ago, may represent the earliest evidence of mammals gathering by the sea, according to a study published in Scientific Reports. The findings suggest that mammals may have first used marine habitats at least 9.4 million years earlier than previously though...

doi: 10.1038/s41598-021-88412-3

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An early bothremydid from the Arlington Archosaur Site of Texas

Scientific Reports, May 21, 2021

The discovery of the oldest known North American species of side-necked turtle — turtles that withdraw their necks sideways into their shells when threatened — is reported in Scientific Reports this week. The findings suggest that side-necked turtles may have migrated to North America during the Cenomanian age (100 to 94 million years ago).

Brent Adrian and colleagues have na...

doi: 10.1038/s41598-021-88905-1

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Archaeology: Climate change may be accelerating ancient rock art degradation

Scientific Reports, May 14, 2021

Climate change may be accelerating the degradation of ancient rock paintings in Indonesia, including the oldest known hand stencil in the world which dates back to 39,900 years ago, according to a study published in Scientific Reports.

Rock paintings made using red and mulberry-coloured pigments in the limestone caves and rock shelters of Maros-Pangkep, Indonesia have been dated ...

doi: 10.1038/s41598-021-87923-3

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Ecology: Swapping algae may be an important tool for coral survival

Nature Climate Change, May 18, 2021

Some corals can swap out the algae that live inside their tissue for different strains more tolerant to warming temperatures, which may help them survive moderate global climate change, suggests a modelling study in Nature Climate Change. These findings have implications for the management of declining coral communities.

Coral bleaching, a process in which algae — also known as...

doi: 10.1038/s41558-021-01037-2

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Environment: Temperate lake oxygen levels in decline

Nature, June 3, 2021

Widespread long-term declines in temperate lake oxygen levels are reported in Nature this week. This trend, calculated for nearly 400 lakes within an 80-year period, may be linked to warming temperatures and decreasing water clarity. The declines could threaten essential lake ecosystems.

The concentration of dissolved oxygen in aquatic systems can affect the balance of nutrients,...

doi: 10.1038/s41586-021-03550-y

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Climate change: Heat-related human mortality from anthropogenic climate change assessed

Nature Climate Change, June 1, 2021

A total of 37% of global heat-related human deaths can be attributed to anthropogenic climate change, according to a paper published in Nature Climate Change. Such findings reveal the pressing need to implement more ambitious mitigation and adaptation strategies to reduce the repercussions of climate change on public health.

Over the past two centuries, global temperatures have r...

doi: 10.1038/s41558-021-01058-x

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Biotechnology: Pollen-inspired microparticles may protect bees from pesticides

Nature Food, May 21, 2021

Pollen-inspired microparticles that could be used to detoxify bees exposed to organophosphate pesticides are reported in Nature Food. This bee detoxification strategy may have implications for reducing the risk of organophosphate insecticide exposure to managed bee populations.

Pollinators are vital to preserving ecosystem function for global food production. However, insecticide...

doi: 10.1038/s43016-021-00282-0

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