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“Fungi don’t turn humans into zombies, but “The Last of Us” gets some science right.”

Views expressed in this science and technology update are those of the reporters and correspondents.

Accessed on 21 February 2023, 1414 UTC.

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  1. A still image from the television show The Last of Us showing a human body that has been completely covered by an orange fungus attached to a gray wall.

    Fungi don’t turn humans into zombies. But The Last of Us gets some science right

    Fungi like those in the post-apocalyptic TV show are real. But humans’ body temperature and brain chemistry may protect us from zombifying fungi.

  2. In a photo, stroke patient Heather Rendulic, who has dark hair and is wearing a dark shirt and a hospital mask, holds a Campbell's soup can. Devices used to monitor her implant are visible on her arm.

    A new treatment could restore some mobility in people paralyzed by strokes

    Electrodes placed along the spine helped two stroke patients in a small pilot study regain control of their hands and arms almost immediately.

  3. NASA Rover Perseverance takes a selfie on Mars

    What has Perseverance found in two years on Mars?

    NASA’s Perseverance rover has turned up volcanic rocks, signs of flowing water and some of the materials necessary for life.

  4. A photo of a new type of robot that has a black box for a body and four legs that are helping it move down the hall.

    This robot automatically tucks its limbs to squeeze through spaces

    Inspired by ants, a robot with telescoping legs can crawl under low ceilings, climb over steps and move on grass, loose rock and mulch.

  5. A photo of Greta Thunberg standing with a sign with a group of people standing behind her.

    Greta Thunberg’s new book urges the world to take climate action now

    Greta Thunberg’s ‘The Climate Book’ covers the basic science of climate change, the history of denialism and inaction, environmental justice and solutions.

  6. A microscope image of a nerve cell with colors highlighting special receptors.

    Psychedelics may improve mental health by getting inside nerve cells

    Psychedelics can get inside neurons, causing them to grow. This might underlie the drugs’ potential in combatting mental health disorders.

  7. A photo of several transparent crustacean larvae swimming around on a white background.

    Glassy eyes may help young crustaceans hide from predators in plain sight

    Nanospheres in the eye reflect light that matches the color of the surrounding water, possibly making the animals invisible to nearby predators.

  8. photo of a seal with a plastic bottle in the ocean

    50 years ago, scientists discovered the Great Pacific Garbage Patch

    In 1973, plastic bottles adrift in the North Pacific alarmed scientists. Fifty years later, more than 1.8 trillion pieces of plastic litter the area.

  9. A fossilized leaf of the extinct plant Gigantonoclea guizhouensis, with holes in pairs along the center

    Insect bites in plant fossils reveal leaves could fold shut millions of years ago

    The 252-million-year-old fossil leaves have symmetrical holes, which suggest an insect bit through the leaves when they were folded.

  10. A photo of a researchers camp on Antarctica's Thwaites Glacier.

    Rapid melting is eroding vulnerable cracks in Thwaites Glacier’s underbelly

    Thwaites is melting slower than thought, but the worst of it is concentrated in underbelly cracks, threatening the Antarctica glacier’s stability.

  11. A closeup photo of a large icicle with others hanging out of focus in the background.

    Here’s why icicles made from pure water don’t form ripples

    A new study explains why icicles made from pure water have irregular shapes rather than the ripples typical of the salty icicles found in nature.

  12. a photo of two giraffes where the male (seen from the side) has curled lips and the female (seen from the back) is peeing

    Why male giraffes drink potential mates’ pee

    In giraffes, an organ that detects pheromones has a stronger connection to the mouth than the nose. That’s different from many other mammals.


    For the latest science and technology news, please check the “Science-Technology Resources” link in the blog sidebar.  Thanks for joining us today.

    Russ Roberts (

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