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17 April 2014 12:48 pm ,
Vol. 344 ,
Officials last week revealed that the U.S. contribution to ITER could cost $3.9 billion by 2034—roughly four times the...
An experimental hepatitis B drug that looked safe in animal trials tragically killed five of 15 patients in 1993. Now,...
Using the two high-quality genomes that exist for Neandertals and Denisovans, researchers find clues to gene activity...
A new report from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) concludes that humanity has done little to slow...
Astronomers have discovered an Earth-sized planet in the habitable zone of a red dwarf—a star cooler than the sun—500...
Three years ago, Jennifer Francis of Rutgers University proposed that a warming Arctic was altering the behavior of the...
- 17 April 2014 12:48 pm , Vol. 344 , #6181
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ScienceShot: Cockroaches Prefer Right Turns
10 December 2010 2:37 pm
When a cockroach scuttles into a dark corner as we flip on the kitchen light, we feel revulsion, not kinship. But a new study reveals that most humans share a basic trait with Kafka's creepy creatures: right-handedness. Researchers released roaches into a Y-shaped tube, where scents of vanilla or ethanol enticed the insects to venture past the tube's splitting point. The researchers then recorded which direction the bugs turned. Cockroaches with intact antennae preferred the tube's right fork 57% of the time. This right-side bias persisted even after the scientists chopped off one of the bugs' sensitive antennae, used to sense touch and smells. The finding, which will be published in an upcoming issue of the Journal of Insect Behavior, adds to a growing body of evidence that even the tiniest brains show side-preference. The insight could aid bioengineers who hope to control cockroaches for search and rescue missions or pest control.
See more ScienceShots.