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6 March 2014 1:04 pm ,
Vol. 343 ,
Antiretroviral drugs can protect people from becoming infected by HIV. But so-called pre-exposure prophylaxis, or PrEP...
Two studies show that eating a diet low in protein and high in carbohydrates is linked to a longer, healthier life, and...
Considered an icon of conservation science, researchers at World Wildlife Fund (WWF) headquarters in Washington, D.C.,...
The new atlas, which shows the distribution of important trace metals and other substances, is the first product of...
Early in April, the first of a fleet of environmental monitoring satellites will lift off from Europe's spaceport in...
Since 2000, U.S. government health research agencies have spent almost $1 billion on an effort to churn out thousands...
Magdalena Koziol, a former postdoc at Yale University, was the victim of scientific sabotage. Now, she is suing the...
- 6 March 2014 1:04 pm , Vol. 343 , #6175
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Video: Shark Embryos Sense Electric Fields
9 January 2013 5:00 pm
Sharks are one of many marine creatures that can sense electrical fields emanating from other animals, and they use this sixth sense to find prey. Brown-banded bamboo sharks can sense these fields even before they've hatched from their egg cases, researchers report today in PLOS ONE. Scientists hung 11 egg cases containing shark embryos 3 to 4 months old in a water tank in front of a bright light, exposing the developing sharks' silhouettes. Normally, an embryo pulses its gills actively. But when researchers turned on electrodes to produce an electric field near the egg cases, the unhatched sharks froze and stilled their gills for several seconds (see video). The researchers suggest that freezing is a response to the presence of possible predators, such as other sharks. By freezing, the embryo may reduce its heart rate, which in turn may also reduce its own electric field, making it harder for predators to notice it.
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