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6 March 2014 1:04 pm ,
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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...
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ScienceShot: How the Blue-Ringed Octopus Flashes Its Bling
10 October 2012 3:50 pm
Don't mess with the blue-ringed octopus. The golf ball-sized cephalopod, which lives in the Pacific Ocean along shallow shores, carries a neurotoxin that can kill an adult human within minutes. But before it bites, releasing its venomous saliva through its beak, the octopus sends out a warning—a flash of bright blue rings—that seems to suddenly iridesce all over its body. A study published today inThe Journal of Experimental Biology reveals how the creature puts on its colorful show: by flexing its muscles. It turns out that the blue-green rings are always there, but pouches of skin conceal their iridescence when the octopus is relaxed. When the octopus gets agitated, it releases one set of muscles and tenses another to get the pouches out of the way and reveal its iridescence. The blue-ringed octopus's brawny approach is unique—all other cephalopods use sacs of pigment, called chromatophores, to change their colors.
See more ScienceShots.