Pinterest • The world’s catalog of ideas

P values, the 'gold standard' of statistical validity, are not as reliable as many scientists assume. One researcher suggested rechristening the methodology “statistical hypothesis inference testing”, presumably for the acronym it would yield. Here we explain why if you think you can trust 'em, you should think again. http://www.nature.com/news/scientific-method-statistical-errors-1.14700?WT.mc_id=PIN_NatureNews Nature Publishing Group

Today is #DNAday a holiday celebrated on April 25 which is the day in 1953 when James Watson and Francis Crick published papers in Nature on the structure of DNA. Credit: Nature Publishing Group

Should we set limits on what science can probe? Are some areas too questionable to investigate? Nature explores taboo genetics - the genetics of IQ, race, sexuality and violence - and the scientists that have crossed the red line to work on them. A poll asks if you think each of these areas should be off-limits to scientists... http://www.nature.com/news/ethics-taboo-genetics-1.13858?WT.mc_id=PIN_NatureNews Nature Publishing Group

Women in Science: Despite improvements, female scientists continue to face discrimination, unequal pay and funding disparities. http://www.nature.com/news/inequality-quantified-mind-the-gender-gap-1.12550 #women #science #sexism Nature Publishing Group

Wow! Gravitational lensing - the bending of light by stars - has been reproduced on a microchip. “This is indeed the first time an exact solution of Einstein's equations was mimicked” using an optical model, says physicist Ulf Leonhardt. The simplicity of the experiment “beautifully illustrates some of the ideas of general relativity”, he adds. http://www.nature.com/news/curved-space-time-on-a-chip-1.13840?WT.mc_id=PIN_NatureNews Credit: Sheng, C.et al. Nature Publishing Group

It sounds like a science administrator’s dream — or a scientist's worst nightmare: a formula that predicts how often research papers will be cited. But a team of data scientists now says it could be possible. They report in Science that a simple model allows reasonably accurate predictions of a paper’s future performance on the basis of about five years of its citation history. http://www.nature.com/news/formula-predicts-research-papers-future-citations-1.13881?WT.mc_id=PIN_NatureNews

The US is sliding down the ranks of research quality as measured by the relative citation impact of its papers, according to a study commissioned by the UK government (see graph). It was overtaken in the rankings (normalized for field) by the United Kingdom in 2006 and by Italy in 2012. http://www.nature.com/news/seven-days-6-12-december-2013-1.14335#/research?WT.mc_id=PIN_NatureNews Nature Publishing Group

Nature Outlook Obesity: Rates of obesity continue to rise worldwide. About 65% of Americans are either overweight or obese, resulting in 300,000 excess deaths per year. Yet surprisingly little is known about the science which underpins this global epidemic. Why do some people seem predisposed to weight gain? And how does appetite actually work? Devising an effective strategy to combat obesity will require the integration of insights from neuroscience, genetics and the behavioural sciences.

Lifespans predictable at early age Worm study suggests that activity in mitochondria determines ageing.

Nature, Volume 499 Number 7457. Phages naturally coexist in abundance with their bacterial hosts in the mammalian gut. Antibiotic treatment can negatively affect the gut environment and cause immune and metabolic deficiencies. (Cover illustration: Jenn Hinkle) Nature Publishing Group

Nature, Volume 497 Number 7447. Genetically modified crops, we were promised, would deliver a second green revolution. In this special issue, Nature charts the development of GMO technology in the past three decades and looks for the green shoots that might form the basis of the next generation of GMOs. Cover: Kelly Krause/Nature (photo: Nagy-Bagoly Arpad/Shutterstock) Nature Publishing Group

First results from psychology’s largest reproducibility test Crowd-sourced effort raises nuanced questions about what counts as replication.

To stay aloft, insects have to beat their wings very fast — up to 500 times a second in the case of mosquitoes. Exactly how they do this has long been debated. By capturing the molecular details of wing beats in live bumblebees, a study now argues that insect flight muscles do not work through a specialized mechanism but exploit properties shared with vertebrate muscles. http://www.nature.com/news/flight-of-the-bumblebee-decoded-1.13587?WT.mc_id=PIN_NatureNews CREDIT: SCIENCE/AAAS

Nature, Volume 510 Number 7503. Many of the high-resolution membrane protein structures published recently are notable for the presence of lipids closely associated with the protein, prompting the question, how are these lipids influencing membrane complex structure? On the cover, IM-MS captures a native membrane protein complex emerging from an ion mobility cell. Shown is the ammonia channel in apo, one- and two-lipid bound states. Cover: Arthur Laganowsky

Happy Darwin Day! Here’s our free special from the archives on his life, science and legacy.

"This is not a reform — this is a liquidation of science in Russia” In a move that has outraged researchers, the 290-year-old Russian Academy of Sciences is to be placed under the control of the Russian government, after the country’s lower house of parliament voted to approve a law that would change how the academy's 436 institutes and 45,000 staff are managed. http://www.nature.com/news/duma-vote-seals-fate-of-russian-academy-of-sciences-1.13785?WT.mc_id=FBK_NatureNews Nature Publishing…

1914 Max von Lae NP in Physics "for his discovery of the diffraction of X-rays by crystals". 100 yr of Xray Crystallography!