Has econometrics taught in classes kept pace with its application? Is a paradigm shift needed? Angrist and Pischke’s (2017) “Undergraduate econometrics instruction: through our classes, darkly” compares old and new approaches to regression by contrasting two studies, and then assesses classic and contemporary textbooks and course outlines to address the gap between “is” and “should” in the field. Read more about their research here.

NASA’s Spritzer Space Telescope has discovered seven Earth-sized exoplanets that are likely to have liquid water. All seven planets closely circle around a single dwarf star Trappist-1. The system is about 40 light years away from Earth in the constellation Aquarius. Of the seven, three planets are in the habitable zone and have the highest chances of having life. Read more about this discovery here.

In a long-term experiment lasting two years, two varieties of algae survived in the space without any lasting adverse effects. Dr. Thomas Leya at the Fraunhofer Institute for Cell Therapy and Immunology IZI in Potsdam, who headed a team of researchers for the project, knew from her experience of studying cryophilic algae, cyanobacteria, mosses, fungi, and bacteria found in Polar Regions that certain varieties of algae are not susceptible to extreme temperature fluctuations and radiation. However, with the intention of studying the effect of cosmic atmosphere on these algae, she undertook a project wherein two algae varieties were transported into space for a period of two years. Read more about her research here.

To study the effect of exotic plants on the ecosystem, a group of researchers led by PD Dr Christopher Kaiser-Bunbury, member of the Ecological Networks Study Group of the TU Darmstadt Biology Department, conducted a large field study in Seychelles. They selected eight inselbergs on Mahé which is Seychelles' largest island and from four of these inselbergs, the team removed all exotic plants such as cinnamon and eucalyptus, while leaving the native plants undisturbed. Read more about their research here.

Can a printer print out human skin? A team of researchers belonging to the Universidad Carlos III de Madrid (UC3M), CIEMAT (Center for Energy, Environmental and Technological Research), Hospital General Universitario Gregorio Marañón, in collaboration with the firm BioDan Group have designed a prototype for a 3D printer that would be able to print out human skin that can be used for cosmetic, chemical, or pharmacological purposes. Read more about their research here.

The University of Buffalo researchers have studied the effect of commonly found synthetic chemicals on human health. Insecticides and garden products such as carbaryl (the third most widely used insecticide in the U.S. but which is illegal in several countries) and carbofuran (the most toxic carbamate insecticide) were found to adversely affect melatonin receptor signaling. Read more about their research here.

A team of researchers at The University of Manchester led by Professor David Leigh in Manchester's School of Chemistry have been successful in producing the most complex regular woven molecule. Read more about their research here.    

Biologists at University of California, San Diego, have discovered that bacteria living in biofilm communities interact with each other using “ion channels,” which is an electrical signaling method that is similar to the communication signals used by neurons in human brain. Read more about their research here.

A collaborative effort by Professor Neil Thomas from the School of Chemistry and Dr. Sara Goodacre from the School of Life Sciences and their teams has led to the development of antibiotic synthetic spider silk. The two teams worked for five years to produce functionalized spider silk synthesized by E.coli bacteria that can be used for a wide range of applications such as wound healing, drug delivery, etc. Read more about their research here.

The incubation period of dinosaur eggs has been a subject of interest to researchers. A team of researchers led by Gregory Erickson, a Florida State University professor of biological science, found out through extensive research that dinosaur eggs typically took three to six months to incubate, depending on the dinosaur. Read more about their research here.