The Latest Scientific Discoveries You Should Know About
Science is an ongoing process which helps human beings gain more knowledge of the Universe.
Researchers and scientists work tirelessly all year round even though important discoveries are not being made all the time.
I believe it’s important to recognize scientific discoveries because the world of tomorrow will be shaped using the latest breakthroughs researchers from different field like astronomy, biology or physics made.
Here are some of the most mind-boggling discoveries which have been made lately.
The First Human Embryo Was Altered
CRISPR/Cas9 is a revolutionary gene editing technique used by scientists to alter the DNA without harming other genes.
In the future, this technique could potentially allow us to delete certain genes in order to eradicate genetic diseases or even add new genes to improve a human’s biological functions.
Even though a lot more studying needs to be involved until we get there, researchers in Portland, Oregon, achieved something incredibly amazing: they were able to change the DNA of a large number of one-cell embryos by using the CRISPR technique.
The embryos were not allowed to develop for more than a few days. Nevertheless, the researchers’ experiment represents an important step towards eradicating genes which cause inherited diseases.
Metallic Hydrogen Was Created
Hydrogen is the number one element in the periodic table and it’s supposed to possess an amazing potential in a metallic form. Even more so, physicists believe metallic hydrogen is a superconductor, which means if wires would be made out of it, then energy would not be lost anymore.
Two physicists working for the Harvard University managed to create metallic hydrogen for the first time. To do this, the physicists pressed two heavy-duty diamonds together in order to compress gaseous hydrogen.
Then, it was turned into a liquid state by lowering the temperature. They noticed some changes only after they increased the applied pressure by twisting a steel screw on the diamond anvil.
The hydrogen started to change its color to reflect 90% of light shine, which meant it was turned into metallic hydrogen.
Even though this is exciting news and one of the major scientific discoveries, the team has yet to see if the metallic hydrogen can remain stable after the pressure is released.
A New Continent Was Uncovered
A paper published last year announces the discovery of a new continent called Zealandia. In the paper, there’s solid evidence which shows the continental crust is large and separate enough to be considered a separate continent which lays in the Pacific Ocean.
It is the youngest, thinnest, smallest and the most submerged continent of them all and 94% of its surface is currently under water.
Zealandia is extremely important for geologists, geophysicists, zoologists, botanists, paleoclimate modelers and conservationists because studying the flora, fauna on this continent is extremely useful for natural sciences.
A Photon Was Teleported Using a Quantum Satellite
For the first time ever, Chinese researchers managed to teleport a photon from planet Earth to a satellite which is more than 500 kilometers away.
This represents a step forward in developing quantum technology.
Quantum teleportation means the photon was not physically transported 500 kilometers away, only its quantum information. The quantum information was then infused into another photon, which now will contain the same quantum information as the first photon before the teleportation happened.
Simply put, the photon which is now in space took the identity of the one which was on Earth.
This achievement drastically increased the distance of possible teleportation, which is extremely important for future developments where the technology can be used for secure long-distance communications or cloud-based quantum computer networks.
A Spinach Leaf Was Transformed into a Human Heart Tissue
Scientists at Massachusetts’ Worcester Polytechnic Institute are aware that the need for organs and tissues available for transplantation exceeds availability.
They came up with the idea of transforming a spinach leaf into beating human heart issues over lunch one day.
Even though there have been numerous advances when it comes to fabricating bioengineered scaffolds, there was still a challenge the fact that the nutrients were not being transmitted to the engineered human tissues.
Thanks to the similarities in the vascular structure of the spinach leaf and animal tissues, the scientists used decellularization to remove cellular material from the plant.
Later on, the plant scaffolds were recellularized using human endothelial cells. These type of cells line our entire circulatory system and they act as a barrier between the blood and the rest of the body tissue, regulate blood flow and regulate the inflammatory processes.
The cardiac muscle cells showed signs of contractions, which demonstrates the potential of decellularized plants when it comes to tissue engineering.
Scientific Discoveries Can Truly Change the World
There were countless other scientific discoveries happening in the last year alone, but these were just some I thought were worth a mention.
Now I’m even more intrigued and curious to see what will happen this year in the scientific world because I’ll definitely be writing more about this topic.
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