The open ocean is the largest and least explored environment on Earth, estimated to hold up to a million species that have yet to be described. However, many of those organisms are soft-bodied – like jellyfish, squid, and octopuses – and are difficult to capture for study with existing underwater tools, which all too frequently damage or destroy them. Now, a new device developed by researchers at Harvard University’s Wyss Institute, John A. Paulson School of Engineering and Applied Sciences (SEAS), and Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study safely traps delicate sea creatures inside a folding polyhedral enclosure and lets them go without harm using a novel, origami-inspired design. The research is reported in Science Robotics.
Watch the Wyss Institute's "Poké Ball" RAD Sampler Capture Ocean Life
Our genetic makeup has fascinated scientists and medical researchers for decades. There have been significant advances in the field of rewriting the blueprint of life or our DNA. It's been used to treat and prevent a number of disorders and diseases. But it could also be used to create what some have called 'designer babies'. The medical world is divided over the approach. Last year, a scientist in China said he created the world's first genetically edited twins -- leading to global condemnation. Scientists have gathered in Geneva this week to try come up with some regulations. But how would officials enforce rules around our DNA? And what are the risks of advanced research into human genetics?WATCH NOW
A breakthrough called CRISPR has given us unprecedented control over the basic building blocks of life. It opens the door to curing diseases, reshaping the biosphere, and designing our own children. Human Nature is a provocative exploration of CRISPR’s far-reaching implications, through the eyes of the scientists who discovered it, the families it’s affecting, and the bioengineers who are testing its limits. How will this new power change our relationship with nature? What will it mean for human evolution? To begin to answer these questions we must look back billions of years and peer into an uncertain future.WATCH NOW