Unusual life discovered in Mexican crystal caves gives insight to astrobiologists

By Lauren Puckett BOSTON — Deep in the caves of Naica, Mexico — some 800 meters below ground, where geothermal heat pushed temperatures into the range of 113 to 140 degrees Fahrenheit — Penelope Boston found something incredible. Within the cave’s enormous sparkling crystals, tiny microbial organisms lived in pockets of fluid. Boston’s attempts to…

Genetic engineering could stop the spread of mosquito-borne illnesses – but should we use it?

By Lauren Puckett An epic battle has been growing for decades: Human versus mosquito. Humans attack with poisons, insecticides, vaccinations and medications, but more than one million people worldwide still die from mosquito-borne illnesses every year.  Today, we have the technology to fight these diseases, and it’s called genetic modification. Gene technologies, developed by mosquito…

Film Review: Life, Animated

By Lauren Puckett In the eyes of 23-year-old Owen Suskind, Disney movies are a window to the world. For Owen, who was diagnosed with autism at age 3, the movies help him understand emotions. They help him make friends. They even help him speak.  Screened at the True/False Film Fest in Columbia, Missouri this March, the…

Newly detected gravitational waves are window to the universe, LIGO spokesperson says

  By Lauren Puckett WASHINGTON, D.C – Colliding black holes have a heartbeat. It just took scientists 1.3 billion years to hear it. Fresh from the announcement Feb. 11 that researchers had detected gravitational waves, ripples in spacetime itself, a triumphant Gabriela González appeared at the AAAS Global Science Engagement in Washington, D.C. February 12. González, spokesperson…

Lauren Puckett

Born and raised in Columbia, Missouri, I started writing when I was seven years old and, basically, I never stopped. I decided I wanted to write fiction when I was in sixth grade, and I discovered a passion for journalism while serving as an editor for my high school paper. I was brought to the…