How NASA Shaped the Study of Life on Earth

Before the space race, microbes were largely overlooked in the study of evolution. But NASA funding of outside-the-mainstream scientists like Lynn Margulis helped change that, opening the door to a new, microbial view of life — and turning the agency into an unlikely catalyst for a revolution in biology.

Editorial Mission
Undark Editorial Mission
We illuminate the complicated and fractious places where science collides with politics, economics, and culture, and where differing world views compete for resources and influence. Learn more here.
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Abstracts: WHO Updates Covid-19 Guidance

ICYMI Highlights

Book Review: Our Worlds Within Walls

In her timely new book “The Great Indoors,” Emily Anthes explores the vagaries of lives lived predominantly indoors, and the burgeoning research connecting indoor environments to behavior and health. From innovative architecture to invisible microbes, Anthes reveals influences both great and small.

Abstracts: Covid-19, Uighurs, and More

Cases of Covid-19 increased across much of the country this week, raising fears that the virus that causes it could spread further during gatherings over the Fourth of July weekend. The holiday arrives as the national death toll from Covid-19 passes 128,000 — roughly one quarter of the world total.