At Last, We Understand What Turns Fruit Flies On

We’ve been breeding the fly Drosophila melanogaster in the lab for decades. We’ve tinkered with their genes — giving them extra legs, curly wings, or odd colored eyes – in pursuit of understanding genetic inheritance and how tissues develop. But until now we didn’t know which chemical made them start to mate. » 5/21/15 1:18pm 5/21/15 1:18pm

We Live With 80,000 Untested Chemicals in Consumer Products

The hundreds of thousands of chemicals that are packed into our homes and lives are what make modern consumerism possible, keeping our food fresh and our walls from molding. They are also, in many cases, completely untested and backed by giant corporations with a financial stake in their successful adoption. » 5/04/15 11:45am 5/04/15 11:45am

Fireball Whisky contains an antifreeze ingredient

Fireball is a ragingly popular, sickly sweet elixir that's taken America by storm. Fireball is also made with propylene glycol, a common ingredient in some antifreezes. That's an unsettling fact, so unsettling that Norway, Sweden, and Finland just recalled the booze. But it's not necessarily as unsettling as it sounds. » 10/29/14 2:46pm 10/29/14 2:46pm

You Won't Believe What Happens When You Light These Chemicals on Fire

Have you ever wondered what would happen if you mixed Mercury(II) thiocyanate (Hg(SCN)2) and Ammonium chromate (NH4)2CrO4 together and then lit it on fire? NO?! What's wrong with you? It's unbelievably hellish and impossibly alien combined with one burning force of what the horrifically kraken insane. » 7/18/13 8:00pm 7/18/13 8:00pm

All the Hidden Chemicals That Are Lurking In Your Coffee

Caffeine. For most of us, that's the only chemical compound in coffee that's worth a damn. But that's far from the only thing that's hiding in that simmering cup of black (or light brownish) glory that you suck down every morning. Cockroach pheromones? Rotting meat-smell? Check and check. Drink up! [Wired via … » 6/29/13 1:00pm 6/29/13 1:00pm

Color-Changing Gloves Alert Lab Workers To Invisible Toxins

The trickiest part of avoiding exposure to toxic substances is that they're often invisible, odorless, and undetectable to our five senses. And as an alternative to expensive detectors and other electronic sensors, researchers at the Fraunhofer Research Institution for Modular Solid State Technologies EMFT in… » 5/03/13 12:17pm 5/03/13 12:17pm

Five Scientific Facts on How Chocolate Is Good For You

Valentine's Day is coming up (it's Thursday I hear), which probably means you'll be eating overpriced chocolate with your sweet loved one or eating fair priced chocolate alone. Either way, have no guilt because chocolate is "good" for you! These five scientific facts about the chemicals of chocolate prove it so. I… » 2/11/13 10:00pm 2/11/13 10:00pm

The 26 Ingredients That Go Into a School Lunch Burger Include Chemicals, Blue Stuff and Question Marks

Why can't a school lunch burger just be a burger? Why does it have to include ingredients (ahem, chemicals) like thiamine mononitrate, disodium inosinate and pyridoxine hydrochloride in it? In the video above, NPR explains why burgers served in school cafeterias have so much crap in them. » 4/06/12 11:40am 4/06/12 11:40am

You Might Be Infertile Because Your Grandparents Were Mucking Around in Harmful Chemicals

New research shows that if your grandmother or even your great-grandmother came in contact with some very common environmental chemicals, you could be suffering the consequences today in the form of male infertility, ovarian disease and the early or late onset of puberty. » 2/28/12 6:15pm 2/28/12 6:15pm