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August 20, 2014 | NPR · If you venture away from the protest zone in Ferguson, Mo., there is an idyllic neighborhood, which doesn't have much patience for the out-of-towners who have joined the protests.
 
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August 20, 2014 | NPR · President Obama has carefully avoided taking sides following the shooting of Missouri teen Michael Brown, disappointing some African-American observers.
 
August 20, 2014 | NPR · Texas ranks 49th out of 50 states in how much funding it commits to mental health. But San Antonio has become a model for other mental health systems. It has saved $50 million over the past 5 years.
 

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August 19, 2014 | NPR · Dr. Joanne Liu of Doctors Without Borders says fear and a lack of sense of urgency has kept the international community in their home countries rather than stepping up to the plate in West Africa.
 
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August 19, 2014 | NPR · The type of Ebola erupting in West Africa is closely related to one found 2,500 miles away — the distance between Boston and San Francisco. How did the virus spread so far without anyone noticing?
 
August 19, 2014 | NPR · Iranian poet and women's rights advocate Simin Behbahani has died. Her work probed the social and political challenges that faced Iran after its Islamic Revolution. She was 87.
 

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August 16, 2014 | NPR · Both Ukraine and Russia say they're trying to send supplies to residents in eastern Ukraine. But with tensions on both sides running high, that aid may take a while to arrive.
 

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August 17, 2014 | NPR · American fighter jets and drones carried out airstrikes against Islamist targets near the Mosul Dam in northern Iraq on Saturday. A breach of the dam could threaten entire cities.
 

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biology

Apr 18, 2014 — In a new paper, biologists suggest that religion evolved in our prehistoric past through processes by which serving one's family and larger social group become synonymous with serving God.
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Oct 10, 2013 — A study shows that genes that help our skin withstand damage from ultraviolet light kick in during the day. At night, our skin focuses instead on regenerating cells that were damaged during the day. This built-in system helps protect us from premature aging and skin cancer.
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Oct 7, 2013 — The trio was celebrated by the Nobel committee for unlocking a key mystery of cell function. The researchers "have revealed the exquisitely precise control system for the transport and delivery of cellular cargo," the committee says.
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Sep 26, 2013 — The tiny organism has an internal clock that triggers it to swim vigorously every 12.4 hours, coinciding with the changing tide — even when it's removed from its habitat.
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Sep 13, 2013 — We find ourselves drawn to the belief that physics alone investigates the basis of the universe, reality as it really is, beyond parochial human interests and values. Alva No asks if we can actually accept this, or if there is more to the universe than the particles and fields of physics.
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Jun 19, 2013 — The diversity of life on Earth, and its ever-growing complexity, leads many people to think that there must be a purpose to its existence. Commentator Marcelo Gleiser argues that, quite the contrary, the only purpose of life is to preserve itself. There is no hidden hand behind it all.
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Mar 10, 2013 — Not only is there no consensus yet on how life might have started on Earth, there is not even any agreement on where it started. But still, many think the mystery of life's origin can be solved. Commentator Wim Hordijk revels in the subject at a conference hosted by Princeton University.
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Feb 8, 2013 — We know a great deal about life and its pre-biotic precursors. But do we now understand how life is built from non-life? This is still an open question. Philospher Alva No considers this state of affairs in the context of the storm of controversy surrounding Thomas Nagel's book.
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Dec 17, 2012 — Secretions from a brown frog's skin contain chemicals that might be useful in fighting bacteria. Russian researchers are cataloging compounds in the slimy goo. Although the odds against them are long, the researchers hope their work will aid the search for new drugs.
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Nov 8, 2012 — Anchoring himself to a tiny patch of Tennessee forest, a scientist takes notes on what he sees and hears. He conducts no experiments and collects no samples. Commentator Barbara J. King offers an appreciation of evolutionary biologist David Haskell's approach to science.
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