Health and Science Editor
New developments in science are always changing what is considered possible, but since there is often not an immediate application for a new theory or technology, the general public is not aware of the development at all. These are some of the most amazing developments that were revealed this year.
Jan 3—On January third, scientists reported that they had created a gas that reaches negative kelvin temperatures. The Kelvin scale was designed in in the 1800’s so that zero kelvin would be the temperature at which all motion stops, leaving particles with no energy. This is known as absolute zero. The potassium based gas was forced into an unnatural configuration with lasers and magnetic fields, and when the atoms would normally repel, forcing them to drop to a small fraction of a degree below absolute zero, revealing new properties of the gas and the behavior of particles below absolute zero.
Jan 23—A man in the UK is the first person to receive a bionic hand. The new prosthetic uses electrodes to sense his muscle movements and decides his intentions. The device only has to be charged for four hours after twenty hours of use.
Feb 4—New techniques in 3D printing may make it possible to print organs. The new printer can use stem cells, cells from human embryos that can become any kind of tissue, and can make organ transplants quicker and easier, possibly in lieu of organ donations.
Mar 3—Scientists have cured Aids in one baby. The infant was given antiretroviral drugs, three doses in thirty minutes, after being diagnosed as HIV positive. This is a much more rapidly administered dose than is usual, and scientists think it was quick enough to prevent it from affecting the body. The child is now two and a half years old and has not taken any medication for HIV for over a year. Doctors warn that this is not to be considered a typical case and that not all traces of HIV in the child’s body were eradicated. They also say that the only reason that it was so effective was because the infant’s cells were not yet affected. There was one other case of the virus going into remission; a San Francisco man had a bone marrow transplant and has not needed medication in five years.