Religion and intelligence

More than 400 years before the birth of Jesus of Nazareth, Greek playwright Euripedes wrote in his play Bellerophon, “Doth some one say that there be gods above? There are not; no, there are not. Let no fool, led by the old false fable, thus deceive you.”

Euripides was not an atheist and only used the word “fool” to provoke his audience. But, if you look at the studies conducted over the past century, you will find that those with religious beliefs will, on the whole, score lower on tests of intelligence. That is the conclusion of psychologists Miron Zuckerman and Jordan Silberman of the University of Rochester and Judith Hall of Northeastern University, who have published a meta-analysis in Personality and Social Psychology Review.

New meta-analysis checks the correlation between intelligence and faith,  Ars Technica, 11 August 2013.

This story set the news agenda that day. It received over 150,000 reads and 600 comments in just one day. It was then picked up by The Independent, Yahoo News, Huffington Post and Daily Mail.

Image credit: Sebastian Bergmann

Tracking stem cells

Heart-related diseases are the leading cause of death in the industrialized world. Cardiac stem cell therapy is a promising new way of reducing those numbers, but its application has proven to be less effective than hoped. Now researchers at Stanford University have developed nanoparticles that can be used to image stem cells implanted into the heart. They claim this will help improve the efficiency of these transplants drastically.

Doctors track stem cells with nanoparticles during cardiac therapy,  Ars Technica, 22 March 2013.

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