Discovered: Racial separation corresponds with more lung cancer; barnacles have gross sex; social interaction is genetic in ants; Facebook is more memorable than books for many people.
Segregation linked to higher cancer rates. When members of different races are contained to different parts of town, the reality that emerges not only promotes more racism—it also correlates with pretty unhealthy outcomes. A study led by the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center's Awori J. Hayanga finds that African-Americans who live in more segregated counties have a much higher likelihood of dying from lung cancer than those in integrated areas. What's surprising is that this trend held true even when the researchers took into account different smoking rates and other socio-economic determinants on health. [The New York Times]
Barnacle sex (ew). Parents, now's the time to make the little turn their eyes away from the computer screen. We're now going to learn about barnacle sex. Mainly about how gross it is. Richard Palmer of the University of Alberta and his colleagues studied this issue, finding that male Pollicipes polymerus gooseneck barnacles are able to impregnate female barnacles without even coming into contact with them. Their penises are unusually small, so they've evolved to shoot sperm through water. "Darwin would be thrilled," says Palmer about the discovery. "He was that kind of guy." [Science News]