Wednesday, February 8, 2023
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Day by day briefing: AI-generated abstracts idiot scientists

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Webpage of ChatGPT is seen on OpenAI's website on a computer monitor

Scientists and publishing specialists are involved that the growing sophistication of chatbots might undermine analysis integrity and accuracy.Credit score: Ted Hsu/Alamy

The substitute-intelligence (AI) chatbot ChatGPT can write pretend abstracts that scientists have hassle distinguishing from these written by people. The chatbot was requested to create 50 abstracts on the premise of the titles of articles in 5 high-impact medical journals. Reviewers noticed solely 68% of the ChatGPT abstracts performing roughly the identical as AI-detector software program. Researchers are divided over the implications: some discover it worrying, however others suppose that severe scientists are unlikely to make use of AI-generated abstracts.

Nature | 4 min learn

Reference: bioRxiv paper (not peer-reviewed)

The controversy over the most effective design for mRNA in COVID-19 vaccines has been settled: chemically modified mRNA comes out on prime. A vaccine made with modified mRNA elicited the identical immune safety and brought on fewer unintended effects on the identical dose as a model with ‘pure’ mRNA in a comparability by vaccine maker CureVac. Because of this the dosage can safely be elevated for optimum safety. CureVac had lengthy remained a proponent of ‘unmodified’ mRNA, even after Pfizer–BioNTech and Moderna had success with next-generation mRNA COVID-19 vaccines. The corporate has now switched its total infectious-disease vaccine portfolio, leaving just a few ‘unmodified’ COVID-19 jabs below improvement in Asia.

Nature | 6 min learn

US President Joe Biden’s administration has unveiled a long-awaited plan to forestall political interference in science performed at authorities businesses. The plan goals to strengthen, broaden and standardize scientific-integrity insurance policies throughout businesses and set up an integrity panel to analyze violations by senior officers and political appointees. Authorities watchdogs praised the plan, however say additional steps are wanted to safe the function of scientists in authorities decision-making and forestall the kind of political meddling that was reported below former president Donald Trump.

Nature | 5 min learn

Reference: White Home framework doc

Picture of the week

Flower inclusion of Symplocos kowalewskii preserved in Baltic amber

This practically 40-million-year-old flower is by far the biggest floral fossil ever found preserved in amber. Flower inclusions often don’t exceed 10 millimetres — this one is 28 millimetres throughout. However the pattern, from the Baltic forests of northern Europe, sat in a German museum case and hadn’t been analysed for greater than 150 years. Researchers extracted pollen from the pattern and say it’s intently associated to the Asian species of Symplocos. They suggest a brand new identify for the flower: Symplocos kowalewskii. (Scientific American | 4 min learn)

Reference: Scientific Reviews paper (Carola Radke, MfN (Museum für Naturkunde Berlin))

Options & opinion

Policymakers can cease worrying that providing money to individuals who get their jabs might have unintended detrimental penalties. Trials in Sweden and the US have proven that financial incentives don’t cut back folks’s belief in vaccine security or erode their altruism. Communities that may afford incentives can now take into account this strategy, alongside bettering vaccine entry, with out having to depend on untested assumptions, argues a Nature editorial.

Nature | 5 min learn

Futures: science fiction from Nature

Within the newest quick tales for Nature’s Futures collection:

• The echo of a space-weather report prompts some homespun knowledge in ‘Sailors take warning’.

• There are classes for us all in ‘Excerpts from the Consumer Information for the SynaTech-3411 3D Bio-Printer (the bits you truly bothered to learn)’.

Andrew Robinson’s decide of the prime 5 science books to learn this week features a breathless scientific narrative of the COVID-19 pandemic and an exploration of the traditional world energy of Nubia.

Nature | 3 min learn

This week, I spoke to the Nature Podcast about a few of essentially the most compelling science tales that you just may need missed in the course of the vacation season, together with the brand new president of Brazil’s environmental insurance policies, how glass frogs swap on their ‘invisibility cloak’ and what noises dinosaurs may need made.

Nature Podcast | 26 min hear

Subscribe to the Nature Podcast on Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts or Spotify.

Quote of the day

An expertise with Python and a set of iconic sea-level-rise figures remodeled NASA computational oceanographer Chelle Gentemann into an open-science advocate. Now she helps to spearhead the Yr of Open Science in the US. (Nature | 5 min learn)

At the moment Leif Penguinson is hid within the Murchison River Gorge in Australia’s Kalbarri Nationwide Park. Can you discover the penguin?

The reply will likely be in Monday’s e-mail, all due to Briefing picture editor and penguin wrangler Tom Houghton.This text is all the time evolving — inform us what you suppose! Please ship your suggestions to

Thanks for studying,

Flora Graham, senior editor, Nature Briefing

With contributions by Katrina Krämer and Dyani Lewis

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