Top Stories: Monarchs that don’t migrate, Jason stays alive, and human organs in animals


Monarch butterflies raised in captivity don’t migrate

In what may be a cautionary tale for citizen scientists trying to save North America’s iconic monarch butterfly, new research has found that butterflies raised in captivity are sometimes unable to migrate—some as a result of missing genes and others for want of the right environmental cues.

Jason—a secretive group of Cold War science advisers—is fighting to survive in the 21st century

After 59 years of service, Jason, the famed science advisory group, was being fired, and it didn’t know why. On 29 March, the exclusive and shadowy group of some 65 scientists received a letter from the Department of Defense saying it had just over a month to pack up its files and wind down its affairs. But Jason has stayed alive by taking on more studies unrelated to national security.

Embryo experiments take ‘baby steps’ toward growing human organs in livestock

The perpetual shortage of human organs for transplant has researchers turning to farm animals. Several biotech companies are genetically engineering pigs to make their organs more compatible with the human body. But some scientists are pursuing a different solution: growing fully human organs in pigs, sheep, or other animals, which could then be harvested for transplants.

NASA will fly a billion-dollar quadcopter to Titan, Saturn’s methane-rich moon

The siren call of Titan could not be ignored. NASA’s next billion-dollar mission, called Dragonfly, will be an innovative quadcopter to explore Titan, Saturn’s largest moon, the agency announced this week. The craft will soar and hover over the icy moon’s surface—and land on it—in a search for the conditions and chemistry that could foster life.

Watch artificial intelligence predict Conan O’Brien’s gestures just from the sound of his voice

Every time you talk, your body moves in sync, whether it’s something as subtle as eyes widening or more extreme movements like flailing arms. Now, researchers have designed an artificial intelligence that knows how you’re going to move based purely on the sound of your voice.