Following is a summary of current science news briefs.
Sick as a dog? Pets often catch COVID from humans, study finds
If you think you have COVID-19, it might be best to stay away from your pets, says the author of a Dutch study that found a surprising number of dogs and cats may be getting infected. “About one out of five pets will catch the disease from their owners,” said Dr Els Broens of Utrecht University in the Netherlands, although there are no known cases of the disease spreading from pets to humans.
Science, industry team up in Italy to zap virus with laser
A United Nations-backed scientific research centre has teamed up with an Italian tech firm to explore whether laser light can be used to kill coronavirus particles suspended in the air and help keep indoor spaces safe. The joint effort between the International Centre for Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology (ICGEB) of Trieste, a city in the north of Italy, and the nearby Eltech K-Laser company, was launched last year as COVID-19 was battering the country.
Lack of side effects doesn’t mean mRNA vaccine not working; mRNA shots limit breakthrough infection severity
The following is a roundup of some of the latest scientific studies on the novel coronavirus and efforts to find treatments and vaccines for COVID-19, the illness caused by the virus. Lack of vaccine side effects no cause for concern
Branson aims to make space trip on July 11, ahead of Bezos
Billionaire entrepreneur Richard Branson will travel to the edge of space on Virgin Galactic Holdings Inc’s test flight on July 11, Branson’s space tourism firm said on Thursday, beating out fellow aspiring billionaire astronaut Jeff Bezos. A successful flight by Branson aboard Virgin’s VSS Unity spaceplane would mark a key milestone in a race to usher in a new era of private commercial space travel.
Trailblazing female pilot will go to space at age 82 with Jeff Bezos
Amazon’s billionaire founder Jeff Bezos will be joined by Wally Funk, one of the 13 women who passed NASA’s astronaut training program in the 1960s, on the first crewed flight into space from his rocket company Blue Origin later this month. Funk, 82, will be the oldest person ever to travel into space, Blue Origin said in an announcement on Thursday.
(With inputs from agencies.)