Bob Adams is a lab animal veterinarian at Johns Hopkins University. Maggie Starbard/NPR hide caption

itoggle caption Maggie Starbard/NPR

The botulism toxin comes from Clostridium botulinum bacteria, seen here in a colorized micrograph. James Cavallini/Science Source hide caption

itoggle caption James Cavallini/Science Source

Classical mechanics, represented by Isaac Newton, typically doesn't play nicely with quantum mechanics, represented by Schrodinger's cat. But the 2013 Nobel laureates for chemistry figured out a way to get the two to work together. Courtesy of the Nobel Prize hide caption

itoggle caption Courtesy of the Nobel Prize

Tourists are dwarfed by the Very Large Array in 2005. The facility, on the Plains of San Agustin, 50 miles west of Socorro, N.M., has been closed as a result of the government shutdown. The VLA consists of 27 radio antennas linked together to simulate the capabilities of a single dish 17 miles in diameter. Robyn Beck/AFP/Getty Images hide caption

itoggle caption Robyn Beck/AFP/Getty Images

From left: Randy Schekman, Thomas Suedhof and James Rothman shared the 2013 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine. Reuters /Landov hide caption

itoggle caption Reuters /Landov

Knight (left) and Bucheli take soil samples from beneath one of the decomposing bodies. Katie Hayes Luke for NPR hide caption

itoggle caption Katie Hayes Luke for NPR

A sixth sense? A small patch of neurons on either side of the brain recognizes how many dots are on a screen. As more dots appear, active neurons shift to the right. Courtesy of Ben Harvey/Utretch University hide caption

itoggle caption Courtesy of Ben Harvey/Utretch University

Beautiful or creepy? A recent survey found that an image of a lotus seed head makes about 15 percent of people uncomfortable or even repulsed. tanakawho/Flickr.com hide caption

itoggle caption tanakawho/Flickr.com

The olinguito is the first carnivore species to be discovered in the Western Hemisphere in 35 years. Courtesy of Mark Gurney hide caption

itoggle caption Courtesy of Mark Gurney

Could the images common in accounts of near-death experiences be explained by a rush of electrical activity in the brain? Odina/iStockphoto.com hide caption

itoggle caption Odina/iStockphoto.com