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The gene scissors "Crispr" opens up incredible possibilities: The genome of humans, animals and plants can be changed easily as desired. Physicians hope to use the new method to cure patients with serious hereditary diseases or HIV. But researchers have ethical concerns to apply the gene clauses in humans.

In Iran, archaeologists have come across a true-to-life replica of the magnificent Babylonian Ishtar Gate. Presumably, Cyrus the Great, the founder of the Persian Empire, gave the order to the monumental copy. display

The interstellar medium that fills the space between the stars and provides the building material for new stars is much more complex and dynamic than astronomers have previously suspected.

In the spring, a car accidentally crashed in the USA. The driver was killed. Experts explain what the accident means for the development of autonomous driving.

Some animals sleep strangely, dolphins only with one half of the brain. Scientists use the findings from the animal kingdom to understand why and how we humans sleep.

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Dear Readers,

Crispr / Cas9 is a bulky term. Nevertheless, you should remember him. Because he stands for a new, explosive tool of genetic engineering. Crispr / Cas9 is a pair of scissors that can be used to tailor any DNA. Experts say we can use it to rebuild nature as easily and effectively as we have in any previous human intervention - for better or for worse. As complicated as the topic is, each one of you has to know what is happening. That's why I particularly like our current cover story from page 10 onwards.

It is the last title story co-responsible for me. Short Reminiscence: In my first issue in March 1994 (pictured) as bdw editor in chief, the title was about the carbon footballs C60 and about what researchers can develop from everything. The result is rather disappointing from today's point of view.

Over 272 monthly editions and dozens of bdw-plus, specials, extras and other products, I was able to set the course in many ways for the image of science.

My goal has always been to provide our readers with high-quality, visually impressive, but above all reliable information on the latest developments in science worldwide. We could only be successful as a group, so the editors had the freedom to do creative work. Freedom gave me the publisher also in the search of my successor. I am very pleased to present you with Dr. Alexander Mäder to present a science journalist who masters his craft and brings along many ideas for the renewal of the magazine.

I myself remain more than just a friend of the brand. In my new function as editorial director for special projects, I will do everything in my power to further anchor the image of science in applied research. And then there are the science-related events and reading tours that we want to expand.

I thank you all for your open-mindedness and many for your loyalty for many years. You take care!

Your Wolfgang Hess

In June, I was at a meeting of the German Ethics Council in Berlin and met in the coffee break, the colleague of a well-known newspaper. She held her smartphone in her hand and waited for the editors to confirm that her article was all right. "When does your text appear?" She asked me. "In the October issue, " I answered, and she laughed. It was an eternity for a newspaper editor like her. For me too, because I worked a long day up-to-date - first with the Berliner Zeitung, later with the Stuttgarter Zeitung.

Now I work at a monthly magazine and suddenly have time. Here I can research more thoroughly and have more space for my stories. That's an advantage - even in our fast-paced world. I think newspapers and magazines complement each other well: a newspaper reports on what is happening while a magazine says what remains important beyond the day: the science of science reports - for more than 50 years - about the discoveries in the research worth remembering. It honors me to continue this traditional brand, which I know since my school days in the 80s.

By the way, from my visit to the German Ethics Council a commentary on the Genscher Crispr / Cas9 was written, which is on pages 24/25 in this issue. Opinions are a matter of the heart: research is too important for the society, as that one should not talk about it. For thorough and understandable information in bdw should also include the stimulating discussion. The commentators are of course not always right, but their reasoning should be understandable. If you want to reply to my comment or praise or criticize something on the booklet, then write me: I look forward to your mail.

Alexander M der

PS: The fast media I remain connected: You can find me with the blog "Heureka!" On, under the name @methodenkritik on Twitter and of course on our daily updated website For example, I give reading recommendations for Fridays on Fridays.

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