Science  19 Apr 2002:
Vol. 296, Issue 5567, pp. 435

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  1. EDUCATION: Bend Me, Shape Me

    About 5 weeks after conception, we all looked a lot like an 11-day-old mouse embryo, right down to the flippers and segmented tail. Students who need to know the intricacies of how we go from fins to fingers may want to visit this clear, thorough guide to normal and abnormal mammalian development. Embryologist Kathy Sulik and radiologist Peter Bream of the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, began putting together the illustrated, nine-unit tutorial 8 years ago. In sequences of labeled electron micrographs and animations, the eyes, ears, heart, and other structures sprout and take shape. Watch a furrow on the embryo's back close to form the spinal cord. Or follow limb formation from the first bulge of tissue along the embryo's flank to fins to the disappearance of the webbing between the fingers. Helpful bells and whistles include illustrations from Langman's Medical Embryology.

  2. IMAGES: Southern Exposure

    Although European caverns like Lascaux and Altamira boast the best known rock artwork, early Americans also got creative in caves, under overhangs, and on rock walls. Some of the best examples of petroglyphs (images carved or pecked into stone) and pictographs (paintings) in the United States are found in Arkansas. The new Web site Arkansas Rock Art delves into the state's pre-Columbian artists and their work, offering information for specialists and aesthetes alike.

    Most works were created between A.D. 900 and 1541, possibly by ancestors of modern tribes such as the Caddo and Osage. General articles describe these cultures and what we can divine about their rituals and beliefs. Technical papers focus on particular excavations and efforts to protect the sites from natural and human damage.

    The gallery showcases renditions of animals, abstract and geometric symbols, and human figures.

  3. TOOLS: A Site for Sore Eyes

    If colleagues snooze through your seminars, maybe the problem isn't you but your drab visuals. ColorBrewer can help perk up presentations by letting you experiment with various color schemes on sample maps. Created by geographers at Pennsylvania State University, the site lets you choose among 250 palettes and map types. You can find out how a particular combination will look through a projector versus on a laptop screen and even whether someone with red-green colorblindness can see it.

  4. DATABASE: The Lowdown on Some Scary Bugs

    Find out everything you ever wanted to know about sexually transmitted microbes but were afraid to ask—or at least about their genetic blueprint. This storehouse from Los Alamos National Laboratory in New Mexico holds complete genome sequences and maps for eight pathogens that cause sexually transmitted diseases. They include Chlamydia trachomatis, three kinds of herpesviruses, the human papillomavirus, and Treponema pallidum, the corkscrew-shaped bacterium that causes syphilis. Zoom in on the maps to find sequences for particular genes, the proteins they encode, and the proteins' likely functions. For the bacterial nasties, you can find out where the gene falls in the bug's biochemical pathways.


    Lost the bookmark for a useful Web site you read about in NetWatch? Want to look up all sites we've noted on cell biology, or astronomy, or mites? You can now find the hundreds of sites we've reviewed in the past 4 years at a new NetWatch archive. Search by keyword or browse by subject at