Sometimes browsing the Cornell ArXiv results in very interesting reading. It is the case with the preprint I got to read today, "DAMA/LIBRA annual modulation and Axion Quark Nugget Dark Matter Model", by Ariel Zhitnitsky. This article puts forth a bold speculative claim, which I found exciting for a variety of reasons. As is the case with bold speculative claims, the odds that they turn out to describe reality is maybe small, but their entertainment value is large. So what is this about?

In the recently released film Blinded by the Light, Pakistani teenager Javed discovers commitment and courage through the music of Bruce Springsteen. Based on journalist Sarfraz Manzoor’s 1980s memoir, the dreams and frustrations of a working-class boy from Luton, North London are given wings by the experience of another working-class boy from Freetown, New Jersey.

Inspired, Javed shares his writings and his feelings.

In 1799, Alexander von Humboldt set sail on a 5-year, 8000-km voyage through Latin America. His journey through the Andes Mountains, captured by his famous vegetation zonation figure featuring Mount Chimborazo, canonized the place of mountains in understanding Earth's biodiversity.  

One puzzle for scientists since von Humboldt 250 years ago, and certainly later with Darwin, Wallace, and Mendel, was global pattern of mountain biodiversity, and the extraordinarily high richness in tropical mountains in particular.

Two new papers focus on the fact that the high level of biodiversity found on mountains is far beyond what would be expected from prevailing hypotheses.
A team of ecologists exposed Zonotrichia leucophrys (white-crowned sparrows) to the seed treatment known as imidacloprid (in the class of insecticides known as neonicotinoids) and say the measured weight mass declined in just a few hours, which led to the birds delaying migration. But their study was so small it can only be considered exploratory.

Neonicotinoids are seed treatments, they were created to reduce broad spectrum spraying, like the dichloro-diphenyl-trichloroethane (DDT) that Nixon appointee William Ruckelshaus banned domestically over the findings of experts in 1972.  But this new paper claims the replacements for broad spraying may be just as harmful. 
A recent paper has linked two types of heart problems and one of the most commonly prescribed classes of antibiotics.

Data from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration's adverse reporting system plus a private insurance health claims database in the U.S. that captures demographics, drug identification, dose prescribed and treatment duration, identified 12,505 cases of valvular regurgitation with 125,020 case-control subjects in a random sample of more than nine million patients.
One of biology's most fundamental sets of building blocks may have special properties that helped bootstrap itself into its modern form - or it may be "cui bono?" thinking where people find an event, find a fact, and assume the fact caused the event, like we get in endocrine disruption and too much modern epidemiology.
Hemophilia, a rare inherited bleeding disorder in which blood doesn't clot normally - meaning any cut can be deadly - is a lot less rare than previously estimated. 

A new paper states that as many as 1,125,000 men around the world have it, 418,000 with a severe version of the mostly undiagnosed disease, which is 3X greater than the 400,000 people previously estimated.
Though bees can live for years, their mating period is brief so male honeybees use a bee version of Flunitrazepam (Rohypnol - colloquially roofies) to improve their chances of being the successful dad. They inject vision-imparing toxins during sex that cause temporary blindness in females and keep them from flying off to other males.

The toxins identified in a new study are proteins contained in male bees' seminal fluid which helps maintain sperm. All honeybees make these proteins, though some may make more of it than others, and honeybee seminal fluid toxins can not only kill the sperm of rivals, it can cause temporary blindness, it turns out.
During puberty, male and female brains clearly become more distinct, with boys showing an increase in connectivity in certain brain areas previously identified as conferring risk for mood problems in adolescents, and girls showing a decrease in connectivity as puberty progresses. 

The researchers analyzed brain scans of 147 girls and 157 boys, aged between 13 and 15, from centers in Dublin, London, Dresden, Mannheim, and Paris.They were at varying puberty stages, from having not started their puberty to being fully mature. The researchers took images of the brain activity while the adolescent volunteers were lying still in an MRI scanner. 
If we want to understand why one political group denies vaccines and another that pollution is bad, we need look no farther than press releases touting mouse studies or statistical correlation as having human relevance, when they are only exploratory.

Everyone sees this stuff gets promoted in mainstream media, they know it is fake, and it becomes impossible for people to trust anything. Even their own political side or field. People assume everyone is hyping results for attention if even their own side is.