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5 Most Incredible Discoveries of the Week

Including a century-old message and scary news for workaholics
By Newser Editors,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 22, 2015 5:29 AM CDT

(Newser) – A riches-stuffed Nazi train and a "switch" that could turn off an obesity gene make the list:

  • Has a Legendary Nazi Train Been Found? Two treasure hunters say they've found a Nazi train thought to have gone missing in Poland while laden with gold, jewels, and weapons. They aren't revealing the precise location of the train, though, until a demand about the loot is granted.
  • Shorter Women Have Shorter Pregnancies: The height and weight of a newborn baby is largely governed by his or her own genes, but it's the height of the mother that's giving researchers a telltale sign. Specifically, shorter women have shorter pregnancies and thus more premature babies. Here's why the find has major health implications.
  • Bad News for Workaholics: If you're putting in more than 55 hours a week at work, the chances are good that you're working toward having a stroke, researchers say. If the hours are a must, the researchers at least have some precautions to help.

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  • A Century-Old Message: What is likely the oldest message in a bottle in history has turned up on a German beach nearly 110 years after it was tossed. A woman walking on the island of Amrum found the bottle, launched in 1906 by England's Marine Biological Association. Despite the length of time, she still collected the bottle's promised reward.
  • Obesity Gene May Have an Off Switch: Researchers have made a major breakthrough in studying the FTO "obesity gene," which acts as a "switch" for other genes that affect whether energy from what people eat is stored as fat or burned off. People who inherited a faulty version of the gene are more likely to be obese—but the researchers say they've discovered something that can reverse the effect.
Click to read about more discoveries, including how a whistled language is changing thinking about the brain. (Read more discoveries stories.)

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