Science publishes 125 of most difficult scientific questions on occasion of its 125th anniversary. Understanding cutting edge of scientific research can be beneficial to your growth. A simple inductive statistic of these 125 questions, of which 46% are in life sciences, 16% are in universe and earth, over 14% are in materials science, and 9% are in cognitive science. The remaining questions concerned mathematics and computer science, politics and economics, energy, environment and population, respectively. In next 1/4 century, people will devote themselves to researching and solving these problems. Of these, 25 core issues were considered most important.
The 125 questions are as follows:
1. What is the universe made of?
2. What is biological basis of consciousness? (Image omitted, go to official account article)
3. Why are there so few human genes?
4. How is genetic variation related to human health?
5. Is it possible to unify laws of physics?
6. By how much can a person's life expectancy be increased?
7. What controls organ regeneration?
8. How do skin cells turn into nerve cells?
9. How does one somatic cell turn into a whole plant?
10. How is interior of Earth arranged?
11. Are people on Earth unique in the universe?
12. Where and how did life originate on Earth?
13. What determines species diversity?
14. What genetic changes have created unique people?
15. How to save and restore memory?
16. How does human cooperation develop?
17. How to create large visual images from an array of biological data?
18. How does chemical self-organization develop?
19. What are limits of traditional computing?
20. Can we selectively disable certain immune responses?
21. Is there a deeper principle of quantum uncertainty and nonlocality?
22. Can an effective HIV vaccine be developed?
23. How much will temperature of earth rise due to greenhouse effect?
24. When and what kind of energy can replace oil?
25. How many people can earth feed?
26. Is universe unique?
27. What drives expansion of universe?
28. When and how did the first stars and galaxies form?
29. Where do ultra-high-energy cosmic rays come from?
30. What powers quasars?
31. What is nature of a black hole?
32. Why is there more matter than antimatter?
33. Will protons decay?
34. What is nature of gravity?
35. Why is time different from other dimensions?
36. Are there elementary particles smaller than quarks?
37. Is neutrino its own antiparticle?
38. Is there a single theory to explain all relevant electronic systems?
39. Can people create the most powerful laser?
40. Can you make perfect optical lens?
41. Is it possible to produce magnetic semiconductors at room temperature?
42. What is mechanism of pair formation after high-temperature superconductivity?
43. Is it possible to develop a comprehensive theory of turbulence dynamics and kinematics of granular material?
44. Are there stable elements with large atomic weights?
45. Does superfluidity exist in solids, and if so, how to explain it?
46. What is structure of water?
47. What is essence of vitreous substance?
48. Is there a limit to rational chemical synthesis?
49. What is the ultimate efficiency of photovoltaic cells?
50. Will thermonuclear fusion become energy source of future?
51. What is reason for movement of solar magnetic cycle?
52. How do planets form?
53. What caused Ice Age?
54. What is reason for reversal of Earth's magnetic field?
55. Are there earthquake harbingers useful for forecasting?
56. Is there life on other planets in solar system?
57. What is origin of chiral principle in nature?
58. Is it possible to predict protein folding?
59. How many ways are there for protein to exist in human body?
60. How does a protein find its target?
61. How many forms of cell death are there?
62. What keeps chamber passage smooth?
63. Why can cell components replicate independently of DNA?
64. What function of genome differs from function of RNA?
65. What is role of telomeres and mitomers in genome?
66. Why are some genomes large and others quite compact?
67. What is role of "garbage" in genome?
68. How much can new technologies reduce cost of DNA sequencing?
69. How do organs and entire organisms know when to stop growing?
70. Besides inherited mutations, how does the genome change?
71. How is asymmetry determined in embryonic period?
72 How do wings, fins and faces develop and evolve?
73. What causes puberty?
74. Are stem cells cause of all tumors?
75. Is it easier to control tumors with help of immunity?
76. Is it easier to control a tumor than to treat it?
77. Is inflammation root cause of all chronic diseases?
78. How will mad cow disease develop?
79. To what extent do vertebrates rely on innate immune system to resist infectious diseases?
80. Is long-term exposure of immune memory necessary for antigens?
81. Why does immune system of a pregnant woman not reject the fetus?
82. What is synchronized with body's biological clock?
83. How do migratory organisms learn migration routes?
84. Why sleep?
85. Why do people dream?
86. Why is there a critical period in language learning?
87. Do pheromones affect human behavior?
88. How do general anesthetics work?
89. What is cause of schizophrenia?
90. What is cause of autism?
91. How long can a patient with Alzheimer's disease live?
92. What is biological basis of addiction?
93. How does the brain establish moral concepts?
94. What is limit of learning with computers?
95. To what extent does personality depend on genetics?
96. What is biological root of sexual orientation?
97. Is tree of life best way to express systematic relationship between life?
98. How many species exist on Earth?
99. What is a view?
100. Why and how does lateral transport occur in many species?
101. Who is common ancestor of world?
102. How do plant flowers develop?
103. How do plants build cell walls?
104. How to control plant growth?
105. Why aren't all plants immune to all diseases?
106. What underlies variability of plants under influence of external environment?
107. What makes a substance disappear?
108. Is it possible to avoid extinction of species?
109. Why are some dinosaurs so huge?
110. How is ecosystem responding to global warming?
111. How many races exist at moment and what is relationship between them?
112. What contributed to behavior of modern people?
113. What is basis of human culture?
114. What is root of evolution of language and music?
115. What is human race and how does human race develop?
116. Why do some countries develop forward while others stagnate?
117. What impact does a high government deficit have on national interests and economic growth?
118. Are politics and economic freedom closely related?
119. Why have almost all anti-poverty efforts in Sahara region failed?
120. Is there an easy way to determine if there are infinitely many solutions to elliptic curves?
121. Is a closed Hodge chain a sum of algebraic closed chains?
122. Will mathematicians finally give a solution to Navier-Stokes equation?
123. Can Poincaré experiment define a ball in 4-dimensional space?
124. Do zero solutions of Riemann zeta function have form a+bi?
125. Will research on Standard Model of particle physics stop at quantum Yang-Mills theory?
(Note: last 6 math problems are selected from new millennium problems raised by Clay Mathematics Institute)
October 10, 2023
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