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One iconic, extinct animal could return to Earth

Plus: The answer to an eternal question about cats

Graphical portrait of mammoth isolated on white background,vector illustration

We have new stories about the things that make your heart flutter, the return of an iconic, extinct creature, a conversation with the director of the Netflix documentary about the Inspiration4 mission, and the answer to an eternal question about cats.

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This is an adapted version of the Inverse Daily newsletter for Monday, September 20, 2021. Subscribe for free and earn rewards for reading every day in your inbox. ✉️

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An unexpected link between stories and a vital organ Katie MacBride explores a new study that suggests our heart rates respond to cognitive processing:

Writers, filmmakers, and playwrights have long known the power of a good story. Whether we’re laughing and crying with strangers in a theater, or debating theories of whodunit in the psychological thriller you’re both reading, stories have always brought humans together.

When we think about how stories connect us, we tend to think about shared emotional experiences—the feelings the stories elicit in us. A new study suggests that stories connect us in an unconscious way as well.

Read the full story.

The more you know:

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Woolly mammoths will walk the Earth again Sarah Wells reports on a new biotechnology company, Colossal, that wants to bring back the mammoth in just six years. But moving this quickly could have more consequences than benefits:

On September 13, entrepreneur Ben Lamm and Harvard geneticist George Church announced the creation of Colossal, a new gene-editing company bent on “de-extincting” the woolly using CRISPR. The company claims that rewilding of this species in the Arctic tundra could revitalize the region's grasslands as a major source of carbon sequestration, which offers a crucial tool in the fight against climate change.

With starting capital of $15 million and four-to-six years of research, Lamm tells Inverse the company could produce a “herd” of woolly mammoths calves for the first time since the Ice Age. This means the first baby mammoths could roam the tundra by 2027 or earlier.

Read the full story.

Go deeper:

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How sports shaped the Inspiration4 Netflix doc The director of the Netflix documentary explains to Mike Brown how he brought the moment to a mainstream audience:

Jason Hehir is the director of Countdown: Inspiration4 Mission to Space, the five-part Netflix documentary that chronicles the mission that’s now underway.

“My brain is all over the place,” he told us earlier this month as he put the finishing touches on the first two episodes. “It’s around the clock at this point.”

Read the full story.

Go deeper:

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Does my cat want to be left alone? Tara Yarlagadda asks pet experts to weigh in on an eternal question:

Inverse spoke with three pet experts to answer the question gnawing at the back of many pet owners’ minds: does my cat want to be left alone? The question speaks to a deeper fear: Do our cats really love us as much or need us as much as we need them?

As it turns out, your cats might not need as much alone time as you think, and they may value your company in ways you don’t fully appreciate.

Read the full story.

More on the science of cats:

That’s all for this Monday edition. Come back tomorrow for a slew of new stories and a great new feature.

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