Each week we uncover the most interesting and informative articles from around the world, here are 10 of the coolest stories in science this week.

Aliens on Earth?
Aliens on Earth?
Credit: Corbis via Getty Images

Fox News published a startling article Monday (Dec. 3) with the headline "NASA scientist says Earth may have been visited by aliens." Unsurprisingly, that news rocketed around the web, with similar articles soon turning up in the New York Post, Russia Today and The Daily Wire. (Fox appears to have been the first major U.S. news source to run with the story.) [Read more about the truth]

The galactic center as seen from the ESO La Silla Paranal Observatory in Northern Chile.
The galactic center as seen from the ESO La Silla Paranal Observatory in Northern Chile.
Credit: ESO

Scientists started watching crystals sparkle in the 1990s. Those crystals sparkled more in the summer, which researchers took as evidence of dark matter. But those scientists were probably wrong, new research suggests.

Based on how dark matter seems to act on the light-emitting matter in the universe, researchers think that the substance tends to cluster in galaxies, holding them together. [Read more about the quest.]

Some have suggested the Ark of the Covenant is inside the Church of Our Lady of Zion in Aksum, Ethiopia.
Some have suggested the Ark of the Covenant is inside the Church of Our Lady of Zion in Aksum, Ethiopia.
Credit: Shutterstock

Over the past few days, several media outlets have reported on a centuries-old claim that the Ark of the Covenant — which allegedly held tablets recording the Ten Commandments — is inside a church in Aksum, Ethiopia, called the Church of Our Lady Mary of Zion, and that only the "guardian" of the ark is allowed to see it. [Read more about the myth.]

<em>Balamuthia mandrillaris</em>
Balamuthia mandrillaris
Credit: CDC

It started with a sinus infection that wouldn't go away. So, in an attempt to give the 69-year-old Seattle woman some relief, doctors recommended that she use a neti pot regularly to rinse out her sinuses. And that's where things went wrong, according to a recent report of the woman's case. [Read more about the infection.]

Researchers found the plague sample on the remains of a 20-year-old woman, shown above.
Researchers found the plague sample on the remains of a 20-year-old woman, shown above.
Credit: Karl-Göran Sjögren / University of Gothenburg

In a nearly 5,000-year-old tomb in Sweden, researchers have discovered the oldest-known strain of the notorious bacterium Yersinia pestis — the microbe responsible for humanity's perhaps most-feared contagion: the plague. [Read more about the strain.]

Who knew? This pottery jar being sold at a flea market was made about 2,000 years before the birth of Christ.
Who knew? This pottery jar being sold at a flea market was made about 2,000 years before the birth of Christ.
Credit: Hansons Auctioneers

You never know what you'll find at a flea market … like a 4,000-year-old piece of pottery. That's what a guy in England discovered, though he didn't realize what he had until later, after he'd repurposed the jar as a toothbrush holder. [Read more about the surprise.]

As groundwater drains from rock under Tehran, the city is paying a steep price.
As groundwater drains from rock under Tehran, the city is paying a steep price.
Credit: Shutterstock

The ground is shifting under Iran's capital, Tehran, home to approximately 15 million people and the biggest city by population in western Asia. High-resolution satellite images recently revealed that in some places, the metropolis of the Middle East is sinking about 10 inches (25 centimeters) per year. [Read more about the dangers.]

A remote location in northwestern British Columbia is home to a huge, unexplored cave.
A remote location in northwestern British Columbia is home to a huge, unexplored cave.
Credit: Catherine Hickson

A helicopter team counting caribou in British Columbia, Canada, recently made an unexpected discovery during an aerial survey: Crewmembers spied an opening to a massive cave that had never been seen before and which might be the largest cave in the country. [Read more about the cave.]

This copper finger ring has a Greek inscription saying "of Pilatus" on it. It also has an image of a krater, a vessel used to mix wine and water. The ring was used as a sealing ring, at far right is an image showing what a seal created from this ring would look like.
This copper finger ring has a Greek inscription saying "of Pilatus" on it. It also has an image of a krater, a vessel used to mix wine and water. The ring was used as a sealing ring, at far right is an image showing what a seal created from this ring would look like.
Credit: Tal Rogovski

A copper finger ring, dating back around 2,000 years, with an incised Greek inscription saying "of Pilatus" has been unearthed in the West Bank.

The design of the ring and its archaeological context mean that it could have been created anytime between the first century B.C. and the mid-first century A.D., the research team reported in an article published a few days ago in the Israel Exploration Journal. [Read more about the ring.]

Doggerland, named for Dogger Bank, is now beneath the North Sea off the east coast of England.
Doggerland, named for Dogger Bank, is now beneath the North Sea off the east coast of England.
Credit: Anton Balazh/Shutterstock

A vast plateau of land between England and the Netherlands was once full of life before it sank beneath what is now the North Sea some 8,000 years ago. Archaeologists now hope to find out what the vast landscape looked like before it slipped beneath the salty water so long ago. [Read more about the plateau.]

Follow Live Science @livescience, Facebook & Google+.