Here is a paper where they scraped Twitter data over a year and showed how the the tweets corresponded with sleep patterns and diurnal rhythms. The coolest part of this paper is that these two guys just went out and collected the data for free. I wish they had focused on more interesting questions though, it seems like you could do a lot with data like this.
Since flu season is upon us, here is an interesting paper where the authors used data on friendship networks and class structure in a high school to study flu transmission. They show targeted treatment isn’t as effective as people had thought when using random mixing models.
This one is a little less statistical. Over the last few years there were some pretty high profile papers that suggested that over-expressing just one protein could double or triple the lifetime of flies or worms. Obviously, that is a pretty crazy/interesting result. But in this paper some of those results are called into question.