Free Republic 3rd Quarter Fundraising Target: $85,000 Receipts & Pledges to-date: $11,164
13%  
Woo hoo!! And the first 13% is in!! Thank you all very much!!

Testing (News/Activism)

Brevity: Headers | « Text »
  • NASA flying saucer set for test flight (No.. Really)

    06/04/2014 4:07:54 PM PDT · by equalator · 46 replies
    Fox News ^ | 6-3-2014 | Staff
    NASA is just about ready to test-launch its so-called flying saucer into the edge of space. The Low-Density Supersonic Decelerator is literally a flying saucer. The original launch date of June 3 was scrubbed because of weather. The next potential launch date is Thursday, June 5, NASA said. "The agency is moving forward and getting ready for Mars as part of NASA's Evolvable Mars campaign," said Michael Gazarik, associate administrator for Space Technology at NASA Headquarters, in a news release. "We fly, we learn, we fly again. We have two more vehicles in the works for next year."
  • Prayer Request for my little sister

    06/02/2014 12:27:48 PM PDT · by jack308 · 51 replies
    Vanity ^ | 06/02/14 | Jack308
    I just found out that my sister has metastatic breast cancer that has spread to her spine. She had no problems with her mammogram last year so this makes me worry that it is aggressive. She is 62. Any prayers for her would be very much appreciated.
  • Neuroscientists find link between agenesis of the corpus callosum and autism

    05/16/2014 9:21:32 AM PDT · by neverdem · 23 replies
    Medical Xpress ^ | April 29, 2014 | Katie Neith
    MRI images from a neurotypical control (left) and an adult with complete agenesis of the corpus callosum (right). The corpus callosum is indicated in red, fading as the fibers enter the hemispheres in order to suggest that they continue on. The anterior commissure is indicated by light aqua. The image illustrates the dramatic lack of inter hemispheric connections in callosal agenesis. Credit: Lynn Paul/Caltech (Medical Xpress)—Building on their prior work, a team of neuroscientists at Caltech now report that rare patients who are missing connections between the left and right sides of their brain—a condition known as agenesis of...
  • Soaring MERS Cases in Saudi Arabia Raise Alarms

    05/03/2014 5:59:41 PM PDT · by neverdem · 16 replies
    Science ^ | 2 May 2014 | Kai Kupferschmidt
    Scientists are scrambling to make sense of a sharp increase in reported infections with the deadly Middle East respiratory syndrome (MERS) virus. In April alone, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates have reported over 200 new cases—more than all MERS-affected countries combined in the preceding 2 years. That has sparked fresh fears that the virus may be about to go on a global rampage. The World Health Organization expressed alarm at the new numbers, and the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC) published an updated risk assessment on 25 April warning European countries to expect more imported...
  • Obesity is Inflammatory Disease, Rat Study Shows

    05/01/2014 3:12:41 PM PDT · by neverdem · 22 replies
    Sci-News.com ^ | Dec 5, 2013 | NA
    Scientists led by Dr David Fairlie from the University of Queensland, Australia, have found abnormal amounts of an inflammatory protein called PAR2 in the fat tissues of overweight and obese rats and humans. PAR2 is also increased on the surfaces of human immune cells by common fatty acids in the diet. When obese rats on a diet high in sugar and fat were given a new oral drug that binds to PAR2, the inflammation-causing properties of this protein were blocked, as were other effects of the high-fat and high-sugar diet, including obesity itself.Zucker Rat, a pet rat that has developed...
  • Study: Unique Combination of Antibiotics Kills Methicillin-Resistant Staphylococcus aureus

    04/30/2014 10:11:51 PM PDT · by neverdem · 5 replies
    Sci-News.com ^ | Nov 15, 2013 | NA
    According to new research published this week in the journal Nature, an acyldepsipeptide antibiotic called ADEP in combination with the bactericidal antibiotic drug rifampicin eliminates the methicillin resistant Staphylococcus aureus.This scanning electron micrograph shows the methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus. Image credit: NIAID. Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) is a bacterium that is resistant to many antibiotics. It is responsible for several chronic infections such as osteomyelitis, endocarditis, or infections of implanted medical devices. These infections are often incurable, even when appropriate antibiotics are used.Senior author of the study, Prof Kim Lewis of Northeastern University, suspected that a different adaptive function of bacteria...
  • Low-carb ketogenic diet takes on low-fat diet for diabetes: Undisputed winner

    04/24/2014 4:28:55 PM PDT · by neverdem · 54 replies
    Examiner ^ | April 23, 2014 | Samantha Chang
    Low-carb, high-fat diets outperformed low-fat diets for managing and even reversing type 2 diabetes, Diabetes.co.uk reported. According to an eight-year study conducted by the Second University of Naples, men and women who followed the low-carb, higher-fat Mediterranean diet were able to come off their diabetes drugs and reverse their diabetes symptoms more readily than people who followed a low-fat diet.In the study, two groups of diabetic men and women were instructed to either follow a low-fat diet or a low-carb, high-fat Mediterranean diet that was comprised of at least 30% fat.The results showed that the higher-fat, low-carb dieters were able...
  • New clinical trials underway for advanced lung cancer patients

    04/19/2014 6:22:13 PM PDT · by neverdem · 20 replies
    PBS NEWSHOUR ^ | April 19, 2014 | Interrogatory
    HARI SREENIVASAN: Another medical story that caught our attention this week. Word of what’s described as a pioneering clinical trial for patients with advanced lung cancer. What’s novel is not necessarily the drugs being used, but how many and how they’re being targeted. Dr. Mark Kris, an oncologist at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, joins us. So what are they doing in the U.K. with this clinical trial? What’s so interesting about it? DR. MARK KRIS: They are taking a discovery that was made here almost ten years ago now where specific genes are damaged in lung tumors. And the...
  • U.S. Navy to test futuristic, super-fast gun at sea in 2016

    04/07/2014 6:43:27 PM PDT · by mandaladon · 89 replies
    Yahoo News ^ | 7 Apr 2014 | David Alexander
    WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The U.S. Navy is planning sea trials for a weapon that can fire a low-cost, 23-pound (10-kg) projectile at seven times the speed of sound using electromagnetic energy, a "Star Wars" technology that will make enemies think twice, the Navy's research chief said. Rear Admiral Matthew Klunder, the chief of Naval Research, told a round table group recently the futuristic electromagnetic rail gun had already undergone extensive testing on land and would be mounted on the USNS Millinocket, a high-speed vessel, for sea trials beginning in 2016. "It's now reality and it's not science fiction. It's actually...
  • Epigenetics: The sins of the father - The roots of inheritance may extend beyond the genome...

    03/14/2014 1:07:40 PM PDT · by neverdem · 32 replies
    Nature News ^ | 05 March 2014 | Virginia Hughes
    The roots of inheritance may extend beyond the genome, but the mechanisms remain a puzzle. When Brian Dias became a father last October, he was, like any new parent, mindful of the enormous responsibility that lay before him. From that moment on, every choice he made could affect his newborn son's physical and psychological development. But, unlike most new parents, Dias was also aware of the influence of his past experiences — not to mention those of his parents, his grandparents and beyond. Where one's ancestors lived, or how much they valued education, can clearly have effects that pass down...
  • Blood test that can predict Alzheimer's: Elderly could be given early warning

    03/09/2014 9:18:45 PM PDT · by neverdem · 32 replies
    Daily Mail (UK) ^ | 9 March 2014 | FIONA MACRAE
    The simple blood test could give early warning within three years The test could speed the search for new drugs that delay or prevent disease Experts are pleased, but it could bring health concerns if no cure is found A simple blood test has been developed that gives healthy elderly people precious early warning they may get Alzheimer’s within the next three years. It is hoped the test, the first to predict accurately who will become ill, could speed the search for new drugs that can delay or even prevent the devastating brain disease. It could eventually lead to widespread...
  • 5 California Children Infected by Polio-Like Illness

    02/28/2014 9:58:03 PM PST · by neverdem · 33 replies
    LiveScience.com ^ | February 23, 2014 | Cari Nierenberg
    Over a one-year period, five children in California developed a polio-like illness that caused severe weakness or paralysis in their arms and legs, a new case study reports. In two of the children, their symptoms have now been linked with an extremely rare virus called enterovirus-68. Like the poliovirus, which has been eradicated in the U.S. since 1979 thanks to the polio vaccine, strains of enterovirus in rare cases can invade and injure the spine. These are the first reported cases of polio-like symptoms being caused by enterovirus in the United States. During the last decade, outbreaks of polio-like symptoms...
  • Middle Eastern Virus More Widespread Than Thought

    02/28/2014 3:27:01 PM PST · by neverdem · 7 replies
    ScienceNOW ^ | 28 February 2014 | Kai Kupferschmidt
    It's called Middle East respiratory syndrome, or MERS, after the region where almost all the patients have been reported. But the name may turn out to be a misnomer. A new study has found the virus in camels from Sudan and Ethiopia, suggesting that Africa, too, harbors the pathogen. That means MERS may sicken more humans than previously thought—and perhaps be more likely to trigger a pandemic. MERS has sickened 183 people and killed 80, most of them in Saudi Arabia. A couple of cases have occurred in countries outside the region, such as France and the United Kingdom, but...
  • Progress Against Hepatitis C, a Sneaky Virus

    02/28/2014 3:07:41 PM PST · by neverdem · 10 replies
    NY Times ^ | February 24, 2014 | J E. Brody
    Forty years ago, a beloved neighbor was bedridden for weeks at a time with a mysterious ailment. She knew only that it involved her liver and that she must never drink alcohol, which would make things worse. It was decades before the cause of these debilitating flare-ups was discovered: a viral infection at first called non-A, non-B hepatitis, then properly identified in 1989 as hepatitis C... --snip-- But with two newly approved drugs and a few more in the pipeline, a new era in treatment of hepatitis C is at hand. These regimens are more effective at curing patients and...
  • Science Takes On a Silent Invader (quagga mussels and zebra mussels)

    02/28/2014 1:51:59 PM PST · by neverdem · 22 replies
    NY Times ^ | FEB. 24, 2014 | ROBERT H. BOYLE
    Since they arrived in the Great Lakes in the 1980s, two species of mussels the size of pistachios have spread to hundreds of lakes and rivers in 34 states and have done vast economic and ecological damage. These silent invaders, the quagga and zebra mussels, have disrupted ecosystems by devouring phytoplankton, the foundation of the aquatic food web, and have clogged the water intakes and pipes of cities and towns, power plants, factories and even irrigated golf courses. Now the mussels may have met their match: Daniel P. Molloy, an emeritus biologist at the New York State Museum in Albany...
  • Synthetic strategy targets ‘undruggable’ small RNAs

    02/13/2014 9:50:51 PM PST · by neverdem · 7 replies
    Chemistry World ^ | 12 February 2014 | Manisha Lalloo
    Molecules can now be designed to target specific small RNAs, opening up a new way to investigate and treat disease © ShutterstockChemists in the US have found a way to predict small molecules that can target short pieces of RNA involved in some diseases, such as cancer. The team’s approach has already met with some success, throwing up a molecule that interferes with a microRNA involved in cancer. This opens up the possibility of treating diseases via a target traditionally seen as ‘undruggable’.MicroRNAs are non-coding lengths of RNA, around 20 nucleotides long, that act as dimmer switches in cells, turning...
  • Researchers find source of new lineage of immune cells

    02/13/2014 8:39:38 AM PST · by neverdem · 6 replies
    Biology News Net ^ | February 12, 2014 | NA
    The elusive progenitor cells that give rise to innate lymphoid cells—a recently discovered group of infection-fighting white blood cells—have been identified in fetal liver and adult bone marrow of mice, researchers from the University of Chicago report early online in the journal Nature. Innate lymphoid cells (ILCs) are among the first components of the immune system to confront certain pathogens. They have a critical function at mucosal barriers—locations such as the bowel or the lung—where the body comes in direct contact with the environment. Yet they went undetected by researchers studying the immune system for a century. "Scientists tend to...
  • Study: Alcohol Can Boost Your Immune System

    12/26/2013 8:09:41 PM PST · by neverdem · 47 replies
    CBS News ^ | December 24, 2013 | NA
    ATLANTA (CBS Atlanta) – According to a new study, alcohol can boost your immune system. Researchers vaccinated animals and then gave them access to alcohol. Researchers found that the animals that had consumed alcohol also had faster responses to the vaccines.According to Medical News Today, the researchers hope this study leads to a better understanding of how the immune system works, and how to improve its ability to respond to vaccines and infections.Researchers were able to show other data to back their findings. According to UCR Today, moderate alcohol consumption has long been associated with a lower mortality rate.Moderate alcohol...
  • Scientists pave way for simple pill to cure Alzheimer's

    10/09/2013 9:28:25 PM PDT · by neverdem · 29 replies
    Queensland Times ^ | 10th Oct 2013 | Charlie Cooper
    SCIENTISTS have hailed a historic "turning point" in the search for a medicine that could beat Alzheimer's disease, after a drug-like compound was used to halt brain cell death in mice for the first time. Although the prospect of a pill for Alzheimer's remains a long way off, the landmark British study provides a major new pathway for future drug treatments. The compound works by blocking a faulty signal in brains affected by neurodegenerative diseases. The signal shuts down the production of essential proteins, leading to brain cells being unprotected and dying off. The compound was tested in mice with...
  • Treatment Gives Dwarf Mice a Growth Spurt

    09/21/2013 2:39:08 AM PDT · by neverdem · 4 replies
    ScienceNOW ^ | 2013-09-18 | Mitch Leslie
    S. Cassagnaud et al., Science Translational Medicine (2013)Big step. A mouse that has the equivalent of achondroplasia (top) doesn’t measure up to an animal that received injections of FGFR3 (bottom). It may sound counterintuitive, but the most common type of human dwarfism results when cells in a child’s bones are overstimulated by growth factors. A mouse study, however, suggests that injecting such children with a molecular decoy that sponges up these factors could treat the condition.People with the form of dwarfism called achondroplasia rarely stand more than 1.5 meters tall. The mutation responsible for the condition ends up stunting the...
  • NIH Studies Explore Promise of Sequencing Babies’ Genomes

    09/09/2013 6:55:50 PM PDT · by neverdem · 12 replies
    ScienceInsider ^ | 2013-09-04 | Jocelyn Kaiser
    U.S. Air Force photo/Staff Sgt Eric T. Sheler/Wikimedia CommonsAdding value. NIH wants to know how genome sequencing could go beyond existing newborn screening tests. In a few years, all new parents may go home from the hospital with not just a bundle of joy, but with something else—the complete sequence of their baby’s DNA. A new research program funded at $25 million over 5 years by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) will explore the promise—and ethical challenges—of sequencing every newborn’s genome.The pilot projects build on decades-old state screening programs that take a drop of blood from nearly every newborn’s...
  • Critics Skeptical as Flu Scientists Argue for Controversial H7N9 Studies

    08/08/2013 2:28:42 PM PDT · by neverdem · 5 replies
    Science ^ | August 8 2013 | David Malakoff
    Flu scientists are hoping to vaccinate themselves against another outbreak of a crippling controversy. In a letter published this week by Nature and Science (see p. 612), 22 researchers make their case for launching potentially risky experiments with the H7N9 avian influenza virus, which emerged earlier this year in China and which some scientists fear could spark a deadly human pandemic. The scientists, who mostly work in U.S.-funded labs, also detail the safety and security precautions that they would take to prevent the possibly dangerous viruses they create from escaping from the lab—or falling into the hands of terrorists. In...
  • Genetic test fingers viral, bacterial infections: Method could help doctors treat children's fevers

    07/24/2013 12:29:45 AM PDT · by neverdem · 4 replies
    Science News ^ | July 16, 2013 | Tina Hesman Saey
    By differentiating between bacterial and viral fevers, a new test may help doctors decide whether to prescribe antibiotics. Fevers are a common symptom of many infectious diseases, but it can be difficult to tell whether viruses or bacteria are the cause. By measuring gene activity in the blood of 22 sick children, Gregory Storch, a pediatrician and infectious disease researcher at Washington University in St. Louis and colleagues were able to distinguish bacteria-sparked fevers from ones kindled by viruses. The activity of hundreds of genes changed as the children’s immune systems responded to the pathogens, but the team found that...
  • Animal studies produce many false positives (An explanation of why that's so.)

    07/16/2013 10:04:09 PM PDT · by neverdem · 2 replies
    Nature News ^ | 16 July 2013 | Heidi Ledford
    Examination of neurological disease research shows pervasive ‘significance bias’. A statistical analysis of more than 4,000 data sets from animal studies of neurological diseases has found that almost 40% of studies reported statistically significant results — nearly twice as many as would be expected on the basis of the number of animal subjects. The results suggest that the published work — some of which was used to justify human clinical trials — is biased towards reporting positive results. This bias could partly explain why a therapy that does well in preclinical studies so rarely predicts success in human patients, says...
  • Rare mutation prompts race for cholesterol drug

    07/15/2013 12:16:26 AM PDT · by neverdem · 22 replies
    NY Times via Columbus Dispatch (OH) ^ | July 14, 2013 | Gina Kolata
    She was a 32-year-old aerobics instructor from a Dallas suburb — healthy, college-educated, with two young children. Nothing out of the ordinary, except one thing. Her cholesterol was astoundingly low. Her low-density lipoprotein, or LDL, the form that promotes heart disease, was 14, a level unheard-of in healthy adults, whose normal level is over 100. The reason: a rare gene mutation she had inherited from both parents. Only one other person, a young, healthy Zimbabwean woman whose LDL cholesterol was 15, has ever been found with the same mutation. The discovery of the mutation and of the two women with...
  • Mom's Antibodies May Cause Some Autism

    07/13/2013 2:50:19 AM PDT · by neverdem · 17 replies
    ScienceNOW ^ | 10 July 2013 | Emily Underwood
    Enlarge Image Monkey business. Young rhesus monkeys that receive human antibrain antibodies in utero act oddly in social situations. Credit: Nancy Collins/Creative Commons "Antibrain" antibodies that slip through the placenta from mother to fetus during pregnancy may account for roughly a quarter of autism cases, a new study suggests. Some scientists say the work could lead to a blood test that accurately predicts whether a mother will bear a child with this immune-triggered form of the disorder—a claim that's raising eyebrows among skeptics. Autism spectrum disorder (ASD), a range of communication and social deficits estimated to affect 1 in...
  • Researchers perform first direct measurement of Van der Waals force

    07/11/2013 11:51:55 PM PDT · by neverdem · 7 replies
    Phys.org ^ | Jul 08, 2013 | Bob Yirka
    Enlarge Mapping out the van der Waals interaction between two atoms. (a) In the experiment of Béguin et al. two atoms are trapped in the foci of two laser beams separated by a distance R. (b) Depending on R, the excitation laser field can couple the ground state |gg of the atomic pair to states containing one atom in the Rydberg state (|gr and |rg, respectively), or to a state with both atoms populating the Rydberg state |rr. The energy of the latter state is strongly shifted because of the van der Waals interaction UvdW between the atoms (see...
  • Cleaner air may have brought more storms

    06/29/2013 2:36:27 PM PDT · by neverdem · 12 replies
    Science News ^ | June 24, 2013 | Cristy Gelling
    Pollution during the 20th century appears to have suppressed North Atlantic hurricanes The Clean Air Act, which has benefited breathing in many American cities over the last few decades, may have worsened the weather in some places. New climate simulations suggest that reducing the level of atmospheric aerosol particles produced by human activity might have been the main cause of a recent increase in tropical storm frequency in the North Atlantic. Aerosol levels have increased since the industrial revolution began, but there have been periods when emissions stalled or fell, such as the Great Depression, World War II and after...
  • New Viruses Found in Asia and Africa Tentatively Linked to Neurological Disease

    06/26/2013 11:45:25 PM PDT · by neverdem · 3 replies
    ScienceNOW ^ | 20 June 2013 | Mara Hvistendahl and Martin Enserink
    A mysterious group of viruses known for their circular genome has been detected in patients with severe disease on two continents. In papers published independently this week, researchers report the discovery of agents called cycloviruses in Vietnam and in Malawi. The studies suggest that the viruses—one of which also widely circulates in animals in Vietnam—could be involved in brain inflammation and paraplegia, but further studies are needed to confirm a causative link. The discovery in Vietnam grew out of a frustrating lack of information about the causes of some central nervous system (CNS) infections such as encephalitis and meningitis, which...
  • Fructose risk factor for metabolic syndrome, diabetes mellitus, and hypertension

    06/26/2013 12:02:26 AM PDT · by neverdem · 60 replies
    FOODCONSUMER ^ | 06/25/2013 | David Liu, PHD
    Tuesday June 25, 2013 (foodconsumer.org) -- A new report published in Journal of Nutrition and Metabolism suggests that eating foods or drinking beverages with fructose may increase risk of endothelial dysfunction, insulin resistance/diabetes mellitus type 2 and hypertension. Z. Khitan and D. H. Kim, the authors of the report, from Marshall University Joan Edwards School of Medicine in Huntington, WV, USA say that uric acid resulting from uncontrolled fructose metabolism is the risk factor for metabolic syndrome and diabetes mellitus. What happens, according to the report, after fructose is ingested is that the sugar in the liver bypasses two highly...
  • Drug Combo Helps Immune System Fight Tumors

    06/10/2013 9:38:01 PM PDT · by neverdem · 4 replies
    ScienceNOW ^ | 30 May 2013 | Jocelyn Kaiser
    Enlarge Image Double whammy. Combining a SIRPa protein (CV1 mono) and the cancer drug rituximab virtually wiped out tumors in mice after 29 days. Credit: Adapted From K. Weiskopf et al., Science (2013) To avoid being destroyed by our immune systems, cancer cells engage in a bit of trickery. As they divide to form tumors, they fly under the radar of macrophages, immune cells whose job it is to ingest dead cells and dangerous invaders. Today, many cancer patients are treated with antibody drugs that work in part by marking tumor cells for destruction by macrophages. Although these drugs...
  • Gene Therapy ... Against the Flu?

    06/10/2013 9:20:22 PM PDT · by neverdem
    ScienceNOW ^ | 29 May 2013 | Jon Cohen
    Enlarge Image Power tool. An antibody called F16, seen here attached to an influenza virus protein, protected animals against a range of flu viruses. Credit: D. Corti and A. Lanzavecchia, Annu. Rev. Immunol. 31 (2013) In 2009, a global collaboration of scientists, public health agencies, and companies raced to make a vaccine against a pandemic influenza virus, but most of it wasn't ready until the pandemic had peaked. Now, researchers have come up with an alternative, faster strategy for when a pandemic influenza virus surfaces: Just squirt genes for the protective antibodies into people's noses. The method—which borrows ideas...
  • Atomic Bombs Help Solve Brain Mystery

    06/07/2013 11:41:33 PM PDT · by neverdem · 5 replies
    ScienceNOW ^ | 6 June 2013 | Emily Underwood
    Enlarge Image Nuclear fallout. Radioactive carbon-14 atoms released by atomic bombs are helping scientists determine the birthdays of new neurons in the hippocampus (inset). Credit: Spalding et al., Cell (2013);(inset) Weissman, Livet, Sanes, and Lichtman/Harvard University The mushroom clouds produced by more than 500 nuclear bomb tests during the Cold War may have had a silver lining, after all. More than 50 years later, scientists have found a way to use radioactive carbon isotopes released into the atmosphere by nuclear testing to settle a long-standing debate in neuroscience: Does the adult human brain produce new neurons? After working to...
  • Obesity surgery can stop diabetes better than drugs -- with risks

    06/07/2013 8:27:36 PM PDT · by neverdem · 13 replies
    Associated Press ^ | 2013/06/05 | Lindsay Tanner
    Obesity surgery worked much better at reducing and even reversing diabetes than medication and lifestyle changes in one of the most rigorous studies of its kind. But the researchers and others warn that possible serious complications need to be considered. The yearlong study indicates that the most common weight-loss surgery, gastric bypass, can effectively treat diabetes in patients with mild to moderate obesity — about 50 to 70 pounds overweight, the researchers reported Tuesday in the Journal of the American Medical Association. Other studies have shown the operation can reverse diabetes in severely obese patients, although sometimes the disease comes...
  • Spacecraft data nail down radiation risk for humans going to Mars

    06/04/2013 10:58:56 PM PDT · by neverdem · 16 replies
    Nature News ^ | 30 May 2013 | Ron Cowen
    Improved shielding technology could keep exposure within acceptable levels. Astronauts travelling to Mars on any of the current space-flight vehicles would receive a dose of radiation higher than NASA standards permit, according to a study of the radiation environment inside the craft that carried the Curiosity rover to the planet. The study, reported in Science1, is the first to use radiation data recorded by a robotic craft en route to Mars. It is also the first to rely on measurements from a radiation detector in space that has shielding similar to what might be used on missions carrying humans, says...
  • Gene switches make prairie voles fall in love

    06/04/2013 10:28:00 PM PDT · by neverdem · 18 replies
    Nature News ^ | 02 June 2013 | Zoe Cormier
    Epigenetic changes affect neurotransmitters that lead to pair-bond formation. Love really does change your brain — at least, if you’re a prairie vole. Researchers have shown for the first time that the act of mating induces permanent chemical modifications in the chromosomes, affecting the expression of genes that regulate sexual and monogamous behaviour. The study is published today in Nature Neuroscience1. Prairie voles (Microtus ochrogaster) have long been of interest to neuroscientists and endocrinologists who study the social behaviour of animals, in part because this species forms monogamous pair bonds — essentially mating for life. The voles' pair bonding, sharing...
  • B-vitamins may delay Alzheimer’s onset

    05/24/2013 11:03:22 PM PDT · by neverdem · 17 replies
    Chemistry World ^ | 21 May 2013 | Emma Stoye
    UK researchers have found that high doses B-vitamins – including folic acid, vitamin B12 and vitamin B6 – can slow down brain tissue atrophy, a wasting process associated with Alzheimer’s disease.David Smith of the University of Oxford, and colleagues, used randomised controlled trials to test the long-term effects of B-vitamins on the brain health of elderly people with mild cognitive impairment, who were classed as having an increased risk of dementia. They found the brains of those treated with B-vitamins shrank less over a two year period than those given a placebo, and experienced less atrophy in regions of grey...
  • Test

    05/23/2013 11:54:54 PM PDT · by Jim Robinson · 50 replies
    up?
  • 'Universal' flu vaccine effective in animals

    05/23/2013 10:32:31 AM PDT · by neverdem · 12 replies
    Nature News ^ | 22 May 2013 | Ed Yong
    Self-assembling nanoparticles could make updating seasonal vaccines easier. Under the microscope, they look like simple jacks, with eight spikes jutting out of a central ball. But these protein nanoparticles are science's latest weapon against influenza: a new breed of flu vaccine that provides better and broader protection than commercially available ones — at least in animal tests. Current flu vaccines use inactivated whole viruses and must be regularly remade to target the strains most likely to cause illness in the coming year. But the new nanoparticles would require fewer updates because they induce the production of antibodies that neutralize a...
  • UPDATE 1-Regeneron, Sanofi asthma drug seen as potential game changer

    05/22/2013 10:06:51 PM PDT · by neverdem · 10 replies
    Reuters ^ | May 21, 2013 | Ransdell Pierson
    A new type of asthma drug meant to attack the underlying causes of the respiratory disease slashed episodes by 87 percent in a mid-stage trial, making it a potential game changer for patients with moderate to severe disease, researchers said on Tuesday. "Overall, these are the most exciting data we've seen in asthma in 20 years," said Dr. Sally Wenzel, lead investigator for the 104-patient study of dupilumab, an injectable treatment being developed by Regeneron Pharmaceuticals Inc and French drugmaker Sanofi. The drug also met all its secondary goals, such as improving symptoms and lung function and reducing the need...
  • Pregnancy test helped to bring frog-killing fungus to the US (chytridiomycosis)

    05/21/2013 10:18:18 AM PDT · by neverdem · 14 replies
    Nature News ^ | 17 May 2013 | Nicola Jones
    Imported African animals released into the wild spread chytridiomycosis. When improved pregnancy tests were developed in the 1960s, the advance came with an unexpected side effect: a role in the spread of chytridiomycosis, a lethal fungal disease that has wiped out hundreds of species of frogs. A study published in PLoS ONE this week tracks the amphibian fungus that causes the disease, Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis, to an important reservoir in the Americas — African clawed frogs (Xenopus laevis)1. The frogs were used in pregnancy tests until the early 1970s, as it was known that the animals ovulated when exposed to a...
  • LOWER CHOLESTEROL WITHOUT STATIN SIDE EFFECTS

    05/20/2013 1:26:51 AM PDT · by neverdem · 44 replies
    Human Events ^ | 5/17/2013 | Leigh Erin Connealy, M.D.
    If you’re taking statin drugs to control cholesterol, you need to read this. From talking to patients, I’ve discovered that many people consider statins to be “miracle” drugs that allow them to eat anything they please without worrying about consequences. No wonder statins are the top selling prescription drugs in the country, with nearly half of the nation’s adults taking them.What many people don’t understand is that statins rob the body of an essential nutrient known as Coenzyme Q10 (CoQ10). This vitamin-like substance plays a huge role in our lives, since it is responsible for roughly 95 percent of the...
  • Scientists Clone Human Embryos To Make Stem Cells

    05/16/2013 9:56:03 PM PDT · by neverdem · 7 replies
    NPR ^ | May 15, 2013 | ROB STEIN and MICHAELEEN DOUCLEFF
    All Things Considered 5 min 23 sec DownloadTranscript   Enlarge image i A scientist removes the nucleus from a human egg using a pipette. This is the first step to making personalized embryonic stem cells. Courtesy of OHSU Photos A scientist removes the nucleus from a human egg using a pipette. This is the first step to making personalized embryonic stem cells.Courtesy of OHSU Photos Scientists say they have, for the first time, cloned human embryos capable of producing embryonic stem cells.The accomplishment is a long-sought step toward harnessing the potential power of embryonic stem cells to treat many...
  • Position Yourself for Big Returns in the Stem Cell Space: Jason Kolbert

    05/15/2013 3:34:26 PM PDT · by neverdem · 2 replies
    The Life Sciences Report ^ | May 13th, 2013 | George S. Mack
    This interview was conducted by George S. Mack of The Life Sciences Report (5/10/13) Stem cell companies have languished long enough in micro-cap territory. The industry is now approaching highly visible phase 2 and phase 3 catalysts that will produce results never before seen in medicine. Managing Director and Senior Biotechnology Analyst Jason Kolbert of the Maxim Group has staked out a select group of nascent cell therapy companies positioned to reap huge gains for investors willing to diversify. In this interview with The Life Sciences Report, Kolbert reflects on the regenerative medicine space following the recent RegenMed Investor Day...
  • Nineteenth Century Technique Turns Old Mouse Hearts Young

    05/15/2013 2:09:10 PM PDT · by neverdem · 16 replies
    ScienceNOW ^ | 9 May 2013 | Paul Gabrielsen
    Enlarge Image Young at heart. Cross-sections of mouse ventricles show the visible change in size when old hearts are immersed in young blood. Credit: Francesco Loffredo It's time to turn back the clock on an aging ticker. Drawing on an odd experimental technique invented more than a century ago but rarely done now, researchers have found that a blood-borne protein makes old mouse hearts appear young and healthy again. It's not clear yet whether humans would react the same way, but scientists are hopeful that this discovery may help treat one of the heart's most frustrating ailments. "This is probably...
  • Mineral dust plays key role in cloud formation and chemistry

    05/10/2013 11:29:47 PM PDT · by neverdem · 11 replies
    Chemistry World ^ | 9 May 2013 | Simon Hadlington
    Scientists flew a plane into high up cirrus clouds and used a sampler that resembled a hair dryer to examine cloud formation © Karl FroydMineral dust that swirls up into the atmosphere from Earth’s surface plays a far more important role in both cloud formation and cloud chemistry than was previously realised. The findings will feed into models of cloud formation and chemistry to help produce more accurate assessments of the role of clouds in climate change.Relatively little is understood about the formation of cirrus clouds, wispy ‘horsetails’ that are made of ice crystals and form at extremely high altitudes...
  • Sickly mosquitoes stymie malaria’s spread - Researchers harness bacteria to cripple insects that...

    05/09/2013 2:21:30 PM PDT · by neverdem · 11 replies
    Nature News ^ | 09 May 2013 | Beth Mole
    Researchers harness bacteria to cripple insects that transmit disease. Scientists have engineered mosquitoes to carry a bacterium that confers resistance to the malaria parasite — a long-sought advance that could eventually curb malaria cases in humans. A team led by Zhiyong Xi, a medical entomologist at Michigan State University in East Lansing, infected Anopheles stephensi mosquitoes with Wolbachia bacteria to produce insects that could pass the infection on to their offspring. Female mosquitoes that carried Wolbachia also bred with uninfected mates, the researchers report today in Science, swiftly spreading the malaria-blocking bacterium to entire insect populations within eight generations1. “This...
  • Another Disappointing Study For Fish Oil Supplements

    05/08/2013 8:51:52 PM PDT · by neverdem · 68 replies
    Forbes ^ | 5/08/2013 | Larry Husten
    Another large study has failed to find any benefits for fish oil supplements. The Italian Risk and Prevention Study, published in the New England Journal of Medicine, enrolled 12,513 people who had not had a myocardial infarction but had evidence of atherosclerosis or had multiple cardiovascular risk factors. The patients were randomized to either a fish oil supplement (1 gram daily of n-3 fatty acids) or placebo. After 5 years of followup, the primary endpoint– the time to death from cardiovascular causes or admission to the hospital for cardiovascular causes– had occurred in 11.7% of the fish oil group versus...
  • Genome sequencing provides unprecedented insight into causes of pneumococcal disease

    05/08/2013 3:34:18 PM PDT · by neverdem · 1 replies
    Biology News Net ^ | May 5, 2013 | NA
    A new study led by researchers from Harvard School of Public Health (HSPH) and the Wellcome Trust Sanger Institute in the UK has, for the first time, used genome sequencing technology to track the changes in a bacterial population following the introduction of a vaccine. The study follows how the population of pneumococcal bacteria changed following the introduction of the 'Prevnar' conjugate polysaccharide vaccine, which substantially reduced rates of pneumococcal disease across the U.S. The work demonstrates that the technology could be used in the future to monitor the effectiveness of vaccination or antibiotic use against different species of bacterial...
  • Device Sniffs Out Black Powder Explosives

    05/04/2013 5:21:22 PM PDT · by neverdem · 12 replies
    ScienceNOW ^ | 3 May 2013 | Sam Lemonick
    Enlarge Image Deadly powder. New technology could help bomb-sniffing devices spot black powder. Credit: Lord Mountbatten/Wikimedia Commons The Boston marathon bombers Tamerlan and Dzhokhar Tsarnaev reportedly purchased several pounds of black powder explosive before the bombing. Used in fireworks and bullets, the explosive substance is both deadly and widely available. It's also very hard to detect. Now, researchers have modified one bomb-sniffing device to accurately spot very small amounts of black powder, an advance that could make us safer from future attacks. Invented in China as early as the 7th century, black powder is a mixture of charcoal, sulfur,...