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Scientists ID Key Cells in Touch Sensation

April 7, 2014 1:49 pm | Videos | Comments

In a new study, researchers solved an age-old mystery of touch: how cells just beneath the skin surface enable us to feel fine details and textures.                              

Scientist Said He May Have Made STAP Cells—Just As Riken Called Fraud

April 2, 2014 1:23 pm | by Cynthia Fox | Articles | Comments

Riken Institute brass want co-authors of the “acid bath” stem cell papers to retract one, after appeal, citing deliberate misconduct. But two developments may complicate this. First, lead author Haruko Obokata refuses to accept it. And Kenneth Lee has become the first scientist outside the co-authors to publicly claim that, following the latest protocol for acid bath cells, he may have made them.

Breaking News: Forgetting is Actively Regulated

March 13, 2014 12:00 pm | News | Comments

Through memory loss, unnecessary information in the brain is deleted and the nervous system retains its plasticity. Previously, it was not clear if this process was active or passive, but scientists have now discovered a molecular mechanism that actively regulates the process of forgetting.


Breaking News: Do Obesity, Birth Control Pills Up MS Risk?

February 27, 2014 4:00 pm | News | Comments

In two new studies, the so-called “obesity hormone” leptin and hormones used for birth control are being examined for their potential role in the development of multiple sclerosis (MS).                   

Estrogen Affects Blood Stem Cells, Explaining Pregnancy

February 20, 2014 2:19 pm | by Cynthia Fox | Articles | Comments

Researchers have another answer to the question of how females can generate so much blood—enough for two blood systems—during pregnancy. The answer is stem cells, as is so often the case lately when a question has something to do with underlying biological mechanisms.

An Essential Step Toward Printing Living Tissues

February 20, 2014 11:55 am | Videos | Comments

A new bioprinting method creates intricately patterned 3D tissue constructs with multiple types of cells and tiny blood vessels. The work represents a major step toward a longstanding goal of tissue engineers: creating human tissue constructs realistic enough to test drug safety and effectiveness.

Breaking News: Could Metabolism Play a Role in Epilepsy?

February 19, 2014 9:29 am | News | Comments

Researchers exploring a possible link between metabolic defects and seizures have determined that diet could influence susceptibility to seizures, and they have identified a common diabetes drug that could be a useful treatment.       

Breaking News: Interactive Genetic History Map Revealed

February 13, 2014 2:15 pm | News | Comments

A new interactive map details the histories of genetic mixing between each of the 95 populations across Europe, Africa, Asia and South America spanning the last four millennia.                     


Breaking News: Gene Links Brain Structure to Intelligence

February 11, 2014 9:19 am | News | Comments

For the first time, scientists have identified a gene linking the thickness of the grey matter in the brain to intelligence, which may help scientists understand biological mechanisms behind some forms of intellectual impairment.      

Alcohol Ages Male Brains Six Years

February 4, 2014 1:51 pm | by Cynthia Fox | Articles | Comments

A scientific study found that even moderately heavy drinking impairs cognition in middle-aged men. Middle-aged men imbibing more than 2.5 drinks a day saw faster decline in all cognitive areas of their brains over a decade. Indeed, middle-aged men putting back 2.5-plus daily, accumulated almost six (5.7) years of extra cognitive aging.

Happy People Are Healthier, Too

January 22, 2014 8:30 am | News | Comments

People who enjoy life maintain better physical function in their daily activities and keep up faster walking speeds as they age, compared with people who enjoy life less, according to a new study.               

Sun Exposure May Reduce Blood Pressure

January 21, 2014 8:30 am | News | Comments

Exposing skin to sunlight may help to reduce blood pressure by altering levels of the small messenger molecule nitric oxide (NO) in the skin and blood, thus cutting the risk of heart attack and stroke, a new study says.       

Caffeine Has Positive Effect on Memory

January 13, 2014 11:43 am | Videos | Comments

Whether it's a mug full of fresh-brewed coffee, a cup of hot tea, or a can of soda, consuming caffeine is the energy boost of choice for millions who want to wake up or stay up. Now, researchers at Johns Hopkins University have found another use for the popular stimulant: memory enhancer.


Y Chromosome "Going to Stick Around," Study Says

January 10, 2014 12:31 pm | News | Comments

A comparison of Y chromosomes in eight African and eight European men dispels the common notion that the Y‘s genes are mostly unimportant and that the chromosome is destined to dwindle and disappear.                

The Massachusetts “Obamacare” Model Works

January 9, 2014 11:21 am | by Cynthia Fox | Articles | Comments

The partial model for Obamacare—Massachusetts’ near-universal health care program, adopted in 2006—resulted in measurably improved health. According to a study conducted by researchers from Harvard University and the University of Michigan—with help from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC)—the health of Massachusetts residents rose more in the first five years of the program than did the health of residents in other New England states.

Key Survival Protein Found in Many Cancers

January 8, 2014 1:00 pm | Videos | Comments

Researchers have discovered a promising strategy for treating cancers that are caused by one of the most common cancer-causing changes in cells.                               

Living Brain Cells Made from Biobanked Alzheimer’s Tissue

January 7, 2014 12:54 pm | News | Comments

Scientists have, for the first time, generated induced pluripotent stem (iPS) cells lines from non-cryoprotected brain tissue of patients with Alzheimer's disease.                          

Stimulating Brain Cells Stops Binge Drinking

January 6, 2014 11:39 am | News | Comments

Researchers have found a way to change alcohol drinking behavior in rodents, using the emerging technique of optogenetics, which uses light to stimulate neurons.                         

Neanderthal Genome Exposes Interbreeding

December 20, 2013 12:17 pm | News | Comments

An international research team has completed the first high-quality genome sequence of a Neanderthal, deepening knowledge about the genetic connections and population histories of ancient and modern humans.             

23andMe Plays Nice

December 17, 2013 10:23 am | by Cynthia Fox | Articles | Comments

23andMe, the consumer genetics company halted by the FDA for ignoring repeated questions, is being conciliatory. The company offered raw gene data, and interpretative reports, to the general public on more than 240 diseases and traits until Dec. 5, when it announced it would cease taking new customers as a result of FDA action. However: “the company is now writing conciliatory letters to regulators,” says an insider.

Breaking News: MRI Agent Linked to Brain Abnormalities

December 17, 2013 9:25 am | News | Comments

For the first time, researchers have confirmed an association between a common magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) contrast agent and abnormalities on brain MRI, according to a new study.                    

Breaking News: First Step of Metastasis Halted

December 12, 2013 12:05 pm | News | Comments

Scientists have identified a unique class of breast cancer cells that lead the process of invasion into surrounding tissues, the first step in the deadly process of cancer metastasis, and have found a way to stop that invasion process in mice.   

HRT Aids Cognition After All, Say Two Menopause Studies

December 12, 2013 11:01 am | by Cynthia Fox | Articles | Comments

Two very different recent papers come to a similar conclusion: cyclical, physiologic hormone replacement therapy (HRT) aids memory in postmenopausal women. One paper found native progesterone, as it is in its natural state cycling the body, helps memory early post-menopause. The other paper found cyclic, physiologic, administered estrogen helps memory after induced menopause.

You Are What Your Father Eats

December 11, 2013 11:25 am | News | Comments

Mothers typically get all the attention, but a new study suggests that the father’s diet before conception may play an equally important role in the health of their offspring.                       

Brain Coverings May Take Brunt of Concussion Impact

December 9, 2013 12:32 pm | Videos | Comments

There is more than meets the eye following even a mild traumatic brain injury. While the brain may appear to be intact, new findings report that the brain’s protective coverings may feel the brunt of the impact.            

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