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New Source of Cells for Modeling Malaria

February 5, 2015 2:29 pm | by MIT | News | Comments

In 2008, the World Health Organization announced a global effort to eradicate malaria, which kills about 800,000 people every year. As part of that goal, scientists are trying to develop new drugs that target the malaria parasite during the stage when it infects the human liver, which is crucial because some strains of malaria can lie dormant in the liver for several years before flaring up.

7 Myths About the Measles Vaccine

February 5, 2015 2:25 pm | by Columbia Univ. | News | Comments

Since December, more than 100 people in 14 states have been infected with measles in an outbreak traced to Disneyland, Melissa Stockwell, MD, MPH, assistant professor of pediatrics and of population & family health, has spoken out to debunk seven myths about the measles vaccine.

Disneyland Measles Outbreak Isn't Largest in Recent Memory

February 5, 2015 2:23 pm | by Associated Press | News | Comments

The largest U.S. measles outbreak in recent history isn't the one that started in December at Disneyland. It happened months earlier in Ohio's Amish country, where 383 people fell ill after unvaccinated Amish missionaries traveled to the Philippines and returned with the virus.

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Ebola Drug Study Canceled Due to Declining Cases

February 4, 2015 2:54 pm | by Associated Press | News | Comments

The drop-off in Ebola infections is good news for Liberia, but it means there are not enough sick people to take part in the study.                      

Federal Health Officials Face Tough Questions on Flu Vaccines

February 4, 2015 2:51 pm | by Lauran Neergard - AP Medical Writer | News | Comments

Federal health officials faced tough questions from lawmakers Tuesday about why they didn't take steps to produce a better flu vaccine as it became clear that this year's version wasn't going to offer much protection.       

Stem Cell Therapy Shows Promise for MS Patients

February 4, 2015 2:41 pm | by Nora Dunne, Northwestern University | News | Comments

A preliminary study suggests stem cell transplantation may reverse disability and improve quality of life for patients with relapsing-remitting multiple sclerosis.                

Fewer Viral Relics May Be Due to a Less Bloody Evolutionary History

February 4, 2015 2:36 pm | by University of Oxford | News | Comments

Humans have fewer remnants of viral DNA in their genes compared to other mammals.                              

Evolutionary Explanation of Walking

February 4, 2015 10:41 am | by Peter Reuell, Harvard News | News | Comments

For decades, scientists have recognized the upright posture exhibited by chimpanzees, gorillas, and humans as a key feature separating the “great apes” from other primates, but a host of questions about the evolution of that posture — particularly how and when it emerged — have long gone unanswered.

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Revolution in Imaging Tech Brings Heart Failure Molecule Into View

February 4, 2015 10:32 am | by Columbia University | News | Comments

Using the same technology that made smartphone cameras possible, scientists at Columbia University Medical Center are capturing images of individual molecules at a level of detail never before possible—including images of a molecule implicated in heart disease and muscle diseases.

How the Brain Ignores Distractions

February 4, 2015 10:23 am | by Brown Univ. | News | Comments

By scanning the brains of people engaged in selective attention to sensations, researchers have learned how the brain appears to coordinate the response needed to ignore distractors. They are now studying whether that ability can be harnessed, for instance to suppress pain.  

Many Herbal Supplements Aren't What the Label Says: Study

February 4, 2015 10:17 am | by Mary Esch, Associated Press | News | Comments

Bottles of Walmart-brand echinacea, an herb said to ward off colds, were found to contain no echinacea at all. GNC-brand bottles of St. John's wort, touted as a cure for depression, held rice, garlic and a tropical houseplant, but not a trace of the herb.                

Nanoparticle Gene Therapy Treats Brain Cancer in Rats

February 4, 2015 10:01 am | by Johns Hopkins | News | Comments

Despite improvements in the past few decades with surgery, chemotherapy and radiation therapy, a predictably curative treatment for glioma does not yet exist. New insights into specific gene mutations that arise in this often deadly form of brain cancer have pointed to the potential of gene therapy, but it’s very difficult to effectively deliver toxic or missing genes to cancer cells in the brain.

High-Speed Images Capture How Raindrops Spread Plant Pathogens

February 4, 2015 9:14 am | by MIT | News | Comments

Farmers have long noted a correlation between rainstorms and disease outbreaks among plants. Fungal parasites known as “rust” can grow particularly rampant following rain events, eating away at the leaves of wheat and potentially depleting crop harvests.

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Beethoven’s Arrhythmias Likely Inspired Some of His Masterpieces

February 3, 2015 1:54 pm | by Cynthia Fox, Science Writer | Articles | Comments

"Washington University cardiologist Zachary Goldberger once made music out of heartbeats. Now, with a Beethoven scholar and a medical historian, he has discovered that three musical compositions that Beethoven created while stressed are arrhythmic in a way mirroring the composer's own probable heart arrhythmias."

Skin based Immunity Secrets Revealed

February 3, 2015 1:46 pm | by University of Melbourne | News | Comments

A team of international scientists has discovered a new mechanism by which immune cells in the skin function act as the body's 'border control', revealing how these cells sense whether lipid or fat-like molecules might indicate the presence of foreign invaders.

New Strategy Pinpoints Single Protein to Reduce Allergic Responses to Multiple Meds

February 3, 2015 1:42 pm | by University of Alberta | News | Comments

Every day in hospitals around the world, patients suffer painful allergic reactions to the medicines they are given. The reactions, known as pseudo-allergies, often cause patients to endure itchiness, swelling and rashes as an unwanted part of their treatment plan. The reactions can be so severe they may stop patients from taking their needed medications and sometimes can even prove fatal. 

Two Genetic Mutations May Interact to Lower Heart Attack Risk

February 3, 2015 1:24 pm | by Ohio State Univ. | News | Comments

Researchers have determined that two mutations on a single gene can interact in a way that lowers the carrier's risk for a heart attack.  The variants are found in a gene called DBH, which regulates an enzyme involved in the conversion of dopamine to norepinephrine - both of which are important chemical messengers and hormones.

Uncovering Genetic Trigger for Immune Response

February 3, 2015 1:06 pm | by Yale University | News | Comments

The thousands of mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) molecules present in each cell are known primarily for their role converting food and oxygen into energy. But Yale researchers have identified an unexpected relationship between mtDNA and the innate immune response.

Protective Brain Protein Reveals Gender Implications for Autism, Alzheimer's Research

February 3, 2015 12:56 pm | by Tel Aviv University | News | Comments

A new study by Tel Aviv University's Prof. Illana Gozes, published in Translational Psychiatry, may offer insight into the pathology of both autism and Alzheimer's by revealing that different activities of certain proteins in males and females cause gender-specific tendencies toward these diseases.    

UK House of Commons OKs Making Babies From DNA of 3 People

February 3, 2015 12:29 pm | by Maria Cheng, AP Medical Writer - Associated Press | News | Comments

Britain's House of Commons gave preliminary approval to permitting scientists to create babies from the DNA of three people, a technique that could protect some children from inheriting potentially fatal diseases from their mothers. Read more...

New 'Reset' Button Discovered for Circadian Clock

February 2, 2015 3:01 pm | by David Salisbury - Vanderbilt University | News | Comments

The discovery of a new reset button for the brain’s master biological clock could eventually lead to new treatments for conditions like seasonal affective disorder, reduce the adverse health effects of working the night shift and possibly even treat jet lag. 

Illusion Aids Understanding of Autism

February 2, 2015 2:48 pm | by Monash University | News | Comments

New research could lead to a better understanding of how the brain works in people with autism.                                               

Face Blindness Predicted by Structural Differences in Brain

February 2, 2015 2:35 pm | by Leslie Willoughby - Stanford University | News | Comments

Recognizing the faces of family and friends seems vital to social interaction.                                                   

Study: Toddler Food Often Has Too Much Salt, Sugar

February 2, 2015 2:23 pm | by Lindsey Tanner - AP Medical Writer | News | Comments

Many packaged meals and snacks for toddlers contain worrisome amounts of salt and sugar, potentially creating an early taste for foods that may contribute to obesity and other health risks.                     

President Obama Reveals Details About Precision Medicine Project

February 1, 2015 6:45 pm | by Ryan Bushey, Associate Editor | Videos | Comments

President Obama held a press conference revealing new details surrounding the Precision Medicine initiative he announced during the State of The Union.                               

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