Christen Brownlee

All Stories by Christen Brownlee

  1. Smoking’s Reward: Nicotine triggers opiate-pleasure response

    A study of mouse brains suggests that nicotine works via the same pathways that give morphine and other opiates their addictively rewarding qualities.

  2. Health & Medicine

    Obesity and insulin resistance age cells

    Conditions known to hasten diabetes in people may also speed aging.

  3. Health & Medicine

    Calories May Not Count in Life Extension

    In fruit flies, shifting the concentrations of nutrients while only modestly cutting calories extends lifespan just as much as a drastic calorie cut does.

  4. Decoding Garlic’s Pizzazz: Extract stimulates taste, temperature receptors

    Raw garlic's characteristic spiciness stems from its capacity to open channels on nerve cells that react both to tastes and noxious temperatures.

  5. Menstrual cycle changes the brain

    Hormonal fluctuations over the course of a woman's menstrual cycle change the abundance of a type of receptor on nerve cells, which can change the cells' behavior.

  6. Mapping Aroma: Smells light up distinct brain parts

    The sense of smell may have its own brain atlas.

  7. Why making fat is good for you

    Making new fat from food intake, as opposed to using stored fat, regulates genes important for blood sugar, fatty acid, and cholesterol concentrations.

  8. Health & Medicine

    Us against Them

    New antibiotics may be valuable weapons in the fight against tougher bacteria.

  9. Health & Medicine

    Insulin may trigger type 1 diabetes

    Insulin itself may precipitate the body's autoimmune attack in people with type 1 diabetes.

  10. Brain’s support cells, always on the go

    Cells that leap into action when the brain is injured are constantly searching for signs of danger during their supposed resting period.

  11. Perfect Match: Embryonic stem cells carry patients’ DNA

    By priming embryonic cells with genetic material from people with problems that stem cells may one day treat, researchers have isolated 11 new lines of stem cells that exactly match the patients' own DNA.

  12. Long Live the Mammals: Antioxidant redirection extends mouse life span

    Increasing the amount of antioxidants naturally produced in the body and directing those molecules to where they're needed can dramatically slow the aging process, according to a new study in mice.