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E.g., 12/19/2018
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  • Year in Review

    Humans wiped out mosquitoes (in one small lab test)

    For the first time, humans have built a set of pushy, destructive genes that infiltrated small populations of mosquitoes and drove them to extinction.

    But before dancing sleeveless in the streets, let’s be clear. This extermination occurred in a lab in mosquito populations with less of the crazy genetic diversity that an extinction scheme would face in the wild. The new gene drive,...

    12/17/2018 - 08:26 Animals, Genetics, Health
  • Year in Review

    Drinking studies muddied the waters around the safety of alcohol use

    For people who enjoy an occasional cocktail, 2018 was a sobering year. Headlines delivered the news with stone-cold certainty: Alcohol — in any amount — is bad for your health. “The safest level of drinking is none,” a group of scientists concluded.

    That finding, along with another one reported this year, seemed to contradict the reassuring notion that an occasional drink might be...

    12/17/2018 - 08:24 Health, Science & Society
  • News

    Babies born in opioid withdrawal have unusually small heads

    Babies born dependent on opioids have smaller heads than babies not exposed to the drugs in the womb.

    The finding, published online December 10 in Pediatrics, raises concerns that the drugs are impairing brain growth during development. And it highlights questions about the safest approach to managing opioid addiction during pregnancy, researchers say.

    Pregnant women who use...

    12/12/2018 - 15:25 Health
  • Feature

    A gut-brain link for Parkinson’s gets a closer look

    Martha Carlin married the love of her life in 1995. She and John Carlin had dated briefly in college in Kentucky, then lost touch until a chance meeting years later at a Dallas pub. They wed soon after and had two children. John worked as an entrepreneur and stay-at-home dad. In his free time, he ran marathons.

    Almost eight years into their marriage, the pinky finger on John’s right hand...

    12/07/2018 - 09:00 Health, Neuroscience, Microbiology
  • Reviews & Previews

    Two new books explore the science and history of the 1918 flu pandemic

    The U.S.S. Leviathan set sail from Hoboken, N.J., on September 29, 1918, carrying roughly 10,000 troops and 2,000 crewmen. The ship, bound for the battlefields in France, had been at sea less than 24 hours when the first passengers fell ill. By the end of the day, 700 people had developed signs of the flu.

    The medical staff tried to separate the sick from the healthy, but that soon...

    12/07/2018 - 07:00 Health, History of Science, Microbiology
  • Editor's Note

    Seeking a panacea in the gut’s microbiome

    It almost feels like people think every known disorder could be cured by tweaking the gut microbiome: The list of possibilities includes obesity, liver disease, diabetes, autism, multiple sclerosis and rheumatoid arthritis, depression and anxiety. The length of that list alone invites skepticism among those of us who cover science. But there’s enough evidence that gut microbes...
    12/05/2018 - 05:15 Science & Society, Health, Neuroscience
  • News

    In a first, a woman with a uterus transplanted from a deceased donor gives birth

    For the first time, a woman has given birth after receiving a uterus from a deceased donor.

    A reported 11 women have had babies after uterus transplants from living donors. But this breakthrough, described online December 4 in the Lancet, could boost the availability of viable organs for women who want to become pregnant but lack a womb.

    “Everyone was waiting to see whether [a...

    12/04/2018 - 18:30 Health
  • News

    Around the world, reported measles cases jumped 31 percent in 2017

    From 2016 to 2017, the number of reported cases in the region jumped 6,358 percent, to 775, largely fueled by an ongoing outbreak in Venezuela that has since infected thousands more. Along with a spike in measles in Europe, the Venezuela outbreak contributed to a 31 percent worldwide increase in reports of the highly contagious disease in 2017, according to researchers from the World Health...

    11/30/2018 - 12:21 Health
  • News

    Kids born in August are diagnosed with ADHD more than kids born in September

    Children who turn 5 just before starting kindergarten are much more likely to be diagnosed with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder than their oldest classmates. The finding bolsters concerns that the common neurodevelopmental disorder may be overdiagnosed.

    “We think ... it’s the relative age and the relative immaturity of the August-born children in any given class that increases...

    11/28/2018 - 17:00 Health
  • News

    A patch studded with tiny needles may help heart attack survivors recover

    A new type of implantable bandage could help mend broken hearts.

    Each bandage is a thin film that oozes a cocktail of molecules to heal tissue damaged during a heart attack. In experiments with rats and pigs, these patches helped minimize scarring and preserve the heart’s ability to pump blood, researchers report online November 28 in Science Advances. Such devices could someday curb...

    11/28/2018 - 14:03 Biomedicine, Cells, Health, Technology