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  • News in Brief

    FDA has approved the first ketamine-based antidepressant

    Doctors have a new weapon in the fight against particularly pernicious depression: a drug based on the powerful anesthetic ketamine.

    The drug — called Spravato and developed by Janssen Pharmaceuticals, Inc. — was approved on March 5 by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration as a treatment for severely depressed people who haven’t responded to two courses of other treatments. The first...

    03/06/2019 - 16:02 Health, Neuroscience
  • News

    A second HIV patient has gone into remission after a stem cell transplant

    For only the second time in recorded medical history, a man’s HIV infection has gone into remission.

    The patient — positive for the virus that causes AIDS since 2003 — had received a blood stem cell transplant in 2016 as treatment for Hodgkin’s lymphoma, a cancer of the lymphatic system. The blood stem cells came from a donor with a mutation that makes cells resistant to an HIV infection...

    03/05/2019 - 11:37 Health
  • News

    Ripples race in the brain as memories are recalled

    Fast waves of activity ripple in the brain a half second before a person calls up a memory. The finding, published in the March 1 Science, hint that these brain waves might be a key part of a person’s ability to remember.

    The results come from a study of 14 people with epilepsy who had electrodes placed on their brains as part of their treatment. Those electrodes also allowed scientists...

    03/05/2019 - 07:00 Health, Neuroscience
  • News

    Sleeping in on the weekend can’t make up for lost sleep

    If the weekend is your time to catch up on sleep, you may want to rethink your strategy.

    In young adults, using the weekend to make up for lost sleep during the workweek can lead to increased late-night munchies, weight gain and a lowered responsiveness to insulin, researchers report February 28 in Current Biology. 

    “The take-home message is basically that you can’t make up for...

    03/01/2019 - 07:54 Health
  • News

    Wireless patches can comfortably monitor sick babies’ health

    Wireless skin patches that measure a baby’s vital signs could offer a safer, more comfortable way of monitoring premature and sick infants in the hospital.

    Each year, about 300,000 newborns are admitted to U.S. neonatal intensive care units, or NICUs, including preemies that are vulnerable to heart problems, breathing trouble and other medical complications (SN Online: 2/16/11). Doctors...

    02/28/2019 - 14:00 Health, Technology
  • News in Brief

    Watching hours of TV is tied to verbal memory decline in older people

    People often fret about television time for children. A new study examines the habit at the other end of life.

    The more television older people watched, the worse they recalled a list of words, researchers report online February 28 in Scientific Reports. But the study describes only a correlation; it can’t say that lots of TV time actually causes the memory slips.


    02/28/2019 - 09:00 Health, Neuroscience
  • 50 years ago, people thought MSG caused ‘Chinese restaurant syndrome’

    Chinese Restaurant syndrome varies —

    Twenty thousand tons of monosodium L-glutamate are manufactured annually in the United States…. But, according to researchers at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine in the Bronx, “MSG is not a wholly innocuous substance.” … In the Feb. 21 Science, [researchers] report “evidence that it (MSG) causes headache, as well as symptoms of acute...

    02/28/2019 - 07:00 Health, Nutrition
  • News

    Treating mosquitoes may be a new way to fight malaria

    The fight against malaria may someday include ridding mosquitoes themselves of the parasites that cause the disease.

    In the lab, treating female mosquitoes with an antimalarial drug stopped parasites from developing inside the insects. Mosquitoes were exposed to the treatment when they landed on a drug-coated glass surface for as little as six minutes, comparable to how long mosquitoes...

    02/27/2019 - 13:35 Health
  • Feature

    With its burning grip, shingles can do lasting damage

    At age 37, Hope Hartman developed a painful, burning rash in her right ear, in the part “you would clean with a Q-tip,” the Denver resident says. The pain got so bad she went to a local emergency room, where the staff was flummoxed. Hartman was admitted to the hospital, where she started to lose sensation on the right side of her face.

    During that 2013 health crisis, Hartman’s husband,...

    02/26/2019 - 09:00 Health, Clinical Trials, Neuroscience, Immune Science
  • News

    The FDA says don’t buy young plasma therapies. Here’s why

    Scientists still haven’t found the fountain of youth. And you shouldn’t pay thousands of dollars to anyone who promises otherwise.

    That’s the message from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, which warned consumers on February 19 against buying infusions of young plasma to counter aging, dementia, Alzheimer’s disease and a variety of other ailments.

    “Simply put, we’re concerned...

    02/25/2019 - 06:00 Health