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E.g., 07/23/2019
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  • News in Brief

    Rogue immune cells can infiltrate old brains

    Immune cells can storm into the brains of older mice, where these normally helpful cells seem to be up to no good. The result, described July 3 in Nature, raises the possibility that immune cells may have a role in aging.

    Anne Brunet of Stanford University School of Medicine and colleagues studied gene activity to identify all sorts of cells in a particular spot in mice brains — the...

    07/03/2019 - 13:00 Health, Neuroscience
  • News

    This brain region may be why some robots send chills down your spine

    A new analysis of brain scans may explain why hyperrealistic androids and animated characters can be creepy.

    By measuring people’s neural activity as they viewed pictures of humans and robots, researchers identified a region of the brain that seems to underlie the “uncanny valley” effect — the unsettling sensation sometimes caused by robots or animations that look almost, but not quite,...

    07/02/2019 - 12:00 Neuroscience, Technology
  • News

    California’s new vaccine rules kept more kindergartners up-to-date

    More kindergartners in California were up-to-date on their vaccinations in 2017, following three statewide policies, scientists say.

    Two stricter laws on vaccine exemptions and a school admission policy, enacted from 2014 to 2016, were associated with a decrease in the rate of kindergartners who were behind on required vaccinations for nine diseases including measles, mumps, pertussis...

    07/02/2019 - 11:00 Health
  • News in Brief

    Vision cells can pull double duty in the brain, detecting both color and shape

    Some nerve cells in the brain are multitaskers, responding to both color and shape, a survey of over 4,000 neurons in the visual systems of macaque monkeys finds.

    The finding, described in the June 28 Science, counters earlier ideas that vision cells nestled in the back of the brain each handle information about only one aspect of sight: an object’s color or its orientation, an element...

    07/01/2019 - 13:04 Health, Neuroscience
  • News

    In mice, a high-fat diet cuts a ‘brake’ used to control appetite

    A gut-busting diet may set the brain up for more of the same.

    After mice ate fatty food for just two weeks, cells in their brains that send a “stop eating” signal were quieter than those in mice that didn’t eat high-fat chow, researchers report in the June 28 Science. The result helps untangle the complex relationship between food and appetite, one that can become muddled when people...

    06/27/2019 - 14:00 Health, Neuroscience
  • News

    Antioxidants may encourage the spread of lung cancer rather than prevent it

    Antioxidants, once touted as a cancer preventive, may actually spur the disease’s spread. Now scientists have figured out how.

    Whether taken as a dietary supplement or produced by the body, antioxidants appear to help lung cancer cells invade tissues beyond the chest cavity, two studies report online June 27 in Cell. Experiments in mice and human tissue revealed that antioxidants both...

    06/27/2019 - 11:02 Cancer, Health, Genetics
  • Rethink

    Thick calluses don’t make feet any less sensitive

    The tender feet of the shoe-clad are no better at sensing the ground than the callused soles of the barefoot.

    Calluses, skin thickened by rubbing against other surfaces, would seem to offer protection at the expense of sensitivity. But that isn’t what Harvard University human evolutionary biologist Daniel Lieberman has experienced when he runs barefoot in summer.

    As Lieberman’s...

    06/26/2019 - 13:00 Health
  • News

    3-D mammograms are popular, but are they better than 2-D?

    In recent years, women getting a mammogram have had a new decision to make: 2-D or 3-D?

    Some breast-care centers have touted the newer 3-D mammography technology as more accurate. But while initial research suggests that it may be a more sensitive diagnostic test, evidence that the technology actually reduces the number of deaths from breast cancer better than 2-D imaging is lacking....

    06/24/2019 - 12:09 Health
  • News

    Gut microbes might help elite athletes boost their physical performance

    One difference between elite athletes and the rest of us might be in what hangs out in their guts.

    Microbes that flourished in the guts of some runners after a marathon boosted the time that lab mice ran on a treadmill, researchers report June 24 in Nature Medicine. These particular microbes seem to take lactate, pumped out by muscles during exercise, and turn it into a compound that may...

    06/24/2019 - 11:00 Microbes, Biomedicine, Microbiology
  • Feature

    New approaches may help solve the Lyme disease diagnosis dilemma

    In 2005, Rachel Straub was a college student returning home from a three-week medical service mission in Central America. Soon after, she suffered a brutal case of the flu. Or so she thought.

     “We were staying in orphanages,” she says of her trip to Costa Rica and Nicaragua. “There were bugs everywhere. I remember going to the bathroom and the sinks would be solid bugs.” She plucked at...

    06/23/2019 - 07:00 Biomedicine, Microbes, Immune Science