Long typecast as the strong silent type, bones are speaking up.
In addition to providing structural support, the skeleton is a versatile conversationalist. Bones make hormones that chat with other organs and tissues, including the brain, kidneys and pancreas, experiments in mice have shown.
“The bone, which was considered a dead organ, has really become a gland almost,” says Beate...
50 Years Ago
Light helps premature babies
Premature babies, who often develop jaundice because of an excess of bile pigment called bilirubin, can be saved from this dangerous condition by the use of fluorescent light.… The light alters the chemistry of bilirubin so it can be excreted with the bile. Exchange transfusion is the usual treatment when jaundice occurs but this drastic procedure carries a...
Letters to the Editor
Water woes06/14/2017 - 10:47 Climate, Genetics
A recent survey of lakes around the globe found that from 1985 to 2009, most warmed while only several cooled, Alexandra Witze reported in “In hot water” (SN: 5/13/17, p. 18). Rising temperatures have consequences for every part of a lake’s food web, from algae to walleye to freshwater seals.
“This article indicates that no pattern could be found to predict which lakes would...
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Those who struggle to fit a vacation wardrobe into a carry-on might learn from ladybugs. The flying beetles neatly fold up their wings when they land, stashing the delicate appendages underneath their protective red and black forewings.
To learn how one species of ladybug (Coccinella septempunctata) achieves such efficient packing, scientists needed to see under the...
The woman in her 70s was in trouble. What started as a broken leg led to an infection in her hip that hung on for two years and several hospital stays. At a Nevada hospital, doctors gave the woman seven different antibiotics, one after the other. The drugs did little to help her. Lab results showed that none of the 14 antibiotics available at the hospital could fight the infection, caused by...
Mutations that prevent cells from spell-checking their DNA may make cancer cells vulnerable to immunotherapies, a new study suggests.
A type of immune therapy known as PD-1 blockade controlled cancer in 77 percent of patients with defects in DNA mismatch repair — the system cells use to spell-check and fix errors in DNA (SN Online: 10/7/15). The therapy was effective against 12 different...
The juice saga continues. The American Academy of Pediatrics updated their official ruling on fruit juice, recommending none of the sweet stuff before age 1. Published in the June Pediatrics, the recommendation is more restrictive than the previous one, which advised no juice before age 6 months.
The move comes from the recognition that whole fruits — not just the sweet, fiberless liquid...
News in Brief
Whether standard white bread or an artisanal sourdough loaf is “healthier” depends on the microbes living in a person’s intestines, a new study suggests.
Averaging results from 20 people who ate white and whole wheat sourdough bread for one week each, researchers found no difference in people’s response to the breads, which includes changes in blood sugar levels. But when researchers...
Some of the earliest settlers of the Americas curtailed their coastal migration to hunker down in what’s now northwestern Peru, new finds suggest. Although researchers have often assumed that shoreline colonizers of the New World kept heading south from Alaska in search of marine foods, staying put in some spots made sense: Hunter-gatherers needed only simple tools to exploit rich coastal and...
Last year, Joan Peay slipped on her garage steps and smashed her knee on the welcome mat. Peay, 77, is no stranger to pain. The Tennessee retiree has had 17 surgeries in the last 35 years — knee replacements, hip replacements, back surgery. She even survived a 2012 fungal meningitis outbreak that sickened her and hundreds of others, and killed 64. This knee injury, though, “hurt like the...