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  • Tina Hesman Saey
  • illustration of man with umbrella under raining statins
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Your search has returned 443 articles:
  • Experiences

    What I actually learned about my family after trying 5 DNA ancestry tests

    Commercials abound for DNA testing services that will help you learn where your ancestors came from or connect you with relatives. I’ve been interested in my family history for a long time. I knew basically where our roots were: the British Isles, Germany and Hungary. But the ads tempted me to dive deeper.

    Previous experience taught me that different genetic testing companies can yield...

    06/13/2018 - 14:41 Ancestry, Genetics
  • Feature

    Yes, statins protect hearts. But critics question their expanding use

    Cholesterol is so important to life that practically every human cell makes it. Cells use the compound to keep their membranes porous and springy, and to produce hormones and other vital substances. The body can make all the cholesterol it needs, but Americans tend to have a surplus, thanks in large part to too little exercise and too much meat, cheese and grease. Fifty years ago, researchers...

    05/03/2017 - 07:00 Health, Biomedicine
  • Feature

    Instead of starving a cancer, researchers go after its defenses

    Like many living things, a cancer cell cannot survive without oxygen. When young and tiny, a malignancy nestles inside a bed of blood vessels that keep it fed. As the mass grows, however, its demand for oxygen outpaces supply. Pockets within the tumor become deprived and send emergency signals for new vessel growth, a process called angiogenesis. In the 1990s, a popular cancer-...

    02/22/2017 - 12:32 Cancer, Cells, Biomedicine
  • Editor's Note

    Scientific success depends on finding light in darkness

    Without light, we cannot see. That’s why “dark galaxies” have eluded astronomers for so long. Two years ago, these star-starved entities were virtually unknown. But scientists now have better ways of seeing, even in dim conditions. New telescopes that can detect the faint light from these mysterious galaxies have enabled scientists to chalk up a considerable list: Dark galaxies seem...
    11/30/2016 - 14:17 Astronomy, Clinical Trials, Animals
  • News

    Popular painkiller doesn’t have more heart risks than others, study claims

    NEW ORLEANS — A long-awaited study on painkillers called nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, the most widely prescribed class of drugs in the world, has concluded that the three most commonly used carry a similar risk of cardiovascular complications. Yet critics say the study was too flawed to fairly compare them.

    Concerns about a type of NSAID called COX-2 inhibitors peaked in 2004...

    11/13/2016 - 21:01 Clinical Trials, Health
  • News

    Protein mobs kill cells that most need those proteins to survive

    Joining a gang doesn’t necessarily make a protein a killer, a new study suggests. This clumping gets dangerous only under certain circumstances. 

    A normally innocuous protein can be engineered to clump into fibers similar to those formed by proteins involved in Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s and brain-wasting prion diseases such as Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease, researchers report in the Nov. 11...

    11/10/2016 - 14:00 Cells, Neuroscience
  • Reviews & Previews

    Despite misuses, statistics still has solid foundation

    The Seven Pillars of Statistical WisdomStephen M. StiglerHarvard Univ., $22.95

    In many realms of science today, “statistical wisdom” seems to be in short supply. Misuse of statistics in scientific research has contributed substantially to the widespread “reproducibility crisis” afflicting many fields (SN: 4/2/16, p. 8; SN: 1/24/15, p. 20). Recently the American Statistical...

    05/15/2016 - 09:00 Numbers
  • Feature

    GMOs haven’t delivered on their promises — or risks

    Arriving home after work a few summers ago, agricultural economist Matin Qaim found several disturbing messages on his home phone. A study by Qaim had shown that small-scale farmers in India who grew genetically modified cotton had larger harvests compared with conventional cotton growers. Those better yields resulted in greater profits for the mostly poor farmers and more disposable income to...

    01/29/2016 - 12:00 Genetics, Agriculture, Science & Society
  • Say What?

    Super-Earths, meet superpuffs, a lighter weight class of planet

    Superpuff\SOO-per-puf\ n.

    A gassy planet, close to its star, with a puzzlingly small mass.

    Not to be confused with a generic breakfast cereal, superpuffs are fluffy planets snuggled up to their suns. A superpuff develops its inflated persona by forming far from its star and then wandering inward, astronomers Eve Lee and Eugene Chiang of the University of California, Berkeley suggest...

    11/30/2015 - 14:17 Astronomy, Exoplanets
  • Feature

    Slow, cold reptiles may breathe like energetic birds

    Colleen Farmer was alone one night dissecting an alligator. Her focus was on blood flow in the heart, when suddenly, a hypothesis unfolded about animal lungs. In one sweep, she realized that what physiologists have assumed for decades about the evolution of airflow in alligators, other living reptiles, birds and maybe even dinosaurs might just be startlingly wrong.

    Lungs sound simple:...

    10/19/2015 - 13:11 Animals, Biophysics