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Tag Archives: researchers

Red v. Blue state knowledge about abortion examined

Red v. Blue state knowledge about abortion examined

A new national survey reveals that the political divide among red-versus-blue states does not support the hypothesis that knowledge about abortion and health is shaped by the state in which one lives. Research led by Danielle Bessett, a University of Cincinnati assistant professor of sociology, was presented at the 109th Meeting of the American Sociological Association in San Francisco. Continue reading

500 million year reset for immune system

500 million year reset for immune system

Scientists at the Max Planck Institute of Immunobiology and Epigenetics (MPI-IE) in Freiburg re-activated expression of an ancient gene, which is not normally expressed in the mammalian immune system, and found that the animals developed a fish-like thymus. To the researchers surprise, while the mammalian thymus is utilized exclusively for T cell maturation, the reset thymus produced not only T cells, but also served as a maturation site for B cells — a property normally seen only in the thymus of fish. Thus the model could provide an explanation of how the immune system had developed in the course of evolution. Continue reading

Visual exposure predicts infants’ ability to follow another’s gaze

Visual exposure predicts infants’ ability to follow another’s gaze

Following another person’s gaze can reveal a wealth of information critical to social interactions and also to safety. Gaze following typically emerges in infancy, and new research looking at preterm infants suggests that it’s visual experience, not maturational age, that underlies this critical ability. The research is published in Psychological Science , a journal of the Association for Psychological Science. Continue reading

Tick-tock: How to quite literally speed up a woman’s biological clock

Tick-tock: How to quite literally speed up a woman’s biological clock

The metaphor of a ticking clock is often used to refer to a woman’s growing urge — from puberty onwards to menopause — to conceive before her childbearing years are over. New research in Springer’s journal Human Nature shows that there’s more truth to this phrase than you might think. The subtle sound of a ticking clock can quite literally speed up a woman’s reproductive timing Continue reading

Single gene controls jet lag, study finds

Single gene controls jet lag, study finds

Scientists at the Salk Institute for Biological Studies have identified a gene that regulates sleep and wake rhythms. The discovery of the role of this gene, called Lhx1, provides scientists with a potential therapeutic target to help night-shift workers or jet lagged travelers adjust to time differences more quickly Continue reading

Size matters when convincing your brain to eat healthier foods

Size matters when convincing your brain to eat healthier foods

Variety may trump virtue when it comes to the struggle to eat healthy, says a Vanderbilt marketing professor who studies consumer self-control and endorses “vice-virtue bundles” combining nutritious and not-so-nutritious foods. “We suggest a simple … solution that can help consumers who would otherwise choose vice over virtue to simultaneously increase consumption of healthy foods (virtues) and decrease consumption of unhealthy foods (vices) while still fulfilling taste goals — ‘vice-virtue bundles,’” Kelly L. Continue reading

Native bacteria block Wolbachia from being passed to mosquito progeny

Native bacteria block Wolbachia from being passed to mosquito progeny

Native bacteria living inside mosquitoes prevent the insects from passing Wolbachia bacteria — which can make the mosquitoes resistant to the malaria parasite — to their offspring, according to a team of researchers. The team found that Asaia , a type of bacteria that occurs naturally in Anopheles mosquitoes, blocks invasion of Wolbachia into the mosquitoes’ germlines — the cells that are passed on through successive generations of an organism — thus stopping the insects from transmitting Wolbachia to their offspring. ” Wolbachia infects up to 70 percent of all known insect species, but is notably absent from some groups, including the Anopheles mosquitoes that transmit malaria,” said Jason Rasgon, associate professor of entomology, Penn State. Continue reading

Like cling wrap, new biomaterial can coat tricky burn wounds, block out infection


Like cling wrap, new biomaterial can coat tricky burn wounds, block out infection


Wrapping wound dressings around fingers and toes can be tricky, but for burn victims, guarding them against infection is critical. Today, scientists are reporting the development of novel, ultrathin coatings called nanosheets that can cling to the body’s most difficult-to-protect contours and keep bacteria at bay. The researchers are speaking about their materials, which they’ve tested on mice, at the 248th National Meeting & Exposition of the American Chemical Society (ACS), the world’s largest scientific society Continue reading

Pregnant women, fetuses exposed to antibacterial compounds face potential health risks 


Pregnant women, fetuses exposed to antibacterial compounds face potential health risks 


As the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) mulls over whether to rein in the use of common antibacterial compounds that are causing growing concern among environmental health experts, scientists are reporting today that many pregnant women and their fetuses are being exposed to these substances. Continue reading

Trauma before enlistment linked to high suicide rates among military personnel, veterans, research finds

Trauma before enlistment linked to high suicide rates among military personnel, veterans, research finds

High rates of suicide among military service members and veterans may be related to traumatic experiences they had before enlisting, making them more vulnerable to suicidal behavior when coping with combat and multiple deployments, according to the findings of several recent studies presented at the American Psychological Association’s 122nd Annual Convention. Experiencing child abuse, being sexually victimized by someone not in the service and exhibiting suicidal behavior before enlisting are significant risk factors for service members and veterans who attempt or commit suicide, according to experts with the National Center for Veterans Studies (NCVS) at the University of Utah Continue reading