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Tue, 27 Sep 2022
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Syringe

New vaccinations to conquer flu pandemic (one that is being manufactured in secret government labs)

A vaccine that could help to control a flu pandemic has shown encouraging results in its first human trials.

The vaccine, made by Acambis, based in Cambridge, should protect against all strains of influenza A, the type responsible for pandemics. Unlike existing vaccines it does not have to be reformulated each year to match the prevalent strains of flu, so it could be stockpiled and used as soon as a pandemic strain emerges. Nor does it need to be grown on fertilised chicken eggs, as the existing vaccines do, but can be produced by cell culture.

Health

Chocolate: A Health Food After All



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Chocolate 'addicts' won't be surprised at the growing evidence that it is a mood enhancer

Ever since the Atkins Diet revival made sugar public enemy No 1, confectionery manufacturers have had their work cut out to sweeten up their image. It hasn't been easy: sugar doesn't just make you fat, and thus can contribute to the development of adult-onset diabetes, it also rots your teeth. Willy Wonka would be weeping into his top hat.

But recently, chocolate has been undergoing something of a rehabilitation, and the current thinking is that it may actually be good for you. So, what's going on?

Bad Guys

China is E-Waste Dumping Ground for the US

The highway of poisoned products that runs from China to the United States is not a one-way street. America ships China up to 80 percent of U.S. electronic waste - discarded computers, cell phones, TVs, etc. Last year alone, the United States exported enough e-waste to cover a football field and rise a mile into the sky.

So while the media ride their new lead-painted hobbyhorse - the danger of Chinese wares - spare a thought for Chinese workers dying to dispose of millions of tons of our toxic crap.

Bulb

Psychopathy and the Hippocampus

Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) of the hippocampus has been extensively studied on neurological and psychiatric disorders. Particularly in studies on schizophrenia and mood disorders, findings regarding the hippocampal involvement have been most controversial. Previously, minor volume loss of the hippocampus in alcoholism, a major comorbidity alongside psychiatric disorders, has been reported.

No data has existed on the hippocampal volumes in subtypes of alcoholism, despite the need and interest to further identify and study subgroups of alcoholics with psychiatric and behavioral syndromes that occur outside and within the context of their abuse. In this case, the distinction was drawn to alcoholism with and without antisocial and violent behavior.

X

Processed Meats Declared Too Dangerous for Human Consumption



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The World Cancer Research Fund (WCRF) has just completed a detailed review of more than 7,000 clinical studies covering links between diet and cancer. Its conclusion is rocking the health world with startling bluntness: Processed meats are too dangerous for human consumption. Consumers should stop buying and eating all processed meat products for the rest of their lives.

Bulb

Low-energy bulbs 'worsen rashes'

The switch to energy-saving light bulbs may put thousands at risk of painful skin reactions, health charities warn.

Syringe

Warning: Drug Ads Can Make You Sick

The drug industry spends billion on advertising that tells us health and happiness are commodities, and anything less is a disease.

Jane's family is suffering from plagues of biblical-lite proportions. Her teenage son is unruly and easily distracted. Her daughter has menstrual cramps, is 12 pounds overweight and shy. Her husband sleeps fitfully and has occasional heartburn and irregularity -- not to mention that his libido is falling and his cholesterol rising. As for Jane, her menopause generates more heat than a blowtorch. Her knees twinge, her breasts are less perky and her jaw line more blurred. Her personality is flat and her legs restless. All of them are less happy than they think they should be.

Although there is a diagnosis, pill or surgical treatment for each of their ills, the family members could simply be suffering from exposure to advertising that sells a fantasy of flawless health, perfect skin, clockwork bowels, extended youth and perpetual cheerfulness in the face of disappointment, aging, money woes and the reign of George Bush. They may, in fact, be healthy people snookered by the pharmaceutical industry, the media and their doctors into believing that ordinary frailties are diseases; that the human condition can be cured.

A $4.2 billion annual industry incessantly reinforces this medicalization of complaints through direct-to-consumer (DTC) advertising.

Roses

Why Some Depressed Girls Can't Smell The Roses

New TAU research links depression to loss of the sense of smell, suggesting that the blues may have biological roots.

Can't smell the roses? Maybe you're depressed. Smell too much like a rose yourself? Maybe you've got the same problem. Scientists from Tel Aviv University recently linked depression to a biological mechanism that affects the olfactory glands. It might explain why some women, without realizing it, wear too much perfume.

Pills

US: Survey of doctors finds placebos are a common prescription

Placebos are a surprisingly common prescription, according to a US study in which nearly half of the doctors surveyed said they had doled out a dummy pill at some point.

Researchers at the University of Chicago said yesterday that the study raises ethical questions and suggests a need for greater recognition and understanding of placebo use.

"It illustrates that doctors believe expectation and belief have therapeutic potential," said Rachel Sherman, a medical student at the University of Chicago, whose study was published in the Journal of General Internal Medicine.

Gear

Product design: How to imbue products with symbolic meaning

Many people pay silly money to wear a particular logo or a designer brand. Of course, a designer outfit doesn't keep you any warmer or dryer than an unbranded one, but functionality is only part of the story. Designer products say something about you - you are a trendy, sexy or sophisticated person. Brands help us to express who we think we are and who we want to be.

Big name brands are an integral part of our lives, says Davide Ravasi, associate professor in the Institute of Strategic Management of Bocconi University, Italy. Whether its Levi jeans, BMW cars or Nokia phones, we know the brands we like. These are more than products; they are symbols, or in other words, they are objects carrying meaning.

In a recent ESF Exploratory Workshop convened by Ravasi, scholars of various disciplines within the social sciences discussed how symbolic attributes of products affect their adoption and evolution.