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Tue, 21 Jan 2020
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Meat And Two Neutrons: The Key To A Longer Life

Indulging in an isotope-enhanced steak or chicken fillet every now and again could add as much as 10 years to your life. Scientists have shown for the first time that food enriched with natural isotopes builds bodily components that are more resistant to the processes of ageing. The concept has been demonstrated in worms and researchers hope that the same concept can help extend human life and reduce the risk of cancer and other diseases of ageing, reports Marina Murphy in Chemistry & Industry, the magazine of the SCI.

A team led by Mikhail Shchepinov, formerly of Oxford University, fed nematode worms nutrients reinforced with natural isotopes (naturally occurring atomic variations of elements). In initial experiments, worms' life spans were extended by 10%, which, with humans expected to routinely coast close to the centenary, could add a further 10 years to human life.

Black Cat

Toxoplasma gondii: Bizarre Human Brain Parasite Precisely Alters Fear

Rats usually have an innate fear of cat urine. The fear extends to rodents that have never seen a feline and those generations removed from ever meeting a cat. After they get infected with the brain parasite Toxoplasma gondii, however, rats become attracted to cat pee, increasing the chance they'll become cat food.

This much researchers knew. But a new study shows the parasite, which also infects more half the world's human population, seems to target a rat's fear of cat urine with almost surgical precision, leaving other kinds of fear alone.

This discovery could shed light "on how fear is generated in the first place" and how people can potentially better manage phobias, researcher Ajai Vyas, a Stanford University neuroscientist, told LiveScience.

Attention

Twists and Turns: Passive smoking and Living in the city are worse then Atomic Fallout

Everyday hazards such as inhaling polluted city air or other people's cigarette smoke are potentially worse for your health than being exposed to the radioactive fallout of an atomic bomb, according to new research.

A study of radiation exposure caused by the atomic bombs dropped on Japan in 1945 and the explosion at the Chernobyl nuclear power plant has suggested that they have posed similar or lower health risks to survivors than the more prevalent problems of air pollution, smoking and obesity.

Ambulance

"Studies Show No Link"; Never mind the Mercury

As we've watched autism grow to epidemic levels in the U.S., we have been given one hard-to-swallow explanation after another.

Health

Man With Drug-Resistant TB Locked Up

PHOENIX - Behind the county hospital's tall cinderblock walls, a 27-year-old tuberculosis patient sits in a jail cell equipped with a ventilation system that keeps germs from escaping. Robert Daniels has been locked up indefinitely, perhaps for the rest of his life, since last July. But he has not been charged with a crime. Instead, he suffers from an extensively drug-resistant strain of tuberculosis, or XDR-TB. It is considered virtually untreatable.

Heart

Blood groups 'can be converted'

Scientists have developed a way of converting one blood group into another.

The technique potentially enables blood from groups A, B and AB to be converted into group O negative, which can be safely transplanted into any patient.

Vader

Study Reveals Widespread Office Bully Problem

The office bully has an array of weapons at his disposal, ranging from the subtle silent treatment to not-so-subtle verbal ridicule, the effects of which can ripple through the workplace.

A new study finds that while nearly 30 percent of U.S. workers have endured a punishing boss or co-worker, many individuals would not label themselves as bully targets. For those who do, it's not just the bully victim who feels the heat. Witnesses in nearby cubicles are affected and show an increase in stress and overall dissatisfaction with their jobs.

The prevalence of bullying in the American workplace tops the rates found in Scandinavian countries and is on par with those in Great Britain, the scientists found.

Light Saber

Getting dirty may lift your mood

Bacteria found in the soil activated a group of neurons that produce the brain chemical serotonin.

Treatment of mice with a 'friendly' bacteria, normally found in the soil, altered their behavior in a way similar to that produced by antidepressant drugs, reports research published in the latest issue of Neuroscience.

These findings, identified by researchers at the University of Bristol and colleagues at University College London, aid the understanding of why an imbalance in the immune system leaves some individuals vulnerable to mood disorders like depression.

Dr Chris Lowry, lead author on the paper from Bristol University, said: "These studies help us understand how the body communicates with the brain and why a healthy immune system is important for maintaining mental health. They also leave us wondering if we shouldn't all be spending more time playing in the dirt."

Health

Experts say more needs to be done for brain-injured Iraq Vets

WASHINGTON - Retired Army Sgt. Edward Wade has adjusted to his prosthetic right arm, his nagging foot pain and most of the other ailments caused by a roadside bomb in Iraq three years ago.

What he hasn't been able to get used to is the lingering fogginess in his mind from the brain injury he sustained in that blast.

Health

Lethal type of dengue fever hits Mexico

MEXICO CITY - The deadly hemorrhagic form of dengue fever is increasing dramatically in Mexico, and experts predict a surge throughout Latin America fueled by climate change, migration and faltering mosquito-eradication efforts.

Overall dengue cases have increased by more than 600 percent in Mexico since 2001, and worried officials are sending special teams to tourist resorts to spray pesticides and remove garbage and standing water where mosquitoes breed ahead of the peak Easter week vacation season.