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Category - New Studys

Treating Addiction as a Disease

In 2015, 16.3 people per 100,000 died of drug overdoses. That was more than 2.5 times the rate in 1999.Recent reports suggest that number is only getting worse.

In the face of this epidemic, researchers struggle to find a solution. From the disaster that was the DARE program to the mixed bag that is the War on Drugs, you cannot say that the crisis comes from lac


The Dangers of Stress: Signs, Symptoms, and Effects

It’s the same routine every day: Your alarm goes off, jolting you awake and immediately kicking your body into overdrive to begin the day. Frantically, you jump in the shower and then throw together an outfit for the day, all while murmuring the talking points of the presentation you have to give to that big client today. You make the rounds to get the kids up and moving, and as they drag their feet getting ready, you whip together a quick breakfast for them. You yell upstairs that there’s food in the kitchen and to make sure not to miss the bus. You rush to your car to drive to work and of course traffic is horrible. It takes every fiber of your being to refrain from shouting “Go!” every 30 seconds to the car in front of you. You finally pull into the parking garage at work, and as you turn off the car, you sigh because you just remembered that PTA meeting you have to attend tonight. Not to mention you left you


E-Cigarettes: Their Rise, Risks, and Future

We’ve come a long way since the “More doctors smoke Camels than any other cigarette” ads of the 1940s. Though still a multi-billion dollar industry, the number of smokers today has significantly decreased due to both the scientific data available and the growing social stigma behind the activity. A Center for Disease Control report found that the number of smokers in 2015 had fallen nearly 10 percent since 1997, signalling the lowest number of smokers ever recorded. However, this doesn’t necessarily mean that people aren’t smoking anymore—many of those who have quit smoking tobacco have just found a different way to exercise thei


"Second Skin" Products Correct Wrinkled Skin

The sun can do a number on the elasticity of one's skin, causing some serious wrinkling over time. However, a network of scientists have developed a product described as a "second skin" that can reverse some of that damage. 

The substance is silicone-based polymer can be applied as a thin coating on the skin. It mimics the elastic and mechanical properties of young, healthy skin.

During human trials, it was able to reshape under eye bags and improve skin hypdration. 

While the creation has beauty applications, researchers from MIT, Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH), Olivo Labs and Jennifer Aniston's beauty company Living Proof found that that in addition to tightening, and smoothing the skin, it can also protect the skin from harmful UV rays and possibly be used to provide medication for skin problems like eczema and dermatitis, according to research published in Nature Materials.

“It’s an invisible l


Male Birth Control Found Effective, But Causes Serious Side Effects

Ever thought men should be able to shoulder the responsibility of birth control for a change?

Well now that's a real possibility, but it still may be a long way off before it ever hits the market. 

An injectable birth control, similar to the depot shot, was tested in a new study sponsored in part by the United Nations and the results were published in the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism. The birth control was over 96 percent effective in preventing pregnancy, but the study, conducted from 2008 - 2012, was cut short because some participants couldn't handle the side effects. Some of the participants complained side effects, such as experiencing mild to moderate depression, increased libido, pain at the injection site and acne. In some extreme cases, it took longer for the participants to return to normal fertility levels and one person's sperm count still hasn't


PTSD: A Serious Issue for Many Former ICU Patients

When people hear about those who suffer from Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), they might think about soldiers who fought in a war or victims of heinous violence, but a lesser known group of sufferers have been making headlines recently: Intensive Care Unit patients.

These patients are typically fighting a critical illness and go into the ICU fighting for their lives, but come out suffering from hallucinations, nightmares and memory loss.

PTSD can also make it difficult to connect with others and experience joy.

In 2013, Texan registered nurse Lygia Dunsworth told the New York Times about her horrific account of what it was like to suffer with PTSD as a patient.


One Blood Test Tells The Story of EVERY Virus You’ve Ever Had

If you can’t quite remember whether you had the mumps or you don’t recall every vaccine you’ve received up until now, an all-in-one solution is entering the medical scene.

A recent study reveals you can find out about every virus that’s ever invaded your body and every vaccine that’s been injected into you with one tiny drop of blood, thanks to a new test called VirScan.

This is groundbreaking, as one test can potentially provide a near full viral scan for each patient at an extremely affordable price---an estimated $25 person.

Developed by multiple scientists from eight institutions, including the Howard Hughes Medical Institute and Harvard, VirScan (systematic viral epitope scanning) is able to


Herpes: The Cure to Melanoma?

Skin cancer is the most common, deadly form of cancer in the United States, but a study published in the Journal of Clinical Oncology says a modified version of herpes may be viable answer.

The treatment, T-VEC, is a genetically engineered version of herpes simplex virus type-1 that is injected into melanoma cancers.

Kevin Harrington, a professor of Biological Cancer Therapies at the Institute of Cancer Research in London, led the UK research team in the T-VEC study.

He found that the treatment not only killed cancer cells, but it stopped tumors from growing and helped strengthen the immune system against future cells.

Compared to chemotherapy, which can cause a number of side eff


Mystery Solved: Why Rain Has a Distinctive Smell & How Rain May Be Connected to Spreading Contaminants

If you’ve ever wondered why you can smell when it rains, it seems as though scientists have cracked the code.

In a recent study published in Nature Communications, MIT researchers revealed the source of the rain fragrance as petrichor---aerosols released once rain fall hits the soil. As neat as that may be, researchers are now conducting experiments to see whether that same mechanism could be spreading dangerous bacteria in the atmosphere.  

The big revelation about the rain fragrance came from filming raindrops in slow motion, microseconds at a time.

Upon review of the film, it was observed that the raindrops released fine bursts of liquid that were suspended in gas after the rain fell.

Those fine bursts of liquid, which are aerosols, float off into the wind and spread that distinctive rain smell.

Heavy rain conditions doesn’t result in more petrichor, light or medium rainfall hitting porous surfaces like wet soil a


Herpes In Stem Cells Can Treat Brain Tumors

According to a recent animal study, stem cells infected with herpes can kill brain tumors, giving way to the possibility of using virotherapy. This is based on a research conducted by the Harvard Stem Cell Institute scientists working for the Massachusetts General Hospital.

During the research, the researchers put the herpes-loaded stem cells in gel form and applied them to tumors in mice suffering from gliobastoma multiforme, improving their rate of survival. The tumor was among the most common brain tumor occurring among human adults.

The study was published in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute and conducted by study leader Khalid Shah, MS, PhD, who is an HSCI Principal Faculty member.

Past studies have shown that oncolytic herpes simplex viruses can treat brain cancer as the virus attacks the brain cells, dividing them. However, this is not effective on humans because the virus could not stay in one place before they are done attacking all


Pig Hearts Might Be Used in Humans

A new study has shown that pig hearts may be a viable replacement in human patients. Researchers were able to successfully transplant a pigs heart into baboon which has now survived for over a year.

This new progress in cross-breeding transplants may be a step closer to find another source of hearts for humans who need organ transplants. Each year approximately 3,000 Americans are in need of a heart transplant. Unfortunately there are typically only 2,000 hearts are available each year, the use of pig hearts could help close this gap.

Patients who could not wait for a human heart face using an artificial heart, which are far from perfect and often pose risks to the humans because of possible infection, power issues, haemolysis or clotting.

Organs transplanted from other animals into primates used to last only for about six months before the new host rejects them.

The option of using an animal organ for transplants was long proposed. However, t


Laugh to Improve Your Memory

Laughter is the best cure for age-related memory loss, according to a new study.

Stress has a negative impact on health. But more than that, it also makes the body more susceptible to allergies and the brain more at risk to mental illness.

If you forgot where your keys are, laugh it off and try to remember where you left them. Humor can help boost the short-term memory of older adults.

The research was conducted by a research team from California’s Loma Linda University and headed by Dr. Gurinder Singh Bains. There were 20 normal older adults in good health who were asked to watch a funny video for 20 minutes straight without any distraction. On the other hand, a control group was simply asked to sit calmly without any video. A test was performed afterwards and saliva samples were tested for stress hormones.

The study found out that those who laughed for 20 minutes because of the video had better scores during the test. The saliva test a