Cutting Emissions Pays for Itself
Lower rates of asthma and other health problems are frequently cited as benefits of policies aimed at cutting carbon emissions from sources like power plants and vehicles, because these policies also lead to reductions in other harmful types of air pollution.
But just how large are the health benefits of cleaner air in comparison to the costs of reducing carbon emissions? MIT researchers looked at three policies achieving the same reductions in the U.S., and found that the savings on health care spending and other costs related to illness can be big — in some cases, more than 10 times the cost of policy implementation.
Read more: http://www.laboratoryequipment.com/news/2014/08/cutting-emissions-pays-itself
AHA: e-Cigs May Aid Quitting
The American Heart Association issued new policy recommendations today on the use of e-cigarettes and their impact on tobacco-control efforts. The guidance was published in the association’s journal, Circulation.
Based on the current evidence, the association’s position is that e-cigarettes that contain nicotine are tobacco products and should be subject to all laws that apply to these products. The association also calls for strong new regulations to prevent access, sales and marketing of e-cigarettes to youth, and for more research into the product’s health impact.
Read more: http://www.laboratoryequipment.com/news/2014/08/aha-e-cigs-may-aid-quitting
Mimicking Evolution Key to Improving Drug Diversity
A revolutionary new scientific method developed at the Univ. of Leeds will improve the diversity of biologically active molecules, such as antibiotics and anti-cancer agents.
The researchers, who report their findings online in Nature Chemistry, took their inspiration from evolution in nature. The research may uncover new pharmaceutical drugs that traditional methods would never have found.
Read more: http://www.laboratoryequipment.com/news/2014/08/mimicking-evolution-key-improving-drug-diversity
Pomegranate Drug May Stem Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s
The onset of Alzheimer’s disease can be slowed and some of its symptoms curbed by a natural compound that is found in pomegranate. Also, the painful inflammation that accompanies illnesses such as rheumatoid arthritis and Parkinson’s disease could be reduced, according to the findings of a two-year project headed by Univ. of Huddersfield scientist Olumayokun Olajide, who specializes in the anti-inflammatory properties of natural products.
Now, a new phase of research can explore the development of drugs that will stem the development of dementias such as Alzheimer’s, which affects some 800,000 people in the UK, with 163,000 new cases a year being diagnosed. Globally, there are at least 44.4 million dementia sufferers, with the numbers expected to soar.
Read more: http://www.laboratoryequipment.com/news/2014/08/pomegranate-drug-may-stem-alzheimer%E2%80%99s-parkinson%E2%80%99s
Wound-healing Compound is a Success
Virginia Tech Carilion Research Institute scientist Robert Gourdie developed a wound-healing peptide while researching how electrical signals trigger heartbeats. He never imagined that the peptide, ACT1, would prove to heal venous leg ulcers twice as quickly as the current standard of care.
The results of this phase 2, multicenter, randomized clinical trial, conducted by FirstString Research Inc., were recently published in the Journal of Investigative Dermatology.
Read more: http://www.laboratoryequipment.com/news/2014/08/wound-healing-compound-success
Combinations of Vaccines Best to Fight Polio
New research suggests a one-two punch could help battle polio in some of the world’s most remote and strife-torn regions. Giving a single vaccine shot to children who’ve already swallowed drops of an oral polio vaccine greatly boosted their immunity.
The World Health Organization officials said the combination strategy already is starting to be used in mass vaccination campaigns in some hard-hit areas and is being introduced for routine immunizations in developing countries, too.
Read more: http://www.laboratoryequipment.com/news/2014/08/combinations-vaccines-best-fight-polio
3-D Printers Produce Custom Medical Implants
A team of researchers at Louisiana Tech Univ. has developed an innovative method for using affordable, consumer-grade 3-D printers and materials to fabricate custom medical implants that can contain antibacterial and chemotherapeutic compounds for targeted drug delivery.
The team comprised of doctoral students and research faculty from Louisiana Tech’s biomedical engineering and nanosystems engineering programs collaborated to create filament extruders that can make medical-quality 3-D printing filaments. Creating these filaments, which have specialized properties for drug delivery, is a new concept that can result in smart drug delivering medical implants or catheters.
Read more: http://www.laboratoryequipment.com/news/2014/08/3-d-printers-produce-custom-medical-implants
Autistic Kids Have Extra Brain Synapses
Children and adolescents with autism have a surplus of synapses in the brain, and this excess is because of a slowdown in a normal brain “pruning” process during development, according to a study by neuroscientists at Columbia Univ. Medical Center (CUMC). Because synapses are the points where neurons connect and communicate with each other, the excessive synapses may have profound effects on how the brain functions. The study was published in Neuron.
A drug that restores normal synaptic pruning can improve autistic-like behaviors in mice, the researchers found, even when the drug is given after the behaviors have appeared.
Read more: http://www.laboratoryequipment.com/news/2014/08/autistic-kids-have-extra-brain-synapses
Laser May Remove Pin Pricks from Diabetics’ Lives
Princeton Univ. researchers have developed a way to use a laser to measure people’s blood sugar, and, with more work to shrink the laser system to a portable size, the technique could allow diabetics to check their condition without pricking themselves to draw blood.
"We are working hard to turn engineering solutions into useful tools for people to use in their daily lives," said Claire Gmachl, professor of electrical engineering and the project’s senior researcher. "With this work we hope to improve the lives of many diabetes sufferers who depend on frequent blood glucose monitoring."
Read more: http://www.laboratoryequipment.com/news/2014/08/laser-may-remove-pin-pricks-diabetics-lives
U.S. Aid Workers Released as Liberia Seals Slum
After nearly three weeks of treatment, the two American aid workers who were infected with the deadly Ebola virus in Africa have been discharged from an Atlanta hospital, officials have said.
Their release poses no public health risk, Bruce Ribner of Emory Univ. Hospital stressed. Kent Brantly, 33, and Nancy Writebol, 59, show no evidence of Ebola, and generally patients do not relapse and they are not contagious once they’ve recovered, said Ribner, director of the hospital’s infectious disease unit.
Read more: www.laboratoryequipment.com/news/2014/08/us-aid-workers-released-liberia-seals-slum
Sleeplessness Increases Obesity Risk
Teenagers who don’t get enough sleep may wake up to worse consequences than nodding off during chemistry class. According to new research, risk of being obese by age 21 was 20 percent higher among 16-year-olds who got less than six hours of sleep a night, compared with their peers who slumbered more than eight hours. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends nine to ten hours of sleep for teenagers.
Researchers at the Mailman School of Public Health at Columbia Univ. and the Univ. of North Carolina Gillings School of Public Health are the first to examine the effect of sleeplessness on obesity in teenagers over time, providing the strongest evidence yet that lack of sleep raises risk for an elevated BMI. Results appear in Journal of Pediatrics.
Read more: http://www.laboratoryequipment.com/news/2014/08/sleeplessness-increases-obesity-risk
Coffee May Fight Gum Disease
Coffee contains antioxidants. Antioxidants fight gum disease. Does coffee, then, help fight gum disease?
That is the question researchers at Boston Univ. Henry M. Goldman School of Dental Medicine explored in a study published in the August issue of the Journal of Periodontology. Lead author and 2014 DMD graduate Nathan Ng said, “We found that coffee consumption did not have an adverse effect on periodontal health, and, instead, may have protective effects against periodontal disease.”
Read more: http://www.laboratoryequipment.com/news/2014/08/coffee-may-fight-gum-disease
Facial Symmetry Isn’t Linked to Health
Beauty, it is said, is in the eye of the beholder. And yet, there are many faces that a majority would find beautiful, say, George Clooney’s or Audrey Hepburn’s.
Psychologists interested in mate selection and the visual processing of faces have long sought to understand why some faces are widely regarded as attractive. Researchers have identified several cues associated with facial beauty, including “averageness” – faces close to the population mean are judged attractive – and “sexual dimorphism” – faces that accentuate characteristics that distinguish males and females are desirable.
There has also been long-standing interest in facial symmetry. Most faces appear broadly symmetric. Close inspection, however, almost always reveals subtle deviations from perfect symmetry. It is common for one eye to be positioned slightly above the other, or further away from the mid-line, and features are rarely perfectly symmetric in shape. Having examined the relationship between degree of facial symmetry and perceived attractiveness, many studies have found that beautiful faces exhibit greater symmetry.
Read more: http://www.laboratoryequipment.com/news/2014/08/facial-symmetry-isn%E2%80%99t-linked-health
Coronary Arteries Hold Heart-regenerating Cells
Endothelial cells residing in the coronary arteries can function as cardiac stem cells to produce new heart muscle tissue, Vanderbilt Univ. investigators have discovered.
The findings, published recently in Cell Reports, offer insights into how the heart maintains itself and could lead to new strategies for repairing the heart when it fails after a heart attack.
Read more: http://www.laboratoryequipment.com/news/2014/08/coronary-arteries-hold-heart-regenerating-cells
A new study suggests that colds and other minor infections may temporarily increase stroke risk in children. The study is published in the online issue of Neurology, the medical journal of the American Academy of Neurology.
“While the study does show an increased risk, the overall risk of stroke among children is still extremely low,” said Lars Marquardt, of the Univ. of Erlangen-Nuremberg, who wrote a corresponding editorial. “Minor infections are very common in children while strokes are thankfully very rare. Parents should not be alarmed whatsoever if a child catches a simple cold.”
Read more: http://www.laboratoryequipment.com/news/2014/08/colds-may-increase-stroke-risk-kids