Category Archives: Biology

A New Map of How We Think: Top Brain/Bottom Brain

… research reveals that the top-brain system uses information about the surrounding environment (in combination with other sorts of information, such as emotional reactions and the need for food or drink) to figure out which goals to try to achieve. It actively formulates plans, generates expectations about what should happen when a plan is executed… Read More »

Brains cleaned while you sleep

It’s no secret that too little shut-eye can drain your brain, but scientists haven’t fully understood why. Now, a new study suggests that a good night’s sleep leaves you feeling sharp and refreshed because a newly discovered system that scrubs away neural waste is mostly active when you’re at rest. It’s a revelation that could… Read More »

Wonder drug and supercharged immune cells offer cancer hope

GENETICALLY “supercharging” immune cells, and combining this with a new wonder drug, offers a new way to boost the body’s cancer defences, Melbourne researchers have found. Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre researchers hope the new treatment combination, tested successfully in animals, will eventually allow cancer patients to be immunised against relapses. The team combined the anti-PD-1… Read More »

Researchers: We can watch 3-D with only one eye

Humans can see 3-D images with only one eye, according to new research, suggesting a future in which the technology could become cheaper and more accessible. Simply looking through a small hole is enough to experience 3-D, says Dhanraj Vishwanath, a psychologist at the University of St. Andrews in Scotland. His research was published in… Read More »

No viral cause found for breast cancer and brain tumors

Image: Raymond Rife who, in the 1930s, observed with a super microscope he built, a filterable virus he extracted from Mayo Clinic tumor samples. It was about 50 years before science accepted that some viruses do cause cancer. This makes the following study particularly interesting: A major study conducted at the Sahlgrenska Academy has now… Read More »

New pathway can increase biofuel yields by 50 percent

A new synthetic metabolic pathway developed by chemical engineering researchers at the University of California, Los Angeles, can break down sugars quickly and efficiently. The researchers believe that the rate in which this new pathway allows for the breakdown of glucose could lead to a 50 percent increase in the production of biofuels. The new… Read More »

Why glial cells should be included in the BRAIN initative

Glia, the non-neuronal cells that make up most of the brain, must not be left out of the Brain Research through Advancing Innovative Neurotechnologies (BRAIN) Initiative, says R. Douglas Fields, chief of the Nervous System Development and Plasticity Section at NIH, in Nature News. “A major stumbling block is the project’s failure to consider that… Read More »

Why Do Mysterious Lizards Have Green Blood?

It’s not a trick of the imagination or a penchant for food coloring –Prasinohaema skinks living on the island of New Guinea actually have green blood, bones, and tissue – and one scientist is trying to figure out why. Louisiana State University biologist and National Geographic explorer Christopher Austin first became interested in these odd… Read More »

Scientists Turn Hunger On and Off In Brain

Recently, scientists have been coming up with more and more, er, creative ways of combatting the potentially fatal effects of obesity. Soon though, people with overeating disorders might have a single solution that stops the problem at the root. We could just turn off part of their brain. In pioneering research, a team of scientists… Read More »

Link between gluten and Alzheimer’s

Dr. Mercola writes: Alzheimer’s disease is at epidemic proportions, with 5.4 million Americans–including one in eight people aged 65 and over–living with the disease. In the next 20 years, it is projected that Alzheimer’s will affect one in four Americans, rivaling the current prevalence of obesity and diabetes. There is still no known accepted cure… Read More »

Chinese man has new nose grown on forehead

A Chinese man has had a new nose grown on his FOREHEAD. The man, who has only been named as Xiaolian, had the treatment to create a replacement for his original nose which was infected and deformed. The procedure was carried out at a hospital in Fuzhou, Fujian province. The 22-year-old damaged his nose in… Read More »

The 22 ingredients for a human

The human recipe includes a kilo of calcium, a pinch of salt Though we do seem terribly complicated, it turns out that a human being can be built, completely intact and complete, with just 22 ingredients. From A to zinc, evolution has shaped just these two dozen or so elements to make up everything from… Read More »

Unusual mechanism of DNA synthesis could explain genetic mutations

… When chromosomes experience double-strand breaks due to oxidation, ionizing radiation, replication errors and certain metabolic products, cells utilize their genetically similar chromosomes to patch the gaps via a mechanism that involves both ends of the broken molecules. To repair a broken chromosome that lost one end, a unique configuration of the DNA replication machinery… Read More »

Study Reports on Link Between Testicle Size and Parenting

The research involved 70 US men of varying ethnicities – most were Caucasian, five were Asian and 15 were African-American. All were the fathers of children aged one to two.The larger the volume of their testes, the less the men were involved in daily parenting activities like changing diapers, said the study by researchers at… Read More »

Research renaissance offers new ways out of depression

As Susan sits chatting to a nurse in a London clinic, a light tapping sound by her head signals that parts of her brain are being zapped by thousands of tiny electro-magnetic pulses from a machine plugged into the wall. The 50 year-old doctor is among growing ranks of people with so-called treatment-resistant depression, and… Read More »

Lyme Disease in the US — 10 Times Higher Than Reported

If you have symptoms of Lyme disease (eg. random fast twitches) treated it with a protocol of daily exercise (for oxygen), heat, healthy organic foods and non-antibiotic antimicrobials. If you do this faithfully for about six months, the symptoms should go away. … It’s worth noting that while many still attribute Lyme transmission exclusively to… Read More »

Brain Protein Is a Key to ‘Senior Moments,’ Study Finds

A protein in the brain could hold the key to reversing the age-related memory loss that causes “senior moments” of forgetfulness, Columbia University researchers report. Deficiency of a protein called RbAp48 in the hippocampus appears to significantly contribute to the memory loss that creeps up on you as you age, said study co-author Dr. Scott… Read More »

This Optical Illusion Lets You See Your Own Brain Waves

The pinwheel-like drawing above is nothing but black and white lines. When you look at it the right way, though, something strange and beautiful happens: it begins to flicker. You may think it’s just a regular old optical illusion at first, but actually, you’re looking at your very own brain waves. To see the optical… Read More »

Hopping out glowing green bunnies for science

There’s a long history of scientists creating glowing animals, ranging from fish to mice to cats. Now, a team of scientists from the University of Hawaii and two universities in Turkey have genetically engineered some adorable, fuzzy, glowing baby bunnies. Out of a herd of eight baby bunnies, two glow under blacklight. The glowing is… Read More »

Experts Call for Redefinition of “Cancer”

A panel of experts commissioned by the U.S. National Cancer Institute says that the word “cancer” may need to be redefined to prevent overdiagnosis and overtreatment of conditions that are often not lethal. Writing in the July 29 online edition of the Journal of the American Medical Association, the experts say that widespread cancer screening… Read More »

First dino “blood” extracted from ancient bone

… A dinosaur bone buried for 80 million years has yielded a mix of proteins and microstructures resembling cells. The finding is important because it should resolve doubts about a previous report that also claimed to have extracted dino tissue from fossils. Proteins such as collagen are far more durable than DNA, but they had… Read More »

Raw Milk Confirmed as Low Risk

Three quantitative microbial risk assessments (QMRAs) recently published in the Journal of Food Protection have demonstrated that unpasteurized milk is a low-risk food, contrary to previous, inappropriately-evidenced claims suggesting a high-risk profile.€  These scholarly papers, along with dozens of others, were reviewed on May 16, 2013 at the Centre for Disease Control in Vancouver, BC… Read More »

Three days in sugar solution gives see-through tissue sample

In a Nature Neuroscience report posted online yesterday, Japanese researchers at the RIKEN Center for Developmental Biology show how they’ve grabbed a ball tossed by Stanford psychiatrist/ neuroscientist/bioengineer Karl Deisseroth, MD, PhD, and run with it. In April, Deisseroth’s team announcedan amazing new method for transforming biological tissues (in this case, the brain of a… Read More »

104 Studies: Pesticides linked Parkinson’s

… A recent meta-analysis published in the journal Neurology, examined data from 104 studies published between 1975 and 2011, in search for a potential link between pesticides and Parkinson’s disease. As many previous studies, it found one… Parkinson’s disease is a neurological disorder in which neurons in a region within your brain responsible for normal… Read More »

What Will Humans Look Like in 100,000 Years?

Think you’re done evolving? You might want to think again. While homo sapiens has come a long way since the Stone Age, and modern medicine is ever-rapidly developing, new biological and psychological ailments enter our vocabularies all the time — many of them incurable. Not to mention, robots have taken over many formerly human occupations… Read More »

Mother Has Third Set Of Twins At 500,000:1

A mother has defied odds of 500,000 to one by giving birth to her third set of twins – baby girls Rowan and Isla. Karen Rodger, 41, and husband Colin, 44, from Langbank in Renfrewshire were “over the moon” at the new arrivals to their family on May 29 at the Southern General Hospital in… Read More »

Life-producing phosphorus carried to Earth by meteorites

Scientists may not know for certain whether life exists in outer space, but new research from a team of scientists led by a University of South Florida astrobiologist now shows that one key element that produced life on Earth was carried here on meteorites. In an article published in the new edition of the Proceedings… Read More »

Surprising Sex Specific Benefit from a Vegetarian Diet

In a recent study published in the journal JAMA Internal Medicine, researchers investigated the association between a vegetarian diet lifestyle and that of mortality using data gleaned from 73,308 Seventh-day Adventist men and women who participated in the study by answering a quantitative food frequency questionnaire. Based on the questionnaire, the study participants were categorized… Read More »

How the turtle got its shell

…All other animals with body armour, including lizards and armadillos, are known to form it from bony scales on the surface of their skin. Turtles are the only ones that fuse ribs and vertebrae to make a shell made up of around 50 bones on the outside of their bodies, it has been found. Until… Read More »

Living with no pulse, How doctors reinvented the heart

The ancient Egyptians believed, as some modern people do, that the mind exists in the heart instead of the brain. I guess they would claim that anesthesia works on the heart and the changes seen in the brain are unrelated to consciousness. There is proof, however, that consciousness does not reside in the heart: Living… Read More »

In Seeing the Brain, Losing the Mind

Understanding the brain is of course essential to developing treatments for devastating illnesses like schizophrenia or Parkinson’s. More abstractly but no less compelling, the functioning of the brain is intimately tied to our sense of self, our identity, our memories and aspirations. But the excitement to explore the brain has spawned a new fixation that… Read More »

Bees tell birds to buzz off

A new study highlights the ‘parasitism by theft’ of bumblebees that invade birds’ nests and claim them as their own. Their warning buzz helps bumblebees to “scare” the bird away from the nest. The work by Piotr Jablonski and colleagues, from the Laboratory of Behavioral Ecology and Evolution at Seoul National University in South Korea,… Read More »

Down Syndrome Neurons Grown from Stem Cells Show Signature Problems

In new research published this week, Anita Bhattacharyya, a neuroscientist at the Waisman Center at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, reports on brain cells that were grown from skin cells of individuals with Down syndrome. “Even though Down syndrome is very common, it’s surprising how little we know about what goes wrong in the brain,” says… Read More »

Centuries-old frozen plants revived

Plants that were frozen during the “Little Ice Age” centuries ago have been observed sprouting new growth, scientists say. Samples of 400-year-old plants known as bryophytes have flourished under laboratory conditions. Researchers say this back-from-the-dead trick has implications for how ecosystems recover from the planet’s cyclic long periods of ice coverage. The findings appear in… Read More »

Brain overload explains missing childhood memories

Scientists – and parents – have long wondered why we don’t remember anything that happened before age 3. As all parents know, no matter how momentous an event is in a toddler’s life, the memory soon drifts away and within months there isn’t even a wisp of it left. Now a new study shows that… Read More »

Feet home to more than 100 fungi

We all have nearly 200 different types of fungi colonising our feet, scientists have discovered. Fungi live all over the human body, but their favourite spots are the heel, under toenails and between the toes, according to a US study. A new map of the body’s fungal diversity could help combat skin conditions such as… Read More »

Practice makes perfect? Not so much

Jason Mraz, world famous performer with “perfect pitch”. €  Turns out, that old “practice makes perfect” adage may be overblown. New research led by Michigan State University’s Zach Hambrick finds that a copious amount of practice is not enough to explain why people differ in level of skill in two widely studied activities, chess and… Read More »