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Overweight mothers give birth to offspring who become even heavier, resulting in amplification of obesity across generations, said Baylor College of Medicine researchers in Houston who found that chemical changes in the ways genes are expressed – a phenomenon called epigenetics -- could affect successive generations of mice.

"There is an obesity epidemic in the United States and it's increasingly recognized as a worldwide phenomenon," said Dr. Robert A. Waterland, assistant professor of pediatrics – nutrition at BCM and lead author of the study that appears in the International Journal of Obesity. "Why is everyone getting heavier and heavier? One hypothesis is that maternal obesity before and during pregnancy affects the establishment of body weight regulatory mechanisms in her baby. Maternal obesity could promote obesity in the next generation."


The expectation that East-Asian people emphasize physical symptoms of depression (e.g. headaches, poor appetite or aches/pains in the body) is widely acknowledged, yet the few available empirical studies report mixed data on this issue. A new study from the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health (CAMH) debunks this cultural myth, and offers clinicians valuable insight to into cultural context when assessing a patient, leading to more accurate diagnosis.


In a diet-focused culture, desserts often get a bad rap, but if you have a sweet tooth don't despair. Some can actually be beneficial.

Desserts made with fruit, nature’s natural sweetener, are ideal, healthy after-dinner treats. Reducing the sugar and fats in a recipe can also Gettmake favorite desserts more healthy and still taste good.

The July issue of Mayo Clinic Health Letter offers healthy dessert suggestions, including:

Grill fruit slices: Cut apples, pineapple, pears or peaches into chunks. Brush them lightly with canola oil and sprinkle with cinnamon. Grill the fruit on skewers or wrap in foil and grill over low heat for three to five minutes.

A new technique for growing single-crystal nanorods and controlling their shape using biomolecules could enable the development of smaller, more powerful heat pumps and devices that harvest electricity from heat.

Researchers at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute have discovered how to direct the growth of nanorods made up of two single crystals using a biomolecular surfactant. The researchers were also able to create “branched” structures by carefully controlling the temperature, time, and amount of surfactant used during synthesis.

Most nanostructures comprised of a core and a shell generally require more than one step to synthesize, but these new research results demonstrate how to synthesize such nanorods in only one step.


Tulane University anthropologist Kit Nelson is the co-director of a National Geographic-sponsored team that is in the process of unraveling a mummy bundle found in Peru's historic Huaura Valley. The mummy is believed to have been an elite member of the Chancay culture, a civilization that thrived in the central coast of Peru from about 1000 to 1400 AD. The territory of the Chancay was later home to the Incas.

Nelson's work was funded by a Faculty Enhancement Grant from Tulane University and through a grant from National Geographic's Committee for Research and Exploration, a century-old body that funds important work in the earth sciences throughout the world.


More than one million Americans currently participate in the Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) program. AA participants are stereotyped as being heavy coffee drinkers and cigarette smokers but very little research has quantified their consumption of these two products. Recent findings confirm that coffee and cigarette use among this population is greater than among the general U.S. population: most AA members drink coffee and more than half smoke.