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In a two-year sub-study of the STAMPEDE (Surgical Therapy And Medications Potentially Eradicate Diabetes Efficiently) trial, researchers  evaluated the effects of bariatric surgery and intensive medical therapy on blood sugar levels, body composition, and pancreatic beta-cell function
and found that gastric bypass surgery reverses diabetes by uniquely restoring pancreatic function in moderately obese patients with uncontrolled type 2 diabetes.

Striking metabolic changes were observed in patients who underwent bariatric surgery compared with intensive medical therapy, particularly in the gastric bypass treatment group.

A group of progenitor cells in the inner ear that can become the sensory hair cells and adjacent supporting cells that enable hearing have been identified, a potential breakthrough for people suffering from hearing loss due to damaged or impaired sensory hair cells, according to a paper in Development.

The inner ear is a highly specialized structure for gathering and transmitting vibrations in the air. The auditory compartment, called the cochlea, is a snail-shaped cavity that houses specialized cells with hair-like projections that sense vibration, much like seaweed waving in the ocean current. These hair cells are responsible for both hearing and balance, and are surrounded by supporting cells that are also critical for hearing.

A new paper in the Journal of Pediatrics
says low-birth-weight babies with a particular brain abnormality are at greater risk for autism, and it could provide a signpost for early detection of the poorly understood disorder.

The authors found that low-birth-weight newborns were seven times more likely to be diagnosed with autism later in life if an ultrasound taken just after birth showed they had enlarged ventricles, cavities in the brain that store spinal fluid.  

Activists love wind power the way they once loved ethanol and natural gas - it is good until scientists show them it is not. 

Claims that there is no upper bound for wind power, that it is scalable because gusts and breezes don't seem likely to "run out" on a global scale, are not based on reality.  And neither are claims that the generating capacity of large-scale wind farms is unlimited. 

Climate change causing every weather event enjoyed the kind of fallacious media coverage in late 2012 it hadn't gotten since 2006 - it remains bad science. While short-term weather is notoriously volatile, climate is more of an average weather pattern over a long period of time. This dichotomy provides the analytical framework for scientific thinking about atmospheric variability, including climate change.

Researchers have reported the results of a 10-year, double-blind randomized controlled trial in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition and  found that the infants of mothers who were given 600 milligrams of the omega-3 fatty acid DHA during pregnancy weighed more at birth and were less likely to be very low birth weight and born before 34 weeks gestation than infants of mothers who were given a placebo.

This result greatly strengthens the case for using the dietary supplement during pregnancy. A follow-up of this sample of infants is ongoing to determine whether prenatal DHA nutritional supplementation will benefit children's intelligence and school readiness.