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Biomarkers Predict How Well People Age

Chemicals found in the blood, biomarkers, can be combined to produce patterns that signify how...

Freud Was Right

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Researchers at the Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research in Rostock, Germany, say life expectancy changes have been so rapid since 1900 that "72 is the new 30" - by that, they mean primitive hunter gatherers had the same odds of dying at age 30 as a modern man in the developed world faces at age 72.

The English know they drink too much alcohol, but they all think it is someone else doing it. In actuality, as many as 75% of people in England are drinking in excess of the recommended daily alcohol limit, according to a new paper in the European Journal of Public Health.

The scholars investigated the potential public health implications related to the under-reporting of alcohol consumption. International surveys have shown that self-reported alcohol consumption only accounts for between 40 and 60 per cent of alcohol sales- that discrepancy reveasl the potential impact of this 'missing' alcohol on public health.

In January of 2012, the United States Department of Agriculture passed a series of regulations designed to make school lunches more nutritious, which included requiring schools to increase whole grain foods and forcing students to select either a fruit or vegetable with their purchased lunch. 

This led to athletes and other students to claim they were not getting enough calories and complaints from advocates for poor children that, since it is the best meal some children might get during the day, it should not be focused on social engineering. Trash cans filled with fruit didn't help things. 

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.