Moons outside our Solar System with the potential to support life have just become much easier to detect, thanks to research by an astronomer at University College London (UCL).
David Kipping has found that such moons can be revealed by looking at wobbles in the velocity of the planets they orbit. His calculations, which appear in the Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society today, not only allow us to confirm if a planet has a satellite but to calculate its mass and distance from its host planet factors that determine the likely habitabiliity of a moon.
More than five million people die every year from infectious diseases, despite the availability of numerous antibiotics and vaccines. The discovery of penicillin to treat bacterial infections, along with the development of vaccines for previously incurable virus diseases such as polio and smallpox, achieved great reductions in mortality during the mid-20th century.
A new study from the psychology department at Tufts University shows that when dieters eliminate carbohydrates from their meals, they performed more poorly on memory-based tasks than when they reduce calories, but maintain carbohydrates. When carbohydrates were reintroduced, cognition skills returned to normal.
While the brain uses glucose as its primary fuel, it has no way of storing it. Rather, the body breaks down carbohydrates into glucose, which is carried to the brain through the blood stream and used immediately by nerve cells for energy. Reduced carbohydrate intake should thus reduce the brain's source of energy. Therefore, researchers hypothesized that diets low in carbohydrates would affect cognitive skills.
Women's magazines such as The Oprah Magazine and Cosmopolitan portray cosmetic surgery as a physically risky but overall worthwhile option for enhancing physical appearance but a University of British Columbia study has found they aren't really addressing possible emotional health risks.
The study, published in Women's Health Issues journal, is the first to examine how women's magazines portray cosmetic surgery to Canadians, and also found that male opinions on female attractiveness are routinely used to justify cosmetic surgery and that a disproportionate amount of articles are devoted to breast implants and cosmetic surgery among women aged 19-34.
Airline pilots who have flown for many years may be at risk of DNA damage from prolonged exposure to cosmic ionizing radiation, suggests a study in Occupational and Environmental Medicine.
The research team compared the rate of chromosomal (DNA) abnormalities in blood samples taken from 83 airline pilots and 50 university faculty members from the same US city.
The two groups were matched for age (35 to 56), sex (male), and smoking habit (light or non-smokers). Age and smoking are known risk factors for cumulative DNA damage.
Fifty eight of the pilots (70%) had served in the military, and they had undertaken significantly more personal air travel than the university staff. Both these factors would have exposed them to more ionising radiation.
Hospital-borne infections are a serious risk of a long-term hospital stay, and ventilator-associated pneumonia (VAP), a lung infection that develops in about 15% of all people who are ventilated, is among the most dangerous. With weakened immune systems and a higher resistance to antibiotics, patients who rely on a mechanical ventilator can easily develop serious infections — as 26,000 Americans do every year.
Thanks to a proven new clinical approach developed by Tel Aviv University nurses, though, there is a new tool for stopping the onset of VAP in hospitals.
This new high-tech tool? An ordinary toothbrush.
Three Times a Day Keeps Pneumonia Away