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The drug erythropoietin, often called EPO, is banned from sports because it is believed to enhance an athlete’s performance and give people who use it an unfair advantage over unenhanced competitors. However a new systemic review of existing research, published in the British Journal of Clinical Pharmacology, reveals that there is no scientific evidence that it does enhance performance, but there is evidence that using it in sport could place a user’s health and life at risk.
A recent clinical trial found that the adult antiviral drug, tenofovir disoproxil fumarate (tenofovir DF), is safe and effective in treating adolescents with hepatitis B virus (HBV). Trial results published in the December issue of Hepatology, a journal of the American Association for the Study of Liver Diseases (AASLD), show that tenofovir DF suppressed HBV in 89% of pediatric participants.
A new study published in BJS has demonstrated for the first time that a simple breath analysis could be used for colorectal cancer screening. The study is part of the “Improving Outcomes in Gastrointestinal Cancer” supplement.
Devalued and Distrusted: Can the Pharmaceutical Industry Restore Its Broken Image? offers a balanced view of the role of drug discovery in improving public health.
Men in their thirties who had inflamed gums caused by severe periodontal disease were three times more likely to suffer from erection problems, according to a study published in the Journal of Sexual Medicine.
A new study suggests that the common diabetes medication metformin may be considered for use in the prevention or treatment of ovarian cancer. Published early online in CANCER, a peer-reviewed journal of the American Cancer Society, the study found that ovarian cancer patients who took the drug tended to live longer than patients who did not take it.
Winning Paper Explores Regulation of Adult Neural Stem Cells
There is no credible evidence of any benefit in using vitamin E to treat or prevent Alzheimer’s dementia, according to an updated systematic review published in The Cochrane Library. The authors highlight the need for greater awareness of its lack of efficacy and potential to cause harm in high doses. They also suggest that alternative formulations of Vitamin E should now be studied.
Ash dieback fungal disease is threatening to devastate Britain's ash tree population. To explore the problem a timely virtual issue of Plant Pathology brings together the latest research into emerging diseases on ash, chestnut, birch, horse chestnut and oak trees. Studies also consider the danger posed by global plant trade as a means of spreading disease and evaluate successful tree disease management.
Could vast geo-engineering projects offset the impact of climate change? Even if they could, would it be ethical, would it have popular support and could we afford it? A new issue of WIREs Climate Change brings together a range of experts to answer these questions, exploring historical precedents, popular perception of weather manipulation, as well as ethical and governance considerations.
Insects are pivotal to our ecosystems, yet their great continental migratory journeys remain a mystery. Scientists, writing in Ecography, explain how citizen science and traditional entomological studies combined to reveal the migration of the painted lady butterfly Vanessa cardui. The study reveals how the butterflies have evolved a highly successful strategy to fly thousands of kilometers by cruising on favorable winds.
Modern technology allows our biological systems to be examined in unprecedented detail. It is expected that future advances will lead to personalized precision medicine, with a shift from traditional symptom-oriented diagnosis towards disease prevention and early diagnostics. A study in WIREs Systems Biology and Medicine reviews the advances and challenges posed by this transition and offers a prospective view of future personalized health care.
With unemployment levels at their highest since the great depression, an army of job hunters has become a central part of the world of work. Research into job hunting often focuses on links between the personality of the applicant and their success, but new research in Personal Psychology sets out the key contextual factors which explain how job hunters’ demands are related to their success.
Ever seen a human face on a piece of toast or in a cloud? This illusionary effect is known as pareidolia and scientists writing in Applied Cognitive Psychology claim you’re more prone to seeing faces if you’re a religious or paranormal believer. The team found believer groups were better at identifying previously defined face-like regions in images, but were also prone to false alarms. Signal detection analysis revealed that believers had more liberal answering criteria than skeptics, but the actual detection sensitivity did not differ. The paranormal believers also evaluated the artifact faces as more face-like and emotional than the skeptics.
Most people probably don’t associate salad with love. Yet, experiments with US college students reveal that subtle reminders of love and sexual memories can trigger different food choices. The results, published in the Journal of Consumer Behaviour, show that reminders of companionate love lead to a greater likelihood of making healthy eating choices than subtle reminders of sexual love.
Ministers in the Board Room: New Study Explores Post-Political Careers of Politicians in Private Sector
The ‘revolving door’ between public office and corporate board rooms is often cited as a threat to the democratic process. New research, published in Political Studies, explores the earnings of politicians who take jobs in corporations when they retire and finds that ministers from the Treasury, Foreign Office and the Ministry of Defense develop the strongest corporate connections.
New research in the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society reveals the amount of dementia sufferers who go missing when out driving, and how effective Silver Alert notifications have been in locating them. The results reveal the majority of missing drivers were men aged 58 to 94, with most drivers becoming lost during routine trips. Alarmingly only 40% were found in the county where they went missing, and 10% were found to have crossed into a different state.
Diabetes researchers believe transplanting pancreatic cells which secrete insulin may reduce the need for patients to regularly inject themselves. However, this potential treatment has been plagued by high failure rates. A new technique, detailed in Advanced Healthcare Materials, may help solve this problem by improving graft rates, which could increase future transplant success rates.
Influenza viruses remain a key pathogenic threat for humans, and understanding the viral sequencing data of flu strands can be crucial to understanding a virus’ origin, spread, and evolution. Researchers, writing in the Journal of Pathology, have turned to the worst pandemic in history, the 1918 Spanish flu, which killed approximately 50 million people worldwide. The team analyzed lung tissue samples from both the 1918 pandemic and the recent Swine Flu influenza of 2009. Within a matter of days the team succeeded in drawing out full-length IAV genomes from both samples, a process which previously took over nine years.
Long before mankind developed flight, humans were changing the skies above us. From industrial pollution to jet engine contrails, man-made clouds have become a permanent feature of the sky. Writing in Weather, scientists from Barcelona explore the origins of these man-made cloud formations and argue that ‘anthropoclouds’ should be promoted as an entirely new and separate classification.