Study identifies mechanism by which nicotine withdrawal increases junk food consumption

New data collected by University of Minnesota Medical School researchers demonstrate a clear connection between nicotine withdrawal and poor eating habits. Their findings point to the opioid system, the brain functions responsible for addiction and appetite regulation, as a possible cause for smoker preference of energy-dense, high-calorie food during nicotine withdrawal. This can lead to weight gain, for those who […]

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Largest study of osteoarthritis to date discovers new genetic risk factors and identifies drug targets

Osteoarthritis is a disease of the joints and affects over 300 million individuals worldwide. It is characterized by a gradually increasing degeneration of the cartilage on the joint surface. This results in chronic pain and stiffness in the joints and is a leading cause of disability. Until today, no curative treatments have been available. An improved understanding of what causes […]

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Study shows how U.S. immigration policy can have domestic health effects

After a controversial federal order suspending travel to the U.S. from seven Muslim-majority countries was signed in 2017, the number of visits to emergency departments by Minneapolis-St. Paul area residents from those nations increased significantly. And that development followed an already marked increase in primary care visits by members of the same population, which began in November 2016 following an […]

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Novel study of high-potency cannabis shows some memory effects

Even before the pandemic made Zoom ubiquitous, Washington State University researchers were using the video conferencing app to research a type of cannabis that is understudied: the kind people actually use. For the study, published in Scientific Reports, researchers observed cannabis users over Zoom as they smoked high-potency cannabis flower or vaped concentrates they purchased themselves from cannabis dispensaries in […]

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Study reveals mechanisms of increased infectivity and antibody resistance of SARS-CoV-2 variants

Combining structural biology and computation, a Duke-led team of researchers has identified how multiple mutations on the SARS-CoV-2 spike protein independently create variants that are more transmissible and potentially resistant to antibodies. By acquiring mutations on the spike protein, one such variant gained the ability to leap from humans to minks and back to humans. Other variants—including Alpha, which first […]

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New study finds SARS-CoV-2 can infect testes

Researchers at the University of Texas Medical Branch have observed that SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19, can infect the testes of infected hamsters. The findings, published in the journal Microorganisms, could help explain symptoms some men with COVID-19 have reported and have important implications for men’s health. As the pandemic goes on, clinicians continue to report their findings that […]

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Study finds ‘serious problems with privacy’ in mobile health apps

An in-depth analysis of more than 20,000 health related mobile applications (mHealth apps) published by The BMJ today finds “serious problems with privacy and inconsistent privacy practices.” The researchers say the collection of personal user information is “a pervasive practice” and that patients “should be informed on the privacy practices of these apps and the associated privacy risks before installation […]

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Study highlights need to monitor oxygen therapy in children with pneumonia

Oxygen therapy can save the lives of children with pneumonia, but careful monitoring is needed to reduce harm, avoid over-reliance and protect supply. These are among some of the key findings to emerge from a four-year-long study of children hospitalized with severe pneumonia in East Africa. Led by researchers at Imperial College London, the Children’s Oxygen Administration Strategies Trial (COAST) […]

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