Uncategorized Out of Africa and into an archaic human melting pot

Out of Africa and into an archaic human melting pot

Genetic analysis has revealed that the ancestors of modern humans interbred with at least five different archaic human groups as they moved out of Africa and across Eurasia. While two of the archaic groups are currently known – the Neandertals and their sister group the Denisovans from Asia ¬- the others remain unnamed and have …

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Uncategorized Study identifies the best healthy eating nudges

Study identifies the best healthy eating nudges

Ever since Richard Thaler won the Nobel Prize in Economics, “nudge” has been front and centre in the interest of researchers and policy makers. A simple definition of nudge is an intervention that attempts to influence behaviours without using economic incentives and while preserving freedom of choice. In a meta-analysis of real-life experiments drawn from …

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Uncategorized Exercise may increase lifespan ‘regardless of past activity levels’

Exercise may increase lifespan ‘regardless of past activity levels’

Exercise is good for us, without a doubt. From lowering the risk of cardiovascular disease, cancer, and diabetes, to increasing life expectancy, the benefits of physical activity are numerous, as countless studies have shown. But does it matter when one starts to exercise, and is it ever too late to reap the benefits? New research …

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Uncategorized Sleep readies synapses for learning

Sleep readies synapses for learning

Synapses in the hippocampus are larger and stronger after sleep deprivation, according to new research in mice published in JNeurosci. Overall, this study supports the idea that sleep may universally weaken synapses that are strengthened from learning, allowing for new learning to occur after waking. Sleep is thought to recalibrate synaptic strength after a day …

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Uncategorized Motivations determine whether others can influence your emotions

Motivations determine whether others can influence your emotions

To learn how people react to upsetting situations and respond to others around them, the researchers examined people’s anger toward politically charged events in a series of laboratory studies with 107 participants. The team also analyzed almost 19 million tweets in response to the police shooting of Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri, in 2014. In …

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Uncategorized The more students engage with music, the better their academic performance

The more students engage with music, the better their academic performance

School administrators needing to trim budgets often look first to music courses, because the general belief is that students who devote time to music rather than math, science and English, will underperform in those disciplines. “Our research proved this belief wrong and found the more the students engage with music, the better they do in …

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Uncategorized Nuts And Bolts Of Robotic Surgery

Nuts And Bolts Of Robotic Surgery

Compared to traditional open surgery, robotic surgery is minimally invasive and recovery time is often shorter, making the technology attractive to patients and doctors. But the da Vinci surgical system is expensive, costing as much as $2 million, and recent studies show that for certain procedures it can sometimes lead to worse long-term outcomes than …

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Uncategorized Brain activity can be used to measure how well concepts are understood

Brain activity can be used to measure how well concepts are understood

“Learning about STEM topics is exciting but it can also be quite challenging. Yet, through the course of learning, students develop a rich understanding of many complex concepts. Presumably, this acquired knowledge must be reflected in new patterns of brain activity. However, we currently don’t have a detailed understanding of how the brain supports this …

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Uncategorized For patients with clogged leg arteries, pain-free exercise works too

For patients with clogged leg arteries, pain-free exercise works too

Around 200 million people worldwide have peripheral arterial disease (PAD), where arteries in the legs are clogged, restricting blood flow to the legs and raising the chances of stroke and heart attack. Smoking, diabetes, high blood pressure, and high cholesterol all increase the risk of PAD. Around 30% of patients have pain and cramping in …

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Uncategorized Statin therapy reduces the risk of stroke in cancer patients after radiation

Statin therapy reduces the risk of stroke in cancer patients after radiation

Cancer patients taking cholesterol-lowering statin medication following radiation therapy of the chest, neck or head had significantly reduced risk of suffering a stroke, and possibly other cardiovascular complications, according to new research in Journal of the American Heart Association, the Open Access Journal of the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association. This is the first large …

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