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A Daily Baby Aspirin Could Help Many Pregnancies And Save Lives

By Selena Simmons-Duffin
Bridget Desmukes (center) and her husband, Jeffrey, love having a big, active family. "The kids are always climbing on things, flipping all the time — it

Pregnant women at high or even moderate risk of developing the life-threatening condition preeclampsia should consider taking a very small dose of aspirin daily to prevent it, doctors say.

(Image credit: Ryan Kellman/NPR)

  • September 16th 2019 at 11:02

CRISPR Gene-Editing May Offer Path To Cure For HIV, First Published Report Shows

By Rob Stein
CRISPR-CAS9 gene editing complex from Streptococcus pyogenes.

Researchers safely used CRISPR gene-editing techniques in a patient with HIV. The research provides evidence the approach may be promising for treating HIV infection.

(Image credit: MOLEKUUL/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY/Getty Images/Science Photo Libra)

  • September 11th 2019 at 23:00

Scientists Create A Device That Can Mass-Produce Human Embryoids

By Rob Stein
These human embryo-like structures (top) were synthesized from human stem cells; they

Researchers hope large numbers of very primitive, embryo-like structures will lead to new insights into early human development and ways to prevent miscarriages and birth defects.

(Image credit: Yi Zheng/University of Michigan, Ann Arbor)

  • September 11th 2019 at 19:01

EPA Chief Pledges To Severely Cut Back On Animal Testing Of Chemicals

By Nell Greenfieldboyce
The EPA says it aims to eliminate the testing of chemicals and pesticides in animals by 2035.

Alternative tests are emerging, the agency says, such as computer modeling and tissue studies of cells grown in the lab. Environmental advocates say the move is too quick, and disregards human health.

(Image credit: filo/Getty Images)

  • September 10th 2019 at 20:57

How A Prenatal 'Bootcamp' For New Dads Helps The Whole Family

By Juli Fraga
Joe Bay (center), coach of a New York City "Bootcamp for New Dads," instructs Adewale Oshodi (left) and George Pasco in how to cradle an infant for best soothing.

Prenatal classes often focus on Mom-to-be — on her shifting role and emotional needs, along with new skills. But if Dad gets sidelined early into a supporting role, research shows, everybody loses.

(Image credit: Jason LeCras for NPR)

  • September 8th 2019 at 13:00

Opinion: Earth Has Survived Extinctions Before, It's Humans Who Are Fragile

By Scott Simon
A gas flare from the Shell Chemical LP petroleum refinery illuminates the sky on Aug. 21 in Norco, La.

Earth has experienced cataclysmic life-destroying events before. NPR's Scott Simon reflects on what this means for humans in the midst of climate change.

(Image credit: Drew Angerer/Getty Images)

  • September 7th 2019 at 14:29

How Should Scientists' Access To Health Databanks Be Managed?

By Richard Harris
UK Biobank has granted 10,000 qualified scientists access to its large database of genetic sequences and other medical data, but other organizations with databases have been far more restrictive in giving access.

Medical and genetic data from more than a million Americans are now in scientific databases. Some programs hoard the data, while others share widely with scientists, hoping to speed medical discovery.

(Image credit: KTSDESIGN/Getty Images/Science Photo Library)

  • September 6th 2019 at 11:04

Vitamin E Suspected In Serious Lung Problems Among People Who Vaped Cannabis

By Joe Neel, Allison Aubrey
The New York State Department of Health said Thursday that it is looking at vitamin E acetate as a potential cause of severe pulmonary illness cases in the state that have been associated with vaping.

New York officials say tests found high levels of vitamin E in cannabis vaping products used by people who developed lung damage. But it's only one of many possible causes still under investigation.

(Image credit: Daniel Becerril/Reuters)

  • September 6th 2019 at 01:09

The Other Twitterverse: Squirrels Eavesdrop On Birds, Researchers Say

By Nell Greenfieldboyce
The sounds of pleasant, relaxed bird chatter made eastern grey squirrels resume foraging more quickly after hearing the sounds of a predator, researchers found.

A squirrel wondering if it's safe enough to forage for food apparently listens for the reassuring chatter of nearby birds, a study finds.

(Image credit: Mike Kemp/In Pictures via Getty Images)

  • September 4th 2019 at 20:01

Fentanyl As A Dark Web Profit Center, From Chinese Labs To U.S. Streets

By Dave Davies
Bags of heroin, some laced with fentanyl, picked up in a 2016 New York City drug bust. "Basically, [fentanyl] is so cheap to produce and it

Fentanyl, Inc. author Ben Westhoff says the opioid, while useful in hospitals, is killing more Americans as a street drug than any other in U.S. history. Here's how it moves from China to your corner.

(Image credit: Drew Angerer/Getty Images)

  • September 4th 2019 at 19:04

Blind From A Bad Diet? Teen Who Ate Mostly Potato Chips And Fries Lost His Sight

By Allison Aubrey
Researchers in the U.K. say a teen has suffered vision loss after years of eating a highly limited diet consisting of snacking on Pringles potato chips, as well as French fries, white bread and some processed pork products.

A poor diet can lead to vision loss, experts say. For a teen, it's certainly rare, but a new case study documents blindness in a boy who ate lots of chips, white bread and bits of processed meat.

(Image credit: Bloomberg via Getty Images)

  • September 3rd 2019 at 21:05

Millennial And Gen-X Travelers: Need Another Measles Shot?

By April Dembosky
The measles virus is highly contagious. If someone with measles coughs or sneezes, the virus in those droplets can survive for two hours afterward — infecting about 90% of the people lacking immunity who pass through that space.

Americans born in the '70s and '80s may not be immune to measles, health officials say. If you're traveling to a country or region having an outbreak, consider a second dose of vaccine before you go.

(Image credit: Erik Witsoe/EyeEm/Getty Images)

  • September 2nd 2019 at 11:45

A New Bloodsucking Leech Species Found Hiding Outside Washington, D.C.

By Leila Fadel
Macrobdella mimicus, the first new species of medicinal leech discovered in over 40 years.

Smithsonian researcher Anna Phillips led the recent discovery of the new medicinal species. Its superficial similarities to a North American leech species helped prevent its detection before.

(Image credit: The Smithsonian Institution)

  • September 1st 2019 at 14:36

Optimists For The Win: Finding The Bright Side Might Help You Live Longer

By Patti Neighmond
Even if optimism doesn

Pessimists may suspect this finding, but researchers who tracked the health outcomes of thousands of adults across many years found optimists were much more likely to reach 85. Optimism is teachable.

(Image credit: Roy Scott/Ikon Images via Getty Images)

  • September 1st 2019 at 13:00

UK Biobank Requires Earth's Geneticists To Cooperate, Not Compete

By Richard Harris
UK Biobank, based in Manchester, England, is the largest blood-based research project in the world. The research project will involve at least 500,000 people across the U.K., and follow their health for next 30 years or more, providing a resource for scientists battling diseases.

A project that shares medical information from 500,000 volunteers is driving innovative research around the world. The richness of the database means scientists are motivated to make it even better.

(Image credit: Christopher Furlong/Getty Images)

  • August 31st 2019 at 14:19

Australia Says Great Barrier Reef Has 'Very Poor' Outlook, Climate Change To Blame

By Merrit Kennedy
The Australian federal government has downgraded its long-term outlook of the Great Barrier Reef to "very poor," and it says that climate change is the most significant threat.

"Despite concerted efforts and investments, the condition of the Great Barrier Reef has declined since 2014, and this is largely due to the impacts from climate change," the main scientist said.

(Image credit: William West /AFP/Getty Images)

  • August 30th 2019 at 22:35

After Months In A Dish, Lab-Grown Minibrains Start Making 'Brain Waves'

By Jon Hamilton
Scientists say pea-size organoids of human brain tissue may offer a way to study the biological beginnings of a wide range of brain conditions, including autism, bipolar disorder and schizophrenia.

Researchers say clusters of human brain cells grown in the lab can spontaneously generate electrical patterns similar to the brain waves of a 6-month-old fetus.

(Image credit: Alysson Muotri/UC San Diego Health Sciences)

  • August 29th 2019 at 18:55

Study Questions Mainstay Treatment For Mild Asthma

By April Dembosky
Among patients age 12 and older in a study of people with mild, persistent asthma, more than half did just as well, or better, on a placebo as they did on a steroid inhaler used twice per day to prevent symptoms.

Many of the 26 million Americans with asthma use a low-dose steroid inhaler daily to prevent symptoms. But a recent study raises questions about this strategy for people with mild, persistent asthma.

(Image credit: hsyncoban/Getty Images)

  • August 26th 2019 at 11:06

Scientists In New York Are Trying To Edit The DNA In Human Sperm

By Rob Stein

NPR got exclusive access to the only lab known to be trying to edit the DNA in human sperm, which raises all the same thorny issues as modifying genes in human embryos

  • August 22nd 2019 at 23:46

Naked And Unafraid: The Secret Lives Of Naked Mole Rats

By Pien Huang
Naked mole rats are eusocial, which means they live all crowded together, in a colony underground.

Picture a hairless, wrinkly rodent about the size of a small sweet potato — kinda cool, kinda weird. They also are extraordinarily long-lived. Researchers are lining up to study their secrets.

(Image credit: Gregory G Dimijian/Getty Images/Science Source)

  • August 21st 2019 at 19:52
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