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Transgender kids show consistent gender identity across measures

Thu, 29/01/2015 - 6:29pm
A study with 32 transgender children, ages 5 to 12, indicates that the gender identity of these children is deeply held and is not the result of confusion about gender identity or pretense. The study is one of the first to explore gender identity in transgender children using implicit measures that operate outside conscious awareness and are, therefore, less susceptible to modification than self-report measures.
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Genetically engineered antibody-based molecules show enhanced hiv-fighting abilities

Thu, 29/01/2015 - 6:29pm
Capitalizing on a new insight into HIV's strategy for evading antibodies -- proteins produced by the immune system to identify and wipe out invading objects such as viruses -- researchers have developed antibody-based molecules that are more than 100 times better than our bodies' own defenses at binding to and neutralizing HIV, when tested in vitro. The work suggests a novel approach that could be used to engineer more effective HIV-fighting drugs.
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Added fructose is a principal driver of type 2 diabetes, experts argue

Thu, 29/01/2015 - 6:29pm
Recent studies have shown that added sugars, particularly those containing fructose, are a principal driver of diabetes and pre-diabetes, even more so than other carbohydrates. Clinical experts challenge current dietary guidelines that allow up to 25 percent of total daily calories as added sugars, and propose drastic reductions in the amount of added sugar, and especially added fructose, people consume.
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Crucial protective role observed for farnesoid-x receptor in cholestatic liver injury

Thu, 29/01/2015 - 6:28pm
The farnesoid-X receptor (FXR), also known as the chief regulator of bile acid metabolism, is thought to play a role in some hepatobiliary and gastrointestinal disorders. A recent study has demonstrated dysfunctional intestinal FXR-signaling in a rat model of cholestatic liver injury, accompanied by intestinal bacterial translocation (BTL) and increased permeability and inflammation. Notably, a highly potent, selective FXR agonist obeticholic acid (INT-747) counteracted these effects, suggesting a potential new therapeutic avenue for liver disease.
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Walking on ice takes more than brains: 'Mini-brain' in spinal cord aids in balance

Thu, 29/01/2015 - 6:28pm
Scientists have discovered how a "mini-brain" in the spinal cord aids in balance. Much of the balancing act that our bodies perform when faced with a task such as walking on an icy surface happens unconsciously, thanks to a cluster of neurons in our spinal cord that function as a "mini-brain" to integrate sensory information and make the necessary adjustments to our muscles so that we don't slip and fall, researchers report.
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Common pesticide may increase risk of ADHD

Thu, 29/01/2015 - 5:55pm
A new study provides strong evidence, using data from animal models and humans, that exposure to a common household pesticide may be a risk factor for ADHD.
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Infants create new knowledge while sleeping

Thu, 29/01/2015 - 5:55pm
There is no rest for a baby's brain -- not even in sleep. While infants sleep they are reprocessing what they have learned. Researchers have discovered that babies of the age from nine to 16 months remember the names of objects better if they had a short nap.
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Parkinson's gene linked to lung cancer

Thu, 29/01/2015 - 5:55pm
A gene that is associated with lung cancer has been identified by researchers. Through whole exome sequencing, they identified a link between a mutation in PARK2, a gene associated with early-onset Parkinson's disease, and familial lung cancer.
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Among gut microbes, strains, not just species, matter

Thu, 29/01/2015 - 5:55pm
Sophisticated genomic techniques now allow scientists to estimate the strains, not just the species, in samples of the human gut's microbe collection. Differences in the strains of microorganisms present might account for the variable influence the gut's microbe community has on human health and disease. Understanding the effects of various strain combinations on such functions as metabolism, immunity and drug reactions might suggest ways to manipulate the gut microbiome to improve health.
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Ancient 'genomic parasites' spurred evolution of pregnancy in mammals

Thu, 29/01/2015 - 5:55pm
Large-scale genetic changes that marked the evolution of pregnancy in mammals have been identified by an international team of scientists. They found thousands of genes that evolved to be expressed in the uterus in early mammals. Surprisingly, these genes appear to have been recruited from other tissue types by transposons -- ancient mobile genetic elements sometimes thought of as genomic parasites. The study sheds light on how organisms evolve new morphological structures and functions.
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Cancer fear can impact screening uptake

Thu, 29/01/2015 - 5:54pm
People who worry about cancer are more likely to want to get screened for colon cancer, but feeling uncomfortable at the thought of cancer makes them less likely to actually go for the test, finds new research.
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Functioning brain tissue grown in 3-D structure

Thu, 29/01/2015 - 5:54pm
Researchers have induced human embryonic stem cells to self-organize into a three-dimensional structure similar to the cerebellum, providing tantalizing clues in the quest to recreate neural structures in the laboratory. One of the primary goals of stem-cell research is to be able to replace damaged body parts with tissues grown from undifferentiated stem cells. For the nervous system, this is a particular challenge because not only do specific neurons need to be generated, but they must also be coaxed into connecting to each other in very specific ways.
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New deep-brain imaging reveals separate functions for nearly identical neurons

Thu, 29/01/2015 - 5:54pm
New deep-brain imaging shows activity of individual, genetically similar neurons to particular behaviors of mice. Scientists watched as one neuron was activated when a mouse searched for food while a nearly identical neuron next to it remained inactive until the mouse began eating.
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Blame men for political gridlock, study says

Thu, 29/01/2015 - 4:37pm
Men in survey and experimental data were more likely than women to avoid cross-party political discussion, to judge political arguments based solely on what party is advancing them, and to form strong political opinions about the opposite party's positions without actually listening to the other side's reasoning, researchers report.
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Iceland rises as its glaciers melt from climate change

Thu, 29/01/2015 - 4:37pm
Earth's crust under Iceland is rebounding as global warming melts the island's great ice caps. In south-central Iceland some sites are moving upward as much as 1.4 inches (35 mm) per year. A new paper is the first to show the current fast uplift of the Icelandic crust is a result of accelerated melting of the island's glaciers and coincides with the onset of warming that began about 30 years ago, the researchers said.
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Ancient skull shows modern humans colonized Eurasia 60-70,000 years ago

Thu, 29/01/2015 - 4:37pm
A skull provides direct anatomical evidence that fills a problematic time gap of modern human migration into Europe. It is also the first proof that anatomically modern humans existed at the same time as Neanderthals in the same geographical area.
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Invasive species in the Great Lakes by 2063

Thu, 29/01/2015 - 4:35pm
The vulnerability of the basin to future invaders has been demonstrated by a new study that calls for regulations to mitigate this threat. The Great Lakes have been invaded by more non-native species than any other freshwater ecosystem in the world. In spite of increasing efforts to stem the tide of invasion threats, the lakes remain vulnerable, according to scientists. If no new regulations are enforced, they predict new waves of invasions and identify some species that could invade the Lakes over the next 50 years.
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Understanding portable biodetection technology for identifying suspcious substances

Thu, 29/01/2015 - 4:35pm
The number of portable biodetectors has grown exponentially in the last decade. During this time, first responders could try different devices, but they didn’t have independent, standardized comparisons to determine which devices better met their needs. Now they do.
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Obesity, diabetes symptoms in mice improved by reversing brain inflammation

Thu, 29/01/2015 - 3:43pm
Using an antioxidant to reverse inflammation in the brain caused by a high-fat diet greatly improves symptoms related to obesity and type 2 diabetes, a new study suggests. The research suggests that butein and other natural compounds that block inflammation in the brain should be vigorously investigated as novel anti-diabetic treatments, he says.
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New research recommends treating elevated blood pressure during pregnancy

Thu, 29/01/2015 - 3:43pm
Treating a woman's elevated blood pressure during pregnancy is safer for her and safe for the baby, a new study shows. The study addresses an age-old belief that reducing elevated blood pressure during pregnancy might lead to reduced growth in the womb and worse health at birth.
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