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Updated: 59 min 52 sec ago

Oklahoma Finally Gets Its Capital Punishment Chemistry Right

Mar 15 2018 - 07:03

Oklahoma, which badly botched a number a number of executions by using experimental methods that were scientifically flawed, has decided to use nitrogen asphyxiation instead. A look at the chemistry and physiology of a more humane method of capital punishment. 

Categories: ACSH

How Many Pets Does United Airlines Kill?

Mar 14 2018 - 18:03

It's difficult to imagine what life must be like for people who work in public relations at United Airlines. If the crew isn't dragging a medical doctor off of a plane or killing a giant bunny, they are suffocating a puppy in the overhead compartment.

Just how dangerous is it for a pet to fly on an airline? Not very. But it should be kept in mind that transporting animals can be trickier than transporting people. Rabbits, for instance, can get so scared that they literally die of fear. Unfamiliar settings can greatly stress animals.

Categories: ACSH

Genetic Testing Post-Breast Cancer Diagnosis Isn't Done As Much As It Should Be

Mar 14 2018 - 10:03

Some women who have been diagnosed with early stage breast cancer would be well advised to have genetic screening and advice to help inform decisions about additional treatments. But many are not, and they should be aware that genetic counseling could be crucial and ask for it if it isn't offered — especially those who are considered at high risk of developing additional cancers.

Categories: ACSH

Zinc -A Bipolar Element

Mar 14 2018 - 08:03

Trying to assign human characteristics to elements might get you convicted for anthropomorphizing. But in the case of zinc, it's not as crazy as you'd think. Zinc is "chemically bipolar" for a number of reasons. Some will surprise you.

Categories: ACSH

Russian Propaganda: Three-Fingered Mummies in Nazca, Peru Are Aliens

Mar 13 2018 - 23:03

A complete hoax was circulated among Russian state-controlled media as legitimate news, and the Western media fell for it. Sure, some of them provided "caveats," but the point is that Russian propaganda has so infiltrated the public discourse that it appears regularly in mainstream Western media outlets. That's shocking.

Categories: ACSH

In Side-by-Side Test, Recycled Wastewater Tastes Better than Tap

Mar 13 2018 - 16:03

Just the thought makes some cringe, but the truth is that recaptured, treated wastewater is safe to drink. But as compared to tap and bottled water, how does it taste? Researchers from the University of California, Riverside set to find out, and the results of their study were somewhat surprising.

Categories: ACSH

Humans Sleep (Way) Less than Other Primates

Mar 13 2018 - 13:03

It's sleep awareness week and we are trying to, well, be more aware of our sleep. 

Sleep is a fascinating topic in large part because we know that we will die without it but don't really understand why. Why we sleep is a perpetuating question in neuroscience along with what our brain is doing while we sleep. 

A new study from the Department of Evolutionary Anthropology at Duke University asked the question, how much do humans sleep when compared with other non-human primates?  

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My Post-Baby BMI Says I'm Overweight

Mar 13 2018 - 12:03

Five months after having my son, I'm back to my pre-baby weight. But my BMI still says I'm overweight. Is this true?

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Chef David Chang Says Americans Are Racist Toward Chinese Food

Mar 12 2018 - 22:03

Everything is about racism these days. From politics to sports, somebody, somewhere, wants you to feel bad because something might be racist.

This uniquely American tendency to assign racism where none exists has struck again in yet another bizarre way: Celebrity chef David Chang says that Americans are racist toward Chinese food.

Categories: ACSH

Rehydrate to Satisfy Your Thirst – and No More

Mar 12 2018 - 14:03

We hear people say it all the time, especially at the gym or where runners congregate, as if it's a proven work-out mantra: Hydrate, hydrate, hydrate. The advice in all its forms flows like water itself: 

"Make sure you drink lots and lots of water to keep your system refreshed, so you can run cool." 

"Gotta drink 8 glasses of water a day."

Or this gem, paraphrasing the esteemed and world-famous internist, Thomas Brady, MD, quarterback of the New England Patriots: Drink enough water that equals half of your body weight, measured in ounces, every day.

Categories: ACSH

FDA Approves 23andMe Cancer Test for BRCA genes

Mar 12 2018 - 12:03

There are millions of people receiving information about their DNA, regarding either their ancestry and/or health. A new test for three mutations in two genes that are associated with higher rates of certain cancers was recently approved by the FDA. But, what does the information provided really mean?  

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LSD Has Staying Power- Chemistry Explains Why

Mar 12 2018 - 12:03

LSD has long had a reputation for staying in the brain for a comparatively long time - well after it is no longer in the blood. A group at UNC has figured out the reason behind this puzzling property by x-ray making use of crystallography and molecular modeling. It turns out that one very simple chemical interaction keeps LSD trapped in serotonin. A great example of structural biology. 

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Want To Increase Screening For CRC? There's An App For That.

Mar 12 2018 - 09:03

Screening tests for colorectal cancer (CRC) are generally underutilized, and thus chances to decrease deaths from the disease are missed. An app that patients can use on an iPAD increases the use of CRC screening tests, new research demonstrates.

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Mother Jones, Breitbart, Self And More Places We Were Cited Last Week

Mar 12 2018 - 07:03

In the 1990s, a term began to become propagated around the science community; watermelons. These were people who were 'green on the outside but red on the inside'. And those people were the new generation of environmentalists. Essentially, unlike their ancestors in environmentalism, they did not care about people, they only cared about tearing down institutions, like companies and universities and the free market itself. 

Categories: ACSH

Alcoholism May Be Linked to Living Further North

Mar 09 2018 - 23:03

Our statistical analysis suggests that the further north Americans live, the likelier they may be to drink excessively. Is it due to the long, dark winter nights?

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Acetaminophen Often Taken In Excess During Cold and Flu Season

Mar 09 2018 - 19:03

A new study published in the British Journal of Clinical Pharmacology suggests increased use and overdose of the common over-the-counter (OTC) pain reliever and fever reducing medication, acetaminophen, happens during cold and flu season. Why is that?

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Nap Time For Toddlers Shouldn't Mean Supplements!

Mar 09 2018 - 12:03

Three daycare workers in Chicago were arrested and charged with child endangerment after it was learned they fed their charges gummies containing the sleep-inducing supplement melatonin. What's wrong with that? Plenty.

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CDC: 1 in 12 Americans Has Moderate to Severe Depression. That Might Be an Underestimate

Mar 08 2018 - 21:03

The Patient Health Questionnaire-9 (PHQ-9) is a quick, 10-question test that attempts to objectify an inherently subjective topic: depression. You can take the test here.

Each question asks about your mental health and various behaviors over the past two weeks. Based on your response, you receive a score of 0-3 for each question. At the end of the test, the responses are tallied and a "depression score" is assigned as follows:

Categories: ACSH

The Canaries in the Physician Workforce Coal Mine Died Years Ago

Mar 08 2018 - 21:03

Rheumatologists are just one example of the problems society faces regarding the number of physicians we "need" and where they locate. Physicians make choices as we all do, based on what is best for us and our families. 

Categories: ACSH

Rheumatologists and Physician Maldistribution - How Can You Keep Them Down on the Farm, After They've Seen Paree?

Mar 08 2018 - 21:03

Rheumatologists are just one example of the problems society faces regarding the number of physicians we "need" and where they locate. Physicians make choices as we all do, based on what is best for us and our families. 

Categories: ACSH