Body

Swedish researchers have found a way to increase the weight of people with Alzheimer's, by improving communication and patient involvement, altering meal routines and providing a more homely eating environment. Patients who gained weight also displayed improved intellectual abilities.

During the three-month study, published in the May issue of Journal of Clinical Nursing, 13 of the 18 patients in the intervention group put on weight, compared with just two of the 15 patients in the control group.

Keeping at arm's length won't protect you from catching an infectious disease, according to new research by Queensland University of Technology which reveals airborne viruses can spread far and wide.

Professor Lidia Morawska, director of QUT's International Laboratory for Air Quality and Health, said the study dispelled the myth that viruses emitted from humans only travel a metre in the air.

Professor Morawska and a team of QUT scientists have been studying the way droplets carring viruses are dispersed in the air when people speak, cough, sneeze and breathe.

Molecular studies recently revealed new genetic information concerning the long-disputed origin of the “European potato.” Scientists from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, the University of La Laguna, and the International Potato Center used genetic markers to prove that the remnants of the earliest known landraces of the European potato are of Andean and Chilean origin.

Threatened coral reefs could be given a helping hand by establishing marine reserves, according to a research team led by the University of Exeter. Marine reserves have already proved to be a successful way of protecting marine life against commercial fishing. Marine reserves could also help in the recovery of corals, which are already suffering the effects of climate change and over-fishing.Adult male of the queen parrotfish, Scarus vetula, one of the most important grazers on Caribbean coral reefs.

A Mediterranean diet halves the chances of developing progressive inflammatory lung disease (COPD), reveals a large study, published ahead of print in Thorax.

COPD (chronic obstructive pulmonary disease) is an umbrella term for chronic progressive lung disease, such as emphysema and bronchitis. It is expected to become the third leading cause of death worldwide by 2020, with cigarette smoking the primary factor in its development.

A study led by researchers at UCL (University College London) demonstrates that female reproductive function is influenced by childhood environment. This suggests there is a critical window of time from about 0-8 years of age that determines the rate at which girls physically mature and how high their reproductive hormone levels reach as adults.

In the eye of a furious hurricane, the weather is often quite calm and sunny. But new NASA research is providing clues about how the seemingly subtle movement of air within and around this region provides energy to keep this central "powerhouse" functioning.

Using computer simulations and observations of 1998's Hurricane Bonnie in southern North Carolina, scientists were able to get a detailed view of pockets of swirling, warm humid air moving from the eye of the storm to the ring of strong thunderstorms in the eyewall that contributed to the intensification of the hurricane.

Food producers in developing countries still need to make many improvements before they can compete effectively on the world market. This is the conclusion from researchers at Wageningen University after their 4-year study. They studied similar production chains in various tropical areas and recorded their findings in a book: ´Tropical food chains, Governance regimes for quality management’.

Human beings are directly responsible for more than 110,000 chemical substances which have been generated since the Industrial Revolution.

Researchers observing wild chimpanzees in Uganda have discovered repeated instances of a mysterious and poorly understood behavior: female-led infanticide. The findings, reported by Simon Townsend, Katie Slocombe and colleagues of the University of St. Andrews, Scotland, and the Budongo Forest Project, Uganda, appear in the May 15th issue of the journal Current Biology, published by Cell Press.