Amerikanerne fortsetter å ese ut

Dagens Medisin - 1 time 57 sek siden
Den gjennomsnittlige amerikaner samler stadig mer magefett, selv om vektøkningen har flatet ut.

– Botox svekker kommunikasjon

Dagens Medisin - 6 timer 10 min siden
Kanskje blir man deiligere med Botox, men det kan være en viss fare for å bli både dum og deilig, advarer spesialist i klinisk psykologi.

UPDATED: Maven successfully enters Mars orbit

nobel intent - 9 timer 45 min siden

Shortly before 10p ET on Sunday, NASA plans on having its Maven spacecraft begin a maneuver to enter the Martian orbit. If the satellite successfully reaches its destination, it marks a huge accomplishment for NASA's first spaceship dedicated to exploring the Red Planet's upper atmosphere.

Maven, short for Mars Atmosphere and Volatile Evolution, has gone 442 million miles during 10 months of interplanetary travel. But tonight marks the culmination of 11 years of planning and development, leaving Maven in position to begin the mission's science phase. By closely monitoring Mars' atmosphere, NASA hopes the satellite will allow them to investigate the planet like never before—launching thorough studies into Mars' history, present climate, and potential to support life.

NASA's most recent Maven update says all spacecraft systems are operating nominally and the orbiter is on track. According to the organization, tonight's procedure involves having it turn in order to point its main engines in the proper direction before firing them to slow down the spacecraft enough to be captured into Mars orbit.

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Massive survey makes sense of the diversity of quasars

nobel intent - 11 timer 55 min siden
A radio image of a quasar, taken by the Very Large Array. The white dot in the middle is the core, while the protrusions pointed top-left and bottom-right are jets, traveling at relativistic speeds, culminating in lobes. Image courtesy of NRAO/AUI

In the hearts of some massive galaxies lie strange objects known as quasars. These mysterious objects were named for their apparent similarity to stars (quasar is short for ‘quasi-stellar radio source’), but they're now understood to be the light from rapidly accreting, supermassive black holes. In addition to their prodigious light output, they often emit jets of charged particles from their poles at close to the speed of light.

Mysteriously, quasars come in a variety of seemingly random forms, leading scientists to search for the cause of their diversity. While there are trends in their variation, up until now, no definitive evidence has been found to confirm any of the models we had for their appearance. But a new study has found a clear relationship between quasar properties and how they look, suggesting an underlying mechanism.

The study, which made use of archival data from the Sloan Digital Sky Survey, analyzed the spectra of more than 20,000 quasars, the first time a study of this type has been achieved with a statistically significant sample size. Within that huge sample, a pattern began to emerge.

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New technique gets pure hydrogen out of splitting water

nobel intent - søn, 21/09/2014 - 22:00
At some point in the future, filling up could actually involve giving your car the gas. Oak Ridge National Lab

Continued concerns about global warming have boosted work on alternative fuel sources that reduce emissions. Hydrogen is an appealing, clean-burning fuel. Currently, most hydrogen comes from the processing of fossil fuels, which produces carbon dioxide as a byproduct. However, the electrolysis of water produces hydrogen without the release of greenhouse gases—provided the electricity used in the process comes from renewable energy.

Currently, the favored method for producing hydrogen involves what are called proton exchange membrane electrolyzers (PEMEs). These use a polymer membrane that allows the movement of protons between solutions of varied charge while separating the negatively charged cathode and positively charged anode. Since the two gasses, hydrogen and oxygen, are produced at different electrodes, the membranes separate them as well, which allows for the easy harvesting of hydrogen.

Unfortunately, PEMEs are expensive because they require precious metal catalysts. Although higher power loads offset the price of these catalysts to some extent, these loads can lead to the simultaneous presence of hydrogen, oxygen, and catalytic particles, resulting in the production of reactive oxygen species (ROS) that degrade the membranes. Low power loads are not as effective because the rates of oxygen and hydrogen production are similar to the rates at which these gasses diffuse through the membrane. As a result, rather than pure hydrogen, you get a hazardous mix of the two gasses.

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There’s not a creativity deficit in science

nobel intent - lør, 20/09/2014 - 19:00

Not so long ago, on a website not so far away, an opinion was expressed: creativity was being suppressed in science. On the surface, the statistics support this: younger researchers are getting progressively less of the funding. Older researchers, it is asserted, tend to propose less risky and less innovative research. As with any good opinion in science, Nobel prize winners are wheeled as supporting cast. But, is it really true? Are we truly suppressing the creative side of science?

The answer is, overwhelmingly, no. Scientific papers are a crude measure for scientific progress, but never have more papers being produced per year than now. Clearly, something creative is going on here. If you don't like scientific papers, simply look at technological progress: your smartphone would not have nearly as much punch without the creativity of scientists; antiviral drugs were not found lying about on the ground; experimental stem-cell therapies were not accidentally attempted. Behind all of these new things lies a decade or more of scientific research. But, you know, thats not creative at all.

Maybe a lack of creativity manifests if we restrict ourselves to more fundamental breakthroughs, like... finding exoplanets, brown dwarfs, the anisotropy in cosmic microwave background, the Higgs Boson, Bose Einstein Condensates, or the acceleration of the rate of expansion of the universe. Not to mention very clever experiments that test the very nature of reality itself, like Wheeler's delayed choice experiment, and Bell inequality tests. Oh wait, all of those have happened in the last 20 years. Some have even garnered Nobel prizes for their work.

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Innrømmet svikt i legemiddelrutiner

Dagens Medisin - lør, 20/09/2014 - 16:26
– Den alvorligste svikten i legemiddelhåndtering vi noen gang har hatt, sier direktør for Sykehusapoteket Nord, etter at to tenåringer fikk 20-dobbel dose cellegift.

[This Week in Medicine] September 20–26, 2014

The Lancet - lør, 20/09/2014 - 02:01
A joint statement by the American Heart Association and American College of Cardiology has recommended a checklist to screen young people aged 12–25 years for congenital and genetic heart disease. Broad dissemination of automatic external defibrillators in places such as schools and sports arenas has also been supported.

[Editorial] Climate change and health—action please, not words

The Lancet - lør, 20/09/2014 - 02:01
Last year, the UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon expressed concern that the world's commitment to mitigate climate change was insufficient. Indeed, in today's Lancet, a Comment by Andy Haines and others provides a stark reminder of the likely adverse effects on human health should fossil fuel consumption and high population growth continue at their present levels. They call for the health community to take a longer term view, where actions that target climate change and health today will reduce the global burden of ill-health in the future.

[Editorial] The integration of mental and physical health care

The Lancet - lør, 20/09/2014 - 02:01
Last week, UK Chief Medical Officer (CMO) Dame Sally Davies launched her annual report on public mental health, which informs national and local government policy in England. The report calls for the integration of health-care services through a biopsychosocial framework and makes 14 policy recommendations. It has been welcomed by the Royal College of Psychiatrists (which defined six goals in response), the Faculty of Public Health, and others.

[Editorial] Dementia: a false promise

The Lancet - lør, 20/09/2014 - 02:01
On Sept 11–12, 2014, the pharmaceutical and biotechnology industries met with academics and politicians at Global Action Against Dementia, an event hosted by Canada and France. Following on from the 2013 G8 Summit on Dementia—which set an ambitious goal to find a dementia cure by 2025—their focus was to maximise “academia–industry synergies”.

[Comment] Health risks of climate change: act now or pay later

The Lancet - lør, 20/09/2014 - 02:01
There is growing scientific consensus that climate change is happening, is largely human induced, and will have serious consequences for human health. The impact of climate change on global health is probably not yet large, compared with major risk factors, but will become greater later in this century, especially if the world follows one of the so-called high-end emission pathways, such as Representative Concentration Pathway (RCP) 8·5, outlined in the UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) Fifth Assessment Report.

[Comment] The power of midwifery

The Lancet - lør, 20/09/2014 - 02:01
Midwifery is commonly misunderstood. The Series of four papers and five Comments we publish today sets out to correct that misunderstanding. One important conclusion is that application of the evidence presented in this Series could avert more than 80% of maternal and newborn deaths, including stillbirths. Midwifery therefore has a pivotal, yet widely neglected, part to play in accelerating progress to end preventable mortality of women and children.

[Comment] Effective treatment for depression in patients with cancer

The Lancet - lør, 20/09/2014 - 02:01
The studies by Michael Sharpe and colleagues in The Lancet and by Jane Walker and colleagues in The Lancet Oncology show a rigorous approach to the implementation and assessment of a complex intervention to alleviate depression in people with cancer. This research is timely, since the risk of depression has been shown to be two-to-three-times higher in patients with cancer than in the general population, and could contribute to the poorer quality of life and increased risk of suicide in such individuals.

[Comment] Melanoma: immune checkpoint blockade story gets better

The Lancet - lør, 20/09/2014 - 02:01
The 10-year survival for patients with metastatic melanoma is less than 10%. After decades of failed attempts to improve treatment outcomes in patients with this disease, the recent successes with ipilimumab and the inhibitors of BRAF and MEK (vemurafenib, dabrafenib, and trametinib) have ushered in a new era in systemic therapy. report the results of programmed-death-receptor-1 (PD-1) blockade with pembrolizumab (MK-3475) in patients with melanoma previously treated with an anti-cytotoxic T-lymphocyte-associated-antigen-4 (CTLA-4) antibody ipilimumab; these findings are another important advance in the rapidly evolving landscape of cancer immunotherapy.

[Comment] Surgical resection of mesothelioma: an evidence-free practice

The Lancet - lør, 20/09/2014 - 02:01
Mesothelioma, a universally fatal cancer, usually arises from the pleura and is often associated with asbestos exposure. The UK and Australia have the highest incidence of malignant pleural mesothelioma in the world, but the unregulated use of asbestos in developing countries could lead to a major global epidemic. described the seminal series of patients. The only therapy (using anti-folate drugs) shown to improve survival in randomised controlled trials did so by a median of only 12 weeks.

[Comment] Offline: How to save primary care research

The Lancet - lør, 20/09/2014 - 02:01
Some years ago, I attended a meeting of WONCA in the cold, remote wastelands of Canada. WONCA is the World Organization of National Colleges, Academies, and Academic Associations of General Practitioners/Family Physicians. The objective of the 3–day conference was to produce a research strategy for primary care. But instead of a positive discussion about important research questions to be asked and inventive ways one might choose to answer them, it became a festival of complaint about the victimisation of general practitioners—how they were ignored and marginalised, powerless and poor, misjudged and misunderstood.

[Comment] Meeting needs of childbearing women and newborn infants through strengthened midwifery

The Lancet - lør, 20/09/2014 - 02:01
Wherever women and babies are, whatever their circumstances or the health system in place, their survival, health, and wellbeing can be improved by midwifery care, as clearly shown in the Lancet Midwifery Series. Together with The State of the World's Midwifery 2014 and Every Newborn Series, this Series honours progress achieved, delineates needed next steps, and identifies tremendous potential for further health gain. The key messages warrant international attention and action to ensure that all women give birth with dignity and safely, and that everyone receives quality care at the beginning of life.

[Comment] Interprofessional collaboration, the only way to Save Every Woman and Every Child

The Lancet - lør, 20/09/2014 - 02:01
Although substantial progress has been made in maternal and child health since 1990 when the Millennium Development Goals were set, we are too far from achieving the 2015 goals. Scaling up and further progress can be achieved by the end of 2015, but the global community has to challenge itself with setting new goals and targets post 2015. Furthermore, we need to ask the crucial question of what can we learn from the past 25 years so we can inform our next steps and move rapidly; any moment lost leads to additional lost lives of mothers, newborn infants, and children.

[Comment] Disrespect and abuse of women in childbirth: challenging the global quality and accountability agendas

The Lancet - lør, 20/09/2014 - 02:01
The framework for Quality Maternal and Newborn Care on which the Lancet Midwifery Series is based, signals a welcome shift in the perspective that should guide planning, implementation, and assessment of maternal newborn health services: the analysis starts with what women need and want during pregnancy and childbirth. From this perspective, quality is not the last step in a chronological sequence of actions to expand coverage of clinical interventions to reduce mortality and morbidity; rather, quality must be a priority from the start.