In work inspired partly by the movie “Avatar,” one monkey could control the body of another monkey using thought alone by connecting the brain of the puppet-master monkey to the spine of the other through a prosthesis, researchers say.
These findings could help lead to implants that help patients overcome paralysis, scientists added.
Paralysis due to nerve or spinal cord damage remains a challenge for current surgical techniques. Scientists are now attempting to restore movement to such patients with brain-machine interfaces that allow people to operate computers or control robotic limbs.
Scientists at Imperial College London have discovered that iron deficiency may increase stroke risk by making the blood more sticky.
The findings, published in the journal PLOS ONE, could ultimately help with stroke prevention.
Every year, 15 million people worldwide suffer a stroke. Nearly six million die and another five million are left permanently disabled. The most common type, ischaemic stroke, occurs because the blood supply to the brain is interrupted by small clots.
The Imperial team found that iron deficiency increases the stickiness of small blood cells called platelets, which initiate blood clotting when they stick together. Although a link between iron deficiency and sticky platelets was first discovered almost 40 years ago, its role has been overlooked until now.
Crime dramas frequently depict detectives interrogating suspected criminals under bright lights to get the truth out of them. Now, a new study may lend credence to this tactic, as it suggests human emotion – both positive or negative – is experienced more intensely under bright lights.
The research, conducted by investigators from the University of Toronto Scarborough in Canada and Northwestern University in Illinois, was published in the Journal of Consumer Psychology.
Genetic adaptations for life at high elevations found in residents of the Tibetan plateau likely originated around 30,000 years ago in peoples related to contemporary Sherpa. These genes were passed on to more recent migrants from lower elevations via population mixing, and then amplified by natural selection in the modern Tibetan gene pool, according to a new study by scientists from the University of Chicago and Case Western Reserve University, published in Nature Communications on Feb. 10.
The transfer of beneficial mutations between human populations and selective enrichment of these genes in descendent generations represents a novel mechanism for adaptation to new environments.
High elevations are challenging for humans because of low oxygen levels, but Tibetans spend their lives above 13,000 feet with little issue. They are better suited when compared to short-term visitors from low altitude due to physiological traits such as relatively low hemoglobin concentrations at altitude. Unique to Tibetans are variants of the EGLN1 and EPAS1 genes, key genes in the oxygen homeostasis system at all altitudes. These variants were hypothesized to have evolved around 3,000 years ago, a date which conflicts with much older archaeological evidence of human settlement in Tibet.
DNA testing can predict which men face the highest risk of deadly prostate cancer, scientists say.
The team at the Institute of Cancer Research, in London, say men could soon be offered genetic screening in a similar way to breast cancer in women.
New research from psychologists at the universities of Kent and Limerick has found that music that is felt to be ‘beautiful but sad’ can help people feel better when they’re feeling blue.
The research investigated the effects of what the researchers described as Self-Identified Sad Music (SISM) on people’s moods, paying particular attention to their reasons for choosing a particular piece of music when they were experiencing sadness – and the effect it had on them.
The study identified a number of motives for sad people to select a particular piece of music they perceive as ‘sad’, but found that in some cases their goal in listening is not necessarily to enhance mood. In fact, choosing music identified as ‘beautiful’ was the only strategy that directly predicted mood enhancement, the researchers found.