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You’ve undoubtedly heard about the Bubonic plague, but the chances of you knowing next to anything about the Justinian plague are significantly slimmer. That’s because no one really knew anything about the Justinian plague — until recently, that is. Now, two ancient, plague-ridden teeth are finally teaching us a little more about one of the worst pandemics in history — including the fact that another outbreak could be just around the corner.
The tragedy of Parkinson’s, which progressively robs patients of their physical abilities, is that while certain drugs, therapies and devices can restore some quality of life, so far we haven’t found a way to stop brain cells from dying. Now, researchers in the UK and Norway have found a drug that could keep brain cells functioning normally — and it’s been used to treat liver disease for years.
There are not — nor will there ever be — any filters in Figure 1, a new iOS photo-sharing app that approximates the fruit of an unholy union between Instagram and the Discovery Health Channel. Instead, clarity is key; the app supplies users with a steady photo stream of very real, very not-for-the-faint-of-heart medical oddities and diseases.
This month, many countries the world over will be helping spread awareness of Multiple Sclerosis — but what exactly is the disease? This video, by ASAP Science, helps explain.
Last year, a promising trial of a new antibody treatment was shown to totally stop cognitive decline in four Alzheimer’s patients over the course of three years, giving researchers hope that the disease could be slowed or even cured. This year, it was expanded into a double-blind placebo test and administered to nearly 100 times more Alzheimer’s patients. It proved ineffective. Goddammit.
Even if it means protection from dangerous, even fatal diseases, having a needle jabbed into your skin and liquid sickness squirted into your flesh is no fun for anyone. There are other needleless injection solutions out there, but a new microneedle array made completely out of dried sugar promises to make vaccination not only painless, but dirt cheap.
No. The chances of getting an STI from peeing in a public bathroom are in the incredibly low-to-no range. Could the organisms that cause chlamydia and gonorrhoea infections be present in people’s urine that’s splattered on the seat? Yes. But are those organisms going to find their way into your urethra or vagina? Not unless you rub the tip of your urethra (or vaginal entrance) on a contaminated toilet seat. Who does that?
Researchers at the University of Cape Town in South Africa have created a pill that can wipe out malaria with a single dose. It’s a development that could save millions of lives in Africa alone, not to mention the rest of the world. But there’s a teensy weensy little hurdle that must first be overcome: human testing.