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Bad News: Booze Gives You the Munchies, Too

At least it does in lab mice

(Newser) - You might hear your stomach rumbling, telling you to fill it with something tasty, but the actual impulse to eat originates in the brain. Now researchers studying the brain cells responsible—called agouti-related protein (AgRP) neurons—say that alcohol activates them, thereby triggering the urge to eat even though alcohol... More »

'Ancient' Signal Dictates Where Mom Holds Baby

'Positional bias' is common among humans and wild animals

(Newser) - It's long been observed that mothers tend to cradle their infants on their left side, and this has long been at least informally attributed to handedness (so that right-handed mothers have the right hand free). Now researchers report in the journal Nature Ecology & Evolution that "positional bias"... More »

A Blood Test Predicts How Well You're Going to Age

What secrets lurk within?

(Newser) - Every time the oldest people in the world celebrate a birthday, they're inevitably asked their secret to aging. Some cite alcohol, others the lack of it; some how much they sleep, others how little; many talk about just relaxing , and almost all pay homage to having good genes. Now... More »

Live Near Heavy Traffic? You Have Higher Dementia Risk

Study finds that those who live near major roads are more likely to develop dementia

(Newser) - Those who live near a high-traffic area may be at a higher risk of developing dementia, a new study out of Canada finds. Researchers looked at the records of more than 6.5 million Ontario residents ages 20 to 85 between 2001 and 2012, and found that within that group... More »

Fossil Fills in Big Blank About the Mysterious 'Ghost Shark'

It belongs to an early chimaera, not a shark

(Newser) - The chimaera, or so-called "ghost shark," is an elusive deep-water fish that has fascinated biologists for more than a century. Like its relative the shark, however, it's made of cartilage and thus rarely fossilizes, so little is known about its evolutionary past, reports Live Science . Now the... More »

Ebola Vaccine 100% Effective: 'We Will Not Be Defenseless'

rVSV-ZEBOV has been fast-tracked by regulators

(Newser) - Excellent news as 2016 draws to a close: Scientists say they've created an Ebola vaccine that appears to be 100% effective. In a trial involving more than 11,000 at-risk people in Guinea, nobody given the vaccine developed the virus after a 10-day incubation period, researchers wrote in a... More »

New Weight-Loss Aid: Sweet Potato Wastewater?

Mice lost weight after consuming it in new study

(Newser) - Tired of Thanksgiving weight gain? Next year you might want to pass on the sweet potato pie and drink a tall glass of sweet potato wastewater instead. That's what a new study in the Heliyon journal hints at with what Modern Farmer says "might be the weirdest weight-loss... More »

There's a Way to Cut TSA Lines and TSA Costs

Waive the PreCheck fee, researchers say

(Newser) - Millions of people pay for the privilege of leaving their shoes and belts on and their laptops in their bags during airport security screenings. But a study out of the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign says by making the TSA's PreCheck program free—it's currently $85 for the... More »

Need Sleep? Go Online

Study says new online therapy program is helping sleepless subjects

(Newser) - A 70-year-old Californian who'd suffered from longtime insomnia had tapped into almost every remedy to no avail—until she tried out a new online therapy that has her "sleeping much better now," she tells the New York Times . The automated program, called SHUTi , is an online adaptation... More »

Math Moves Scientists Closer to Perfect Coffee

Coffee-maker companies will likely be paying attention

(Newser) - One plus one equals … brew? Scientists out of Ireland's University of Limerick tapped into math and a computer model in their quest to come up with a cup of coffee that would satisfy even Twin Peaks' Special Agent Dale Cooper , the CBC reports. And while it was impossible... More »

You Could Have Ebola and Not Even Know It

Up to 25% of infections may be 'minimally symptomatic'

(Newser) - Ebola doesn't always show itself through fever, vomiting, and diarrhea. A new PLOS study finds that some people with the virus show mild or no symptoms at all—a potential concern for preventing its spread. Researchers who visited the village of Sukudu in Sierra Leone, a hot spot in... More »

Scientists Pinpoint When a Woman's Sex Drive Declines

It seems to start 20 months before her final menstrual period

(Newser) - Sex is important to most middle-aged women, a fact established by a new study in the journal Menopause, which found that 75% of 1,390 middle-aged women reported sexual functioning to be moderately to extremely important. But roughly 20 months before menopause hit, these women reported a "notable decline... More »

When We Have Kids, How Many May Be Partly Genetic

DNA variants can also predict probability of a woman remaining childless

(Newser) - For the first time, scientists have identified areas of DNA—specifically, 12—associated with reproductive habits, in this case the age when men and women have their first kid and how many kids they have. Reporting in the journal Nature Genetics , researchers at the University of Oxford analyzed more than... More »

Think Rideshares Minimize Racism? Study: Think Again

It's not just taxi drivers who pick up fewer African-Americans

(Newser) - Research has suggested that Uber and the like are helping to alleviate some of the discrimination that runs rampant among taxi drivers—but a new study involving roughly 1,500 trips in Seattle and Boston may be casting some rain on that parade. Published by the National Bureau of Economic... More »

Zika Virus Ravages Testicles of Male Mice

Just 2 weeks post-infection, their testes shrank visibly

(Newser) - The Zika virus has been linked to microcephaly, or shrunken heads, in the infants of pregnant women who contract the virus, but it also decimates the testicles of males—at least in mice, report researchers in the journal Nature . Little is currently known about the impact of an infection on... More »

Science Just Made Milk Chocolate Healthy Like Dark Chocolate

And without altering milk chocolate's supremely sweet taste, scientists say

(Newser) - The virtues of noshing on dark chocolate have long been extolled , but its more milquetoast cousin may now be able to capitalize on its health benefits—and it's all thanks to peanuts, the Independent reports. In a study published in the journal Food Science , scientists from North Carolina State... More »

Beautiful 'Freak' Snake May Ease Your Pain One Day

If scientists can harness the power of the long-glanded blue coral snake's venom

(Newser) - Ibuprofen for your splitting headache, or venom from the "killer of killers"? Scientists say that poison from one of the rarest, most "beautiful" snakes in the world—a creature that devours king cobras for breakfast and boasts "freaky" long venom glands that run a quarter of... More »

Music Makes High-Intensity Exercise Easier to Take

Tunes also make people more likely to continue

(Newser) - High-intensity interval training is all the rage, with research suggesting that just a few minutes of all-out sweating could reap the same health benefits as a 45-minute moderate workout, and that's true even for the elderly . The draw is clear—interval training takes less time, after all—but so... More »

Cranberry Juice Stops UTIs? Um, Nope

Scientists say it's just an old wives' tale

(Newser) - Among things all females learn early on is that you guzzle cranberry juice to prevent a urinary tract infection, which one in five women will eventually get. The reason: cranberries contain proanthocyanidins, or PACs, which can keep bacteria from sticking to the bladder and urinary tract. That's why a... More »

Pot Might Help You See in the Dark

Cannabinoid shown to improve night vision in tadpoles

(Newser) - A new study suggests that marijuana may have a strange benefit: improving night vision. Based on a pharmacologist's observation in the 1990s that Jamaican fishermen who smoked or consumed cannabis had "an uncanny ability to see in the dark," researchers at McGill University dug in. They applied... More »

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