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This Type of Athlete Wows at Conquering Pain

High-level endurance athletes beat soccer players in pain tolerance, thresholds

(Newser) - Want to fell less pain? You may want to try long-distance running. Research published in July comparing pain perception in endurance athletes, soccer players, and nonathletes suggests elite athletes overall have increased pain tolerance, higher pain thresholds, and lower pain intensity—but also that endurance athletes manage the best. In... More »

Researchers Skeptical About White-Noise Sleep Apps

They might actually make things worse, concludes a new study

(Newser) - Apps or devices that simulate white noise to help people sleep are popular these days, but a new study raises doubts about their effectiveness. In fact, they might even degrade the quality of sleep, warns one of the researchers from the University of Pennsylvania. "I would just be careful,... More »

People With This Blood Type May Have Lower COVID Risk

Scientists say those with Type O blood also may suffer less if they do get the virus

(Newser) - What makes some people more vulnerable to the coronavirus? Scientists are still wrangling with that, but new research sheds light on the role a person's blood may play. CNN cites two new studies published in the journal Blood Advances—one out of Denmark , the other Canada —that suggest... More »

It'll Feel Like Eating Pop Rocks, but Your Tinnitus May Improve

Researchers say bimodal neuromodulation device shocks tongue to reduce ringing in ears

(Newser) - Scientists say they've come up with a noninvasive device that can help alleviate the symptoms of tinnitus , a perception of noise or ringing in the ears. In the study in the Science Translational Medicine journal cited by Scientific American , the researchers say the bimodal neuromodulation contraption achieves this by... More »

Opening More Bottles Than Usual? You're Not Alone

Study finds Americans 30 and older are drinking booze 14% more during pandemic than last year

(Newser) - If you've been throwing back more vino than you used to, join the stuck-at-home crowd. A new study conducted by the Rand Corporation has found that Americans are drinking alcohol 14% more often during the pandemic than they used to, with NPR citing everything from Zoom happy hours to... More »

Lab Breakthrough May Help Fight on Plastic Waste

'Pac-Men' enzymes engineered to feast on plastic

(Newser) - Plastic waste is a large and ever-growing problem around the world. Now, researchers say they're closing in on a potentially game-changing solution that could be commercially available in a year or two, reports the Guardian . Scientists have engineered a "super-enzyme" that breaks down plastic six times faster than... More »

Songbirds Change Their Tune During Lockdown

Sparrows sing 'sexier' songs as road traffic decreases

(Newser) - With fewer cars on the road because of the pandemic, birds no longer have to shout to be heard. The result? Softer, sweeter songs, say researchers in a new study at Science . More to the point, "sexier" songs, lead researcher Elizabeth Derryberry of the University of Tennessee tells AFP... More »

Whale's Deep Dive Stuns: 'Not Supposed to Be Able to Do This'

Cuvier's beaked whale goes under for a record 3 hours, 42 minutes without coming up for air

(Newser) - It's a mystery how Cuvier's beaked whales go so long without a gulp of air. Based on its body size and metabolism, scientists originally thought the whale would need to resurface every 33 minutes. But one beaked whale just went seven times as long underwater—3 hours, 42... More »

Something Weird Is Happening on Venus

Chemical associated with biological life is detected in the clouds

(Newser) - Astronomers have found something unexpected in the clouds of Venus—a chemical usually associated with biological life. Does this mean there's life on Venus? Nope, far from it, explains the MIT Technology Review . But the gist from coverage is that the discovery is extremely intriguing. In their paper in... More »

In Search for Human Bodies, Plants May Be Key

Chemicals from decomposing remains may trigger visible changes in vegetation

(Newser) - Researchers are toying with a new idea that could transform grueling and expensive body-recovery missions, and it involves what you might call cadaver plants. Yes, plants. Neal Stewart, a biologist at the University of Tennessee, has long been interested in the ways plants sense and respond to stresses. Now, he... More »

COVID-19 Antibodies Hold Tight for 4 Months

Levels were found to rise in months 1 and 2 and then hold steady

(Newser) - A new study out of Iceland has some new answers about COVID-19 antibodies—but also raises new questions. The upshot is that antibodies were found to persist in some people for at least four months after they contracted the coronavirus, per the study published Tuesday in the New England Journal ... More »

Stomach Rebelling Over Stress? 'Love' Hormone May Help

Scientists find that oxytocin plays bigger role in stress reduction, digestion than previously thought

(Newser) - When you're cuddling with someone special, you may feel butterflies in your stomach—but scientists now say the feel-good hormone that's released when you're in love may also be playing another part when it comes to your GI tract. Researchers have long known that when people are... More »

Caffeine Limits for Pregnant Women Need 'Radical Revision'

Health authorities disagree; 200mg daily limit remains

(Newser) - Pregnant women who've limited their caffeine consumption to one or two cups of coffee per day, in accordance with official US guidance, aren't going far enough, according to a new peer-reviewed study that finds there's no safe level of caffeine for moms-to-be. Researchers say health recommendations in... More »

COVID-19 Smell Loss Study Supports an Infection Theory

The theory being that the coronavirus infects the brain and central nervous system

(Newser) - A small study out of Europe is the first to look at how smell loss associated with COVID-19 differs from that caused by a severe cold or the flu—and the findings bolster the theory that the coronavirus infects the brain and central nervous system, per a press release . A... More »

Penguins' First Home Isn't What We Thought

Researchers trace origin to Australia, New Zealand, not Antarctica, some 22M years ago

(Newser) - Penguins have had quite the journey, from Australia some 22 million years ago to modern-day Antarctica, according to a new study. With help from institutions around the world, researchers at the University of California, Berkeley, analyzed blood and tissue samples from 18 species of penguins, finding that the animals originated... More »

Experts Paint Eyes on Cow Butts—and It Works

Researchers find a low-cost way to save cattle in Botswana

(Newser) - Want to save cattle from predatory attacks? First, paint eyeballs on their butts. Then see what happens. That's pretty much the gist of a new study out of Botswana—and it worked, Happy Mag reports. Researchers at the University of South Wales painted the eyes on cow butts to... More »

'MYSTERY SOLVED!' on Origin of Stonehenge's Megaliths

Scientists say most of the giant sandstone slabs came from West Woods in Marlborough Downs

(Newser) - In the 1500s, a British antiquities expert examined Stonehenge's biggest slabs and said he knew where they came from. Now, more than four centuries later, scientists are saying that William Lambarde was right on the money, solving one of the world's great archaeological and geological mysteries. The New ... More »

DNA Slavery Study Yields Surprises

More enslaved people came to the US from Nigeria than previously thought, researchers say

(Newser) - Using historical records has been the most traditional way to shed light on the dark stain of slavery in the United States. Now, per new research that the Scientist calls "the largest DNA study to examine African ancestry in the Americas," gene analysis is helping put more pieces... More »

'Dark Fishing Fleets' Blamed for Rise in Ghost Ships

Chinese vessels are forcing North Koreans to fish elsewhere, researchers say

(Newser) - "Ghost ships" carrying the bodies—or skeletons—of North Korean fishermen have been washing up in Japan for years, but there was a massive increase after 2017. A new study links the rise to "dark fishing fleets" of Chinese vessels in North Korean waters in violation of United... More »

If We Can't Solve This Problem, Our Species 'Disappears'

Experts predict crash in births will force societal overhaul

(Newser) - Experts say we'll need to "reorganize societies" to respond to a "jaw-dropping" decrease in the number of Earthlings being born. To keep a steady population, a woman needs to have 2.1 children on average so as to account for infant mortality and childless women. Women were... More »

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