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August 15 2014

Giving antibiotics to babies may lead to obesity, researchers claim


Long courses of antibiotics may put babies and toddlers at higher risk of obesity when they grow up, according to US researchers.

Low doses of penicillin early in life can alter natural populations of gut microbes, which in turn may affect metabolism and lead to higher rates of obesity later in life, the scientists said.

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August 15 2014

Disinfectant Causes Reproductive Problems in Mice


Mice exposed to disinfectants in commercial-grade cleaning products took longer to get pregnant, had fewer pups and suffered more miscarriages and distressed fetuses, researchers reported today.

The little-known chemicals, called quaternary ammonium compounds, or quats, are common ingredients of cleaners used by hospitals, restaurants and food processing plants. Quats also are found in some shampoos, disinfectant wipes and nasal sprays.

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August 15 2014

Bacteria growing less susceptible to common antiseptic


Bacteria that cause life-threatening bloodstream infections in critically ill patients may be growing increasingly resistant to a common hospital antiseptic, according to a recent study led by investigators at Johns Hopkins. The study was published in the September issue of Infection Control and Hospital Epidemiology, the journal of the Society for Healthcare Epidemiology of America.

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August 15 2014

Despite Legalization, Colorado Teenagers Stubbornly Refuse to Smoke More Pot


New survey data from Colorado indicate that marijuana legalization so far has not led to an increase in pot smoking by teenagers, as prohibitionists warned it would. In the 2013 Healthy Kids Colorado survey, 37 percent of high school students reported that they had ever tried marijuana, down from 39 percent in 2011.


Related: The UN says this country is smoking the most marijuana

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August 15 2014

Drugs minister calls for legalising cannabis for medicinal use


Liberalised drug laws should be introduced to legalise the widespread use of cannabis to relieve symptoms of certain medical conditions, including the side effects of chemotherapy, the drugs minister Norman Baker will say.

Amid concerns that "credible people" are having to break the law to secure the only substance that can help to relieve their condition, Baker is writing to the health secretary, Jeremy Hunt, to call for a review of the medicinal properties of cannabis.

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August 15 2014

The spiritual person: Alcohol releases the 'beast within'


Results of the study indicate that violence decreases as spirituality increases in persons who received the non-alcohol beverage. However, quite unexpectedly, violence actually increased as spirituality increased in persons who received the alcoholic beverage.


Related: Drunk words really ARE sober thoughts: Alcohol doesn't impair our ability to control our actions - it just makes us care less

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August 15 2014

Do you hear voices? You are not alone


Auditory verbal hallucinations or ‘hearing voices’ is not restricted to people who have a form of psychosis. For many, the voices provide support and guidance or have a spiritual aspect

Hearing voices is an experience that is very distressing for many people. Voices – or “auditory verbal hallucinations” – are one of the most common features of schizophrenia and other psychiatric disorders. But for a small minority of people, voice-hearing is a regular part of their lives, an everyday experience that isn’t associated with being unwell.

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August 14 2014

Mummifying-balm recipe is older than the pharaohs


Long before ancient Egyptians swaddled their pharaohs in balm-and-resin-soaked linens and placed them in treasure-bedecked tombs, their more egalitarian predecessors were using essentially the same embalming recipe.

The finding, published in PLoS ONE, pushes back known use of the multi-ingredient ointment by about 2,000 years, the authors estimate. The early blend includes a resin that probably came from at least 1,000 kilometres away from the gravesites, hinting that the region already had an established and extensive trade network.

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August 14 2014

Are you a lucid dreamer? If you are, you’re likely to be ahead of the game when you’re awake, too


You’re in a lecture hall giving the talk of your life, when you suddenly become aware of the fact that you aren't wearing any trousers. Embarrassed, you look up to see if anyone has noticed, only to be met by a sea of three-eyed aliens. Do you continue your talk, fearing the repercussions for your career, or do you say to yourself: “Hang on, the only way this could possibly be happening is if this is a dream. Let’s just jump on that passing flying banana and go and have some fun.”

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August 14 2014

Whales, Dolphins Experience Joy, Squeal with Delight


Dolphins and whales squeal after pleasant moments, researchers noticed long ago, such as receiving a tasty fish treat. A new study supports that these happy sounds are genuine expressions of delight.

The discovery, published in The Journal of Experimental Biology, not only helps to explain the meaning of these sounds but also provides evidence that dolphins and whales experience joy.

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August 14 2014

GM fruit flies could be released into the wild


Genetically modified flies could be released into the wild to save crops from being damaged by pests following a breakthrough by British scientists.

Researchers at the University of East Anglia have tweaked the DNA of fruit flies so that they only produce male flies after mating.

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August 14 2014

Geckos use toe hairs to turn stickiness on/off


Researchers at Oregon State University have developed a model that explains how geckos, as well as spiders and some insects, can run up and down walls, cling to ceilings, and seemingly defy gravity with such effortless grace.

The solution, outlined today in the Journal of Applied Physics, is a remarkable mechanism in the toes of geckos that use tiny, branched hairs called "seta" that can instantly turn their stickiness on and off, and even "unstick" their feet without using any energy.

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August 14 2014

Even Monkeys Believe In Hot Streaks


Rolling five straight sevens at the craps table. Sinking eight consecutive three-point basketball shots. Making the light at the intersection every day all week.

Such streaks are all easily within the bounds of statistical probability. But when they’re happening, people believe that they have what is often called the hot hand. Our brains are hardwired to find such patterns and meaning. And now researchers find that other primates also appear to believe in streaks.

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August 14 2014

BBC Airs Robin Williams Family Guy Episode In “Freakishly Weird” Coincidence


In an eerie coincidence, BBC Three aired a Robin Williams-centric episode of ‘Family Guy’ featuring a suicide attempt, moments before news of the comic’s tragic death broke.

The ‘Family Guy’ episode ‘Fatman & Robin’ sees Peter Griffin imbued with the power to turn people into Robin Williams with a single touch. He turns everyone in the city into Robin Williams (or at least characters played by the famous actor), but he attempts suicide after the multiple clones become too much for him to handle.

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August 14 2014

UFO enthusiasts: Blurry object definitely a UFO ... definitely


The online community of UFO true believers is bustling with excitement.

Twice in the past week, dedicated UFO watchers have reported spotting an Unidentified Flying Object near the International Space Station, via NASA's live webcam.

TThe first such sighting was Aug. 4, when blogger Scott Waring of UFO Sightings Daily saw a "glowing disk" on the live feed.

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August 14 2014

Chile Declares UFOs Pose No Threat to Aircraft


A recent high level meeting at the headquarters of Chile's Civil Aviation Department will likely be the envy of those Americans desiring open government participation in UFO investigations, rather than the familiar blanket dismissal.

The question of whether UAP (unidentified aerial phenomena) pose any danger to civilian and military air operations was up for discussion. An official video about the event (the first 4 minutes), posted on Friday, is telling. You don't need to understand a word of Spanish to take note of the serious expressions on the faces of the participants.

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August 14 2014

Could We Detect an Alien Civilization's Waste Heat?


As far as technological races go, humans are welterweights in comparison to hypothetical alien civilizations that could, conceivably, inhabit an entire galaxy. But if these vastly advanced extraterrestrials do exist, how could our current (and, frankly, meager) technology go about detecting them?

The answer could be in seeking out the galactic waste — heat waste to be precise — that such huge civilizations would generate. What’s more, we may already have the observational data to begin a detailed search of the Cosmos.

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