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New Hypertension Guidelines Could Save Lives and Money

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Full implementation of new hypertension guidelines could prevent 56,000 cardiovascular disease events (mostly heart attacks and strokes) and 13,000 deaths each year, without increasing overall health care costs, an analysis conducted by researchers at Columbia University Medical Center found. The paper was published today in the online edition of the New England Journal of Medicine.

Medicine

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3D Printing Makes Heart Surgery Safer for Children

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Richard Kim, MD, a cardiac surgeon at Children’s Hospital Los Angeles, recently used a 3D printed heart as a model to plan a life-saving procedure for his young patient, Esther Perez.

Medicine

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Psychopathic Violent Offenders’ Brains Can’t Understand Punishment

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Psychopathic violent offenders have abnormalities in the parts of the brain related to learning from punishment, according to an MRI study led by Sheilagh Hodgins and Nigel Blackwood.

Science

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Kepler Astronomers Discover Ancient Star with Five Earth-Size Planets

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Iowa State's Steve Kawaler is part of a team that used data from NASA's Kepler spacecraft to find an 11.2 billion-year-old star with at least five Earth-size planets. That means Earth-size planets have been forming for most of the history of the universe.

Medicine

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High Cholesterol In 30s, 40s, Increases Later Risk Of Heart Disease

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Most young adults might assume they have years before needing to worry about their cholesterol. But new findings from researchers at the Duke Clinical Research Institute suggest that even slightly high cholesterol levels in otherwise healthy adults between the ages of 35 and 55 can have long-term impacts on their heart health, with every decade of high cholesterol increasing their chances of heart disease by 39 percent.

Science

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Brain’s On-Off Thirst Switch Identified

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Neurons that trigger our sense of thirst—and neurons that turn it off—have been identified by Columbia University Medical Center neuroscientists. The paper was published today in the online edition of Nature.

Science

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Least Known Chimpanzee Threatened by Climate Change

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Human beings are not the only great ape species likely to be severely impacted by climate change in the future. According to a new study by the Drexel University, Wildlife Conservation Society, and other groups, the Nigerian-Cameroon chimpanzee—the most endangered of all chimpanzee subspecies—may lose much of its habitat within the next five years and fully half of it in the next century.

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Experts Recommend Intermediate Physical Activity Goals, Especially for Older Adults

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The recommendation that adults should get 150 minutes of moderate exercise per week may be too ambitious for many middle-aged and older adults. That’s one recommendation from physical activity and health experts who published a paper this week in the British Medical Journal.

Life

Social and Behavioral Sciences

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Pro-Marijuana ‘Tweets’ Are Sky-High on Twitter

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Analyzing every marijuana-related Twitter message sent during a one-month period in early 2014, researchers at Washington University School of Medicine have found that the “Twitterverse” is a pot-friendly place. In that time, more than 7 million tweets referenced marijuana, with 15 times as many pro-pot tweets sent as anti-pot tweets.

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A First Peek Beneath the Surface of a Comet

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In some of the first research findings to be published from the European Space Agency’s Rosetta Mission to the comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko, scientists report this week in Science on early measurements of the comet’s subsurface temperature and production of gas from the surface of its nucleus.