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Glaucoma may be an autoimmune disease | Science Daily

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A new study from MIT and Massachusetts Eye and Ear has found that glaucoma may in fact be an autoimmune disorder. In a study of mice, the researchers showed that the body’s own T cells are responsible for the progressive retinal degeneration seen in glaucoma. Furthermore, these T cells appear to be primed to attack retinal neurons as the result ... Read More »

Neuroscientists get at the roots of pessimism: Stimulating the brain’s caudate nucleus generates a negative outlook that clouds decision-making | Science Daily

Many patients with neuropsychiatric disorders such as anxiety or depression experience negative moods that lead them to focus on the possible downside of a given situation more than the potential benefit. MIT neuroscientists have now pinpointed a brain region that can generate this type of pessimistic mood. In tests in animals, they showed that stimulating this region, known as the ... Read More »

Laziness helped lead to extinction of Homo erectus | Science Daily

New archaeological research from The Australian National University (ANU) has found that Homo erectus, an extinct species of primitive humans, went extinct in part because they were ‘lazy’. An archaeological excavation of ancient human populations in the Arabian Peninsula during the Early Stone Age, found that Homo erectus used ‘least-effort strategies’ for tool making and collecting resources. This ‘laziness’ paired ... Read More »

These four-legged military heroes will soon have an award of their own | Military Times

Military working dogs, the beloved canines who have saved countless of troops on the battlefield, will soon have their own commendation. The “Guardians of America’s Freedom Medal,” created via legislation introduced by Sen. Robert Menendez, D-N.J., is the first official Defense Department commendation for military working dogs, the New York Times reported. Menendez announced the passage of the legislation on Tuesday at the U.S. War ... Read More »

Both long term abstinence and heavy drinking may increase dementia risk: But the underlying mechanisms are likely to be different in the two groups | Science Daily

People who abstain from alcohol or consume more than 14 units a week during middle age (midlife) are at increased risk of developing dementia, finds a study in The BMJ today. However, the underlying mechanisms are likely to be different in the two groups. As people live longer, the number living with dementia is expected to triple by 2050. So ... Read More »

Cancer study of nuclear test site expected to finish in 2019 | Military Times

A long-anticipated study into the cancer risks of New Mexico residents living near the site of the world’s first atomic bomb test likely will be published in 2019, the National Cancer Institute announced. Institute spokesman Michael Levin told The Associated Press that researchers are examining data on diet and radiation exposure on residents who lived near the World War II-era ... Read More »

New light shed on the people who built Stonehenge | Science Daily

Despite over a century of intense study, we still know very little about the people buried at Stonehenge or how they came to be there. Now, a new University of Oxford research collaboration, published in Scientific Reports suggests that a number of the people that were buried at the Wessex site had moved with and likely transported the bluestones used ... Read More »

AI device identifies objects at the speed of light: The 3D-printed artificial neural network can be used in medicine, robotics and security | Science Daily

Numerous devices in everyday life today use computerized cameras to identify objects — think of automated teller machines that can “read” handwritten dollar amounts when you deposit a check, or internet search engines that can quickly match photos to other similar images in their databases. But those systems rely on a piece of equipment to image the object, first by ... Read More »

MIT’s Cheetah 3 blind robot can climb a staircase littered with debris, leap, and gallop across rough terrain | Kurzweil

MIT’s Cheetah 3 robot — an upgrade to the Cheetah 2, can now leap and gallop across rough terrain, climb a staircase littered with debris, and quickly recover its balance when suddenly yanked or shoved — all while essentially blind. The 90-pound robot is intentionally designed to do all this without relying on cameras or any external environmental sensors. The ... Read More »

Experimental drug reverses hair loss and skin damage linked to fatty diet, shows new study in mice: The research advances search for compounds that may someday accelerate wound healing and reverse balding | Science Daily

The investigators say the compound halts the production of certain fats called glycosphingolipids, or GSLs, that are major components of skin and other cell membranes. Current research shows that mice fed a diet high in fat and cholesterol are more likely to have hair discoloration from black to gray to white, extensive hair loss and inflammation of skin exhibited by ... Read More »