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health & medicine

What’s really behind ‘gluten sensitivity’?

A small community of researchers is hunting for a link between wheat components and patients’ symptoms.


In search of suicidal warning signs

Researchers are monitoring teens’ cellphone use to capture signals of imminent suicide risk that a doctor’s questionnaire can’t.


War of nerves 

(Winner of the 2020 American Association for Cancer Research June L Biedler Prize)

The nerves that branch through our bodies seem to partner with tumors as they grow and spread, potentially linking chronic stress and cancer progression.


Do ‘ultraprocessed’ foods make us eat more?

In a landmark study, people consumed more calories on a processed diet, but the reasons are unclear.


How does exercise keep your brain young?

Recent studies hint at ways to prevent and even treat cognitive decline.


The trespasser

Danielle Bassett has pioneered the use of concepts from physics and math to describe the dynamic connections in the human brain.


Probing the roots of hallucination

Laser holograms that stimulate precise sets of neurons seem to create visual experiences in mice.


Artificial intelligence turns brain activity into speech

Fed data from invasive brain recordings, algorithms reconstruct heard and spoken sounds from neural signals alone.


High hopes for ultrasound brain treatment

Ultrasound can penetrate the skull and boost or suppress brain activity, pointing to future treatments for epilepsy, depression, and Alzheimer’s disease.


Next-generation artificial vision comes into view

New technologies promise sharper artificial vision for blind people by stimulating the retina or brain.


Winged warriors

(Finalist for the 2017 Science in Society Journalism Award, National Association of Science Writers)

Billions of lab-engineered mosquitoes will be released in Brazil to to combat infectious disease. Will it work?


Mosquitoes armed with bacteria beat back dengue virus

Field trials suggest public health benefit to spreading Wolbachia


The transgenic petunia carnage of 2017

After a biologist spotted forgotten genetically engineered flowers in a train station, authorities forced growers to destroy them.


Medicine’s longest year

12 months in to the pandemic, what have physicians learned about how to treat the coronavirus?


Tracking an unequal burden

Gaps in COVID-19 testing data makes it harder for researchers to understand and study racial disparities.


A pandemic-inspired push to shrink jails and prisons

As the virus spreads behind bars, researchers are exploring the health and public safety impacts of decarceration


Hydroxychloroquine’s risks

Antimalarials widely used against COVID-19 heighten risk of cardiac arrest. How can doctors minimize the danger?


Can digital contact tracing help tame the pandemic? 

COVID-19 contact tracing apps are coming to a phone near you, but how will we know whether they work?


COVID-19 measures also suppress flu—for now 

Masking, social distancing, and travel restrictions failed to fully control SARS-CoV-2, but they’ve brought less infectious seasonal viruses to heel—including influenza and respiratory syncytial virus (RSV).

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