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Friday, July 12, 2024

Science Scene

Water located on moon, scientists say

Researchers for NASA’s Lunar Crater Observation and Sensing Satellite announced on Friday that they have found water on the Moon.

The Lcross (pronounced L-cross) mission consisted of two phases. The first phase sent a rocket that slammed into the floor of Cabeus, a crater 60 miles wide and 2 miles deep. The latter part of the mission had a sensor to measure what and how much was kicked up.

Scientists hope that this discovery in the form of ice accumulated over billions of years will hold a record of the solar system’s history.

Source: nytimes.com

Dreams provide tune-up for brain, study says

Freud and Jung might have been wrong when it comes to dreaming.

In a new study published in the journal Nature Reviews Neuroscience, Dr. J. Allan Hobson, a psychiatrist at Harvard, argues that the main function of rapid-eye-movement (REM) is physiological.

According to Hobson, dreams act as a warm-up for the brain as it anticipates the following day’s sounds, sights and emotions. This explains why humans forget the content of the dream, but know that they dreamt, he said.

Source: nytimes.com

Opening barriers: a new way to fight brain tumors

Who said that old dogs cannot learn new tricks?

Dr. Howard Riina of the NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital and colleagues devised a new way to deliver drugs in the brain through old methods.

In a procedure using the cancer drug Avastin, Riina injected the drug directly into a patient’s brain where a malignant tumor was removed using microcathaters. This allowed the doctors to deliver Avastin without the side effects of affecting the whole brain.

The problem with most drugs in the brain is that a natural blocker called the blood-brain barrier prevents drugs from affecting the brain, even when doctors want them to. This new method could potentially be used to treat other brain disorders that require medication and limit harmful side effects.

Source: nytimes.com

Mammograms should begin at 50, not 40, says panel

In this case, sooner is not better than later.

In new guidelines released Monday, the United States Preventive Services Task Force recommended that most women begin their regular breast screenings at age 50, not 40. Their recommendations also included that women should check every other year, instead of the long-standing every year approach.

The guidelines were based off of new data and the potential of harm from over screening, said Dr. Diana Petitti, vice chairwoman of the panel and professor of biomedical informatics at Arizona State University.

Source: nytimes.com

NICK MARKWITH can be reached at features@theaggie.org. 


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