In brief (September 2015): saliva and radiotherapy, cold and insulin sensitivity, and a giant virus

Keeping saliva secretion up after radiotherapy, or how finding where stem cells crucial to salivary gland regeneration reside may help prevent irreversible tissue damage and loss of saliva production after head-and-neck cancer radiotherapy
Getting cold in type 2 diabetes, or how a protocol involving sitting in a cold room for several hours can improve insulin sensitivity in patients with type 2 diabetes
Another big, big, big virus, or how a new giant virus was recently discovered in a 30,000-year-old permafrost sample from Siberia Continue reading


Breastfeeding: let’s talk more about mom’s health

A couple of days ago, I listened to a TEDMED 2014 talk by Eleanor Bimla Schwarz, director of the Women’s Health Services Research Unit at the University of Pittsburgh. The point of her talk was to raise awareness about the fact that breastfeeding may be a good thing for the long-term health of mothers and that adequate support should be more widespread (be it support at time of delivery in hospitals or longer maternity leaves). Continue reading

In brief (April 2013) – Microbiome, gender and diabetes; stealth nanoparticles and anticancer drug; (not quite) dream reading

Three picks from what I’ve read over the past two months:
microbiome, gender and diabetes, or how gut bacteria influence susceptibility to disease in females versus males in a mouse model of type 1 diabetes,
stealth nanoparticles and drug delivery, or how a short chain of amino acids can get anticancer drug-carrying nanoparticles past the defenses of the immune system,
(not quite) dream reading, or how researchers can approximately tell what kind of images are going trough your mind in the stage 1 of sleep. Continue reading

In Brief (February 2013) – Binge drinking, mighty bug and celiac disease

A few picks from what I’ve read over the past month:
binge drinking, or how high alcohol blood levels can disrupt the normal functions of insulin,
mighty bug, or how a pathogenic bacteria can reprogram host cells,
celiac disease, or how it may not be all about gluten. Continue reading