7 Things You Need To Know Today (September 4, 2018)
1. Be sure to smile the next time you see a goat.
A new study looked into the way that 20 different goats reacted to images of smiling and frowning people. Funnily enough, the goats were much more willing to look at and interact with the happy people. Cue the awwwww. (Treehugger)
2. Scientists discovered the part of the brain that makes time feel like it's flying or dragging.
We all understand that time is measured in seconds, minutes, hours, days, years, etc., but we can't deny that sometimes it feels like it's moving more quickly than others. A new study published in the journal Nature details a new grouping of brain cells that determine how fast we perceive time—repetitive tasks are more precise and predictable, whereas engaging in a new activity can make time feel like it's moving too quickly. (ARS Technica)
3. Researchers are pouring money into finding a viable acne vaccine.
We wrote about the potential for an acne vaccine early last year, and now it's becoming closer to a reality. Scientists found that antibodies to a toxin that P. acnes (bacteria associated with acne) secretes have reduced inflammation in human acne tissue in early trials. While more research is needed—the skin microbiome is a delicate balance, and the long-term effects are not known—it's a promising development for people who suffer from chronic, painful cystic acne. (mindbodygreen)
4. Bees are addicted to our harmful pesticides.
A new study found that bees are actually more attracted to plants that have been sprayed with pesticides, which are often harmful to their health. This could explain why colony collapse disorder—which is thought to be caused in part by pesticide use—is such a huge issue these days. Yet another reason to eat organic! (The Guardian)
5. This $109K hospital bill was reduced to $322.
After Drew Calver was rushed to an out-of-network, for-profit hospital for a heart attack, he was sent a bill that would bankrupt him. But after his story was told in a segment called "The Bill of the Month"—by Kaiser Health News and NPR—the hospital reduced it to $322, shining a light on an important issue with surprise medical bills, particularly after emergencies. (NPR)
6. Worked out today? A new study finds that we might not be as active as we think.
A year's worth of data from participants who took note of how they spent their day, movement-wise, revealed a few things: First, not only is it typical to be fairly sedentary (most men and women reported sitting for nine or 10 hours a day), but on days that folks exercised for an hour or so, the total calories burned for the entire day was way below the researchers' expectations. Turns out, when we take time to work out, we're likely to spend the rest of the day in a lazier mode—i.e., in front of the TV or not doing household chores. The take-away? To maximize your exercise's physical health benefits, keep up the energy post-workout. (NYT)
7. CRISPR gene editing successfully halted muscular dystrophy in dogs.
The most common fatal genetic disease in children, Duchenne muscular dystrophy, is caused by a mutation that inhibits the production of dystrophin, a protein needed for muscle function. In a breakthrough study published in Science, dystrophin was restored in dogs with the same genetic mutation thanks to CRISPR, the gene-editing tool that can make targeted changes to a living cell's genome. The lab's next step is to conduct longer-term studies to measure stability of the new dystrophin levels and make sure there are no adverse side effects. If all's successful, a human clinical trial may be on the horizon. (Science Daily)
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