Posts Tagged ‘Medicine’

Fluorescence images of uncompressed (left) and compressed (right) colonies of malignant breast epithelial cells. Compressed colonies are smaller and more organized. Photo: Fletcher Lab

Fluorescence images of uncompressed (left) and compressed (right) colonies of malignant breast epithelial cells. Compressed colonies are smaller and more organized. Photo: Fletcher Lab

Yes, you read that right. No this is not a joke. Though it’s not just playing with them that does the trick. A new study from the University of California in Berkeley shows a remarkable correlation between breast compression and the reduction of cancerous breast tissue.  The study suggests that cancerous breast cells have simply “forgotten” how to be healthy and with a little cuddle time with other healthy breast cells they can be retaught how to be healthy. “Malignant cells have not completely forgotten how to be healthy; they just need the right cues to guide them back to a healthy growth pattern,” said Gautham Venugopalan, a member of the “Let’s just squash cancer” research team.
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With the end of the year fast approaching and the belief that the end of the world will happen tomorrow, its easy to overlook some awesome things that have happened this year. All over the world this year has been an awesome year for Science. Here we will run down some of the most amazing things to happen this year in Science and Technology.  Everyone knows about events like Curiosity landing Mars but there are many other cool things that didn’t get that kind of press, so in no particular order, here are 18 awesome things that have happened in science and technology in 2012 you might not have heard of. While it may not be flying cars or hover boards, it is pretty awesome.

Jan Scheuermann feeding herself with her robotic arm

Jan Scheuermann feeding herself with her robotic arm

1. A quadriplegic woman can now use her mind to control a robotic arm. We did more of a full story on this in our article Robotic Replacement Limbs – Science Fiction Comes to Life (video at the bottom of the article). Her story is amazing, paralyzed 13 years ago from the debilitating effects of Multiple Sclerosis, she is able to perform task such as feeding herself after a revolutionary surgery to implant 2 – 96 channel intracortical implants into the motor cortex of her brain.

Genetically modified silk stronger than steel

Genetically modified silk stronger than steel

2. At the University of Wyoming, scientists have modified a group of silkworms to produce silk that is, weight for weight, stronger than steel. Several different groups hope to benefit from the use of the super-strength silk, including stronger sutures for the medical community, a biodegradable alternative to plastics, and even possibilities of lightweight armor for military purposes. The uses of super strong, exceptionally lightweight material will be vast.

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Soldier's Peg Leg

Soldier’s Peg Leg

The line between Science and Science Fiction is blurring. Prosthetic limbs have been around for hundreds of years, from the peg legs of pirates and civil war soldiers, to the old claw like replacement arms we, as humans have tried to regain our mobility and functionality after tragic events. In Science Fiction moves such as Star Wars seem to have been to gold standard when it comes to the idea of prosthetics. Human looking limbs that replace 100% of functionality and require no learning curve. We haven’t gotten there quite yet, but we have come a long way from peg legs.

Prosthetic Running Leg

Prosthetic Running Leg

In recent years we have developed prosthetic legs that have such a natural feel and are functional enough that they have allowed their users to win races against, able-bodied people. Replacement limbs are also making strides in looking more natural. Instead of claw style grabbers we have more realistic looking hands and arms.
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