A link between pesticides and attention disorders?

Prenatal exposure to pesticides may be delaying kids’ nervous-system development, leading to attention problems later in life, a new study finds.

Researchers at the University of California at Berkeley followed more than 300 California children and their mothers over several years. When the women were pregnant, the researchers took …

Understanding the mind of a cocaine addict

A protein known for its role in Rett syndrome — a rare genetic brain disorder — also works to regulate cocaine addiction, new research shows.

In a study published today in Nature Neuroscience, Florida researchers were able to mimic in rats a human’s transition to cocaine addiction: the transition, that is, from controlled intake …

Top 5 health stories of the weekend

It’s summer, so with luck you didn’t spend all weekend indoors glued to the screen. In case you missed these headlines when they broke, here are the biggest health stories of the past two days:

  1. Plan C. The FDA approved a new emergency-contraception pill on Friday. Unlike the existing Plan B, this latest drug — already sold in Europe

Was the JetBlue slide incident caused by head injury?

Many explanations have been offered for JetBlue flight attendant Steven Slater’s meltdown and dramatic emergency slide exit on Monday—from “air rage” to suggestions of a relapse into alcoholism. But none of the media coverage has noted what could be the most obvious and chilling reason for his bizarre behavior: at the beginning of …

How can a pea plant grow in the lungs?

The Internet’s a-buzz with news of Ron Sveden, the 75-year-old Cape Cod man who discovered that a growth in his lung was not, as feared, a tumor — but rather a pea plant. A seed had somehow lodged itself in his lung, presumably after some food found its way down the wrong tube, and the seed then sprouted.

But how is this …

A culture of suicide

Rural Americans are more likely to kill themselves than urban Americans, and men are more likely to kill themselves than women — though women are more likely to consider suicide.

These patterns and more are part of the rich culture of suicide, discussed today in a panel at the Annual Convention of the American Psychological …

More sugar is worse for your teeth? Not necessarily

It’s a common myth that the more sugar you eat, the more likely you are to get cavities. But it’s not always so, says Tufts University professor of nutrition and oral health Carole Palmer. Writing with colleagues in the July/August issue of Nutrition Today, she explains that it’s not in fact the amount of sugar you ingest that matters, …

Protein signature may predict Alzheimer’s

Three biomarkers in spinal fluid may be enough to diagnose Alzheimer’s disease — or to give warning of developing Alzheimer’s pathology before symptoms appear.

In a study of more than 400 older adults, released yesterday by the medical journal Archives of Neurology, a telltale protein signature was present in 90% of patients already …

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