For most people, learning they have a 90 percent chance of developing cancer would be devastating. But for 17-year-old Casey Longstreet, it was a call to action.
“I’m not living in fear. I don’t want to live my life in fear. I want to go out and make a difference in this world,” Casey said.
Casey has a rare mutation of the TP53 gene — a gene that provides the body with instructions for suppressing tumors. Having this mutation gives her a chance of more than a 90 percent of developing cancer.
Her little brother, Tanner Longstreet, had the mutated gene, too. Tanner died from a glioblastoma brain tumor when he was 11.
If a person is diagnosed with a life-threatening illness, their loved ones don’t rush to write an obituary and plan a funeral. Likewise, species aren’t declared extinct until they actually are.
In a viral article entitled “Obituary: Great Barrier Reef (25 Million BC-2016),” however, writer Rowan Jacobsen proclaimed ― inaccurately and, we can only hope, hyperbolically ― that Earth’s largest living structure is dead and gone.
XL Catlin Seaview Survey via Associated Press
This photo on the left shows bleached coral at Lizard Island in March. The second image, taken in May, shows the same formation dead.
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This September ends with the eerily named black moon rising.
On Friday night, watch for this relatively rare lunar event ― something that hasn’t happened since March 2014, according to AccuWeather.
So you’re probably wondering what a black moon is. It actually has a few definitions. The one we’re using here is a second new moon in a calendar month ― not to be confused with a blue moon, which is the second full moon in a calendar month.
Jeff Foott/Getty Images
This is a full moon — not a new moon, black or otherwise.
Science can explain a lot of things — why women need more sleep; why waist trainers are bullshit; why you should be sleeping naked; why certain foods can make you better in bed. But it can’t explain everything. There are a number of commonplace phenomena that continue to stump scientists.
The cells in your immune system eat 100 billion dead cells in your body every day.
But sometimes, your body eats living cells, too — even though it’s not supposed to. Scientists don’t know why, but a new study from a team at the Salk Institute says that cellular barbarism might be the key to treating a host of neurodegenerative diseases.
Most people think by the time you’re an adult, you’re done making new neurons. But some parts of your brain are molecular busybodies and want to keep making them, so you end up with a lot more neurons than you need, and they end up dying.
To keep the neurons in check and not turn your body into a big neural graveyard, your immune system uses what are called microglia to clean out the dead neurons. Microglia are pretty much the trash collectors of your central nervous system. Unlike synaptic pruning, which just nibbles off the connections between neurons, this process — called phagocytosis — involves eating entire cells.
It turns out that being brokenhearted after the death of a loved one isn’t just a euphemism — it’s possible that the loss of a partner may actually trigger an irregular heartbeat, according to a new study, especially when the loss is sudden.
“People are more likely to develop an irregular heartbeat following the death of their spouse or life partner, particularly if they’re younger or the loved one died unexpectedly,” reported HealthDay on Wednesday, citing a study conducted by Danish researchers and published Tuesday in the journal Open Heart.
The study found that the risk of atrial fibrillation, a kind of heart arrhythmia, was 41 percent higher among people whose partners had died compared to those who hadn’t experienced the death of a partner, HealthDay reported, and an unexpected death seems to play an even greater role in that risk.
Every year, around 17,000 kidney transplants and 6,000 liver transplants are performed in the U.S. But there was something special about two recent kidney and liver transplants performed at Johns Hopkins University Medical Center.
The kidney and liver came from a deceased donor with HIV, and they were transplanted into patients who also have HIV. They’re the first HIV-positive organ transplants since the 2013 repeal of an outdated law banning people with HIV from donating their organs.
“This is an unbelievably exciting day for our hospital and our team, but more importantly, for patients living with both HIV and end-stage organ disease,” Dr. Dorry L. Segev, professor of surgery at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, said in a statement.