Clever animation explains how viruses attack our cells to make us sick

Staying healthy is a lot like medieval warfare. Cells vs viruses. There are cells defending their castles and viruses trying to break through. If a sneaky virus manages to attack a cell, the cell fights it and notifies all the other castles about what to build to defend it. Man, learning about biology is so much easier … » 4/17/14 11:19pm Yesterday 11:19pm

A Rare Genetic Mutation in These Siblings Makes Them Immune to Viruses

Viruses are incompetent but smart little things. Unable to make proteins on their own, they hijack ours for their own nefarious purposes. But what if we gave the viruses broken proteins? An incredibly rare genetic disorder in a brother and sister pair does exactly that, making them immune to many classes of viruses—and … » 4/15/14 4:40pm Tuesday 4:40pm

British Scientists Say They've Created Artificial Blood for Humans

Somebody ring the bell at the blood factory, because it's almost time to get those assembly lines running. Almost. A team of British scientists say they've created red blood cells suitable for transfusion into humans, a breakthrough that could change the lives of millions—if it works. » 4/14/14 1:20pm Monday 1:20pm

Tracking an Ebola Outbreak in a City Without Maps

If you Google Map Guéckédou, the Guinean city smack dab in the Ebola virus's deadly domain right now, you'd see just an abstract blotch of beige and yellow. Zoom all the way in on satellite view, and you can barely make out the outlines of buildings. Don't even think about trying Street View. Google Maps simply reflects… » 4/11/14 10:00am 4/11/14 10:00am

Could Google Glass Really Help People with Parkinson's?

While the world has been squabbling about Glassholes, doctors have quietly been testing the potential of Google Glass in medicine. Features that may seem silly to use in a cafe or on the subway have real advantages in the doctor's office. Hand-free control? Remote diagnosis? On-demand medical records? Check check… » 4/09/14 4:40pm 4/09/14 4:40pm

Bad News: E-Cigs Alter Cells a Lot Like Tobacco Does

A new cancer study brings more bad news to the e-cigarette industry. Scientists exposed human bronchial cells to e-cig vapor and found that it altered the cells in a way not dissimilar to tobacco. In other words, that delicious, seemingly risk-free nicotine vapor might not be so benign, after all. » 4/09/14 3:20pm 4/09/14 3:20pm

Is It a Good Idea to Vaporize and Inhale Alcohol?

Vaporizing, and then inhaling alcohol has gained a lot of attention lately. In the 1950s it was introduced as a treatment for excessive fluid in your lungs, called pulmonary edema. It's now gained popularity as a way to quickly become intoxicated. Proponents of this process-to-become-plastered, tout several benefits… » 4/09/14 7:30am 4/09/14 7:30am

Did A "Field of Human Excrement" By The White House Kill A President?

If you remember President William Henry Harrison from U.S. history class at all, then you probably remember him as the poor fellow who died from pneumonia a month after delivering his inaugural address in freezing rain. Except was it really pneumonia after all? A New York Times article suggests a different theory, and… » 4/02/14 5:40pm 4/02/14 5:40pm

22 Strange Medical Instruments From the Past That Make You Shudder

In the history of medicine, machines became crucial parts of the diagnostic and treatment process in the first half of the 20th century. Scientists and doctors experimented with some really strange devices, and they developed a lot of creepy-looking health equipment—at least some of which seems almost horrific, seen… » 4/02/14 9:00am 4/02/14 9:00am

Exploding Head Syndrome Is a Real Thing

Jarred awakes from a sound sleep by a "shotgun blast, a thunderclap . . . the clash of cymbals, a lightning strike or the sound of every door in the house slamming." As with others who have his condition, sufferers of exploding head syndrome (EHS) wake terrified, only to realize the noise was just a figment of their… » 4/02/14 6:00am 4/02/14 6:00am

Sanitizer-Dispensing Door Handles Ensure Hospital Staff Stay Clean

When you work in an environment that's all about battling germs, bacteria, and disease, common sense dictates that you should always keep your hands clean. But that's easier said than done, at least until these clever PullClean sanitizer dispensing door handles are installed in every hospital, doctor's office, and… » 3/28/14 10:40am 3/28/14 10:40am