Science science

Children who are breast-fed for at least six months as babies have less hyperactive behavior by age 3 compared with kids who weren't breast-fed. But breast-feeding doesn't necessarily lead to a cognitive boost.

Children who are breast-fed for at least six months as babies have less hyperactive behavior by age 3 compared with kids who weren't breast-fed. But breast-feeding doesn't necessarily lead to a cognitive boost.
Children who are breast-fed for at least six months as babies have less hyperactive behavior by a...

The radio version of this story touched on this basically saying it's probably more to do with the type of people that breastfeed, they tend to be college educated and better off, once you control for those variables the type of milk falls away as a significant factor.

In studies like this, do they ever separate "breast fed" from "bottle fed breast milk"? My son drank pumped breast milk since he had a lip tie and latch issues, would that be considered breast fed? I don't see why not, but I know the baby provides "markers" in the saliva for what the mother is supposed to make (or something like that), so perhaps it's not as 'perfect' as on-breast milk?

It's always hard to find real science though since I never know how they separate the two, or if they do at all.

Edit: since I've gotten a lot of replies I just want to clear up that I'm the father. My wife was the pumping champ. Kiddo didn't care for my breasts at all.

I thought longer breastfeeding (or rather feeding the baby breast milk) was positive for later cognitive functions, as the milk is extremely rich in nutrients and thereby ensures better brain development. can anyone back up the theory that this is wrong?

Immunologist here. That sounds like pseudoscience. The main things in saliva are water, digestive enzymes, anti microbial molecules, and bacteria. Milk composition is basically water, sugar, fat, antibodies, and other nutrients. I can't imagine any difference in bottle feeding the same milk, other than the lack of physical contact and hormone interactions.

A low socioeconomic status is so damaging to health, it reduces life expectancy by 2.1 years. That's worse than obesity or high blood pressure and a consortium of global researchers are calling for it to be treated like any other major health risk factor.

A low socioeconomic status is so damaging to health, it reduces life expectancy by 2.1 years. Tha...

That sounded very low to me too. The more interesting number to me is the "disease-free life expectancy" (DFLE). This one found that BMI > 35 reduced DFLE by nine years in men and seven years in women:

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/28138135

I watched a documentary on aging not that long ago. If I remember correctly it was centered around a decades-long study of a village or town of people. They found that not only does poverty seem to affect health significantly (I'm not a scientist, but it had something to do with chronic inflammation), but the health effects don't reverse when that person rises out of poverty. It's a permanent, lifelong condition.

Edit: I found the documentary. It's a four part series detailing the ongoing study of 1000 plus people from Dunedin, New Zealand from birth. It's called Predict My Future: The Science of Us and it was the fourth episode I saw. I hope I remembered everything correctly :)

How can 'low socioeconomic status' cause damage to health independently of everything else? 'Low socioeconomic status' certainly causes lots of things that can be damaging to health but an abstract income bracket is not a cause of damage to health.

Stress hormones and exposure to them in the womb have life-long effects. They also hamper brain development which is why poor kids often have trouble with behavior and concentration in school.

Caesarean sections are more likely to be performed by for-profit hospitals as compared with non-profit hospitals, finds a systematic review and meta-analysis. This holds true regardless of women's risk and contextual factors such as country, year or study design.

Caesarean sections are more likely to be performed by for-profit hospitals as compared with non-p...

How can I find out if a specific hospital is for profit? It does not seem like something they'd advertise on their website.

Check their website for a donations page where they provide their tax exempt status.

Otherwise, if it's affiliated with a church/religion or university, or a public (county) health system, it's probably nonprofit (there are exceptions though). If it's part of a corporate chain like advocate or Cancer Centers of America it's for-profit.

Or just Google "is X hospital nonprofit" and there will probably be an answer :)

So are for profit hospitals trying to make more money or are non-profits trying to save precious money

You'd need to look at the infant mortality rates. If the for-profit hospitals give more c-sections and have a lower infant mortality rate or vice versa.

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'Supermassive' black hole rocketing through space at five million miles an hour, Nasa reveals

'Supermassive' black hole rocketing through space at five million miles an hour, Nasa reveals
'Supermassive' black hole rocketing through space at five million miles an hour, Nasa reveals
TL;DR; The Hubble Space Telescope was used to image a galaxy (3C186) containing a quasar located 8 billion light years away from the Earth. In this particular galaxy, the supermassive black hole was not located at the galactic core. Instead it was 35,000 light-years from the center and traveling outward at an estimated 7.6 million km/h. Researchers believe 3C186 was formed after two galaxies collided and merged 1-2 billion years ago. As the central black holes circled closer and closer together, they began to emit gravitational waves that were preferentially oriented in one direction. When the black holes finally merged, the resulting billion-solar-mass black hole launched off in the opposite direction with the energy of 100 million supernovae exploding simultaneously. This study is the first evidence of two supermassive black holes merging.



M. Chiaberge et al., The puzzling case of the radio-loud QSO 3C 186: a gravitational wave recoiling black hole in a young radio source? Astronomy and Astrophysics (2017).


arXiv



Abstract: Radio-loud AGNs with powerful relativistic jets are thought to be associated with rapidly spinning black holes (BHs). BH spin-up may result from a number of processes, including accretion of matter onto the BH itself, and catastrophic events such as BH-BH mergers. Aims. We study the intriguing properties of the powerful (L_bol ~ 1047 erg/s) radio-loud quasar 3C 186. This object shows peculiar features both in the images and in the spectra. Methods. We utilize near-IR Hubble Space Telescope (HST) images to study the properties of the host galaxy, and HST UV and SDSS optical spectra to study the kinematics of the source. Chandra X-ray data are also used to better constrain the physical interpretation. Results. HST imaging shows that the active nucleus is offset by 1.3 +- 0.1 arcsec (i.e. ~11 kpc) with respect to the center of the host galaxy. Spectroscopic data show that the broad emission lines are offset by -2140 +-390 km/s with respect to the narrow lines. Velocity shifts are often seen in QSO spectra, in particular in high-ionization broad emission lines. The host galaxy of the quasar displays a distorted morphology with possible tidal features that are typical of the late stages of a galaxy merger. Conclusions. A number of scenarios can be envisaged to account for the observed features. While the presence of a peculiar outflow cannot be completely ruled out, all of the observed features are consistent with those expected if the QSO is associated with a gravitational wave (GW) recoiling BH. Detailed studies of this object will allow us to confirm such a scenario and will enable a better understanding of both the physics of BH-BH mergers and the phenomena associated with the emission of GW from astrophysical sources.

TL;DR; The Hubble Space Telescope was used to image a galaxy (3C186) containing a quasar located 8 billion light years away from the Earth. In this particular galaxy, the supermassive black hole was . Instead it was 35,000 light-years from the center and traveling outward at an estimated 7.6 million km/h. Researchers believe 3C186 was formed after two galaxies collided and merged 1-2 billion years ago. As the central black holes circled closer and closer together, they began to emit gravitational waves that were preferentially oriented in one direction. When the black holes finally merged, the resulting billion-solar-mass black hole launched off in the opposite direction with the energy of 100 million supernovae exploding simultaneously. This study is the first evidence of two supermassive black holes merging.

M. Chiaberge et al., The puzzling case of the radio-loud QSO 3C 186: a gravitational wave recoiling black hole in a young radio source? Astronomy and Astrophysics (2017).

arXiv

Abstract: Radio-loud AGNs with powerful relativistic jets are thought to be associated with rapidly spinning black holes (BHs). BH spin-up may result from a number of processes, including accretion of matter onto the BH itself, and catastrophic events such as BH-BH mergers. Aims. We study the intriguing properties of the powerful (L_bol ~ 1047 erg/s) radio-loud quasar 3C 186. This object shows peculiar features both in the images and in the spectra. Methods. We utilize near-IR Hubble Space Telescope (HST) images to study the properties of the host galaxy, and HST UV and SDSS optical spectra to study the kinematics of the source. Chandra X-ray data are also used to better constrain the physical interpretation. Results. HST imaging shows that the active nucleus is offset by 1.3 +- 0.1 arcsec (i.e. ~11 kpc) with respect to the center of the host galaxy. Spectroscopic data show that the broad emission lines are offset by -2140 +-390 km/s with respect to the narrow lines. Velocity shifts are often seen in QSO spectra, in particular in high-ionization broad emission lines. The host galaxy of the quasar displays a distorted morphology with possible tidal features that are typical of the late stages of a galaxy merger. Conclusions. A number of scenarios can be envisaged to account for the observed features. While the presence of a peculiar outflow cannot be completely ruled out, all of the observed features are consistent with those expected if the QSO is associated with a gravitational wave (GW) recoiling BH. Detailed studies of this object will allow us to confirm such a scenario and will enable a better understanding of both the physics of BH-BH mergers and the phenomena associated with the emission of GW from astrophysical sources.

What happens when the black hole encounters something? Is it like a big eraser randomly wiping away chalk off a board? Is that a terrible analogy haha

That is an interesting question.

Gasses, rocks and small items? Gone from existence I'd think.

Larger masses like star systems and galaxies? Scattered about in all directions forming new orbits.

If anyone is curious like I was, there's no way it's reaching us within a trillion years even. It would take much much longer.

Spinach Leaf Transformed Into Beating Human Heart Tissue

Spinach Leaf Transformed Into Beating Human Heart Tissue
Spinach Leaf Transformed Into Beating Human Heart Tissue

Interesting. From the title I expected that they somehow took spinach cells and converted them into human cells, which sounded really farfetched. Instead they took advantage of the existing vein structure in the leaves and used it as a pre-made circulatory system for human tissue. Very clever! The article also state that cellulose is a known bio-compatible material, something I didn't know about until just now. If this method pans out, it will be a giant hurdle towards artificially made replacement organs.

edit: I guess it makes sense that cellulose is bio-compatible, given that it's an organically made substance. My question is, if implanted into a person's body, would it provoke an immune system response?

A ghost heart is not removing the dna. It's a decellularized heart, leaving behind the extracellular matrix, which serves as a scaffold essentially. You then re-cellularize the scaffold with the patient's own cells.

Imagine you buy an old house. You tear everything down except the foundation and the wooden frame. Then, you build your own house using the remaining frame as a start.

EDIT: I didn't expect to receive so many replies for this post! I'm really happy lots of people are interested, and I'm trying to reply to everything. I found some articles that may be of interest to some people.

Question Article "How do you get all the cells out?" An overview of tissue and whole organ decellularization processes (See: Section 3 & 4) "How do we get all the new cells back inside?" Whole-Organ Tissue Engineering: Decellularization and Recellularization of Three-Dimensional Matr... (See: Pages 32 - 44)

I have a porcine (pig) tissue aortic valve which is keeping me alive currently. This type of research saves lives.

Cotton is closer to almost 99% cellulose. It is among the purest forms of easily available cellulose product available

A study shows that the very religious and atheists are the groups who do not fear death as much as much as those in-between. The team found 100 relevant articles, published between 1961 and 2014, containing information about 26,000 people worldwide

A study shows that the very religious and atheists are the groups who do not fear death as much as much as those in-between. The team found 100 relevant articles, published between 1961 and 2014, containing information about 26,000 people worldwide
A study shows that the very religious and atheists are the groups who do not fear death as much a...

So people who are sure of what will happen to them after they die are less afraid than people who are unsure what will happen after they die?

Yes.

I think it means that people who believe but aren't 100% sure that what they believe is the only truth. More than anything, I think it's if the person has even a bit of doubt, they worry. No one likes to be wrong and being incorrect on how to spend the rest of eternity can definitely scare some people.

I think the unexpected finding is that Atheists don't fear for their impermanence despite nothing existing for them beyond their lives. I suppose they have ample time to tussle with this and accept their fate though

Edit: I know it is super edgy to say you aren't scared of nothingness, but I encourage you to take a moment or two to think about what eternal nothingness means.

Changes to flight paths add 1% to operating costs but could reduce aircraft effect on climate by 10%

Changes to flight paths add 1% to operating costs but could reduce aircraft effect on climate by 10%

Air traffic controller here.

Changing an aircrafts route like this works only in perfect conditions. Ie no weather.

Throw in storms and you're back to square one.

Now changing the fuel, that would do more good and be more effective.

Fun fact: gas turbine engines (jet engines) are very capable of running on very different types of fuel, it would just take fuel availability and cost to change it. And if anyone is wondering, and if course you are, jet fuel is basically just kerosene.

Here's some more made up math like the article.

Global airline operating cost is over $600 billion/yr (can't get a good source, oliverwyman.com stated $124 billion just for fuel in 2015 which is 19% total operating cost). So for over $6 billion/yr, we can potentially save an estimated 0.5% reduction in pollution to curb climate change.

Air New Zealand did a 50/50 biofuel test years ago with a 747-400. At the time it was only financially viable when oil prices were over $120/barrel

Scientists found our biological clocks are a type of cell they used to think was just a gap filler in the nervous system

Scientists found our biological clocks are a type of cell they used to think was just a gap filler in the nervous system
Scientists found our biological clocks are a type of cell they used to think was just a gap fille...

I wonder if these cells are affected by drugs that alter the sense of time.

Relevant reviews for those interested:

Sidenote, the comment about "used to think was just a gap filler" is only fair if you go very far back. Astrocytes have been, and continue to be, extensively studied for their role in many CNS processes.

"Astrocytes and the modulation of sleep." https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/28284099

"Astrocytes and synaptic plasticity in health and disease." https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/28299411

"Human astrocytes in the diseased brain." https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/28212850

all of those are from 2017, it says the discovery that they were keeping time was made in 2005.

So for a neuroscientist like Herzog, the obvious question was: What were the astrocytes doing in the SCN? Were they keeping time? And if they were keeping time, how did the astrocyte clocks interact with the neuron clocks?

Herzog answered the first question in 2005

You couldn't put the word "astrocytes" in the title? Also, everyone who studies the brain nowadays knows astrocytes are more than just gap fillers.

A drug that can reverse aspects of ageing has been successfully trialled in animals, say scientists. They have rejuvenated old mice to restore their stamina, coat of fur and even some organ function.

A drug that can reverse aspects of ageing has been successfully trialled in animals, say scientists. They have rejuvenated old mice to restore their stamina, coat of fur and even some organ function.
A drug that can reverse aspects of ageing has been successfully trialled in animals, say scientis...

“They accumulate naturally with age and have a role in wound healing and stopping tumours.

But while they appear to just sit there, senescent cells release chemicals that cause inflammation and have been implicated in ageing.

The group of scientists created a drug that selectively killed senescent cells by disrupting the chemical balance within them.”

While they appear to just sit there... What was that part about wound healing and stopping tumours?

There is a balance between death and cancer. As we live longer we get cancer more. Cancer is what happens when cells do not die.

There are several companies working on removing senescent cells.

Unity Biotechnology uses the same approach discussed in this article (senolytics) and it raised $ 116 millions in funding last year. They will start human clinical trials in the next 12 months.

Another one worth noting is Oisin which is instead pursuing a gene therapy approach. I like their approach better.

Check out /sub/longevity if you are interested in this kind of stuff.

Because apes are expensive, but there's lots of people lining up for a chance to try this?

A new rotavirus vaccine that does not require refrigeration has been found to be successful in preventing most cases of potentially fatal diarrhea in a randomized, placebo-controlled trial in Niger, funded by Médecins sans Frontières, that could save the lives of almost 500,000 children a year

A new rotavirus vaccine that does not require refrigeration has been found to be successful in pr...

So is the diarrhea fatal because it dehydrates them?

How not to be ignorant about the world | Hans and Ola Rosling

Yes.

Edit: My fellow redditors ITT, do you think saving children will overpopulate the earth, or cause starvation?

Interestingly, saving children lowers the overall fertility rate. Don’t Panic – The Facts About Population[58:50]

Also this: [19:09]

Doctors Without Borders is one of the few groups I consistently donate to. I'd highly recommend you all consider doing so as well:

https://donate.doctorswithoutborders.org/onetime.cfm

IV drips require a decent amount of sterile equipment. Expensive & hard to procure in countries where rotavirus is endemic.

Try one of these subthreads