“Dry, lifeless hair can take the fun out of your life,” intones an announcer in a 1950s ad for the haircare product Brylcreem, “but you can put it back with Brylcreem—with Brylcream, a little dab will do you.” The ad might seem a little rough by 2017 sensibilities, but some 60 years later we’re still attracted to the shine promised by cosmetics and personal care products. Toothpaste companies pledge that they’ll give us blindingly white smiles, while deodorant manufacturers dangle the hope of a life without stink. The advertisements that we see and the products we buy help determine and reinforce what we view as normal.
It’s no secret that exercise makes your heart bigger in a healthy way, helping it to pump blood more efficiently and lessening the potential for heart failure. Figuring out a way to mimic the way exercise manages to do this could be an extremely beneficial way to treat certain types of heart conditions. A study out this week shows how a protein called cardiotrophin 1 might in fact do this: have the same positive effects on the heart, minus the actual exersise part.
When a thirty-year-old woman turned up to the Sir Charles Gairdner Hospital, in Western Australia complaining about an incredible amount of stomach pain, the cause of her suffering initially eluded the physicians trying to treat her.
It’s relatively new to America’s drug scene, but in the last few years, its victims have included everyone from musician Prince to a 10-year-old boy in Miami. The culprit is fentanyl, a lesser-known—but incredibly lethal—opioid that has become increasingly prevalent in the United States.
If the eyes are windows to the soul, they’re open windows, potentially letting in all kinds of unwelcome bugs. To ensure that doesn’t happen, our tears are loaded with microbe-killing compounds and immune cells. In fact, our eyes are so inhospitable that it was long thought they were the only part of our bodies which lacked a symbiotic bacterial community. But now, scientists have found evidence of a once-inconceivable ocular microbiome—and it may help eyes fight off disease.
We’re all clamoring to get into space these days, but lost in our excitement to fly to the Moon and colonize Mars is a brutal truth: the final frontier is a cold, inhospitable wasteland that’ll kill you at the first opportunity it gets. Astronauts already know this, but for the rest of us, here are just a few of the potentially lethal dangers faced by spacefaring pioneers.
This past week, a Texas family suffered a heartbreaking loss when their four-year-old son succumbed to a suspected (though not officially confirmed) case of secondary drowning—a condition in which inhaled water causes fluid to build up in a person’s lungs. In these cases, death can occur hours after a child goes swimming. Such fatalities are extremely rare, but knowing the causes and symptoms can help put parents’ minds at ease—and help you act fast if something isn’t right.