This is not SciFi: software update slated for bionic eye will grant higher resolution and colour vision

The Argus II is the first bionic eye implant, designed to grant the blind vision, that has been approved by the FDA in the US. The wearer of such an implant is now capable of distinguishing objects and live an almost independent life, which is absolutely remarkable by itself, however its performance is light years away from the natural counterpart.

‘Sniffing’ cancer: device detects cancer odors in urine

A while ago, ZME Science reported on some mind blowing research in which dogs were trained to literally sniff lung and breast cancer from samples. The dog’s detection accuracy was between 90% and 95% for breast and lung cancer, respectively, compared to biopsy results. Recently, a collaborative team of researchers from University of Liverpool and the University of the West of

Experiment shows that crabs and lobsters feel pain, suggests we don’t really understand animal pain

I have never in my life eaten a crab or a lobster, because ever since I was a kid, boiling an animal alive seemed extremely cruel; it just didn’t make sense that an animal doesn’t feel pain – and even today, it doesn’t, to me. Pain is your body’s way of telling you something is damaged and needs fixing. It

Managers lose track of the big picture, only focus on grades and performance, not context

How many times did you apply for a job or to enter a graduate program in some school somewhere only to find that the position was filled by someone less capable than you? Now, we’re strictly referring to people genuinely less capable than you, otherwise we’d be hitting the same bias exhibited by the manager in charge that renounced you

Children can recover from an autism diagnosis, study finds

It’s no easy task for any psychologist to bear the news to a parent that his child is suffering from autism. For the parent, receiving the news is much worse. Not all hope is lost, however, as it’s been reported that a promising fraction of those diagnosed with autism eventually recover during young adulthood, despite still showing some mild symptoms

Migraines linked with abnormal brain arteries

We’re all swept from time to time by the occasional migraine, and rest assured you don’t want anyone around you when that time comes. Some people, however, suffer from migraines more often than others in what’s recently been classified as chronic migraines. It’s still unclear what causes them. Some studies point to dilation of blood vessels in the head, it’s even

Dwelling inside the gambler’s mind

There’s a lot more to gambling than just luck, and whilst it’s impossible to predict an outcome or utilise a system effectively, the human brain and our emotions have a lot to do with the decisions we make during the gambling process. Expectation Say you slide a coin into a one armed bandit, pull the lever and watch the reels

Plain packaging makes cigarettes less appealing

Most smokers fall prey to the poisonous grasp of cigarettes because they became seduced by the simple act itself, not because of the taste or other pleasures relieved from smoking. There are many aspects that make smoking  extremely appealing, especially to attention-seeking young. Despite several policies have been introduced in the past decades to put a stop to the seductive

3D map of brain 50 times more detailed than previous versions released

Scientists have striven for years to comprehend the complicated neurological mechanisms that underline the human brain and consciousness. Besides the philosophical aspects of such a quest (how we do think? what is consciousness born?), a better understanding of the human brain will help solve a number of medical issues that currently plague the human brain. A new step forward in

Why are females better at coping with stress? Study suggests estrogen is the key

Society today is becoming ever stressed out it seems. According to a recent American Psychological Association poll, nearly a quarter of Americans confessed to currently feeling under “extreme stress,” however not all of us are as stressed under the same conditions. For instance, there’s a general consensus in the medical world that women are better at coping with stress than men,

Scientists create functional blood vessels from adult stem cells

Researchers at Harvard-affiliated Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH) have successfully grown and inserted functional blood vessels into animal models after they  used vascular precursor cells derived from human induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs). These blood vessels lasted for as long as nine months, much longer than any previous attempt, making the Harvard researchers’ efforts seem extremely promising. Patients suffering from damaged blood vessels,

Study finds that the mothers of children with autism are more than 21 times as likely to have specific Maternal Autoantibody Related antibodies in their systems

Autism is one of the biggest medical mysteries of the 21st century, and researchers are still trying to figure out the causes of this condition. UC Davis MIND Institute researchers have made a significant step forward in that direction, identifying some specific antibodies that target fetal brain proteins in the blood of women with autistic children. This finding is the

Science of Financial Risk Taking

Imagine the toughest financial choice you’ve made lately, one in which you are virtually torn in which way to go: stock market investing, loan taking,  buying a house, car, deciding what to do with your life savings. The anxiety experienced may have been the consequence of information overload; however, scientists suspect a more complicated biological phenomenon is the reason why.

Cockatoos learn to pick locks, cognitive study shows

What if the world’s greatest unsolved heists were made by aviary burglars? Bear with me for a second. A bird is small enough to fit through cages and window cracks, it can fly in and out fast and on the sly, and if it ever gets caught, it won’t turn its partners in crime since … well, it can’t speak.

Paralyzed rats regain control of their bladder

It may surprise you to know that a life-threatening disability after complete spinal cord injury is urinary dysfunction – although numerous strategies and treatments have been tried, in the attempt of regrowing the severed axons, their success has been very limited. Now, researchers have finally come up with a solution that works, at least in rats. Paralyzed rodents can now

Poverty might cause changes to the brain

It’s rather clear that social-economic factors have a huge part to play in the development of an individual, but when discussing this we typically refer to education, something that can be more or less manipulated at any time, albeit with various degrees of difficulty. How do social-economic aspects affect the brain, though? Martha Farah, the founding director for Penn’s Center for Neuroscience and

Video Gamers really do see more

Hours and hours spent at computers or gaming consoles do have their advantages – not only do they train reaction times and adaptation, but they also train the brain to make better and faster use of visual input, according to Duke University researchers. “Gamers see the world differently,” said Greg Appelbaum, an assistant professor of psychiatry in the Duke School

Captain Obvious presents: men and women lie about sex to match gender expectations

A new study conducted by researchers from Ohio University concluded that both men and women will lie about their behavior to match cultural expectations. Well now, this is a new one – who would have thought people actually lie to have sex? But it gets even better – they used student behavior for this study. The first thing they noticed

Autism speeds motion perception

It seems to me that we’ve just began to scratch the surface of what we know about autistic spectrum disorder (ASD). It’s been recently shown that autism is linked with child prodigies and that for some reason, autism rates continue to increase, especially in male population. Now, according to researchers at Vanderbilt University and the University of Rochester, children with

OIder adult clumsiness linked to brain changes

For more and more people, ageing and clumsiness seem to go hand in hand – difficulties when handling a plate, fumbling with keys or even dialing a phone – new research from Washington University in St. Louis suggests that some of these day-to-day reaching-and-grasping difficulties may be be caused by changes in the mental frame used by older adults to