medicine

Researchers add sense of touch to robotic arm via brain implant

Enlarge / Robotic arm in action. University of Pittsburgh Medical Center One of the most stunning examples of the promise of brain implants is shown in a video in which a paralyzed person controls a robotic arm with nothing but her thoughts. The technology alone is impressive, but the joy on the participant’s face as she …

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CDC advisory committee recommends COVID vaccine for 12- to 15-year-olds

Enlarge / With new data, we’re able to expand vaccinations to ever-younger populations. Roberto Jimenez Mejias / Getty Images Update, 10:00pm EDT: CDC Director Rochelle Walensky has followed the Advisory Committee’s advice. In a statement released this evening, she said, “CDC now recommends that this vaccine be used among [the 12-15 year old] population, and providers …

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“Are schools safe?” is the wrong question to be asking

Enlarge MediaNews Group/Reading Eagle via Getty Images Is it safe to open schools? From the moment it became clear that the COVID-19 pandemic had set up shop in the US, answers to that question have been scrutinized, analyzed, and even politicized. Lost in all of this is the realization that it’s a terrible question—because there’s …

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Scientists sequence 64 human genomes to better reflect genetic diversity

The Human Genome Project shed light on our species in 2001, but it was a patchwork of different humans’ genes that didn’t really reflect humanity’s genetic makeup. Flash forward 20 years, however, and science is taking a significant leap forward. Researchers have revealed a new dataset of 64 sequenced full human genomes that should better …

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Origami-like patch could help robot surgeons repair internal injuries

Robot surgeons could one day have an easy way to mend internal injuries with minimal impact. MIT researchers have developed an “origami-inspired,” biodegradable medical patch that can be folded around a robot’s minimally invasive surgical tools to seal internal damage. While bioadhesive patches are already in use for this kind of surgery, they can create …

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Russia’s Sputnik V vaccine looks good in early analysis

Enlarge / Picture of vials of Russia’s Sputnik V vaccine against the novel coronavirus disease, COVID-19, seen at the Cotahuma Hospital in La Paz, Bolivia. Jorge Bernal/Getty Images Yesterday, the people behind Russia’s leading vaccine, termed Sputnik V, issued a preliminary analysis of its function. The news was quite good: while the trial is ongoing …

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New COVID cases dropping, but worrying signs on the horizon

Enlarge / Aerial view showing a tractor digging graves in a new area of the Nossa Senhora Aparecida, where COVID-19 victims are buried, in Manaus, Brazil. Marcio James / Getty Images While attention has been focused on the worrying new variants of SARS-CoV-2, there has been some good news: despite the evolution of a number …

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Apple warns against putting an iPhone 12 too close to your pacemaker

Chris Velazco/Engadget You probably don’t need someone to tell you that magnets and life-saving medical devices don’t mix, but Apple wants to make that patently clear. MacRumors has learned that Apple recently updated a support document to warn against keeping the iPhone 12 and MagSafe accessories too close to pacemakers, defibrillators and other implants that …

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The immune system and COVID: It’s still confusing

Enlarge / SOUTH TANGERANG, INDONESIA – JANUARY 7, 2021: A patient recovered from COVID-19 donate plasma at Indonesia Red Cross Transfusion Center in South Tangerang. Barcroft Media / Getty Images It’s clear that the immune system can mount a robust response to SARS-CoV-2, as the vaccine trials have made clear. Beyond that, though, there are …

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Second COVID vaccine approved for use in the US

Enlarge DeFodi Images Late Friday, the Food and Drug Administration issued an emergency authorization to a COVID-19 vaccine from a company called Moderna. The move follows an enthusiastic endorsement of the vaccine following an evaluation of clinical trial data by the FDA’s Vaccines and Related Biological Products Advisory Committee. Moderna already has millions of doses …

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