How Do Our Bodies Fight Off Dangerous Chemicals?

We’re all subjects in a massive experiment. Humans have created about 80,000 synthetic industrial compounds — including plastics, the flame retardants that cover our sofas, and pesticides. These compounds have structures that are not commonly seen in nature and present a risk to our health. Everybody on the planet is exposed. It’s important to understand what these substances … Read moreHow Do Our Bodies Fight Off Dangerous Chemicals?

Fruit and Liquid Sugar

Liquid sugar, such as in sodas, energy drinks and sports drinks, is the leading single source of added sugar in the American diet, representing 36% of the added sugar we consume. Research suggests that our bodies process liquid sugar differently than sugar in foods, especially those containing fiber. Scientists argue that when you eat an apple (for … Read moreFruit and Liquid Sugar

Caffeine helps your memory

Caffeine is the energy boost of choice for millions who consume it to wake up or stay up. Now, UC Irvine neurobiologist Michael Yassa has found another use for the stimulant: memory enhancer. Michael Yassa, assistant professor of neurobiology & behavior, and his team of scientists found that caffeine has a positive effect on long-term … Read moreCaffeine helps your memory

How songbirds may help build a better hearing aid

Untreated hearing loss can have devastating and alienating repercussions on a person’s life: isolation, depression, sapped cognition, even dementia. Yet only one in five Americans who could benefit from a hearing aid actually wears one. Some don’t seek help because their loss has been so gradual that they do not feel impaired. Others cannot afford … Read moreHow songbirds may help build a better hearing aid

Is Sugar in Fruit Different Than Sugar in Soda?

Sugar. Everyone loves a sweet treat, but sugar has found its way into savory foods like pasta sauce and bread. On average, Americans eat nearly 66 pounds of added sugar per person per year. It’s easy to exceed the daily recommended sugar intake when a 12 oz soda has about 11 teaspoons of added sugar.  But what … Read moreIs Sugar in Fruit Different Than Sugar in Soda?

Developing the world’s first neural device to restore memory

The Neural Technology group at Lawrence Livermore National Lab will seek to develop a neuromodulation system — a sophisticated electronics system to modulate neurons — that will investigate areas of the brain associated with memory to understand how new memories are formed. The research builds on the understanding that memory is a process in which … Read moreDeveloping the world’s first neural device to restore memory

Traffic jams can hurt the heart

Anyone who has experienced Los Angeles gridlock likely can attest that traffic may cause one’s blood pressure to rise. But UC Irvine researchers have found that, beyond the aggravation caused by fellow drivers, traffic-related air pollution presents serious heart health risks — not just for rush hour commuters, but for those who live and work … Read moreTraffic jams can hurt the heart

Do gut bacteria rule our minds?

It sounds like science fiction, but it seems that bacteria within us — which outnumber our own cells about 100-fold — may very well be affecting both our cravings and moods to get us to eat what they want, and often are driving us toward obesity. In an article published this week in the journal … Read moreDo gut bacteria rule our minds?

Making Huge Strides for Mobility

This exoskeleton, developed by UC Berkeley professor Homayoon Kazerooni and his team, helps people suffering from spinal cord injuries to walk again. “Many paraplegics are not in a situation to afford a $100,000 device, and insurance companies don’t pay for these devices,” Kazerooni said. “Our job as engineers is to make something people can use.” … Read moreMaking Huge Strides for Mobility