In November 2005, the world turned its attention to Amines, France, where Isabelle Dinoire became the first person ever to receive a partial face transplant. The surgery was greeted with intense controversy that has continued to this day.
Self-experimentation has been an important means of making new discoveries, and it is only in the past century that self-experimentation has been increasingly frowned upon. In fact, prior to the eighteenth century, human research using only one or small numbers of subjects was the mainstay of scientists. However, as our scientific knowledge developed, so too did higher ethical standards, and public demand for studies with statistical significance increased.
Whether it is a steaming mug of morning Joe or an afternoon pick-me-up soda, the world is addicted to caffeinated comforts. According to a study conducted by New Scientist magazine, 90% of North American adults consume some form of caffeine on a daily basis, making this legal, psychoactive substance the world's most widely used drug. Its widespread use, coupled with its lack of nutritional value, has attracted the condemnation of many dietary purists who brand caffeine as some sort of "demon compound." But to what extent is draining that café latte from Starbucks an exercise in sinfulness? While existing research offers conflicting opinions, the current consensus seems to be chanting "everything in moderation."
Brand Nobel is a very eclectic one, with threads of all hues of life forming its rich tapestry. This is especially true about Medicine, with its very colorful list of recipients-from microbe-hunters to gene-seekers, from animal behaviorists to worm people. In essence, the prize is sometimes retro, saluting the significant past, and sometimes techno, recognizing the most cutting-edge in the arena, but always unique and significant. The new flavor this season is one that permeates all of these, enriching and transforming areas far and wide.
History is found in many things and places. In recent times, scientists have uncovered a great deal about past life through bones. And many of the findings have overturned common wisdom. For example, it was previously thought that the "invention" of human agriculture more than ten thousand years ago had immense benefits such as improved access to food, and more leisure time. However, ample research on archeological remains of human bones during the agricultural transition provided evidence to the contrary. The over-reliance on a single source of food, crowded conditions, and increasing social inequality brought about by land ownership were associated with pathological signs in bones such as increased pathogen load, and dental diseases.
The horrible impact of the AIDS epidemic is well known 39 million people are living with HIV and three million people die from AIDS each year. And although many methods are used in the fight against HIV, ranging from condoms to a wide variety of drugs, the number of people with HIV is increasing. Many people think the solution may come in the form of a vaccine. However, the search for a vaccine recently hit a major obstacle, causing researchers to question their approach to HIV vaccinations.
At the end of the day, there's nothing better than collapsing into a large, comfy chair for some rest and relaxation. But before you get too comfortable, have you ever wondered how much you're moving even when you are trying your best to remain an inert blob? The answer to this question is surprisingly complicated and might surprise you!