Scanaflo Home Urine Testing via Iphone

Scanaflo™ is a urine test kit in development that will empower people to monitor their health at home.

Health tech startup Scanadu is working on the cutting-edge of a new type of medical technology that could one day put the hospital in the palm of our hands. Scanadu is now in the testing phase with Scanaflo. This is an iPhone-ready urinalysis strip that, with just one pee, knows if you are pregnant, diabetic or have been smoking weed.

Found via TechCrunch

Recent Research into Anal Gas Expulsion (“Farting”)

medical1[1]

Via Real Clear Science

Until recently, there hadn’t been formal studies to prove which foods would reduce anal gas expulsion (aka farting). The intent of recent research is to document the causes of extreme flatulence, flatulence-free foods and bacteria in the large intestine where the gas is generated.

Spanish researcher Fernando Azpiroz bolsters our scientific knowledge on passing gas. He published two new papers, one published in the journal Gut in June 2013, and the other just published to Neurogastroenterology and Motility. In his most recent paper, he documents how different diets affect flatulence.

It’s a good read, but you may prefer the summary, so i recommend you go to Real Clear Science for a great overview.

Well-Connected Hemispheres of Einstein’s Brain May Have Sparked Brilliance

Albert Einstein

From a Florida State University article – Research shows Albert Einstein’s brain had more extensive connections than other men.

The left and right hemispheres of Albert Einstein’s brain were unusually well connected to each other and may have contributed to his brilliance, according to a new study conducted in part by Florida State University evolutionary anthropologist Dean Falk.

“This study, more than any other to date, really gets at the ‘inside’ of Einstein’s brain,” Falk said. “It provides new information that helps make sense of what is known about the surface of Einstein’s brain.”

The study, “The Corpus Callosum of Albert Einstein’s Brain: Another Clue to His High Intelligence,” was published in the journal Brain. Unfortunately, an account is needed to access the full study, but you can read the extract here.

Backdoor to Boeing’s 787 Dreamliner Computer System?

Boeing

 

Researchers claim the chip used in military systems and civilian aircraft has built-in function that could let in hackers. The chip in question is ProASIC3 chip , it’s used in medical, automotive, communications and consumer products, as well as military use. Among applications where it’s used are remote surveillance systems, drones, and for flight-critical applications on the new Boeing 787 Dreamliner.

Good god, this is all we need to worry about now for possible terrorist attacks that no longer need to penetrate physical security to down a plane, now all they need is a really good hacker.

Read more at the Guardian.

Scientists: Stinky Sock Smell Helps Fight Malaria

Virus-medicine

From Seattle Times:

The smell of old socks can help fight malaria by attracting mosquitoes to a trap outdoors, scientists have found, and on Wednesday donors announced new funding to help develop the device.

Traps scented with the odor of human feet attracted four times as many mosquitoes as a human volunteer, said Dr. Fredros Okumu, the head of the research project at Tanzania’s Ifakara Health Institute. Mosquitoes who fly into the trap are then poisoned.

This is a big deal because according to the World Heath Org there are 3.3 Billion people at risk of malaria infection. Of those, 250 Million malaria cases occur per year and about 1 Million deaths result from it.

Possessed Hoarders

Hoarders

I found this short video documentary on compulsive hoarders (wikipedia), people whose lives are dominated by their relationship to possessions. The video is fascinating in a clinical sense, but could be scary or possibly revolting if you’re lacking in empathy for these folks because clearly there’s a psychological issue going on here.

The video is called ‘Possessed’, is about 20 minutes long and you meet 4 very different hoarders. If you enjoy watching medical mysteries or science shows, then I highly recommend watching it.

Does Eating Tofu Lower Sperm Count?

Tofu

From Scientific American, a quick discussion on a report that recently came out indicating that a key compound in soy bean called phytoestrogens, mimics the female hormone estrogen. Estrogen has been shown to reduce testosterone levels in men.

In this study, half a serving of soy, on average, lowered sperm counts by 34 million per milliliter compared to those that ‘abstained’ from soy.

Intel is Getting Into The Medical Device Category of Embedded Devices

Intel Health Guide

Is it odd for a silicon vendor like Intel to get into the medical device business that they have to market and service as opposed to allowing another OEM to rebrand or license Intel’s IP?

I guess I need to look into this a little more, but that’s exactly what Intel has done. The device just received FDA approval and is called the “Intel Health Guide”. It’s considered a personal health system or a care management tool for healthcare professionals who manage patients with chronic conditions.

Essentially, your doctor sends you home with this, the patient can have the device take readings from the in-home patient (like blood pressure), then uploads the results to the Dr. who has a device or software on the backend to make assessments of the patient’s state.

I can definitely see a great use for this, especially for the elderly, but I would like to know the cost and what kind of revenue stream they’ll see from it since this is a gamble on their part.

Injured By A UFO? There’s A Medical Diagnostic Code For That

The Wall Street Journal’s Health blog researches some of the more interesting medical diagnostic codes to help track injuries throughout the world. For instance, if you’re injured by a spacecraft, that’s ICD-9 code E845.

And the extended definition notes that the code includes “launching pad accident,” but excludes “effects of weightlessness in spacecraft,” which has its own code (E928.0). And with a little sleuthing they found a reference to the need for these spacecraft codes go all the way back to 1966. No doubt due to the heightened awareness of the space race.

More interesting codes:

  • injury by nuclear weapons – E979.5
  • by paintball gun – E922.5
  • by atomic power plant malfunction in watercraft – E838
  • by ski-lift with gondola – E847

Bumper Stickers Linked to Road Rage

Bumper sticker road rage

According to a new psychological study reported in Nature, a car bumper sticker as innocuous as “Jesus Saves” or “My honor student is a cam whore” are among a few of the indications that the driver is more susceptible to road rage than drivers with no bumper stickers or other bling to personalize the vehicle. So those people with dashboard toys or custom paint jobs for instance are subconsciously marking their car as a very personal space or property.

Coupled with the fact that roads are being over populated will lead to the normal human instinct of increased territorial aggression (this applies to other animals suffering from over population as well). They are more apt to take offense at even the slightest infringement upon what they deem as their space on the road when other drivers are too close or cut them off. Their feeling of having a personal space violated can cause the territorial individual to respond with aggression, hence road rage.

My theory based on that study then goes that if you’re going to cut someone off, take a peek at their car first and only go after the timid or more passive, less territorial drivers, with no car adornments. Those are the people treating the vehicle as a pure means of transportation between two points and less likely to retaliate.

Monkeys Managing Machines. Or, Monkey Brain Hardwired To Robotic Arm, Feeds Self.

 Monkey brain controls robotic arm

In a mental meeting of monkey and machine, two primates have learned to feed themselves with a robotic arm by controlling the appendage with signals from their brains.

The success boosts hopes for mind-controlled robotic prosthetics that may help disabled humans achieve some mobility.

Jeebus, something about this gives me a feeling of impending doom, maybe subconsciously I’m seeing this as the beginning of some kind of twilight zone thing that doesn’t end well for society. Like maybe a Planet of the Apes kind of thing.

Take your pick for more details, some with video:

BBC News
Forbes
Bloomberg
Voice of America
Science News

Elbows Home To Bacteria Tribes

Medical

In the ‘I think I was better off not knowing Dept.’, researchers inform us that the patch of skin for the human elbow contains 6 tribes of bacteria and that you should be thankful for the value they bring.

The research is coming from a paper published a few days ago out of the National Human Genome Research Institute, part of the human microbiome project. The project is a government-financed endeavor to catalog the typical bacterial colonies that inhabit each niche in the human ecosystem.

Read the elbow article at Seattle Times.

If you don’t know anything about the Human Genome Project, here’s an overview. Most educated geeks should know at least a little something about it, it’s pretty important to the future of our species and our understanding of how to solve some of the more difficult medical diseases and genetic unknowns of homo sapiens.

Carbon Nanotubes Are Now Ubiquitous and Eerily Similar to Asbestos. Here Comes the Cancer.

carbon nantubes

Carbon Nanotechnology is a billion dollar business, the nanotubes are in everything from facial creams to tiny nanoradios to iPods to tennis rackets and the particles come in a wide variety of ‘flavors’ with different electrical properties. Researchers, experimenting with mice exposed to these different type of nanotubes, are finding that the technology has a lot of characteristics in common with Asbestos…including causing cancer.

Like Asbestos, some carbon nanotubes are thin and multi walled, and, as is the case for people exposed to asbestos, the cancer takes a while to manifest itself (30-40 years).

Wonderful.

Here’s additional sources on this story if you’re interested in more: Washington PostInformationWeekCRNComputerworld

Medical News: 5-7-08

Medical

Scientists discover why the plague is so lethal– Bacteria that cause the bubonic plague may be more virulent than their close relatives because of a single genetic mutation

Bacterial slime helps cause serious disease – Leptospirosis is a serious but neglected emerging disease that infects humans through contaminated water. Now research published in the May issue of the journal Microbiology shows for the first time how bacteria that cause the disease survive in the environment.

Ferreting Out HIV – Compound that pulls the virus out of hiding is synthesized.

China rushes to quell viral outbreak as Olympics approach – A viral outbreak in China has sickened more than 6,300 people and killed another child, raising the death toll to 26 children

Reprogrammed Stem Cells Work on Parkinson’s – A study in rodents suggests that skin cells can be transformed into neurons to treat neurodegeneration.