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Blood Test Provides More Accurate Prenatal Testing For Down Syndrome

A new blood test offers pregnant women a safe and much more accurate way to screen for Down syndrome.


New APA autism guidelines ‘reduce diagnosis by more than 30%’

New autism guidelines could leave thousands of children who have developmental delays without autism diagnosis, meaning they will miss out on social services, educational support and medical benefits.


Obesity Drops Among Young Children in U.S., Report Says

The obesity rate among 2- to 5-year-olds dropped by almost half in the U.S. over the past decade, according to a report suggesting a new wave of Americans may avoid the risks of heart disease and diabetes linked to being severely overweight.


Just Say No To These 11 Outrageous Arguments Against Legalizing Marijuana

When it comes to public opinion, it’s becoming clear that anti-pot crusaders are losing the battle and over a dozen more states are considering legalization measures right now.


Overlooked Virus May Be Cause Of Paralyzing Disease In California

There are about 60 enteroviruses, and they sicken millions of people each year.


Centralizing organ removal shows promise for transplants

For decades, surgeons have traveled to far-off hospitals to remove organs from brain-dead donors and then rushed back to transplant them. Now an experiment in the Midwest suggests there may be a better way: Bring the donors to the doctors instead.


Autism-friendly travel now officially aboard Royal Caribbean cruises

Following guidelines set by Autism of the Seas, the cruise line has now incorporated new youth programs, trained daycare staff and specialized meals that cater to autism-sensitive dietary restrictions like gluten or dairy-free options.


FDA weighs risks of 3-person embryo fertilization

U.S. government health regulators will consider this week whether to green light a provocative new fertilization technique that could eventually create babies from the DNA of three people, with the goal of preventing mothers from passing on debilitating genetic diseases to their children.


When Doctors Need to Lie

OF course, even when a doctor believes that a paternalistic approach is justified, he should aim to keep it as “soft” as possible. Soft paternalism involves negotiation, persuading a patient to see things from your point of view. Hard paternalism, on the other hand, is coercive.


Unusual Iowa abortion rule has surprising result

University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics  decided not to bill the state for the 15 abortions it had performed as of mid-February.


$5B initiative proposed for stem cell research

Supporters of California’s multibillion-dollar stem cell program plan to ask for $5 billion more to bring the fruits of research to patients.


Mom: Hopeful signs seen in teen called brain dead

The mother of a 13-year-old California girl who was declared brain dead after suffering complications from sleep apnea surgery said she has seen changes in her daughter’s condition that give her hope.


Insured patients are often not transferred for better care, study finds

Patients with insurance may not be transferred to specialized trauma centers as quickly as those without, a Stanford study has found.


Scientists create a power plant: Artificial leaf could be used to produce cheap energy

The leaf uses sunlight to break water down into hydrogen and oxygen. Hydrogen can be used to propel spacecraft, and is a potential fuel source for combustion engines and other vehicles.


Sitting linked to increased risk for disability, study shows

For people over age 60, every extra hour of the day spent sitting is linked to an increased risk for developing life-altering physical disabilities, according to a new study from Northwestern University’s Feinberg School of Medicine.


New York State to Limit Use of Solitary Confinement

New York State has agreed to sweeping changes that would curtail the widespread use of solitary confinement to punish prison infractions, according to court papers filed on Wednesday.


Doctors fear kids’ brain disorders tied to industrial chemicals

Global restrictions on environmental toxins needed in face of rising autism and ADHD, say two top medical researchers.


Crazy ants take on fire ants and win

Crazy enough to use their own venom to detoxify that of a fire ant.


Ancient American’s genome mapped

Present-day Native Americans are descended from some of the continent’s earliest settlers, a genetic study suggests.


How your DNA can reconstruct history

Most people are carrying around historical records in their DNA, with clues to how people from genetically distinct groups intermingled over the last 4,000 years. That’s the conclusion of a new study in the journal Science.


Measuring Public Perception About Cancer Prevention, Treatment and Research

Genetic testing to predict the likelihood of developing a hereditary cancer can help save millions of lives each year.


Vast Study Casts Doubts on Value of Mammograms

One of the largest and most meticulous studies of mammography ever done, involving 90,000 women and lasting a quarter-century, has added powerful new doubts about the value of the screening test for women of any age.


Did AOL CEO Tim Armstrong Violate HIPAA?

Tim Armstrong has already acknowledged (and apologized) for his sizable gaffe last week, but is he also guilty of violating healthcare’s privacy law known as HIPAA?


Teen Pregnancy Rates Much Higher for Girls With Serious Mental Illness: Study

Teenage girls diagnosed with major mental illness are much more likely to give birth, suggesting such girls should become a special target for anti-pregnancy efforts.


Scientist’s Experiment in Fundraising

Scientist Plans to Raise $1.5 Million Through Online Solicitations


23andMe Releases New Research on Genetic Causes of Allergies

23andMe finds 11 new genetic associations for allergy sufferers, but the company isn’t out of the hot-seat yet as questions continue to emerge about direct-to-consumer genetic testing.


To Catch a Killer Gene: Sisters Race to Stop Mystery Disease

The gene has killed five people in the Linder family, and it now threatens the sisters themselves. But if they have their way, it will die out in their generation.


Why You Should Care That CVS Will Stop Selling Cigarettes, Even if You’re Not a Smoker

CVS/Pharmacy announced on Wednesday that its stores will discontinue cigarette sales by October 1 of this year. CVS Caremark, the parent company of the pharmacy chain, predicts that the move could lose the company $2 billion in revenue for 2014, but won’t affect its earnings forecast.


Ethics Questions Arise as Genetic Testing of Embryos Increases

Her first thought after she heard the news, after she screamed and made her mother and boyfriend leave the room, was that she would never have children.


New rule allows patients to get test results directly from labs, without doctors’ clearance

Patients may obtain their test results directly from the laboratory that produced them, without having to go through their doctors.