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Johns Hopkins University

Diabetic retinopathy is one of a number of nasty effects diabetes can have on the human body. The disease sees the development of leaky blood vessels in the eye that over time lead to permanent loss of vision. Though it is the leading cause of new cases of blindness in American adults, its progress can be slowed by certain drugs or laser treatment. But research has now uncovered a new protein found to drive the condition, raising the possibility of preventing it altogether.

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If you've ever seen a bat in flight, then you'll know how quickly and precisely they can maneuver. Scientists from Johns Hopkins University, Columbia University and the University of Maryland have now uncovered one of the key factors that allows them to do so – and it could have applications in the design of aircraft.

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While non-invasive imaging technologies, such as mammograms or CT scans, are capable of detecting tumors, identifying whether they are malignant or benign usually involves getting out the scalpel and conducting a biopsy. Now researchers at Johns Hopkins University have developed a technique that uses magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) to noninvasively detect cancerous cells, offering the potential of supplementing biopsies or maybe one day replacing them altogether. Read More
Many people assume e-cigarettes are a healthier – or less unhealthy, at least – option than regular cigarettes, resulting in a rapid uptake in recent years. While the long-term effects of e-cigarettes are still unknown, research out of Johns Hopkins University has found that e-cigs may deliver a false sense of security along with their nicotine hit. Read More
While environmental factors and genetics play a role in the development of cancer, scientists at Johns Hopkins University have used statistical modeling to show that two-thirds of adult cancers may be attributable to "bad luck," or random mutations, rather than lifestyle. Read More
Now orbiting the planet Mercury after over ten years in space, NASA's MESSENGER spacecraft is still functioning better than expected. Its mission will soon come to an end though – it's running out of fuel and is scheduled to crash into the planet in March. However, mission control have come up with a novel plan that will use the helium used to pressurize the unmanned probe's engine to give it another month of life. Read More
Researchers at the Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory (APL) have successfully tested bilateral shoulder-level prosthetics, allowing a test subject to perform complex tasks using both arms simultaneously. The tests indicate that the system is quick to learn, and it could one day drastically alter the lives of shoulder-level amputees. Read More
For doctors, nurses, soldiers, and other responders fighting the Ebola outbreak in West Africa, currently available protective suits are both too hot to wear in the tropics and often a source of contagion when they're being taken off. To make moving and treating patients safer, Johns Hopkins University, along with international health affiliate Jhpiego and other partners, is developing a new anti-contamination suit for health care workers that is both cooler to wear and easier to remove. Read More
The list of potential winners of the Qualcomm Tricorder XPRIZE has been whittled down to 10. The aim of the project is to make science fiction science fact, encouraging the creation of a medical scanning device that would mimic some of the key functions of the iconic Star Trek tricorder, allowing consumers access to reliable, easy to use diagnostic equipment any time, anywhere, with near instantaneous results. Read More
While there are a wide range of scenarios that may cause a person to take their own life, the fact is that in a given situation, some people will do so whereas others won't. Scientists at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine now believe that this difference can largely be traced to a genetic mutation in the people who are more likely to commit suicide. What's more, this mutation can be detected via a blood test. Read More
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