The woman had abnormally high cesium levels in her blood from oral cesium chloride supplements she took for many months. The metal can cause an abnormal heart rhythm
By Cari Nierenberg and LiveScience
A Colorado woman died after using cesium chloride supplements as an alternative treatment for breast cancer, a new case study reports.
The 61-year-old woman had been taking cesium supplements daily for a year as a treatment for breast cancer, but it was a single injection of cesium chloride liquid into a lump in her right breast that is likely what ultimately proved fatal, the report said.
The woman had been following the advice of a nutritionist, who had recommended cesium chloride to help shrink her breast tumor.
Cesium chloride is an alternative treatment that “supposedly increases the pH level of cancer cells to kill them, while not altering the pH of healthy cells,” said study author Dr. Daniel Sessions, who was a medical toxicology fellow at the Rocky Mountain Poison and Drug Center in Denver and was involved in the case. (A cell’s pH is a measure of how acidic or basic its internal environment is.)
However, this theory of how cesium chloride works “has not been scientifically proven to be true,” Sessions said. [7 Medical Myths Even Doctors Believe]
I always thought they couldn’t get cancer.
A tumor on the lower jaw of a great white shark, near the Neptune Islands, South Australia. It’s the first documented tumor in this species. Image: Andrew Fox and Sam Cahir
Scientists have known for more than 150 years that sharks get cancer. And yet the belief persists that the animals don’t suffer from the disease.
That misconception is promoted in part by those who sell shark cartilage, who claim that the substance will help cure cancer, said David Shiffman, a shark researcher and doctoral student at the University of Miami. But no studies have shown that shark cartilage is an effective treatment, and the demand for the material has helped decimate shark populations, researchers say: Humans kill about 100 million sharks per year, according to a March 2013 study (although many factors contribute to the killing of sharks, including demand for shark-fin soup).
Here’s one way we could fight pollution and climate change, that you may not have thought of.
In a little corner of the Great Plains, corn growers are using proven methods to cut their carbon footprint.
The tri-state corner of Minnesota, South Dakota and Iowa is marked by rolling hills dotted with trees, a transition between the dry prairies and woodlands. Recently, it has become a laboratory for more sustainable corn, and one research team has found that the processes used can cut carbon emissions by more than half from the national average.
psychiatrist and Professor of Neuropsychopharmacology, David Nutt, argues for the legalization of controlled substances for Brain research.
Or is it time for scientists and doctors to change the rules so research and clinical treatments can flourish? Image Courtesy of Pixabay/OpenClips
Imagine being an astronomer in a world where the telescope was banned. This effectively happened in the 1600s when, for over 100 years, the Catholic Church prohibited access to knowledge of the heavens in a vain attempt to stop scientists proving that the earth was not the center of the universe. ‘Surely similar censorship could never happen today,’ I hear you say—but it does in relation to the use of drugs to study the brain. Scientists and doctors are banned from studying many hundreds of drugs because of outdated United Nations charters dating back to the 1960s and 1970s. Some of the banned drugs include cannabis, psychedelics and MDMA (now widely known as ecstasy).
Many doctors suggest that women take it easy during their pregnancies. However, being active might actually be the best thing for newborn noggins. New research shows that as little as 20 minutes of exercise, three times a week, is enough to give their babies a head start in brain development.
Scientists at the University of Montreal wondered if the benefits of exercise for cognition might transfer from mother to baby.
This is really interesting, much of what we think we know about planet formation maybe wrong.
A planetary scientist has identified the largest-known solid object in the Solar System that could float in a bathtub. The rock-and-ice body, which circles well outside the orbits of the planets, is less dense than water — although a bathtub big enough to hold it would stretch from London to Frankfurt.
The body, dubbed 2002 UX25, lies in the Kuiper belt, a reservoir of dwarf planets, comets and smaller frozen bodies beyond the orbit of Neptune. The object’s low density and size — it is 650 kilometers wide — seem to conflict with a leading model for the formation of large solid bodies in the Kuiper belt and throughout the Solar System. Planetary scientist Michael Brown of the California Institute of Technology in Pasadena reports its density measurement in an upcoming issue of The Astrophysical Journal Letters, with a preprint available on the arXiv online repository.
Because objects in the Kuiper belt are believed to have changed relatively little since the early years of the Solar System, the region “offers our best chance to comprehend how the early stages of planet formation unfold”, says planetary scientist Andrew Youdin of the University of Colorado Boulder.
Update 12:11 pm
edited my little comment above the article I’m quoting to make it clearer as to what I meant.
Dogs respond better to robots behaving in a social manner than those acting passively, according to Hungarian researchers. The study of 41 dogs provides important insights into the mental processes of living creatures.
An interesting article in Scientific American on how the water towers on top of so many NYC building came into being.
(Hint: It’s all the liberal’s fault. ///)
Herbal Menopause Supplement Often Contains Other Species, DNA Bar Coding Reveals: Scientific American
But controlled trials of this supplement have seen mixed results, sometimes showing it to be effective in relieving hot flashes, sleep disruptions, mood swings and other symptoms whereas other times revealing it to be ineffective. And some case reports even suggest that it can be toxic, damaging the liver.
This messy track record gave Damon Little, a bioinformaticist at The New York Botanical Garden (NYBG), and his colleagues an idea: What if patients—in these trials and out in the community—were not always taking pure, actual black cohosh (Actaea racemosa), but one or more related species? Fortunately, they had just the tool on hand to figure that out: DNA barcoding.
Using this technology, which locates and sequences specific areas of a plant’s genome (specifically, two matK gene nucleotides), they were able to determine that one quarter of commercially available “black cohosh” pills were not the herb at all. Their findings were published this July in the Journal of AOAC International.
“Misidentification and adulteration in black cohosh supplements [has been] known for many years as a matter of concern,” notes Rolf Teschke, an internist at the Teaching Hospital of the Johann Wolfgang Goethe University in Frankfurt and who was not involved in the new research. “The present study confirms—but extends—previous findings.”
Unlike drugs, however, supplements are not required to be tested for safety or efficacy by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration before they hit the market. And testing to make sure the contents match the label are much more lax than it is for pharmaceuticals, opening the opportunity for mislabeling, whether it is accidental or intentional.
Mars will make a close approach to Earth Saturday (March 3), and interested skywatchers can follow the action live online.
Every 26 months, the orbits of Earth and Mars align such that the two planets form a relatively straight line with the sun. This cosmic event is called an opposition, because the Red Planet sits on the exact opposite side of Earth from the sun.
Mars will be in opposition to Earth Saturday, and it will be visible even to stargazers under the cloudiest of skies. That’s because the online Slooh Space Camera will broadcast a free, real-time feed of the Mars opposition, beginning at 11:00 p.m. EST (0400 GMT on March 4).
Slooh will provide footage from multiple observatories around the world, including Arizona and the Canary Islands off the coast of Africa. The broadcast can be accessed at Slooh’s homepage, found here: events.slooh.com
Though the opposition occurs Saturday, the Red Planet’s actual closest approach to Earth won’t come until Monday (March 5), when the two bodies are separated by about 62.6 million miles (100.7 million kilometers). This discrepancy in dates is caused by Mars’ elliptical path around the sun. [Amazing Mars Photos]