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Jun 15, 2018

When Healthcare ignores Mental Health: 200 common prescription medications increase depression risk

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, health, neuroscience

Why is no one talking about this? — “More than one-third of U.S. adults are taking prescription medications that may lead to depression, new research finds. The study, published in the Journal of the American Medical Association, warns that depression is a potential side effect of more than 200 commonly prescribed medications, including beta blockers for blood pressure, birth control pills, antacids, and painkillers.”

___ Many Americans taking common meds that may cause depression, study finds (CBS News): “More than one-third of U.S. adults are taking prescription medications that may lead to depression, new research finds. The study, published in the Journal of the American Medical Association, warns that depression is a potential.

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Jun 15, 2018

NASA is about to launch astronauts into space again – and a massive business for big companies

Posted by in categories: business, space

It’s been seven years since astronauts launched into space from U.S. soil.

From idolized to anonymous, what it means to be an American astronaut is changing once more.

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Jun 15, 2018

£720m Large Hadron Collider upgrade ‘could upend particle physics’

Posted by in category: particle physics

Collider will be far more sensitive to anomalies that could lead to entirely new theories of the universe.

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Jun 15, 2018

Smart Robots Are the Secret to Spaceflight’s Future

Posted by in categories: 3D printing, robotics/AI, space travel

A spacecraft, spinning in Earth’s orbit, reaches inside itself. One of its four arms pulls out a length of polymer pipe that has been 3D-printed inside the body of the machines. All four of the spacecraft’s arms are securing pieces together as it builds a new space station right there in orbit.

This surreal project, called Archinaut, is the future vision of space manufacturing company Made In Space. The company promises a future of large imaging arrays, kilometer-scale communications tools, and big space stations all built off-planet by smart robots.

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Jun 15, 2018

Brain Aging Correlates with Aortic Stiffness and Low Fitness

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, life extension, neuroscience

In case we needed more evidence that staying fit is good for you…

A study to be published in the Journal of Alzheimer’s Disease shows a correlation between low fitness, aortic stiffness, and the cognitive decline typically observed during brain aging [1].

Study abstract

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Jun 15, 2018

Traumatic Memory Study Reveals How Our Darkest Fears Can Be Rewritten

Posted by in category: neuroscience

Deep-seated fears, like the memory of a death or war-time trauma, can be crippling. They’re also notoriously hard to study and treat, says neuroscientist Ossama Khalaf, Ph.D. But finally, we’re making progress: In a Science paper published Thursday, Khalaf and his team show new evidence suggesting that fearful memories that dwell deep in the brain’s neural circuitry don’t have to be a burden forever. It’s possible, the paper suggests, that they can be rewired.

The paper is rooted in the science of engrams — the idea that memories leave a physical trace in the brain. In this case, Khalaf, a researcher at École Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne, and his team traced deep-seated fear memories in rats back to the activity of specific neurons. They found that the way those neurons fire — and thus the fearful memory they encode — can be reprogrammed.

“In our study, we are providing the first experimental evidence that fear memory attenuation is mediated by the re-engagement of the original fear re-writing it towards safety,” Khalaf tells Inverse via email.

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Jun 15, 2018

Stephen Hawking’s Voice Will Be Broadcast Into Space

Posted by in categories: entertainment, space

Hawking is being interred at Westminster Abbey on Friday, with a thousand members of the public (selected through a lottery system) present for the ceremony. The physicist’s remains will be placed between those of Isaac Newton and Charles Darwin.

His voice will be broadcast into space after the service honoring his life.

Hawking’s words “have been set to an original score by composer Vangelis, most famous for his Chariots of Fire film theme,” the BBC reports.

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Jun 15, 2018

Spinlaunch has $40 million to fund development to first centrifuge space launch by 2022

Posted by in categories: energy, space

SpinLaunch Inc. has closed a $35 million Series A funding round with a powerhouse syndicate of investors. Investors include Airbus Ventures, GV (formerly Google Ventures), and Kleiner Perkins. This syndicate joins institutional investors including Lauder Partners, ATW Partners, Bolt, and Starlight Ventures to total $40 million. Investment funds will be used to scale the team and technology, through first launch by 2022.

SpinLaunch is revolutionizing access to space by developing a kinetic energy launch system designed to provide the world’s lowest-cost orbital launch service for the rapidly growing small satellite industry. Their environmentally responsible approach is unmatched in the industry. SpinLaunch is currently considering four different states for potential launch sites within the United States.

Spinlaunch use large centrifuges to store energy and will then rapidly transfer that momentum into a catapult to send a payload to space at up to 4,800 kilometers per hour (3,000 mph). If successful, the acceleration architecture is projected to be both lower cost and use much less power, with the price of a single space launch reduced to under US$500,000.

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Jun 15, 2018

Starts Testing Smallest ‘Spin Qubit’ Chip for Quantum Computing

Posted by in categories: computing, quantum physics, space

Intel researchers are taking new steps toward quantum computers by testing a tiny new “spin qubit” chip. The new chip was created in Intel’s D1D Fab in Oregon using the same silicon manufacturing techniques that the company has perfected for creating billions of traditional computer chips. Smaller than a pencil’s eraser, it is the tiniest quantum computing chip Intel has made.

The new spin qubit chip runs at the extremely low temperatures required for quantum computing: roughly 460 degrees below zero Fahrenheit – 250 times colder than space.

The spin qubit chip does not contain transistors – the on/off switches that form the basis of today’s computing devices – but qubits (short for “quantum bits”) that can hold a single electron. The behavior of that single electron, which can be in multiple spin states simultaneously, offers vastly greater computing power than today’s transistors, and is the basis of quantum computing.

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Jun 15, 2018

Russia’s HIV/AIDS epidemic is getting worse, not better

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, government, health

Almost anywhere in the world, an HIV-infected woman who has an uninfected partner and wants to have a baby would be first in line to receive ARVs. The challenges Katia faced in getting treatment amid Russia’s epidemic highlight the country’s faltering response, which critics have blasted as misguided, lackadaisical, and downright dismissive. Some federal health officials even question the term epidemic. “This is a very large and very serious epidemic, and certainly one of the few epidemics in the world that continues to get worse rather than get better,” says Vinay Saldanha, the Moscow-based regional director for the Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS) in Eastern Europe and Central Asia. “This is a public health crisis.”

The government has begun to confront its shortcomings, but critics want more aggressive change.

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