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Anti-cancer drug for women weakens bone density

A drug tipped for widespread use to prevent breast cancer in post-menopausal women also accelerates loss of bone density, thus potentially boosting the risk of fractures, a study published on Tuesday said. Exemestane — brand name Aromasin — is part of a drug class called aromatase inhibitors, which lower levels…

Jurassic chirp: Scientists recreate ancient cricket song

WASHINGTON — The call of a Jurassic-era cricket was simple, pure and capable of traveling long distances in the night, said scientists who reconstructed the creature’s love song from a 165 million year old fossil. British scientists based their work out Monday on an extremely well preserved fossil of a…

Scientists cautious over Russia’s Antarctic lake drilling

PARIS — Experts on Monday raised questions over the scientific benefit and environmental impact of Russia’s feat in drilling into a virgin lake under Antarctica’s icesheet. Kerosene, which the Russians used as antifreeze to prevent the borehole from closing up in the extremely cold depths of the icesheet, was a…

Proposed autism diagnostic criteria disturbs medical community

A proposal to use new diagnostic criteria for autism has roiled the US medical community, with many experts concerned that the move could exclude children affected by some forms of the disorder. The American Psychiatric Association recommended last month that a new category called “autism spectrum disorder” be established to…

Nine-year-old girl gets six-organ transplant

NEW YORK, USA — A nine-year-old girl is making what doctors described as a remarkable recovery Sunday, days after surgeons transplanted six of her organs in a groundbreaking medical procedure. The surgery performed last Tuesday on young Alannah Shevenell, sought to remove an aggressive cancerous growth festering since 2008, and…

Santorum suggests abortion causes breast cancer

Republican presidential candidate Rick Santorum on Sunday suggested that Susan G. Komen for the Cure shouldn’t provide grants to Planned Parenthood for breast cancer screenings because abortions cause breast cancer, a false claim that has been repeatedly debunked. The candidate told Fox News host Chris Wallace that he didn’t agree…

Cutting-edge cocktails light up New York

You’re not allowed to light a cigarette in New York bars, but there’s nothing to stop a bartender from setting your cocktail on fire with a 815 degrees Celsius (1,500 degrees Fahrenheit) poker. In fact, the red hot rod is just the tip of the mad scientist treatment meted out…

Environment agency becomes crunch issue in Rio talks

The UN Environment Programme (UNEP) is emerging as a hot issue in preparations for June’s Rio conference, styled as a once-in-a-generation chance to restore a sick planet to good health. The US is fighting a proposal, backed according to France by least 100 countries, for transforming UNEP from a poorly…

Malaria toll far higher than thought: study

Malaria kills more than 1.2 million people a year, nearly 50 percent more than previously thought, and inflicts a high toll among adults and older children and not just toddlers, a new investigation says. But there is also good news: deaths from the mosquito-borne disease have in fact been falling…

Lifestyle changes can help prevent 30% of cancers: WHO

More than 30 percent of cancers can be prevented by lifestyle changes, the World Health Organization said Friday, on the eve of World Cancer Day. Among key risk factors for cancer are tobacco and alcohol consumption, a diet low in fruit and vegetable intake and lack of physical activity. “Tobacco…

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