Science & Technology

Boosting a lipid fuel makes mice less sensitive to the cold

September 11, 2017

When grandpa nudges the settings on the thermostat, there’s likely a good reason. Humans, like other animals, become more sensitive to cold with age. Now, scientists from University of Utah Health report that delivering a single dose of a nutritional supplement called L-carnitine to older mice restores a youthful ability to adapt to the cold. After treatment, […]


Hormonal IUDs have no effect on lactation or breastfeeding

September 5, 2017

Having a hormonal intrauterine device (IUD) implanted immediately after birth does not affect a woman’s ability to lactate and breastfeed, according to new research by investigators at University of Utah Health and University of New Mexico School of Medicine. The results of this study are available online Aug. 21 in the American Journal of Obstetrics […]


Given the choice, zebrafish willingly dose themselves with opioids

September 1, 2017

As the opioid crisis escalates, the science behind addiction remains poorly understood. To address this need, researchers at University of Utah Health devised a system that allowed zebrafish, a small tropical fish, to self-administer doses of hydrocodone, an opioid commonly prescribed to people for pain. After one-week, the fish had increased their drug-seeking behavior, even […]


Catheter ablation better than traditional drug therapies for treating atrial fibrillation

August 31, 2017

Every year, millions of people around the world are diagnosed with heart failure, a chronic, progressive condition where the heart is unable to pump enough oxygenated blood throughout the body. Researchers at the University of Utah Health and Klinikum Coburg, Germany, co-led a clinical trial that showed radiofrequency catheter ablation lowered hospitalization and mortality rates […]


Nature imagery calms prisoners

August 28, 2017

Sweeping shots of majestic landscapes. Glaciers, forests and waterfalls.  Research published today shows that these images, shown to people deprived of access to nature, can reduce tension, help defuse anger and make some of the harshest environments, like a solitary confinement cellblock in a maximum-security prison, a little easier to bear. The study, published in […]


Manipulating a Single Gene Defines a New Pathway to Anxiety

August 24, 2017

Removing a single gene from the brains of mice and zebrafish causes these animals to become more anxious than normal. Researchers from University of Utah Health show that eliminating the gene encoding Lef1 disrupts the development of certain nerve cells in the hypothalamus that affect stress and anxiety. These results are the first implication that […]


Putting it to the test

August 23, 2017

It’s estimated that about 788,000 people worldwide died of liver cancer in 2015, the second-leading cause of cancer deaths, according to the latest statistics from the World Health Organization. One of the major challenges in combatting this disease is detecting it early because symptoms often don’t appear until later stages. But a team of researchers […]


Scientists restore youthful plasticity to the brains of adult mice

August 8, 2017

Like much of the rest of the body, the brain loses flexibility with age, impacting the ability to learn, remember and adapt. Now, scientists at University of Utah Health report they can rejuvenate the plasticity of the mouse brain, specifically in the visual cortex, increasing its ability to change in response to experience. Manipulating a […]


What it takes to recover from drought

August 3, 2017

Drought-stricken areas anxiously await the arrival of rain. Full recovery of the ecosystem, however, can extend long past the first rain drops on thirsty ground. According to a study published August 10 in Nature, the length of drought recovery depends on several factors, including the region of the world and the post-drought weather conditions. The […]


New look at archaic DNA rewrites human evolution story

August 2, 2017

August 7, 2017—Hundreds of thousands of years ago, the ancestors of modern humans diverged from an archaic lineage that gave rise to Neanderthals and Denisovans. Yet the evolutionary relationships between these groups remain unclear. A University of Utah-led team developed a new method for analyzing DNA sequence data to reconstruct the early history of the […]