July 2020

Scientists test a ‘bispecific’ antibody that helps T cells zero in on treatment-resistant cancers


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Although immunotherapy has achieved increasing prominence in the panoply of innovative cancer treatments, it remains an imperfect tool—too many tumors simply do not respond.

To the rescue is an evolving class of engineered proteins that go by the unusual name of bispecific antibodies. As their name implies, these proteins have dual recognition capability: They are engineered to home in on a T cell surface receptor as well as bind to the surface antigen of a cancer cell itself. The aim is to bring the two types of together and to activate the tumor annihilating

Challenging the representation of autism in Vietnamese media


Nguyễn Yến Khanh with her son Minh. Credit: Massey University

With the first-hand experience of raising a son with autism, a Massey University international Ph.D. student has called for a national communication strategy and action plan in her home country Vietnam, to change the way news media portray the condition.

Nguyễn Yến Khanh, who received a Massey Doctoral scholarship to pursue her Ph.D. study, recently conferred her thesis with the outcome of “pass without emendations.” The research discussed how the online news in Vietnam framed and represented , using cultural political economy, corpus framing analysis and critical

Study shows large gaps in access to oral health care for poorest Californians


Credit: Shutterstock/Nutthaseth Archer

A new policy brief from the UCLA Center for Health Policy Research shows that low-income California adults are less likely to receive timely dental care like regular checkups and are more likely to visit the dentist for specific problems than those with higher incomes—a fact that holds true even for low-income residents who have dental insurance.

The study authors found that among those adults with the lowest incomes, 59{58e281ace639831ddb6d8687333e7c2b02e87c7c548a0119c43312a5ff3c7894} had seen a dentist within the last year, compared with 80{58e281ace639831ddb6d8687333e7c2b02e87c7c548a0119c43312a5ff3c7894} for higher-income residents. The disparity persisted even for those with private dental , with 75{58e281ace639831ddb6d8687333e7c2b02e87c7c548a0119c43312a5ff3c7894}

COVID-19 dreams? Here’s what they mean


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Whether the cause is stress related to working from home, wearing masks, lack of day care, or limited access to health care, COVID-19-related anxiety has spilled into nearly every aspect of our lives. Apparently, it has even invaded our dreams.

People are reporting strange, intense, colorful, and vivid dreams—and many are having disturbing nightmares related to COVID-19.

But Christine Won, MD, a Yale Medicine sleep specialist, who has noticed an uptick in patients reporting recurrent or stressful dreams, provides reassurance that this is no cause for concern. “Nightmares and bad dreams, in general, have not

Psychologists show that embedding primes in a person’s speech can influence people’s decision making


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A pair of psychologists at Goldsmiths, University of London has found that embedding primes in a person’s speech and gestures can influence people’s decision-making. In their paper published in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, Alice Pailhès and Gustav Kuhn describe experiments they conducted with volunteers and primes and what they learned from them.

In both psychology and magic circles, primes are known as actions or words that unconsciously influence the thinking of another person One example is a policeman interrogating a witness tapping his ring while inquiring about jewelry a suspect might

11 no-nonsense fitness facts PT James Smith wants you to know


Separating fact from fad – Healthista editor Olivia Hartland-Robbins asks social media sensation James Smith for his no-nonsense fitness facts

James Smith. Does he even need an introduction? He’s one of the biggest names in the fitness industry, with an Instagram following that’s growing faster than you can say ‘calorie deficit’.

If you’re one of the 637k people who does follow James AKA @JamesSmithPT on Instagram then you’ll know he’s a no-nonsense, no bulls**t kind of guy.

The 31-year-old online PT is well-known for his ‘outing’ of false influencers, fad diets and unhelpful headlines that feature in well-known tabloids,