Michael Phelps and other athletes have been showing off round welts at the Rio Olympics. Does “cupping” work? Vox explores
It could be that cupping brings more blood to an area and this promotes healing. But that’s just a guess. Some say it helps relieve stress in the muscles by pulling them upward. Overall, "larger well-designed trials are needed to validate the therapeutic efficacy of cupping therapy," the 2015 review reads.
This is the space where a lot of fad health trends thrive: There’s no good data to prove cupping helps, but, likewise, there isn’t data to disprove it either. And meanwhile, you have celebrity endorsements to propel the fad forward.
Pitsiladis considered these forecasts to be overly conservative. He started his Sub2 Project in late 2014 with i website, fund-raising and the recruitment of scientists. He believed his goal could be achieved by the end of 2019 — years earlier than commonly thought possible
.His consortium of scientists would use the latest knowledge — and develop culling-edge approaches — in nutrition, biomechanics, genetics, running efficiency, training, race strategy and sports medicine to deliver a sub-two-hour marathon. Incremental gains here and there, the scientists believed, could add up to a startling accomplishment. And perhaps new technology and knowledge would emerge for broader benefits, as when man raced toward the moon.
The Sub2 experts would use data to confront habit, tradition, consensus. They would tailor training programs to individuals, employing science to help runners from Ethiopia and Kenya and elsewhere who had had fantastic performances using little science.
Austin Burt, a professor of evolutionary genetics at Imperial College and the developer of the technology, didn’t set out to commit mosquito genocide. “Our target is malaria, not mosquitoes,” he says. “Mosquitoes are a means to an end.” But once unleashed, Burt’s mosquitoes have no kill switch. They will carry out their mission until there are no females left. To some experts, it’s a small sacrifice. But others worry about the implications of leaving a biological niche empty.
That concern is part of what drove Anthony James, a molecular biologist at the University of California, Irvine, to take a different tack. He’s working to make mosquitoes incapable of carrying malaria and, eventually, other pathogens like Zika. This technique leaves the mosquitoes in place while disarming them. “Nobody likes mosquitoes, but you can live with them if they are not giving you disease,” he says. “Better to fix the ones you have than deal with whoever comes along next.”
Genetically engineered drugs known as biologics typically have to be injected rather than swallowed because their complex proteins break down in the stomach. Rani Therapeutics is developing a pill that will protect those proteins.
The patient swallows the pill, currently about the size of a large vitamin. The coating starts to dissolve when the pill reaches the high-alkaline level of the digestive tract, mixing its Alka-Seltzer-like components, which create carbon dioxide.
The CO2 inflates a small plastic-film balloon underneath one or two injector darts made of molded sugar, propelling them into the intestinal wall. The darts dissolve and the medicine they contain is absorbed into the bloodstream.
the Parker Institute for Cancer Immunotherapy. PICI (pronounced “pie-sea”), as it’s called by its member scientists, is doing something unprecedented in academic medicine: combining and coordinating the efforts of six of the top cancer immunology centers in the country—MD Anderson Cancer Center, Memorial Sloan Kettering, Penn Medicine, Stanford, UCLA, and UCSF—in order to greatly expand and, more important, to accelerate our understanding of why some immune-based treatments work miraculously in some patients and not at all in others. Carl June, an oncologist at Penn and a PICI team member, says he almost can’t believe Parker pulled it off. “Never before would I think you could get all these institutions to sign the exact same document,” he says.
The first DNA blood test for cancer in the United States was commercialized in 2014 by Guardant Health, a venture-backed California company, and tests to spot cancer DNA in blood, urine, or spinal fluid are now in development by a growing number of companies but remain a risky bet for investors.
One pioneering researcher, Dennis Lo, is now tracking more than 20,000 people in Hong Kong to see whether blood screening can catch liver cancer early. Some of his early and ongoing work was paid for by a $1 million grant from the Kadoorie Charitable Foundation, the charity of Hong Kong billionaire Michael Kadoorie, and he later won a $4.25 million award from the Hong Kong government. “It took us about 10 years to convince people to fund us,” he says. Lo says he recently cofounded a company called Cirina to develop blood tests, and he expects initial financing of $12 million from investors.
The device will help fill the gaps left by canes, dogs and basic GPS devices by providing users with more information about their surroundings. Worn around their shoulders, it will help users better navigate indoor spaces, such as office buildings and shopping malls, by helping them identify everyday features, including restrooms, escalators, stairs and doors.
The device will be equipped with cameras that detect the user's surroundings and communicate information to him or her through speakers and vibration motors. Users, in turn, will be able to interact with the device through voice recognition and buttons. Toyota plans to eventually integrate mapping, object identification and facial recognition technologies.
“In just three years, Mac will have aged from the human equivalent of about 49 to 70. That’s a lot faster than waiting 21 years to see how rapamycin would affect humans.
Kaeberlein also suspected his fellow pet owners might appreciate the opportunity. In fact, he has barely had to promote the study to enroll subjects—he simply mentioned it in passing to a reporter, and that reporter wrote a story that went viral. Soon he was besieged by phone calls and emails from more than 1,500 dog owners, some from as far away as Great Britain and Japan. One man who lived in the Midwest informed Kaeberlein he was ready to sell his house and move to Seattle if he could enroll his dog. (Kaeberlein advised him to wait until a nationwide study came to him.)”