Originally published on Mon October 15, 2012 12:10 pm
Even extreme stress doesn't have to get you down.
That's the message from brain scientists studying the relationship between stress and problems such as depression, anxiety and post traumatic stress disorder, or PTSD.
Researchers at the Society for Neuroscience meeting in New Orleans presented studies showing how stress caused by everything from battlefield trauma to bullying can alter brain circuitry in ways that have long-term effects on mental health.
We learned two things this morning: First, experts from the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission believe that the softball-sized eyeball that washed up in Pompano Beach, Fla. belongs to a swordfish.
Supertasters are the Olympic athletes of gastronomy, able to detect subtle differences in flavors that other people never register. That talent may make for more than a discriminating palate, though. It may also warn them about attacking germs, and help them defend themselves against sinus infection.
This notion isn't as bizarre as it may seem. Bitter tastes have long been considered a danger signal in foods, warning about potential toxins in potatoes and other vegetables. If the potato's bitter, don't eat it.
Good morning. I'm Steve Inskeep with low-key congratulations to Chuck Yeager. In 1947, he broke the sound barrier. On Sunday, the Las Vegas Review-Journal reports he did it again. At age 89, he climbed in the backseat of an Air Force jet. The plane ripped past the speed of sound 65 years to the minute after Yeager first did it. Afterward, the famously laid back pilot seemed unimpressed. Flying is flying, he said. You can't add a lot to it. You're listening to MORNING EDITION. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.
You'd think that someone who is a science correspondent and is as allergic to poison ivy as I am would have heard of urushiol, but no. I didn't recognize the word when I saw it a week or so ago. Now, thanks to my new beat (Joe's Big Idea), I'm allowed to dig a little deeper into stories, and what I learned about urushiol is pretty amazing.
Acne, the scourge of many an adolescent life, is getting harder to treat, but 80 percent of teenagers have some form of it.
Conventional treatment includes topical and oral antibiotics. Studies are now finding the bacteria that cause acne are increasingly resistant to antibiotic treatment. Alternatively, there are effective laser treatments. But these are costly and typically not covered by insurance.
"I know the whole world is watching now, and I wish the world could see what I see."
Those were the words of Austrian skydiver Felix Baumgartner as he plummeted toward Earth faster than the speed of sound. He jumped 24 miles from the stratosphere and landed gracefully just more than nine minutes later in a desert in Roswell, N.M., Sunday.
His plunge was record-breaking on three fronts: the highest jump, the longest distance of a free fall and the fastest vertical velocity. Baumgartner's free fall was seconds shorter than the record set by Joe Kittinger in 1960.
Kyle Glusenkamp pilots Gamera, a human-powered helicopter.
Credit Adam Cole / NPR
Team Gamera keeps a stack of spare rotor blades on hand for quick repairs after crashes. Styrofoam ribs, wrapped in plastic, create the blade's airfoil form, while a triangular truss built of carbon fiber tubes provide strength.
Todd Reichert pedals Atlas into the air, as Cameron Robertson (left) and team member Calvin Moes watch from the ground.
A Canadian team built Atlas in this abandoned barn at a glider club near Tottenham, Ontario. It once held livestock; the roof leaks during thunderstorms.
Credit Maggie Starbard / NPR
Henry Enerson prepares for a flight.
Credit Team Gamera
With Enerson in the cockpit, Gamera reaches an altitude of 8 feet. Elizabeth Weiner, the human ruler, stands below.
"I grew up wanting to fly," says Graham Bowen-Davies. "I guess I just settled for being an engineer."
He's standing on an indoor track in southern Maryland, watching a giant helicopter take flight. At the end of each of its four spindly arms — arms he helped design and build — a giant rotor churns the air. In the cockpit sits the engine: a 0.7-horsepower, 135-pound graduate student named Kyle Gluesenkamp.
Gluesenkamp is pedaling like crazy to keep the rotors spinning and the craft aloft.
As we approach the presidential election in November, Weekend Edition is seeking your questions about issues and candidates in a new segment called Reporter Hotline. This week, we answer inquiries about health care.