More young adults are abstaining from alcohol — ScienceDaily

Fewer college-age Americans drink alcohol, compared to nearly 20 years ago, according to a new study.

Between 2002 and 2018, the number of adults aged 18-22 in the U.S. who abstained from alcohol increased from 20% to 28% for those in college and from about 24% to 30% for those not in school, say researchers at the University of Michigan and Texas State University. And alcohol abuse among both groups decreased by roughly half.

However, the study found that the number of young adults using marijuana, as well as co-using alcohol and marijuana, has increased.

Overall, the mixed findings show more positive than negative trends for alcohol and marijuana use and misuse among this age group, but the progression still bears close monitoring, the researchers say.

The study, appearing in JAMA Pediatrics Oct. 12, examined how alcohol and marijuana abstinence, co-use and use disorders have changed in 18-to-22-year-olds as a

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Exercise intensity not linked to mortality risk in older adults, finds trial — ScienceDaily

Exercise intensity appears to make no difference to risk of mortality among older adults, suggests a randomised controlled trial from Norway published by The BMJ today.

Physical activity has been highlighted as one of the most important actions people of all ages can engage in to improve health, and data from observational studies show that early death is significantly reduced in physically active compared with inactive individuals.

Yet high quality clinical trial evidence on a potential direct (causal) relation between current advice on physical activity levels and longevity is lacking.

So an international research team set out to evaluate the effect of five years of supervised exercise training compared with recommendations for physical activity on mortality in older adults (70-77 years).

The trial involved 1,567 participants (790 women and 777 men) living in Trondheim, Norway, with an average age of 73 years. In total, 87.5% of participants reported overall good

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How Technology Is Improving Access And Empowering Older Adults To Embrace Telehealth

COVID-19 has greatly changed how we care for ourselves and has resulted in a massive change to how we connect with our doctors. Providers are seeing 50-175 times the number of patients via telehealth visits than they did before the pandemic, and Forrester predicts that virtual care visits will soar to more than 1 billion by the end of 2020, including 900 million visits related to the coronavirus.

Telehealth has great potential to increase healthcare access for everyone during the pandemic, and this is especially important for older adults and other populations at higher risk of contracting COVID-19. But, virtual visits can also be stressful for those with an aversion to using technology to speak with their doctor.

As patients who might’ve shied away from technology in the past now need to use it to connect with their doctors, it’s important for healthcare providers to ensure their telemedicine platforms

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Nuclear magnetic resonance insights set stage for next-gen targeted cancer therapies for adults and children

Nuclear magnetic resonance insights set stage for next-gen targeted cancer therapies for adults and children
First author Tao Xie, Ph.D., and corresponding author Charalampos Babis Kalodimos, Ph.D., chair, both of the Department of Structural Biology at St. Jude, have visualized previously unknown structures of the ABL kinase through the use of an NMR spectrometer. Credit: St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital

Scientists at St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital have visualized previously unknown structures of the ABL kinase, offering insight for designing the next generation of targeted therapies for adult and childhood cancers. The work will advance understanding of treatment resistance to targeted cancer therapies. The findings appear as an advance online publication today in Science.

Central to this achievement was the United States’ most powerful nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) spectrometer, which was installed at St. Jude in 2019. Just as microscopes enable scientists to peer inside a cell, NMR spectroscopy lets researchers visualize previously invisible, or undetectable, molecular structures that cannot be seen with other

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Antidepressant drug effective in treating ‘lazy eye’ in adults — ScienceDaily

In a new study, published in Current Biology, researchers from the University of California, Irvine School of Medicine reveal how subanesthetic ketamine, which is used for pain management and as an antidepressant in humans, is effective in treating adult amblyopia, a brain disorder commonly known as “lazy eye.”

“Our study, demonstrates how a single-dose of subanesthetic ketamine reactivates adult visual cortical plasticity and promotes functional recovery of visual acuity defects resulting from amblyopia,” explained Xiangmin Xu, PhD, a professor of anatomy and neurobiology and director of the Center for Neural Circuit Mapping at the UCI School of Medicine.

Subanesthetic ketamine, commonly used to treat depression and pain, evokes rapid and long-lasting antidepressant effects in human patients. There was evidence that ketamine may control how the nervous system makes structural changes in response to internal and external demands, a process called neural plasticity. But, how the drug worked remained elusive,

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Can wearable technology help older adults maintain healthy lives?

apple watch
Credit: CC0 Public Domain

Older adults who are physically activity are more likely to remain healthy and maintain their independence. Research indicates that self-tracking of physical activity supports healthy living for people of all ages, but older adults have been slower to adopt new technologies like movement trackers. A new project funded by the National Science Foundation will examine how to leverage wearable technology to encourage older adults to be more active.

David Conroy, professor of kinesiology and human development and family studies at Penn State, is collaborating with a team of leading researchers from the University of Maryland’s College of Information Studies (iSchool) in this study. The project team is developing innovative wearable technology tailored to track the movements and activities of older adults, age 60 and over. Combined with the development of teachable interfaces, the project aims to enhance the motivation of older adults to engage in physical

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Yale researchers develop AI technology for adults with autism

Courtesy of Kai Nip

Researchers from several American universities are collaborating to develop artificial intelligence based software to help people on the autism spectrum find and hold meaningful employment. 

The project is a collaboration between experts at Vanderbilt, Yale, Cornell and the Georgia Institute of Technology. It consists of developing multiple pieces of technology, each one aimed at a different aspect of supporting people with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) in the workplace, according to Nilanjan Sarkar, professor of engineering at Vanderbilt University and the leader of the project. 

“We realized together that there are some support systems for children with autism in this society, but as soon as they become 18 years old and more, there is a support cliff and the social services are not as much,” Sarkar said.

The project began a year ago with preliminary funding from the National Science Foundation. The NSF initially invested in around

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‘Adults are asleep at the wheel’ in climate crisis, says Varshini Prakash, co-founder of the Sunrise Movement

It’s a good question. We work with a lot of organizations not solely focused on young people, who are really concerned about the climate crisis. But I think for young people, it’s in our bones. We always kind of had this fear of this looming crisis. One of the experiences that defined my childhood was hearing about Hurricane Katrina. I was 12. You know, seeing these images of people on their roof, hearing about bodies just floating downstream. And the government doing nothing to support those communities.

I was probably at the tail end of the generation that hoped that people more powerful and older than us would do what was necessary to stop it. [Laughs.] And when we got to be teenagers and 20-somethings, it became abundantly clear: The adults are asleep at the wheel. Our politicians weren’t doing what was necessary. And if young people didn’t force the

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