What's the Buzz

What's the Buzz

How to reduce intake of air pollution

Alison Tomlin, who led the research, claims that air pollution levels change dramatically within small geographical areas due to many factors. Apparently, wind patterns, the location of traffic queues and the position and shapes of the surrounding buildings determine the level of pollution.

Traffic flow and carbon monoxide levels were watched over an eight week period at the intersection between Marylebone Road and Gloucester Place in West London to come to the conclusion.

It was observed that pollution hotspots generally tend to accumulate on the leeward side of the street, in relation to the wind’s direction at roof-top level. The researchers also found that carbon monoxide levels were up to four times lower in parallel side streets compared to the main road. Tomlin said: “CO levels were highly variable over remarkably short distances.”

Depression raises internet addiction
Teenagers who have psychiatric symptoms such as attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), social phobia, hostility and depression could be more prone to develop an internet addiction, according to a report.

The study underlined that although the internet has become one of the most significant information resources for adolescents, addiction to the internet can negatively impact school performance, family relationships and adolescents’ emotional state. “This phenomenon has been described as problematic internet use and classified as a possible behaviour addiction,” wrote the authors.

Mosquitoes can fight malaria!
A new study suggests that the mosquitoes that transmit malaria can actually help scientists find potential new ways to fight this disease. Researchers at the European Molecular Biology Laboratory (EMBL) in Heidelberg, Germany, and the Institut National de la Sante et de la Recherche Medicale (INSERM) in Strasbourg, France, have found that variations in a single gene affect mosquitoes’ ability to resist infection by the malaria parasite.

“Malaria parasites must spend part of their lives inside mosquitoes and another part inside humans, so by learning how mosquitoes resist malaria, we may find new tools for controlling its transmission to humans in endemic areas,” says Stephanie Blandin. The scientists looked for clues in the genome of Anopheles gambiae mosquitoes, a major carrier of the parasite that causes the most severe form of human malaria in Africa.

Breast milk best as soon as expressed
Breast milk should be given to a baby at the same time of day it is expressed, a new study has said. The levels of the components in breast milk change every 24 hours in response to the needs of the baby. And a new study published in the journal ‘Nutritional Neuroscience’ shows, for example, how this milk could help newborn babies to sleep.
Breast milk contains various ingredients, such as nucleotides, which perform a very important role in regulating babies’ sleep. The new study confirms that the composition of breast milk changes quite markedly throughout the day.