Study shows surge of emergency room visits since introduction of rideshare e-scooters — ScienceDaily

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A Henry Ford Health System physician is sounding the alarm on the rising number of injuries caused from riding electric scooters, calling it a growing public health concern.

In a study of e-scooter injuries, Kathleen Yaremchuk, M.D., chair of the Department of Otolaryngology — Head and Neck Surgery, says a review of emergency visits in the last three years shows e-scooter injuries have increased significantly with many of them related to head and neck injuries. The study describes how the types of injuries which include concussions, fractures, contusions and abrasions, lacerations and internal organ injuries have changed since the introduction of e-scooter rideshare systems to the public in September 2017.

The study’s break down on the type of injuries shows that head and neck injuries made up nearly 28% of the total injuries. Results were also broken down by age groups and showed that from 2009 to 2017, patients who were 17 years old or younger made up the most injured age group. After 2017, the demographic of 18-to-44-year-olds became the most injured age group, which suggests that e-scooter injuries occur predominantly with older users.

“I’ve seen riders not wearing helmets, two or three riders on one e-scooter recklessly weaving in and out of traffic. The numbers of injuries we’re seeing should be a wake-up call about the safety risks of riding these modes of transportation,” says Dr. Yaremchuk, the study’s senior author.

Results of Henry Ford’s retrospective study were presented at the annual meeting of the American Academy of Otolaryngology.

The Henry Ford research team found that since the introduction of rideshare e-scooters, motorized vehicles that can reach speeds of up to 35 miles per hour, injuries have increased as more people gravitate to the inexpensive and convenient form of transportation used mostly in crowded urban centers.

“We hope

Animal study shows treatment blocks inflammation and protects lungs without killing the flu virus — ScienceDaily

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The raging lung inflammation that can contribute to death from the flu can be stopped in its tracks by a drug derived from a naturally occurring human protein, a new animal study suggests.

In mouse studies, all untreated animals given a lethal dose of influenza died within days. All but one of the infected mice treated with the experimental therapy not only survived, but remained energetic and kept weight on — despite having high levels of the flu virus in their lungs.

The experimental treatment is a heavy dose of MG53, part of a family of proteins that plays an essential role in cell membrane repair. Already identified as a potential therapy for conditions ranging from Alzheimer’s disease to persistent skin wounds, MG53 was found in this study to prevent death from a lethal flu infection by blocking excessive inflammation — without having any effect on the virus itself.

The researchers are currently testing the effects of the therapy in mice infected with SARS-CoV-2, the coronavirus that causes COVID-19.

“I haven’t ever seen anything like this before,” said Jacob Yount, associate professor of microbial infection and immunity at The Ohio State University and co-lead author of the study. “Even though these mice had the same viral load as the untreated mice, they didn’t get very sick — with the lethal dose of the flu.”

Yount, whose lab studies the immune response against viral infections, co-led the work with Jianjie Ma, professor of cardiac surgery at Ohio State, who discovered MG53 and its role in cell repair and has been developing the protein as a therapeutic agent.

The paper was published online Oct. 8 in the American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine, and will appear in a future print issue.

The collaboration on this work grew out of

New global temperature data will inform study of climate impacts on health, agriculture — ScienceDaily

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A seemingly small one-to-two degree change in the global climate can dramatically alter weather-related hazards. Given that such a small change can result in such big impacts, it is important to have the most accurate information possible when studying the impact of climate change. This can be especially challenging in data sparse areas like Africa, where some of the most dangerous hazards are expected to emerge.

A new data set published in the journal Scientific Data provides high-resolution, daily temperatures from around the globe that could prove valuable in studying human health impacts from heat waves, risks to agriculture, droughts, potential crop failures, and food insecurity.

Data scientists Andrew Verdin and Kathryn Grace of the Minnesota Population Center at the University of Minnesota worked with colleagues at the Climate Hazards Center at the University of California Santa Barbara to produce and validate the data set.

“It’s important to have this high-resolution because of the wide-ranging impacts — to health, agriculture, infrastructure. People experiencing heat waves, crop failures, droughts — that’s all local,” said Verdin, the lead author.

By combining weather station data, remotely sensed infrared data and the weather simulation models, this new data set provides daily estimates of 2-meter maximum and minimum air temperatures for 1983-2016. Named CHIRTS-daily, this data provides high levels of accuracy, even in areas where on-site weather data collection is sparse. Current efforts are focused on updating the data set in near real time.

“We know that the next 20 years are going to bring more extreme heat waves that will put millions or even billions of people in harm’s way. CHIRTS-daily will help us monitor, understand, and mitigate these rapidly emerging climate hazards,” said Chris Funk, director of the Climate Hazards Center.

Additionally, the people who are most vulnerable are often located in areas

A study detailing the processes that control mole size may help scientists find new ways to prevent skin cancer from growing — ScienceDaily

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Moles stop growing when they reach a certain size due to normal interactions between cells, despite having cancer-associated gene mutations, says a new study published today in eLife.

The findings in mice could help scientists develop new ways to prevent skin cancer growth that take advantage of the normal mechanisms that control cell growth in the body.

Mutations that activate the protein made by the BRAF gene are believed to contribute to the development of skin cancer. However, recent studies have shown that these mutations do not often cause skin cancer, but instead result in the formation of completely harmless pigmented moles on the skin. In fact, 90% of moles have these cancer-linked mutations but never go on to form tumours. “Exploring why moles stop growing might lead us to a better understanding of what goes wrong in skin cancer,” says lead author Roland Ruiz-Vega, a postdoctoral researcher at the University of California, Irvine, US.

Scientists believe that stress caused by rapid cell growth may stop the growth of moles through a process called oncogene-induced senescence (OIS), but this has not been proven. To test the idea, Ruiz-Vega and colleagues studied mice with BRAF mutations that develop numerous moles.

The team first focused on assessing ‘senescence’, a set of changes in cells usually associated with aging. Using a technique called single-cell RNA sequencing to compare mole cells with normal skin cells, they found that moles are growth-arrested, but no more senescent than normal skin cells. The cells also did not have any apparent differences in gene expression (where a gene is activated to create a necessary protein) that would support the idea of OIS controlling their growth.

Additionally, computer modelling of mole growth did not support the idea of OIS. In fact, the models suggested that mole cells communicate

Study comparing energy providers finds parallels to local foods movement — ScienceDaily

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When you go to the grocery store, you can look at an apple and know if it was grown in Chile, Washington or somewhere closer to you by a quick glance at its sticker. But consumers have largely been in the dark when it comes to energy, and how far it has traveled to reach them.

A study published today in the journal Frontiers in Sustainability by the University of California, Davis, sheds light on the lengths alternative energy providers go to bring electrical power to customers.

Consuming electricity closer to its source can reduce greenhouse gases lost in the transport of electrons across the transmission and distribution grid. This can help increase efficiencies and create more self-sustaining, equitable communities. Similar goals are often shared by farm-to-table supporters.

“This study provides a quantitative foundation for a local energy movement, akin to the local food movement,” said co-leading author Rebecca R. Hernandez, an assistant professor in the UC Davis Department of Land, Air and Water Resources and a founding director of the Wild Energy Initiative in the John Muir Institute of the Environment, and Energy and Efficiency Institute.

The study compared three types of energy providers in California — community choice aggregations, or CCAs; cooperatives; and publicly owned utilities — to learn the distance purchased-energy sources travel to support their consumers, and the makeup of their energy resource portfolio, in 2017. Investor-owned utilities were excluded from the study.

GOING THE DISTANCE

Madison Hoffacker, a master’s student in the UC Davis Energy Graduate Group at the time the study was conducted, designed and hand-curated the study’s large, spatial dataset. She found that CCAs purchased more than 2.5 times as much renewable energy as other providers. Renewables comprised nearly half of their energy portfolios. However, CCAs also went 2.5 times farther to source