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Scientists find that smoking harms livers of unborn babies

Scientists find that smoking harms livers of unborn babies

Image copyright Getty Images The impact of cigarette damage to unborn babies has been revealed in a new stem cell study. Scientists found that the cocktail of chemicals in cigarettes is particularly harmful to developing liver cells. They developed a method of studying the effects of maternal smoking on liver tissue using embryonic stem cells. […]

Autism diagnoses ‘could be reduced under NHS plan’

Autism diagnoses ‘could be reduced under NHS plan’

Image copyright Getty Images Proposals to reduce the number of children being diagnosed with autism are being considered by NHS commissioners in south-west London. The idea of restricting an autism diagnosis to only the most severe cases was discussed earlier this month. The local alliance of five clinical commissioning groups (CCGs) says nothing has been […]

Why Greek mountain villagers have healthy hearts

Why Greek mountain villagers have healthy hearts

Image copyright Getty Images Image caption Elderly villagers are well known for their good health and long lives Scientists have pinpointed one reason why people living in isolated villages in Greece may enjoy long and healthy lives. They found a new genetic variant, common among villagers, which appears to protect the heart by lowering levels […]

Charlie Gard’s parents fight for Supreme Court hearing

Charlie Gard’s parents fight for Supreme Court hearing

Image copyright Family handout Image caption Specialists at Great Ormond Street say there is no accepted cure for Charlie’s rare disease The parents of ill baby Charlie Gard who want to take their son to the US for treatment are bidding to take their case to the Supreme Court. Chris Gard and Connie Yates failed […]

Kettering General Hospital ‘fiddled’ waiting time records

Kettering General Hospital ‘fiddled’ waiting time records

Image copyright James Haynes/Geograph Image caption Whistle-blower David Phelan claims Kettering Hospital covered up waiting times to avoid being fined Thousands of patients were removed from a hospital’s waiting lists in a bid to “fiddle” the system, it is claimed. A BBC investigation found thousands of Kettering General Hospital patients had waited a year or […]

Charlie Gard’s parents lose life support court appeal

Charlie Gard’s parents lose life support court appeal

Image copyright PA Image caption Charlie’s rare disease has left him unable to cry and made him deaf Doctors can stop providing life-support treatment to ill baby Charlie Gard, Court of Appeal judges have ruled. Charlie’s parents appealed against a ruling made last month that would allow specialists to move their eight-month-old son to palliative […]

Fitness trackers ‘poor at measuring calories burned’

Fitness trackers ‘poor at measuring calories burned’

Image copyright Getty Images Image caption Do I really deserve that ice cream or not? Most fitness trackers are good at measuring heart rate but poor at measuring calories burned, a study suggests. As a result, people should be cautious about using them to judge what to eat, Stanford University scientists said. The study recommended […]

Ancestry.com denies exploiting users’ DNA

Ancestry.com denies exploiting users’ DNA

Image copyright Bloomberg A leading genealogy service, Ancestry.com, has denied exploiting users’ DNA following criticism of its terms and conditions. The US company’s DNA testing service has included a right to grant Ancestry a “perpetual” licence to use customers’ genetic material. A New York data protection lawyer spotted the clause and published a blog warning […]

Frozen ‘space sperm’ passes fertility test

Frozen ‘space sperm’ passes fertility test

Image copyright RobinOlimb/Getty Healthy baby mice have been born using freeze-dried sperm stored in the near-weightless environment of space. The Japanese team behind the gravity-breaking experiment on the International Space Station (ISS) say it shows that transporting the seeds of life away from Earth is feasible. Sperm banks could even be made on the Moon […]

Intersex patients ‘routinely lied to by doctors’

Intersex patients ‘routinely lied to by doctors’

Media captionJeanette was 50 when she discovered the truth about her own body Doctors in the UK routinely lied to patients with disorders of sex development known as intersex conditions, the BBC has found. A leading paediatric consultant told BBC Radio 4 that withholding the truth of patients’ diagnoses had been “widespread”. Jeanette, now 71, […]

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