All articles posted in Health

The ‘Uber’ of physical fitness

Mobility Pre­scrip­tion, a per­sonal fit­ness con­sulting firm founded by North­eastern alumnus Ryan Beauch­esne, serves clients of all shapes and sizes, from first-​​time lifters to pro­fes­sional ice hockey players. “We’re mobile,” says Beauch­esne. “We go directly to our clients’ homes.” This evening, he and fellow grad­uate Jimmy Heim will be run­ning a fit­ness boot camp for mem­bers of the uni­ver­sity community.

Underreporting of Zika is rife; researchers project epidemic’s spread

A team led by North­eastern pro­fessor Alessandro Vespig­nani responded to a “call to arms” to model the spread of the Zika virus, revealing the dis­parity between the number of reported cases and the number of pro­jected cases of this largely asymp­to­matic dis­ease. The results will help coun­tries in the Amer­icas plan a response.

Coast-​​to-​​coast collaboration targets food security

A team of 20 grad­uate stu­dents at Northeastern’s Boston and Seattle cam­puses spent the spring semester working together, col­lab­o­rating via Skype, GitHub, and Google Hang­outs to build a soft­ware plat­form aimed at con­necting a global com­mu­nity of farmers, researchers, and educators.

National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences head lauds Northeastern’s interdisciplinary approach

You cannot do envi­ron­mental health work if you don’t work with the com­mu­nity,” said Linda Birn­baum, director of the National Insti­tute of Envi­ron­mental Health Sci­ences, during remarks on campus on Monday. She lauded North­eastern, with its emphasis on inter­dis­ci­pli­nary research and prac­tice, for doing just that, and noted Northeastern’s con­tri­bu­tions to a multi-​​country study of Zika.

3Qs: Will ‘superbug’ in Rio’s waters harm Olympic athletes?

A new study from a team of Brazilian sci­en­tists has found that a drug-​​resistant bac­terium has been growing off two city beaches bor­dering Gua­n­abara Bay, where Olympic sailors will com­pete next month. We asked Daniel Faber, pro­fessor of soci­ology and director of Northeastern’s Envi­ron­mental Jus­tice Research Col­lab­o­ra­tive, to dis­cuss the social, polit­ical, and sci­en­tific impli­ca­tions of the findings.

Northeastern receives $9M grant to fast track the discovery of new antibiotics

A team led by Uni­ver­sity Dis­tin­guished Pro­fessor of Biology Kim Lewis received a five-​​year, $9 mil­lion grant from the National Insti­tute of Health’s National Insti­tute of Allergy and Infec­tious Dis­eases to launch a novel plat­form for devel­oping antibi­otics that kill pathogens without encoun­tering resistance.

Comfort dogs bring healing in times of tragedy

Twelve golden retrievers recently arrived in Orlando to bring com­fort to the sur­vivors and those grieving after the mass shooting at the gay night­club Pulse. Here, Northeastern’s Lisa Feldman Bar­rett, who spe­cial­izes in the psy­chology of emo­tion, explains how dogs help bring our ner­vous sys­tems back into bal­ance and, at least tem­porarily, make us feel safe.

3Qs: Is soda losing its fizz?

Philadel­phia recently became the first major U.S. city to pass a soft drink tax, and a new report from Bev­erage Mar­keting Corp. found that bot­tled water will soon sur­pass soda as the nation’s most pop­ular bev­erage. Here, Janice Maras, research man­ager in the Depart­ment of Health Sci­ences, who spe­cial­izes in dietary data analysis, explains how a soda tax might affect dietary habits and what kind of long-​​term impact the declining pop­u­larity of soft drinks will have on the nation’s obe­sity epidemic.

Hackathon to help nurses drive innovation in healthcare

As the startup cul­ture in health­care con­tinues to grow, North­eastern School of Nursing Dean Nancy Han­rahan sees an oppor­tu­nity for nurses to play a key role in devel­oping inno­v­a­tive solu­tions to improve patients’ health­care expe­ri­ences. North­eastern is hosting a three-​​day summit and hackathon starting today geared toward empow­ering nurses to drive that innovation.

Researchers reveal the hidden environmental and public health impacts of the US healthcare sector

Over the past 10 years, the U.S. health­care sector’s green­house gas emis­sions grew by more than 30 per­cent, accounting for 9.8 per­cent of the national total in 2013. “If the U.S. health­care sector were itself a country, it would rank 13th in the world for green­house gas emis­sions, ahead of the entire U.K.,” states a new paper coau­thored by North­eastern researcher Matthew Eckelman.

How serious is the threat posed by new ‘superbug’?

Reports of the arrival in the U.S. of a new superbug that is resis­tant to an antibi­otic of last resort have set off alarm bells among public health offi­cials. Last year, a team led by North­eastern pro­fessor Kim Lewis dis­cov­ered teixobactin, an antibi­otic that elim­i­nates bac­teria without encoun­tering any detectable resis­tance. We asked him to explain the new superbug, how wor­ried we should be, and how it might be stopped.

Take 5: The science of doping in sports

Reports of doping by Russia’s Olympic ath­letes con­tinue to grab head­lines. Just yes­terday, offi­cials con­firmed that 14 of the country’s ath­letes from the 2008 Games had been impli­cated by the I.O.C. in a re-​​testing of sam­ples. But doping in sports is not new. As early as the 8th cen­tury B.C., Greek ath­letes found ways to boost testos­terone to enhance per­for­mance, says Northeastern’s Rui Li, an expert on exer­cise phys­i­ology. Here, she talks about the sci­ence of doping and pos­sible mea­sures to stop it.