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Health & Medicine

Coronavirus is evolving but so are our antibodies

Antibodies (white) binding to a coronavirus (red and orange). Kateryna Kon/Shutterstock Sarah L Caddy, University of Cambridge and Meng Wang, University of Cambridge The emergence of “variants of concern” has raised questions about our long-term immunity to the coronavirus. Will the antibodies we make after being infected with or vaccinated against the dominant lineage, called D614G, protect us against future …

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COVID-19 and mental health: Feeling anguish is normal and is not a disorder

How we name our experiences and how we make sense of our distress matters. (Shutterstock) Marnie Wedlake, Western University As the pandemic rages on, people continue to talk about their emotional distress and a growing sense of despair. Some mental health researchers suggest the increased reports of depression and anxiety indicate a rise in mental disorders stemming from the coronavirus …

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Pollen can raise your risk of COVID-19 – and the season is getting longer thanks to climate change

Pollen can suppress how the body’s immune system responds to viruses. Callista Images via Getty Images Lewis Ziska, Columbia University Exposure to pollen can make you more susceptible to COVID-19, and it isn’t just a problem for people with allergies, new research released March 9 shows. Plant physiologist Lewis Ziska, a co-author of the new peer-reviewed study and other recent …

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Data suggest no increased risk of blood clots from the AstraZeneca vaccine. Australia shouldn’t pause its rollout

Nigel William Crawford, Murdoch Children’s Research Institute; Hazel Clothier, Murdoch Children’s Research Institute, and Jim Buttery, The University of Melbourne Germany, France, Spain and all of Italy also paused their AstraZeneca rollouts, shortly after this article was published. Ireland and the Netherlands have temporarily paused their rollouts of the AstraZeneca COVID vaccine, due to concerns about blood clots. The move …

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Alzheimer’s: mouse study may have uncovered drug that can prevent the disease

Amyloid plaques are one cause of Alzheimer’s disease. Design_Cells/ Shutterstock Mark Dallas, University of Reading Although around one in 14 people over 65 have Alzheimer’s disease, there’s still no cure, and no way to prevent the disease from progressing. But a recent study may bring us one step closer to preventing Alzheimer’s. The trial, which was conducted on animals, has …

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Coronavirus: will immunity rapidly fade or last a lifetime?

Luke O’Neill, Trinity College Dublin The COVID vaccines are working. Data from Israel and Scotland shows that they are protecting people and may also be decreasing the spread of the SARS-CoV-2 virus. If it all holds up, people will be protected from severe disease, the amount of virus will progressively decrease, and we can truly plan for a way out …

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COVID vaccine weekly: a new race is emerging between variants and boosters

Rob Reddick, The Conversation Updated versions of already authorised COVID-19 vaccines, tweaked to deal with new variants of the coronavirus, will not have to go through a lengthy testing and approval process, the UK Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency has said. The announcement follows a week in which UK authorities have desperately tried to contain the spread of P1, …

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Three ways behavioural psychology might help you lose weight

Tracking what you eat is one method proven to work. Okrasiuk/ Shutterstock Claire Madigan, Loughborough University There’s no shortage of weight loss programmes out there to choose from, each of which claim to have the key to shedding pounds. One of the latest popular weight loss programmes out there is Noom, which claims that behavioural psychology is the key to …

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