Study defines personal space
Now there is a scientific definition of “personal space.” Researchers from University College, London have defined it as a space 8 to 16 inches from a person’s face. The fact that the need for personal space varies from person to person is common knowledge, but this study, published in The Journal of Neuroscience, is the first to create a numerical definition of it.
Researchers from England’s University College London recorded the study subjects’ blink reflexes at varying distances from their faces. They chose to study blink reflexes because they are defensive responses to potentially dangerous stimuli, according to researchers Chiara Sambo and Giandomenico lannetti.
After studying blink reflexes, the researchers compared the results with results from anxiety questionnaires. They found that the people who scored high on the anxiety text tended to react more strongly to stimuli eight inches from their face than those who got low scores.
The study supports previous research that found that people with anxiety traits need more personal space than those without anxiety traits.
Researchers say they believe their new findings could be useful for seeing how good people are at determining risks in certain jobs, particularly those which present dangerous or threatening situations.
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Sourced from: Medical News Today, Study sets personal space boundary: 8 to 16 inches from face
Marijuana for teens can enhance addictive behavior
Teenage marijuana users are more at-risk than other age groups for developing addictive behaviors and suffering long-term negative effects, according to researchers from the University of Montreal and New York’s Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai Hospital.
The scientists said the findings were of particular concern because marijuana is the most-used illicit drug among teenagers, and—regarding increasing legalization and accessibility—“most of the debates and ensuing policies regarding cannabis were done without consideration of its impact on one of the most vulnerable population, namely teens, or without consideration of scientific data,” said researchers Didier Jutras-Aswad and Dr. Yasmin Hurd.
While the researchers did not conduct an original study, they reviewed more than 120 studies that examined the relationship between marijuana and the adolescent brain, including the biology of the brain, chemical reactions that occur in the brain and the influence of genetic and environmental factors.
“When the first exposure occurs in younger versus older adolescents, the impact of cannabis seems to be worse in regard to many outcomes such as mental health, education attainment, delinquency and the ability to conform to adult role,” said Jutras-Aswad.
The research adds to studies conducted in rats, in which scientists have observed differences in the brains of adolescent rats after marijuana was introduced—particularly in the chemical pathways that govern addiction and vulnerability and the dopamine receptor related to substance abuse.
The scientists acknowledged that a lot remains unknown about how marijuana affects the brain and that it is difficult to confirm a causal link between drug consumption and specific behavior, give genetic, physiological and environmental factors.
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Sourced from: ScienceDaily, Perception of Marijuana as a ‘Safe Drug’ Is Scientifically Inaccurate, Finds Review of Teen Brain Studies
Broccoli may help prevent osteoarthritis
Here’s a new reason to eat your vegetables: It may help you have healthier joints as you age. A new study, published in the journal Arthritis and Rheumatism, finds that a compound called sulforaphane can help fight osteoarthritis, the most common form of arthritis. And that compound is released when eating broccoli, brussel sprouts, cauliflower, kale, cabbage and bok choy.
The study, from the University of East Anglia, is significant in that it’s the first of its kind to demonstrate the relationship between sulforaphane and joint health. The goal of the study was to find out how much sulforaphane entered joints when vegetables were consumed and what effect they would have.
Researchers performed a relatively small trial, about which lead researcher Ian Clark, professor of musculoskeletal biology at UEA, said, “The results from this study are very promising. We have shown that this works in the three laboratory models we have tried, in cartilage cells, tissue and mice.”
UEA researchers are planning another trial, this time in 40 osteoarthritis patients who are due to have joint replacement surgery. Half of the patients will be fed “super broccoli,” with extra sulforaphane, two weeks before surgery. Researchers will compare patients post-surgery to see if they can detect sulforaphane in the replaced joints and whether it affected joint metabolism.
NEXT: Marijuana for teens can enhace additive behavior
Sourced from: Medical News Today, Broccoli may slow, prevent osteoarthritis