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This is the question posed in an explanatory video released in tandem with a new report which claims to have used transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS) to improve the acquisition of piloting skills in test subjects. It certainly is an enticing idea, one which could put an end to spending hours buried in textbooks or wasting away in corporate training seminars—but could it ever really be that easy? Leer Más

Chili Peppers Could Free Us From Opioids


A painting of bright red chilies hangs in the boss’s office at Centrexion Therapeutics. A wreath of the spicy peppers sits on the desk of the company’s chief scientist. Chilies in one form or another seem to be everywhere at the company’s Baltimore headquarters. Led by former Pfizer Chief Executive Officer Jeffrey Kindler, Centrexion is developing a new generation of nonaddictive painkillers, and hot peppers could play a role. Leer Más

Minimum legal drinking age of 21 can protect against later risk of death


The minimum legal drinking age (MLDA) in the U.S. regulates the age at which individuals can legally purchase and possess alcohol in public. An MLDA of 21 has been linked to a number of benefits, including a lower risk for alcoholism in adulthood. However, no studies have examined linkages between exposure to MLDAs during young adulthood and mortality later in life. This study examined if young adults — college and non-college students — exposed to a permissive MLDA (younger than 21) had a higher risk of death from alcohol-related chronic diseases compared to those exposed to an MLDA of 21. Leer Más

Adolescent Girls Choose to Drink at Lower Blood Alcohol Concentrations


Gender and a family history of alcoholism (FH) are two genetically determined factors known to affect someone’s risk for developing alcohol-use disorders (AUDs). Adolescence is also a critical period for the development of AUDs; drinking habits can be unstable and environmental factors such as peer pressure may be substantial. This study looked at how gender and FH might affect alcohol use in a sample of 18- to 19-year-olds from the Dresden Longitudinal Study on Alcohol use in Young Adults (D-LAYA). Leer Más

Precision medicine introduced to psychiatry


Mayo Clinic is highlighting the potential merits of using precision medicine in prescribing antidepressants. Details appear in the current issue of Mayo Clinic Proceedings. Eleven percent of Americans 12 years and older have been prescribed antidepressant medication, according to Centers for Disease Control and Prevention data from 2005-2008. These medications are regularly prescribed in psychiatric, pediatric, adolescent, family and general medicine clinics nationwide. Leer Más