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  • Don't blame the smelt: The salmon too reflects the dire state of the California Delta

    Don't blame the smelt: The salmon too reflects the dire state of the California Delta

    The delta smelt is: 1) A nearly extinct species that serves as a crucial barometer for the health of the California Delta. 2) A useless bait fish that deprives Central Valley farmers of critical water for their almond trees. 3) Delicious with cheese and crackers. That all depends on who you are....

  • E-cigs' effect on public health an open question

    E-cigs' effect on public health an open question

    E-cigarettes help smokers cut back on or kick their deadly habit--or they feed the addiction. They act as a gateway to smoking with seductive flavorings and safety claims--or they divert a generation of would-be smokers from the dangers of burned tobacco. They reduce nonsmokers' involuntary exposure...

  • Doctors see big loophole in FDA action against e-cigarettes and want it closed

    Doctors see big loophole in FDA action against e-cigarettes and want it closed

    The Food and Drug Administration’s new plan to regulate electronic cigarettes contains a glaring loophole that some of the nation’s most influential medical associations would like to see closed. Under new rules announced Thursday, e-cigarette sales to minors will be banned and products sold to...

  • 'We've never seen this before': Watch NOAA's live feed of a hidden, watery world

    'We've never seen this before': Watch NOAA's live feed of a hidden, watery world

    A plume that resembles black smoke billows from a towering underwater chimney. Blind white shrimp rain down in all directions. Pale-colored crabs, squat lobsters and hairy snails cover the patches of ocean floor not already occupied by the thousands of shrimp. Then, 10,000 feet deep in the ocean’s...

  • In landmark step, feds will regulate e-cigarettes; sales to minors banned

    In landmark step, feds will regulate e-cigarettes; sales to minors banned

    Hundreds of electronic cigarette brands will have to undergo federal review to stay on the market under new rules that have the potential to upend a multibillion-dollar industry attempting to position itself as an alternative to traditional cigarettes.  The Food and Drug Administration on Thursday...

  • How often do you go to the doctor? It depends on where you live, study says

    How often do you go to the doctor? It depends on where you live, study says

    The odds that you’ve seen a doctor in the last year vary quite a bit depending on where you live — but so far, the way your state has implemented the Affordable Care Act doesn’t seem to have much to do with it, government data show. A new report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention...

  • Dr. Robot scrubs in, and suturing may never be the same

    Dr. Robot scrubs in, and suturing may never be the same

    Surgery, a profession filled with great hands, quick minds and big egos, may have a new star in its midst. The Smart Tissue Autonomous Robot--STAR--is a melding of off-the-shelf robotic hardware, time-worn sensor technology and improvised software, and it has none of the attributes that make surgeons...

  • Medical errors are No. 3 cause of death in the U.S., after heart disease and cancer

    Medical errors are No. 3 cause of death in the U.S., after heart disease and cancer

    Heart disease, cancer ... and medical errors? A new tally of mistakes made in American hospitals suggests that medical errors are the No. 3 cause of death in the U.S. At least 250,000 deaths each year can be attributed to medical care that has gone awry, according to a report published Tuesday...

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