Latest Stories

Smoke from Western wildfires is coloring Philly skies

The colossal fires on the West Coast are now impacting the air flowing into Pennsylvania, according to the National Weather Service.

How do Americans view genetic engineering of humans, animals? Men and women disagree, survey finds

Most favor certain health-promoting changes, such as correcting inherited diseases that would affect newborns or altering animals so that they can grow organs for people who need them. But crafting luminous pets and smarter babies would be taking the science too far, a majority of respondents said.

Elephants ward off cancer via ‘zombie gene’

African elephants die from cancer at a third the rate of people — that's despite weighing up to a hundred times more and living well into their 70s. Trillions more long-lived cells should equal more chances for tumors, yet somehow these pachyderms are protected.

EPA’s new asbestos rule: Philadelphia doctors cite the dangers

With its many older buildings and shipbuilding heritage, Philadelphia faces a legacy of asbestos dangers. Much of the scientific research linking asbestos fibers and cancer was assembled by Philadelphia researchers.

Cancer ‘drones’ in blood weaken immune system, Penn scientists show

Cancer's ability to manipulate the immune system — and thereby protect itself — is more sophisticated than previously understood, according to new research published Wednesday in the journal Nature.

Scientists peer inside cancer using water and light

Peering into live tissue to spot microscopic cancers — as well as signs of aging and normal development — could someday help physicians excise tumors that today evade even the most skilled surgeons.

Move over, birds. New Jersey considers naming a ‘state microbe.’

Many have tried, but few have succeeded to get microbes official state recognition. But Streptomyces griseus is a very big deal.

Depression is tough to treat. Could a blood test unlock the mystery?

A team of scientists found that blood levels of acetyl-L-carnitine, a compound produced by the body which plays a role in cellular metabolism, appear to play a role. But don't rush out to the drug store for supplements.

How opioids reshape your brain, and what scientists are learning about addiction

Habits — including drug abuse — literally cut tracks through our brains. Neuroscientists are finding out what this means for those trying to get and stay sober.

Public faith in marijuana outpaces medical research, study finds

"We don't have enough studies that demonstrate the benefits of medical cannabis," a Pitt expert on addiction said. "And the perceptions about the risks related to cannabis are going down, particularly among adolescents."