New approach to treating chronic itch

Two receptors in the spinal cord and the right experimental drug: Researchers at the University of Zurich have discovered a new approach that suppresses itch. In a series of experiments in mice and dogs they successfully alleviated different forms of acute as well as chronic itch. For the latter, current treatment options are very limited, according to Science Daily.

Everybody knows the unpleasant itching sensation after being bitten by a mosquito. Luckily, this kind of itch can be relieved by a number of drugs that are available on the market. These drugs, however, are largely ineffective when it comes to the unrelenting and debilitating urge to scratch experienced by patients suffering from skin, kidney or liver diseases. This chronic condition, which affects about 10 percent of the population, is currently treated with antidepressants or immune suppressants. Originally developed to treat other diseases, these drugs often fail to provide the desired relief or come with severe side effects.

Footballer heart death risk 'underestimated'

The risk of footballers dying because their heart stops beating is higher than experts thought, a study suggests.

There have been high-profile deaths, including that of Marc-Vivien Foe while playing for Cameroon aged 28. Former England defender Ugo Ehiogu, who was a Spurs coach, died last year aged 44, according to BBC.

The study, in the New England Journal of Medicine, comes from two decades of data on 11,168 youth players in the UK.

Doctors said there was a duty to protect players.

Salt is NOT as bad as previously thought

Even double the daily limit won't increase your heart attack risk, study claims

For most people the amount of salt they eat is not harmful, a controversial new study has found.

Health guidelines say any more than 0.75 teaspoons a day increases your risk of a heart attack. 

Is too much screen time harming children's vision?

As children spend more time tethered to screens, there is increasing concern about potential harm to their visual development. Ophthalmologists -- physicians who specialize in medical and surgical eye care -- are seeing a marked increase in children with dry eye and eye strain from too much screen time, according to Science Daily.

But does digital eyestrain cause lasting damage? Should your child use reading glasses or computer glasses? As you send your kids back to school this month for more time with screens and books.

It's a fact that there is a world-wide epidemic of myopia, also known as nearsightedness. Since 1971, the incidence of nearsightedness nearly doubled, to 42 percent. Clearly, something is going on. But scientists can't agree on exactly what.

Learning while sleeping?

Led by Philippe Peigneux, a group of researchers found that our learning capabilities are limited during slow wave sleep. Using magnetoencephalography (MEG), they showed that while our brain is still able to perceive sounds during sleep, it is unable to group these sounds according to their organisation in a sequence, according to Science Daily.

Hypnopedia, or the ability to learn during sleep, was popularized in the '60s, with for example the dystopia Brave New World by Aldous Huxley, in which individuals are conditioned to their future tasks during sleep.