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Action spectrum of sun skin damage documented

Scientists have documented for the first time the DNA damage which can occur to skin across the full range of ultraviolet radiation from the sun providing an invaluable tool for sun-protection and the manufacturers of sunscreen.

Testing on human skin cell lines, this study documents the action spectrum of ultraviolet damage in cells derived from both the upper layer (dermis) and lower layer (epidermis) of the skin.

This will allow manufacturers of sunscreen to develop and test products so that they can provide protection to both layers.

Our skin ages due to the constant exposure to sunlight as ultraviolet radiation comprising UVA and UVB rays from the sun penetrates cells and increases the number of damaging free radicals, especially the reactive oxygen species. Too many reactive oxygen species can be harmful because they can damage the DNA within our cells.

Unusual US Zika virus case baffles experts

Experts are trying to work out exactly how a US carer has caught Zika after tending to a dying elderly man with the virus.

Until now it was thought that only mosquitoes and sex spread Zika, as well as the risk of mother-to-child transmission in the womb.

The carer, from Utah, did not have any of these known risk factors, according to BBC.

US officials say they are monitoring the situation carefully and carrying out more tests.

Is artificial lighting making us sick? New evidence in mice

Along with eating right and exercising, people should consider adding another healthy habit to their list: turning out the lights. That's according to a new study showing many negative health consequences for mice kept under conditions of constant light for a period of months.

"Our study shows that the environmental light-dark cycle is important for health," says Johanna Meijer of Leiden. "We showed that the absence of environmental rhythms leads to severe disruption of a wide variety of health parameters."

Happy cows make more nutritious milk

Daily infusions with a chemical commonly associated with feelings of happiness were shown to increase calcium levels in the blood of Holstein cows and the milk of Jersey cows that had just given birth. The results, could lead to a better understanding of how to improve the health of dairy cows, and keep the milk flowing.

Demand is high for milk rich in calcium: there is more calcium in the human body than any other mineral, and in the West dairy products such as milk, cheese and yoghurt are primary sources of calcium. But this demand can take its toll on milk-producing cows.

Western-style diet linked to state-dependent memory inhibition

Obesity may ultimately be a disease of the brain, involving a progressive deterioration of various cognitive processes that influence eating. Researchers at have now shown that memory inhibition -- the useful ability to 'block out' memories that are no longer useful, which depends on a brain area called the hippocampus -- is linked to dietary excess. Usually, food-related memories should be at the forefront during hunger but then inhibited during fullness, so that thoughts of food are set aside when eating is no longer top priority.

Prior animal studies have shown that a diet -- one high in fats and sugars and low in fruit, vegetable and fiber -- impairs the memory inhibition abilities of the hippocampus. Practically, this could mean that a style diet makes it harder to inhibit pleasant memories triggered by seeing or smelling palatable food.