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U.S. News & World Report

MIT researchers have found that in the U.S., “fires started by people account for a majority of premature deaths related to inhalation of tiny smoke particles,” writes Cara Murez for U.S. News & World Report. “Fires not only threaten human lives, infrastructure and ecosystems, but they are also a major cause for concern in terms of air quality,” says Therese Carter PhD ’22. 

Forbes

Writing for Forbes, Joseph Coughlin, director of the MIT AgeLab, highlights the safety concerns associated with shrinking airlines seats. “Tightening seating is argued to be a threat to a speedy emergency evacuation and even the cause of dangerous health conditions such as blood clots,” writes Coughlin.

NPR

NPR’s Vicky Hallett spotlights two teams of innovators who will receive support and mentorship from MIT Solve, an initiative aimed at driving innovation to solve pressing global challenges, for their work focused on equitable health solutions. "Where we want to play a role is by ensuring technology is designed for and by underserved communities," explains Alex Amouyel, executive director of MIT Solve.

The Verge

The Verge reporter Justine Calma writes that a new study by MIT researchers finds that while wind energy has measurably improved air quality, only 32% of those benefits reached low-income communities. “The research shows that to squeeze out the greatest health benefits, wind farms need to intentionally replace coal and gas power plants,” writes Calma. “And to clean up the most polluted places — particularly those with more residents of color and low-income households — those communities need to be in focus when deploying new renewable energy projects.”

HealthDay News

A new study by MIT researchers finds that increased usage of wind power is improving air quality in parts of the U.S., however only a third of the health benefits are being seen in disadvantaged communities, reports Alan Mozes for HealthDay. "Going forward," explains Prof. Noelle Selin, "more targeted policies are needed to reduce the disparities at the same time, for example by directly targeting [fossil fuel] sources that influence certain marginalized communities."

The Hill

Increased usage of wind energy has led to health benefits, but does not affect all communities equally, reports Saul Elbein for The Hill. The researchers found that in order to increase the benefits of wind energy, “the electricity industry would have to spin down the most polluting plants at times of high wind-supply — rather than their most expensive ones,” writes Elbein.

Boston 25 News

Researchers from MIT and Boston Children’s Hospital are working on developing new technology that could help predict and identify diseases through audio recordings of a patient’s voice, reports Jim Morelli for Boston 25 News. “It’s almost like being Sherlock Holmes to voice, taking voice as a signal and trying to understand what’s going on behind it,” said Satrajit Ghosh, a principal research scientist at the McGovern Institute. “And can we backtrack from voice and say this is ‘Disorder A’ versus ‘Disorder B’?” 

New York Times

A study by Prof. Emery Brown suggests that the combination of Covid-19 and anesthesia could prompt the human brain into a state of quiet that can last weeks or months, similar to how turtles quiet their neurons to survive winter, reports Carl Zimmer for The New York Times. The findings “might point to new ways to save people from brain damage: by intentionally putting people into this state, rather than doing so by accident.”

Wired

Research from Synlogic, a biotech company founded by Profs James Collins and Timothy Lu, has found that it’s the company’s engineered bacteria could provide some benefit to patients with a rare genetic disease, reports Emily Mullin for Wired. “Similar to how you might program a computer, we can tinker with the DNA of bacteria and have them do things like produce a drug at the right time and the right place, or in this case, break down a toxic metabolite,” says Lu.

TechCrunch

Researchers at MIT are working on a system that can track the development of Parkinson’s disease by monitoring a person’s gait speed, reports Kyle Wiggers and Devin Coldewey for TechCrunch. “The MIT Parkinson’s-tracking effort aims to help clinicians overcome challenges in treating the estimated 10 million people afflicted by the disease globally,” writes Wiggers and Coldewey.

Forbes

Forbes contributor Marija Butkovic spotlights Gloria Ro Kolb ’94, the founder of medical device company Elidah, which is developing “an external, home-use treatment for female urinary incontinence.” 

CBS News

Spatial Equity NYC, an online tool developed by MIT researchers and Transportation Alternatives, uses public information to address the racial and economic disparities between neighborhoods in New York City, reports Jenna Deangelis for CBS News. “Our team has focused on fostering data transparency, making open data more accessible, legible and useable,” says research associate Daniela Coray.

Gothamist

Researchers from MIT and Transportation Alternatives have developed an online tool using census information, city health data, and other public information to help understand the correlation between racial and health care disparities in New York City, reports Stephen Nessen for Gothamist. The researchers have found that “the New York City neighborhoods with the worst health and poverty outcomes, also tend to have more injuries from traffic,” writes Nessen.

Boston.com

Researchers from MIT and Harvard Medical School are investigating how exercise and high-fat diets can alter cells, genes and cellular pathways, reports Abby Patkin for Boston.com. “Their research could eventually help develop drugs that would mimic the effects of exercise and combat obesity,” explains Patkin.

WCVB

Researchers from MIT and Harvard Medical School have conducted a study to see how exercise and high-fat diets can impact cells, reports WCVB. The researchers “say the data could eventually be used to develop drugs that could help enhance or mimic the benefits of exercise,” writes WCVB.