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NBC Boston

A new study by researchers from MIT and Harvard Medical School has helped identify the impact of exercise and high-fat diets on cells, reports Darren Botelho for NBC Boston 10. “Years from now, those researchers say the data could lead to a pill that would help not only with weight loss, but with the overall effect from exercise – a better wellbeing,” explains Botelho.

Boston 25 News

Prof. Manolis Kellis speaks with Boston 25 about his team’s work exploring the underlying mechanisms exploring how exercise influences weight loss, findings that could offer potential targets for drugs that could help to enhance or mimic the benefits of exercise. “Such an intervention would be a complete game changer and the reason for that is that the obesity epidemic has led to the U.S. having a decreased life span compared to all other developed countries,” says Kellis.

Smithsonian Magazine

MIT researchers have created a robotic pill that can safely penetrate the mucus barrier in the digestive tract to deliver drugs more efficiently, reports Margaret Osborne for Smithsonian Magazine. “The device’s textured surface clears away the mucus, and the rotating motion erodes the compartment with the drug payload, which slowly releases into the digestive tract,” explains Osborne.

New Scientist

New Scientist reporter Alex Wilkins writes that MIT researchers have developed a robotic pill that can propel itself through mucus in the intestines and could enable some injection-only medications to be taken orally. “The pill is 2.5-centimeters long and 1-centimeter wide – about the size of a large multivitamin ­– and encased in a gelatin capsule that dissolves in stomach acid,” writes Wilkins. “The pH in the lower intestine activates the motor, which is powered by a small battery.”

The Boston Globe

MIT researchers have developed a new in-home device that can help monitor Parkinson’s patients by tracking their gait, reports Hiawatha Bray for The Boston Globe. “We know very little about the brain and its diseases,” says Professor Dina Katabi. “My goal is to develop non-invasive tools that provide new insights about the functioning of the brain and its diseases.”

Popular Science

Popular Science reporter Philip Kiefer writes that MIT researchers have developed an in-home device that could be used to track the progression of symptoms in Parkinson’s patients. “We can’t really ask patients to come to the clinic every day or every week,” explains graduate student Yingcheng Liu. “This technology gives us the possibility to continuously monitor patients, and provide more objective assessments.”

HealthDay News

A study by MIT researchers finds that the screening test used for autism creates a gender gap that impedes diagnosis and treatment for women and girls, reports Sydney Murphy for Health Day. The researchers found that “a screening test often used to decide who can take part in autism studies seems to exclude a much higher percentage of women than men,” writes Murphy.

The Hill

A new study by MIT researchers finds that women being excluded from studies on autism can hinder diagnoses and the development of useful interventions for women and girls, reports Gianna Melillo for The Hill. “Female diagnoses could be missed altogether and an already small pool of study subjects is further reduced,” writes Melillo.

Economist

Prof. Edward Boyden has developed a new imaging technique called expansion-revealing microscopy that can reveal tiny protein structures in tissues, reports The Economist. “Already his team at MIT has used it to reveal detail in synapses, the nanometer-sized junctions between nerve cells, and also to shed light on the mechanisms at play in Alzheimer’s disease, revealing occasional spirals of amyloid-beta protein around axons, which are the threadlike parts of nerve cells that carry electrical impulses.”

The Washington Post

Washington Post reporter Pranshu Verma writes about how Prof. Dina Katabi and her colleagues developed a new AI tool that could be used to help detect early signs of Parkinson’s by analyzing a patient’s breathing patterns. For diseases like Parkinson’s “one of the biggest challenges is that we need to get to [it] very early on, before the damage has mostly happened in the brain,” said Katabi. “So being able to detect Parkinson’s early is essential.”

Forbes

Forbes contributor Jennifer Kite-Powell spotlights how MIT researchers created a new AI system that analyzes radio waves bouncing off a person while they sleep to monitor breathing patterns and help identify Parkinson’s disease. “The device can also measure how bad the disease has become and could be used to track Parkinson's progression over time,” writes Kite-Powell.

The Boston Globe

A new tool for diagnosing Parkinson’s disease developed by MIT researchers uses an AI system to monitor a person’s breathing patterns during sleep, reports Hiawatha Bray for The Boston Globe. “The system is capable of detecting the chest movements of a sleeping person, even if they’re under a blanket or lying on their side,” writes Bray. “It uses software to filter out all other extraneous information, until only the breathing data remains. Using it for just one night provides enough data for a diagnosis.”

WBUR

Boston Globe reporter Hiawatha Bray speaks with Radio Boston host Tiziana Dearing about how MIT researchers developed an artificial intelligence model that uses a person’s breathing patterns to detect Parkinson’s Disease. The researchers “hope to continue doing this for other diseases like Alzheimer’s and potentially other neurological diseases,” says Bray.

The Guardian

Researchers at MIT have discovered that pictures of food appear to stimulate strong reactions among specific sets of neurons in the human brain, a trait that could have evolved due to the importance of food for humans, reports Sascha Pare for The Guardian. “The researchers posit these neurons have gone undetected because they are spread across the other specialized cluster for faces, places, bodies and words, rather than concentrated in one region,” writes Pare.

Fierce Biotech

Researchers at MIT have developed an artificial intelligence sensor that can track the progression of Parkinson’s disease in patients based on their breathing while they sleep, reports Conor Hale for Fierce Biotech. “The device emits radio waves and captures their reflection to read small changes in its immediate environment,” writes Hale. “It works like a radar, but in this case, the device senses the rise and fall of a person’s chest.”