Nicotine may not prevent coronavirus infection, WHO cautions

Even as French researchers hypothesise that nicotine reduces the risk of novel coronavirus infection by preventing the virus from binding to a different receptor (nicotinic acetylcholine receptor or nAChR) and a trial is set to begin, WHO cautions that there is insufficient evidence to confirm nicotine's protective effect. Urging researchers, scientists and the media to … Continue reading Nicotine may not prevent coronavirus infection, WHO cautions

Plants emit ultrasonic distress screams when stressed

Researchers at Tel-Aviv University have found plants making airborne emission of ultrasound screams when subjected to stress. They suspect that the sounds are generated by a process called cavitation. The sound may be alerting other plants nearby. Researchers have for the first time found evidence of plants making airborne emission of ultrasound screams when subjected … Continue reading Plants emit ultrasonic distress screams when stressed

Cardiovascular disease risk high in rural area near Chennai

A large study that followed-up people for nearly eight years in a rural area near Chennai finds that cardiovascular disease is becoming an important preventable cause of death in rural areas. In the study area, two-thirds of people who developed cardiovascular disease died. Contrary to the general notion, cardiovascular disease is becoming an important preventable … Continue reading Cardiovascular disease risk high in rural area near Chennai

To enslave youth, E-cigarettes use time-tested machinations of big tobacco

The e-cigarettes makers have been following the time-tested machinations of the big tobacco companies to a tee. Using flavours is just one of the many strategies that e-cigarette makers have resorted to. The tide is now slowly turning. Lack of vaping-related illness during the last 10 years that electronic cigarettes have increasingly been used has … Continue reading To enslave youth, E-cigarettes use time-tested machinations of big tobacco

Explainer: Why India is banning e-cigarettes

Unlike in the case of cigarette smoking the actual and full-scale adverse health effects are not yet know. But much like traditional cigarettes, e-cigarettes too deliver ultrafine particles and nicotine deep into the lungs, where they get absorbed by the blood. On September 18, the Union Cabinet approved the promulgation of the Prohibition of Electronic … Continue reading Explainer: Why India is banning e-cigarettes

Pictorial warning: Will public health override free speech in the U.S?

It is an irony that a country that introduced text health warnings in 1966 and updated it in 1984 to include the Surgeon General’s warning, cigarettes packages in the U.S still do not carry pictorial warnings. Ten years after the Congress passed the Family Smoking Prevention and Tobacco Control Act, on August 15 this year, … Continue reading Pictorial warning: Will public health override free speech in the U.S?

‘Tobacco products become affordable after GST’

The final price of cigarettes increases by only 0.18%. In the case of bidi and smokeless tobacco, the final price hike is 8.8% (about Rs. 1.30 per pack of 25 sticks) and 6%, respectively. With the introduction of the goods and services tax (GST) in 2017, all tobacco products — cigarettes, bidis and smokeless — … Continue reading ‘Tobacco products become affordable after GST’

Biomarkers found for lymph node metastasis in oral cancer

Researchers at the National Institute of Biomedical Genomics, Kalyani, and ACTREC, Tata Memorial Centre, Mumbai have identified five biomarkers for lymph node metastasis in oral cancer. Two of the biomarkers are heritable DNA changes while three are somatic DNA alterations. Patients can be spared of lymph node dissection in the absence of the biomarkers. By looking … Continue reading Biomarkers found for lymph node metastasis in oral cancer

India should soon introduce plain packaging

Besides Australia, France, UK. Norway, Ireland, New Zealand and Hungary have introduced plain packaging of tobacco products. Plain packaging was will be introduced in Uruguay and Slovenia in 2019 and 2020 respectively, and is under process or being considered in 14 more countries. With the WTO clearing the last hurdle by favouring plain packaging, India should … Continue reading India should soon introduce plain packaging

Adults from South, Northeast India have higher risk of cardiovascular disease

Two large surveys covering nearly 8 lakh adults between 2012 and 2014 have found the average 10-year risk of a cardiovascular disease event varying from 13.2% in Jharkhand to 19.5% in Kerala. The mean risk is 12.7% among females and 21.4% among males. And adults living in urban areas have higher risk than those in rural areas. Two … Continue reading Adults from South, Northeast India have higher risk of cardiovascular disease