Science Bites: June 27th

Science Bites: June 27th

Linking multiple sclerosis and obesity

People who are obese in early adulthood face a heightened risk of developing multiple sclerosis, according to new researchThis finding confirms previous observational studies that suggested a link and has important public health implications because of the high prevalence of obesity in many countries, the study’s authors wrote.

New research combats mosquito-borne illness

A 25-year observational study conducted in Kenya found that, despite a period of reduced transmission, older children may have been more susceptible to contracting malaria due to a decrease in acquired immunity. However, children in areas with high insecticide-treated net (ITN) usage were less like to show symptoms of malaria than children in areas with low ITN use. Despite the upswing in cases, this study suggests that ITN usage is still a promising strategy for reducing malaria in older children.

A new identification technique could make one approach to controlling Aedes aegypti – a species of mosquito known for transmitting dengue and Zika viruses – easier and cheaper to implement. The new study describes how researchers used near infrared spectroscopy to distinguish between mosquitos infected with two different strains of Wolbachia bacteria that reduce A. aegypti’s ability to transmit viral pathogens.

Journals under report publication agreements

Publication agreements that constrain academic investigators’ independence are common and are incompletely reported in journal articles, according to new research. This may compromise the scientific evidence base established by randomized clinical trials. The new study analyzed randomized clinical trials with industry connections and found that 70% of the trial protocols mentioned a publication rights agreement between industry and academic investigators.

Image Credit: 8-5-13 by CDC Global via Flickr



Jen is the Editorial Media Manager at PLOS. Before her time at PLOS, she's worked in broadcast news, radio and online media.

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