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Daily Dose: 9/24/12

Here at What the Health, we’re introducing a new feature on the blog. Each day, we’ll be giving you the Daily Dose – quick links to current health news, studies, and more! Check back every morning to keep up with what’s going on in the health world. Enjoy!

Memory Mix-ups: A new study from Northwestern indicates that our brains don’t recall memories exactly as they happened. Instead, our memory works more like a game of telephone. You know, the game you all played when you were younger, in which you whisper a phrase to your friend and it gets passed on – by the end of the game, the phrase that comes out on the other end is nothing like what you originally started with. Memories work the same way: Each time you recall the memory, you mix up a few details. The next time you remember that same memory, you’re not actually remembering the original memory – you’re actually remembering the time you first remembered. I know – it sounds like something out of Inception. For more details and researchers’ theories on why this phenomenon occurs, check out this article from CNN.com.
“Popcorn Lung” Phenomenon: All over the news recently has been the story of Wayne Watson, a man from Colorado who developed what has been coined “popcorn lung” after eating microwave popcorn on a daily basis for the past few decades. When you inhale diacetyl, a chemical found in artificial butter flavoring, it can become difficult for air to flow to and from your lungs. A jury found the popcorn’s manufacturer, along with the supermarket that sold the popcorn to Watson, liable for failing to warn consumers of the popcorn’s possible risks, and Watson was awarded over $7 million. Read more from LA Weekly.

Closer to a Cure: In the first comprehensive genetic analysis on breast cancer, researchers have identified four types of breast cancer, each genetically different from one another. More specifically, scientists found the genetic changes that may cause the cancer, and with that knowledge, may even be able to create more effective treatments. A genetic expert not involved in the study explains the importance of this study in The New York Times: “We now have a good view of what goes wrong in breast cancer. We haven’t had that before.” For more details on the research, read this NYT article.

Check back tomorrow for another Daily Dose!

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