Falling traffic lights can kill. One tweak could save lives.
An impact-absorbing traffic light pole could save the lives of drivers and pedestrians, while also cutting repair and replacement costs.
A simple webcam can automatically catch — and treat — infant jaundice
Researchers in Australia and Iraq have developed a system that uses a webcam to catch infant jaundice and begin treatment right away.
This device can automatically detect and reverse opioid overdoses
Researchers at the University of Washington have developed an AI-powered wearable to detect, and reverse via naloxone injection, opioid overdoses.
A patch to treat peanut allergies appears safe to wear for years
A peanut allergy can be debilitating at best, and life threatening at worst. A new possible treatment looks to be safe to wear for at least three years.
Vaccine robot administers doses without needles or human help
Canadian startup Cobioni has built a vaccine robot that can deliver a dose into a patient’s arm without a needle or any human help.
Just $50 can turn your phone into a powerful chemical, pathogen detector
If this becomes a common feature of smartphones, it could someday allow anyone to identify pathogens and detect impurities in food.
Rhode Island will be the first state to open safe drug consumption sites
In an important test of drug harm reduction techniques, Rhode Island is set to become the first state to open safe consumption sites.
A new clue in why oral vaccines don’t work as well in developing countries
Oral vaccines are crucial to public health, but work worse where they are needed most. A new mouse study has a potential reason why.
Johns Hopkins receives the first NIH grant for clinical psychedelic research in half a century
For the first time in decades, the National Institutes of Health is funding a clinical psychedelic study, perhaps a turning point for the field.
New water purification tablet makes river water safe to drink
A new water purification tablet that simply and quickly decontaminates river water could help address global drinking water scarcity.
A malaria antibody prevented infections in purposefully-infected volunteers
In a small study, researchers found an antibody that prevents malaria infection in people purposefully infected with the parasite.
FDA approves COVID-19 boosters for seniors, high-risk groups (Updated)
The FDA has expanded its authorization of COVID-19 boosters of Pfizer’s vaccine to include seniors and people in high-risk populations.
Study: COVID-19 booster shots dramatically reduce infection risk
A large COVID-19 booster shot study in Israel found that a third dose significantly increased seniors’ protection against the coronavirus.
Pfizer’s shot is the first FDA-approved COVID-19 vaccine
Pfizer’s shot has become the first FDA-approved COVID-19 vaccine, making the transition from emergency use authorization on August 23.
Inside your nose, it’s bacteria vs. bacteria in the fight against meningitis
Researchers have found that nose drops containing “friendly” bacteria can protect people against meningitis-causing bacteria.
Door-to-door vaccination campaign reaches the most vulnerable
An equitable door-to-door vaccination campaign might be just what it takes to help the U.S.’s most vulnerable communities fight COVID-19.
Moderna COVID-19 vaccine 2.0: Lower dose, fewer side effects
Any revised version of the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine will likely include a smaller dose, reducing side effects and increasing the supply of shots.
Can a dog vaccine for Valley fever lead to a human one?
Cases of Valley fever, a fungal infection, have risen dramatically over the decade. Researchers hope a dog vaccine may lead to one for humans.
Mass vaccination experiment was a huge success in Brazil
A mass vaccination experiment in Brazil suggests that even a moderately effective vaccine can have a dramatic effect if enough people get the shot.
Dengue fever vaccine still protects after three years
A dengue fever vaccine candidate by Takeda is still effective after three years in a large human study, raising hopes for fighting the virus.
Ohio announces $1M vaccine lottery, shots surge 33%
Ohio’s vaccine lottery, which will give five vaccinated residents $1 million each, appears to have sparked the desired increase in new vaccinations.
Can new drugs make obesity a medical — not moral — condition?
Researchers are hopeful that a class of drugs called incretins will not only treat obesity, but help people think of it as a medical condition.
Would you spray this DIY COVID-19 vaccine up your nose?
Makers of a DIY COVID-19 vaccine are talking to governments about launching human challenge trials to quickly and cheaply find out if the vaccine is effective.
How long are you too high to drive? The science is fuzzy.
Some drug driving laws outlaw any amount of THC. To create better laws, researchers are trying to find out how long cannabis intoxication itself lasts.
All adults in the US are now eligible for COVID-19 vaccines
In the U.S., anyone over the age of 16 is now eligible for COVID-19 vaccines — a major milestone along the path to herd immunity.
Food supplement appears to “cure” malnutrition in children
A food supplement designed to cure malnutrition in children doesn’t just deliver calories — it also helps promote a healthy gut microbiome.
Pfizer’s COVID-19 vaccine 100% effective in adolescent study
Pfizer’s COVID-19 vaccine was reportedly 100% effective in a trial involving more than 2,000 adolescents between the ages of 12 and 15.
A common virus may be the key to a COVID vaccine for young children
Researchers have reverse-engineered a common children’s virus to show the spike protein, potentially leading to a new COVID vaccine for young children.
A new bird flu is infecting people. Here’s what we know.
The H5N8 bird flu virus has reportedly infected seven poultry farm workers in Russia. Here’s what we know about the new avian flu threat.
FDA: One-shot COVID-19 vaccine is safe and effective
FDA experts confirm that Johnson and Johnson’s one-shot COVID-19 vaccine is safe and effective, putting it a step closer to authorization.
World’s first COVID-19 human challenge study is a go
Researchers have gotten the green light to deliberately infect people with the coronavirus as part of the world’s first COVID-19 human challenge study.
Study: Strong immunity without Pfizer vaccine’s second dose
The Pfizer vaccine's second dose might not be as necessary as thought — and ultra-cold storage of the COVID-19 vaccine might not be necessary at all.
Fauci predicts universal COVID-19 vaccine availability by April
Anthony Fauci expects April will be “open season” for COVID-19 vaccines. Here’s why his prediction about COVID-19 vaccine availability appears accurate.
Are we scratching the surface of what an old vaccination method can do?
Smallpox vaccine was administered by scratching the skin. Mice suggest this old-school method may work better against other respiratory viruses as well.
New discovery could stop dengue’s “breakbone” fever
Making a dengue vaccine is difficult. It’s early, but a new antibody that targets a protein the virus makes instead of the virus itself may be a solution.
These are the medical breakthroughs that inspired us in 2020
2020 has put medicine to the forefront like never before. Freethink’s B. David Zarley looked back on the year and chose three medical developments that inspired him.
The new coronavirus mutation: What we know & what we need to figure out
A new coronavirus mutation is spreading quickly in the U.K. Here’s what we know about the coronavirus strain and what we need to figure out.
Tobacco-based COVID-19 vaccine moves to human trials
British American Tobacco has FDA approval to begin human trials on a tobacco-based COVID-19 vaccine that could potentially be stored at room temperature.
HIV can hide inside human cells for years. Can CRISPR cut it out?
Using CRISPR to stop the replication of SIV, a primate virus closely related to HIV, researchers may have taken a step to wiping the virus out in the body.
FDA authorizes first over-the-counter COVID-19 test
The FDA has authorized the first over-the-counter COVID-19 test for home use, but buyers still have to send their samples to a lab for processing.
Congo just used vaccines to beat Ebola. What they learned could stop COVID, too.
Congo’s recent success delivering frigid Ebola vaccines to remote areas may provide invaluable experience for a COVID-19 vaccine cold chain.
Reverse engineering a $15k medical device for 50x less
Many hospitals in developing countries can’t access the overpriced, high-tech equipment that’s standard in the U.S. Reverse innovation could finally change that.
Oxford says its COVID-19 vaccine is up to 90% effective
The University of Oxford's COVID-19 vaccine was up to 90% effective in a phase 3 trial and could be easier to distribute than other coronavirus vaccines.
Trial suggests Moderna’s coronavirus vaccine is 95% effective
Another win for mRNA vaccines: Moderna’s coronavirus vaccine appears to be 94.5% effective at preventing COVID-19, according to initial trial data.
A flu vaccine grown in tobacco plants just aced its clinical trials
Plant-based vaccines can be made cheaply and at scale. A tobacco plant-based vaccine for influenza has now been the first to complete clinical trials.
Can a new polio vaccine help finish the virus off once and for all?
Thanks to polio vaccines and public health campaigns, polio is on the run — although COVID has it fighting back. Can a new vaccine help turn the tide again?