Finding ways to enlist the bacteria living in our bodies to defend against infections while better understanding their role in promoting antibiotic resistance are key to fighting this growing problem, says Dr Nassos Typas, a microbiologist at the European Molecular Biology Laboratory in Heidelberg, Germany.
The bacteria and viruses a baby inherits from its mother play a crucial role in determining the child’s health in later life, according to research that could lead to new interventions to tackle conditions like obesity, allergies and colic.
Cancer is a group of diseases that we may never be able to cure completely, but scientists are optimistic that vaccines, personalised medicine and smart lifestyle choices will help prevent and treat a much greater proportion of cases than currently happens.
Shifting people to a new diet that is healthier for both the planet and for our bodies will require radical changes in the way food is grown, sold and eaten, including possibly adding a tax on meat and dairy products.
Think back to what you did last weekend. You might be able to picture it clearly, but there should be no doubt in your mind that whatever you are remembering happened in the past. For people with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), however, memories of traumatic events often return in the form of vivid flashbacks that make it feel like it’s happening all over again – putting them right back at the scene of a car crash, or the moment they lost a loved one.
Entrepreneurs in the aquaculture sector face a problem – extracting all the valuable molecules from seaweed and algal cells is still really difficult. But marine enzymes and magnets are now making it easier to remove precious molecules and can even turn microalgae into magnetically-guided ‘vehicles’ for targeted drug delivery.
Virtual reality and scenario-testing models are being built to help urban planners and architects get real-time feedback about the impact of their designs on mental health, particularly for older people.
Virtual simulations can also help build aeroplane wings more efficiently.
Understanding consciousness in healthy people could help when things go wrong.
Dr Michaël Gillon on what's next for exoplanet science.