Storytelling video games may be beneficial

Video GameBerlin: Non-violent video games that capitalise on storytelling have prosocial benefits that could ultimately be helpful to clinical disorders such as autism, a new study suggests.

Daniel Bormann of the University of Freiburg in Germany and his colleague Tobias Greitemeyer wanted to see whether storytelling fosters immersion and changes how players are able to assess the mental states of others
(called "theory of mind").

Sweet nanoparticles to target stroke

Sweet nanoparticlesBerlin: Materials resulting from chemical bonding of a sugar with a kind of nanoparticle may help reduce cell damage and inflammation occurring after stroke, scientists say.

A research team from the Max Planck Institute in Germany has tested these materials on mice, opening the door to potential new drugs for the cerebrovascular accident.

UN tally of Ebola-linked deaths tops 8,000

UN tally of Ebola-linked deaths tops 8,000Berlin : The World Health Organisation says more than 8,000 people are thought to have died last year from the Ebola outbreak in West Africa.

The Geneva-based body says the total number of confirmed, probable and suspected deaths from the disease in the three most affected countries reached 7,989 by December 31.

Diabetes, obesity more common in poor regions: Study

Diabetes, obesity more common in poor regions: StudyBerlin, March 3 : The place where you live can increase the risk of developing diabetes and obesity with the risks being more if you are living in socio-economically deprived regions, claims a new research.

And it holds true in spite of your own individual social status.

Pacemakers for depression patients

Pacemakers for depression patientsBerlin, April 10 : German scientists have implanted pacemakers in the brains of patients suffering from depression, with remarkable results.

Researchers from the Bonn University Hospital implanted pacemaker electrodes into the medial forebrain bundle in the brains of patients suffering from major depression. In six out of seven patients, symptoms improved both considerably and rapidly.

Clogged arteries can precipitate stroke

Clogged arteries can precipitate strokeBerlin, March 1 - Clogged arteries could precipitate a stroke, even if you're considered low risk, says a new study.

A stroke is a condition in which the brain cells suddenly die because of a lack of oxygen, caused by blockage in the blood flow, or the rupture of an artery that feeds the brain.

The patient suddenly loses the ability to speak, or one side of the body can become paralysed.

An electronic nose that sniffs sleep apnea

An electronic nose that sniffs sleep apneaBerlin, Oct 25 - An electronic nose used in detecting molecules in a patient's breath could be tweaked to diagnose obstructive sleep apnea, dangerous pauses in breathing.

The gold standard used to identify sleep apnea is an overnight sleep test, a technically demanding, time-consuming and cost-intensive system.

Friends, strangers govern mode of speech

Friends, strangers govern mode of speechBerlin, Sep 12 - When people talk to close friends or partners, they talk differently than when they address a physician or a stranger. But these differences in speech are quite subtle and hard to pinpoint, say researchers.

Johanna Derix, Tonio Ball and their colleagues from the Bernstein Centre and the University Medical Centre in Freiburg, Germany, report that they were able to tell from brain signals who a person was talking to.

Vitamin C keeps dementia at bay

Vitamin C keeps dementia at bayBerlin, Sep 12 - The levels of antioxidants Vitamin C and beta-carotene in blood are lower in patients with dementia than in people without it, a German study says about the disease which affects millions worldwide.

Kids know when you are faking distress

Kids know when you are faking distressBerlin, Aug 21 - Even three-year-old infants can tell whether your are only whining or genuinely upset, report researchers at the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology.

New approach could reverse liver failure

New approach could reverse liver failureBerlin, Aug 6 : A new approach being tried by researchers could reverse liver failure, characterised by sudden and massive death of the organ's cells, which could potentially end in fatality, according to a German study.

Bean sprouts possible source for E. coli outbreak

Bean sprouts possible source for E. coli outbreakBerlin, June 6 - German authorities said bean sprouts might be the "most convincing" source for the E. coli outbreak that has led to the death of 22 people and infected over 2,000 in Europe, Xinhua reported.

Gert Lindemann, agriculture minister of the state of Lower Saxony, said restaurants and food outlets where cases of E. coli were reported all had received shipments of particular bean sprouts.

In future, your car will wake you up if you fall asleep

In future, your car will wake you up if you fall asleepBerlin, Oct 25 - Falling asleep behind the wheel of your car will be a thing of the past when built-in sensors sound an alarm the moment they detect your eyelids have closed, according to a team of German scientists.

Mosquitoes themselves may one day become anti-malaria `syringes'

Mosquitoes themselves may one day become anti-malaria `syringes'Berlin, Aug 30 - A team of German scientists may have discovered a "needle-free" malaria vaccine by combining antibiotics with malaria-infected mosquitoes - effectively using mosquitoes themselves as "syringes".

Smoking during breast feeding can damage baby's health

pregnant smokingBerlin, June 14 : Mothers who smoke not only damage their children during pregnancy but can also negatively affect their development in the breast-feeding phase.

Nicotine and other dangerous substances contained in tobacco enter breast milk and then the child's system, according to a new report from the German Cancer Research Centre.

Take care with 'energy shot' drinks

Berlin, March 1- Overindulging in "energy shot" drinks can have consequences, warn consumer safety organisations. The shots are more concentrated per litre than standard energy drinks, warns the consumer centre of Saxony-Anhalt in Germany.

That increases the risks of consuming large portions of caffeine in a short time, which can damage the heart and circulatory system.

Combining large quantities of those drinks with alcohol and physical exertion, like sport or long stretches of dancing, could be even more dangerous.

World held its breath as swine flu grew into pandemic

Berlin, Dec 30 - Latin cultures have made physical proximity one of their trademarks: people regularly kiss each other hello and goodbye.

For a time in 2009, however, both kissing and handshakes became taboo. Disinfectant hand gel was everywhere. Some drug stores even ran out.

The World Health Organization (WHO) first reported the outbreak of an "influenza-like illness in the US and Mexico" April 24. It wasn't long before swine flu - what public health officials later called 2009 Influenza A(H1N1) - was dominating headlines around the globe.

Rally in Berlin: 130,000 hospital workers at protest

Rally in Berlin: 130,000 hospital workers at protest Berlin  - Doctors, nurses and other hospital workers demonstrated in Berlin Thursday against government plans to reduce funding for Germany's dense network of local hospitals.

Police said 130,000 people took part in the rally at the landmark Brandenburg Gate, one of the biggest protests ever in Germany about health policy. Germany has 2,100 hospitals for 80 million people.

Identifying the signs of hearing loss

Berlin - When a radio is apparently too loud or several people are talking simultaneously, it often becomes difficult for an elderly person to follow a conversation.

However, it's not age that causes deafness but the fact that our hearing has been exposed to damaging noises over the course of years such as loud music.

Usually, the people who are directly affected, recognise too late they are losing their sense of hearing.

Germans test first new TB vaccine for 80 years

Germans test first new TB vaccine for 80 years Berlin  - Amid worldwide fears that tuberculosis is adapting to thwart existing drugs, Germany began human testing this week of what is described as the first new live vaccine against tuberculosis for more than 80 years.

The drug, named VPM1002, is a genetic refinement of the Bacille Calmette-Guerin (BCG) vaccine that has been used to immunize hundreds of millions of people since 1921.

Too much paracetamol can cause liver damage

Too much paracetamol can cause liver damage Berlin  - The painkiller paracetamol can cause health problems, if the dose is too high, experts say.

A healthy adult who takes more than 10 to 12 grams in one dose or more than 7.5 grams a day for a longer period, risks liver damage, reports the German Federation of German Apothecary Associations.

Twins with different skin colour born in Germany

Berlin - Twin boys of radically differing skin colour have been born in a one-in-a-million chance to a German father and Ghanaian mother in a Berlin hospital, doctors at the clinic have announced.

The twins, born by Caesarean section, came into the world on July 11. But details were kept from the public until the press were invited to the clinic to see the delighted parents - Florence, 35, and the father Stephan, 40, and photograph them with their twin boys.

Dos and don'ts for burns and scalds

Berlin - When a person's skin comes into contact with intense heat, it is not only extremely painful but also very damaging to the tissue. Many burns and scalds are preventable, however. The difference between these two types of injury is not the severity but the cause: hot liquids and steam for scalds, and open fire as well as contact with hot, solid objects for burns.

Children with concentrating problems do not always suffer from ADHD

Berlin - Before treatment begins for a child suspected of having an attention disorder, other possible maladies should be ruled out, according to Professor Andreas Warnke of the Berlin-based German Society for Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, Psychosomatics and Psychotherapy (DGKJP).

Warnke noted that some of the typical symptoms of Attention- Deficit and Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) could have other causes. If a child has difficulty concentrating, he said, it may be due to a developmental disorder such as dyslexia.

Rheumatism often treated too late

Berlin (dpa) - Rheumatism sufferers are often treated too late,
sometimes because the disease is not recognised immediately, experts

"People with painful, soft swelling of one or more joints should
see a rheumatologist within six weeks of the first symptoms'
appearance," said Edmund Edelmann, head of the Association of German
Rheumatologists, at a medical convention in Berlin.

The same advice applied if a person's joints remained stiff for 30
minutes or more after he or she got up in the morning, he added.

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