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News in Short

News in Short - 26-February-2020

Eye scan may help in detecting autism early in children

Date: 26 February 2020 Tags: Miscellaneous
  • Researchers have developed a new eye scan that they claim could help identify autism in children years earlier than currently possible.
  • The non-invasive eye scan utilises a hand-held device to find a pattern of subtle electrical signals in the retina that are different in children on the autism spectrum.
  • The potential biomarkers for autism spectrum disorder (ASD) utilised by the scan may also allow for early detection of other disorders, such as attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD).

Mediterranean diet tied to gut diversity and healthy ageing

Date: 26 February 2020 Tags: Miscellaneous
  • The Mediterranean diet, whichhas been linked to a number of potential health benefits, now researchers have found that olive oil in this diet may hold the key to improving lifespan and mitigating aging-related diseases.
  • Early studies on the diet suggested red wine was a major contributor to the health benefits of the Mediterranean diet because it contains a compound called resveratrol, which activated a certain pathway in cells known to increase lifespan and prevent aging-related diseases.
  • The study suggested that when coupled with fasting, limiting caloric intake and exercising, the effects of consuming olive oil will be most pronounced.

Former NASA mathematician Katherine Johnson dies

Date: 26 February 2020 Tags: Obituaries
  • Katherine Johnson, a ground-breaking black NASA mathematician whose life was portrayed in the movie "HiddenFigures," died aged 101.
  • Johnson's calculations helped put the first man on the Moon in 1969, but she was little known until the Oscar-nominated 2016 movie that told the stories of three black women who worked at NASA.
  • Johnson and a colleague were the first to calculate the parameters of the suborbital 1961 flight of astronaut Alan Shepard, the first American in space. She was honoured with Presidential medal of freedom in 2015.

Malaysian PM Mahathir Mohamad resigns

Date: 26 February 2020 Tags: Appointments & Resignations
  • Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad tendered his resignation to Malaysia's king while his political party quit the ruling alliance in a shocking political upheaval.
  • The turn of events come amid plans by Mahathir's supporters to team with Opposition parties to form a new government and thwart the transition of power to his named successor Anwar Ibrahim.

Mars lander confirms quakes

Date: 26 February 2020 Tags: Space
  • NASA's newest Mars lander has confirmed that quakes and even aftershocks are regularly jolting the red planet.
  • It was detected from the seismometer from the InSight spacecraft has detected scores of marsquakes.
  • A series of research papers focus on the 174 marsquakes noted that twenty-four were relatively strong and apparently stemmed from distant underground triggers.
  • The rest were smaller, with uncertain magnitude and origin. Even the stronger quakes would not have posed a hazard to anybody on the planet's surface.