Archive for November, 2017

Of placebos,
wine, and Eeyore

November 30, 2017

Most people know about the placebo response. Tell patients to expect to feel better following what they don’t know is a sham treatment, and, often, they will. Less known but equally powerful is the nocebo response, where telling patients they’ll feel worse can be just as self-fulfilling. Non-medical products can induce placebo and nocebo responses, [...]

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Grateful Act of Congress

November 20, 2017

THE FOURTH THURSDAY of November is a legal holiday in the United States. Designated as a national day of thanks, it is named, appropriately enough, Thanksgiving. Observing Thanksgiving in autumn has been around since the early 17th century. An act of Congress signed on October 6, 1941 established it as a legal holiday and designated [...]

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The “War on Cash”
(A Report from the Front)

November 17, 2017

DON’T THROW AWAY your cash just yet. If the International Currency Association (ICA) has its way, cash will never be found on the abandoned products pile next to the likes of eight-track tapes, dot matrix printers, and 16 ounces of coffee for under six bucks. The ICA, which came into existence last year and sometimes [...]

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DNA and the woman
behind the mag stripe

November 2, 2017

MOST PEOPLE COULDN’T tell you what DNA stands for (hint: deoxyribonucleic acid), much less pronounce it (dē-ˈäk … on second thought, never mind). But since its discovery in 1953, DNA has become a household initialism. It’s no wonder, then, that the 1962 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine went to Francis Harry Compton Crick, James [...]

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