9 Things I Miss About AOL

1. Bad Screen Names For a large majority of twenty-somethings, there’s nothing more embarrassing than recalling your first screen name. Created during a period in your life when you possessed a truly stunning inability to tell the difference between lifelong interests and temporary infatuations with passing fads, most early screen names reflect interests that we’d prefer to forget. I know my Buddy List circa 1998 featured testaments for everything from KoRn to The Undertaker to the number 69. I even remember with particularly horrific glee one friend from my blindingly white suburban town who christened himself as a SnoopSoldier. Creating a screen name was an important step in our adolescent development. By choosing that name, you weren’t just publicly declaring your support for a given band or movie or sports team, you were actively incorporating them into your own identity. At least when it came to the online world, you actually became a SnoopSoldier; after all, random people in chat rooms had no idea you looked more like Frankie Muniz than a gangsta rapper. Just imagine how terrifying it would be if when you met all your new med school friends, you had to introduce yourself with your first ever screen name…   2. The Thrill of Realizing That Other People Share Your Bizarre Interests Before the internet, if you liked something really esoteric or random, like Japanese Death Metal or...

Medstart’s Blue Button Challenge: The Best New Ideas in Medical Technology

The 2nd annual MedStart was hosted by Tufts University School of Medicine on January 17-19, 2014. This year, The Blue Button Boston Innovation Challenge brought together diverse minds from relevant fields of study (medicine, business, technology, engineering) to collaborate over a weekend to create a startup company. The code-a-thon was an opportunity for providers, patients, and the developers of consumer facing technology to come together to learn about Blue Button, identify high priority use cases, and build exciting new products ready to receive Blue Button...

App Reveals Scientific Breakthrough Lurking Under Your Skin

Scientists at Massachusetts Institute of Technology’s Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory have developed a program that can amplify standard videos to detect miniscule changes in motion by temporal filtering of the video frames. The technology reveals things imperceptible to the naked eye, such as a person’s pulse, which is measured by amplifying the frames showing the flow of blood as it fills the...

7 Best Study Snacks As Decided By Reddit

Much of one’s success in medical school comes from continually improving one’s study techniques. Well, I can tell you that no study technique is complete without proper snackage. Because of this I recently posed a question to reddit to help with my study snack game. The question: “what are your best study snacks?” The following are the top responses. Let’s do this. #7 Chocolate Covered Espresso Beans (by: Phillynotdoc) The perfect synergy between candy and coffee: the chocolate covered espresso bean. This is the, “I’m not messing around” snack. It’s for the work hard, play hard type that wants both right now. #6 Thing + Nutella (by: cloocubster) Do they have a Nobel Prize for food? They totally should and Nutella definitely deserves one. Nutella can pretty much go on anything. A banana, pretzels, a chair…the sky is the limit with this incredible spread. However, fun fact, Nutella was sued for false advertising because they claimed to be “part of a nutritious breakfast” despite not carrying any nutritional health benefits. So ya, I guess there is one thing that Nutella can’t go with. #5 Sugar Free gum. (by: thismythrowawayyall) Otherwise known as the “I don’t want to gain weight while I live an obscenely sedentary lifestyle for two years snack”. Enjoy as your Masseters gain the ability to crush rocks. #4 Pure protein bars (by: Bnthatsht) Sometimes, when you’re...

The 4 Professors You’ll Have in Med School…In Pictures

Professors are…interesting. They are (or should be) ultimately there to convey the necessary information but sometimes their own agenda gets in the way! Have you encountered these professors? Leave a comment and tell us about your favorite/favorite-to-immitate professor! 1. The one who seems to have forgotten the competitive process of getting into medical school.   2. The one who seems to forget the confines of human memory.     3. The one who can’t differentiate between “What you need to know for Step I” and “What you need to know when you’re a practicing physician.”   4. The one who seems to be...

That Extra Piece of Birthday Cake May Not Be As Harmless As You Think

This morning, the CDC published an article in JAMA on the declining rates of childhood obesity. Obesity rates in children between the ages of 2 and 5 have decreased by 43% in the past decade, they say. It’s hard to make sense of this number without understanding the epidemic, the people it affects, and how it affects the country as a while. What can we do to help? First, know the...

Everything You Need to Know About the Latest Research on Stem Cells

As life begins, we are a single cell, full of potential to become any cell of the body. Our cell divides, the first of a countless number of replications as we approach a steady state of cell growth and cell death around 40 trillion cells. During this process, our cells lose their potential, committing to play a more specific role in the body, and with each commitment, it is believed that the cells enter a path of no return. These high potential cells are called stem cells and there is a great interest among medical researchers in their ability to produce multiple cell types. Studying them can help us understand more about how our body develops and how mistakes in this development process can manifest in negative outcomes. They also may be used in regenerative medicine to replace damaged tissue or eventually produce whole organs. While most of our cells commit to a role, some remain in the high potential state to act as the body’s repair system. To study them, we can isolate them from bone marrow, adipose tissue, and blood, their three most accessible sites in adults. They can also come from an embryo, but this method is highly controversial and sparks debate over when life truly begins. In vitro, cells can also be induced to have this high potential through introduction of genes that are expressed...

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