Daily Rounds: Maybe Not Bin Laden's Sister's DNA; High Readmissions; Duerson Brain Damage; The Magic Of Serotonin

ABC backs off Osama's sister's brain? - Phlog "A DNA sample collected from bin Laden's body Sunday was compared to DNA from multiple relatives, a U.S. intelligence official told ABC News. . . .It is unclear whether bin Laden's sister, who died of brain cancer in Boston in 2005, was one of the relatives used in the comparison," writes ABC reporter Katie Moisse... Meanwhile, by the time Popular Science picked this story up, it had mutated to the point that Osama's still-unnamed sister's brain was being kept in "the FBI's hall of brains." It's worth noting that the initial ABC report came from Brian Ross, whom Gawker once called America's Wrongest Reporter. " (

Hospitals ranked by readmission rates - White Coat Notes - "Two Massachusetts hospitals had among the worst rates in the state for all three categories: Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center in Boston, and St. Elizabeth's Medical Center in Brighton, part of Steward Health Care." (

Study: Duerson had brain damage at time of suicide - "As Dave Duerson apparently feared, a medical examination of his brain found the telltale signs of a degenerative brain disease linked to taking repeated blows to the head, researchers at Boston University announced Monday." (Los Angeles Times)

Serotonin, Our Utility Hormone, Still Surprises - "Just when you thought that serotonin was passé, and you’d tossed all your half-used bottles of S.S.R.I.-type antidepressants because the ones that didn’t give you nausea or smother your libido left you wondering whether you were in the placebo arm of a clinical trial, here comes a raft of new discoveries that sweeps the small, evolutionarily ancient and slyly powerful signaling molecule back on to center stage...Pat Levitt of the Zilkha Neurogenetic Institute at the University of Southern California and his colleagues reported in the April 21 issue of the journal Nature, the creator of all that architectonic prenatal serotonin turns out to be an organ long dismissed as a passive sieve: the placenta. Other researchers have determined that serotonin in the gut helps orchestrate the remodeling of bone, the lifelong buildup and breakdown of osteoclasts and osteoblasts that make the human skeleton such an exciting organ system to own. "(

This program aired on May 3, 2011. The audio for this program is not available.


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