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Teenager uses Facebook to save Romania's stray dogs

By Radu Marinas and Bogdan Cristel BUCHAREST (Reuters) - When French film actress Brigitte Bardot began a campaign to spare the thousands of stray dogs in Romania's capital from being put down, she did it with a $150,000 donation scheme. A similar campaign is being waged by Ana-Maria Ciulcu, a 13-year-old schoolgirl with braces on her teeth who uses Facebook to appeal to dog lovers all over Europe - and to make sure the dogs go to the right homes. Ciulcu was a baby when Bardot started her sterilization campaign in 2001. But Bucharest's state-funded wards now hold 2,800 dogs, and 2,000 dogs have been euthanized in the past two months, according to Romania's Authority for Animal Surveillance and Protection.  More »

Casual pot use causes brain abnormalities in the young: study

Young, casual marijuana smokers experience potentially harmful changes to their brains, with the drug altering regions of the mind related to motivation and emotion, researchers found. The study to be published on Wednesday in the Journal of Neuroscience differs from many other pot-related research projects that are focused on chronic, heavy users of cannabis. The collaborative effort between Northwestern University's medical school, Massachusetts General Hospital and Harvard Medical School showed a direct correlation between the number of times users smoked and abnormalities in the brain. "What we're seeing is changes in people who are 18 to 25 in core brain regions that you never, ever want to fool around with," said co-senior study author Dr. Hans Beiter, professor of psychiatry and behavioral sciences at Northwestern University.  More »

Beijing says one third of its pollution comes from outside the city

About a third of the air pollution in China's smog-hit capital comes from outside the city, official media reported on Wednesday, citing a pollution watchdog. Chen Tian, chief of the Beijing Environmental Protection Bureau, said that about 28-36 percent of hazardous airborne particles known as PM2.5 came from surrounding provinces like Hebei, home to seven of China's 10 most polluted cities in 2013, according to official data. The central government has identified the heavily industrialised Beijing-Hebei-Tianjin region as one of the main fronts in its war against pollution, and it is under pressure to cut coal consumption and industrial capacity. Decades of unrestrained growth have hit China's environment hard and Beijing's often choking air has become a symbol of the pollution crisis.  More »

Medical pot measure could boost Fla. Democrats

MIAMI (AP) — Tied to an unpopular president and his signature health care law, Democrats in the nation's largest swing state see medical marijuana as a potential antidote to political malaise in this year's midterm elections.  More »

Scientists Use Fishing Line, Thread to Make Artificial Muscles

THURSDAY, Feb. 20, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Fishing line and sewing thread can create powerful artificial muscles that could be used to help disabled people or to build incredibly strong robots, a new study says. Compared to human muscle of the sa...  More »

Could Thyroid Activity Raise Depression Risk in Seniors?

THURSDAY, Feb. 20, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Older adults with slightly elevated thyroid activity may be at increased risk for depression, a new study indicates. Researchers analyzed data from more than 1,500 people, average age 70, who were depres...  More »

Flu Hitting Younger Adults Hard, Vaccination Helps: CDC

THURSDAY, Feb. 20, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- The flu is hitting younger and middle-aged adults unusually hard this season, but getting vaccinated reduces the need for a doctor's care, U.S. health officials said Thursday. People aged 18 to 64 repres...  More »

Flu season waning; younger adults hit hardest

ATLANTA (AP) — Flu season seems to be winding down, and it's been an odd one.  More »

Flu activity highest among U.S. young and middle-aged: CDC

By David Beasley ATLANTA (Reuters) - Hardest hit this U.S. flu season are adults, from younger to middle-aged, in part because fewer have been vaccinated, a federal health agency said on Thursday as the season enters its final weeks. An estimated ...  More »

Goldman Sachs misses out on WhatsApp, 2014's top deals so far

The world's top deal adviser for nine of the past 10 years, Goldman Sachs Group Inc has been notably absent on 2014's largest mergers and acquisitions, including Facebook's $19 billion deal to purchase mobile messaging service WhatsApp...  More »

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