ON AIR NOW

LISTEN NOW

Weather

cloudy-day
83°
Sunny
H 84° L 65°
  • cloudy-day
    83°
    Current Conditions
    Sunny. H 84° L 65°
  • clear-day
    67°
    Morning
    Sunny. H 84° L 65°
  • clear-day
    83°
    Afternoon
    Mostly Sunny. H 88° L 67°
LISTEN
PAUSE
ERROR

Krmg news on demand

00:00 | 00:00

LISTEN
PAUSE
ERROR

Krmg traffic on demand

00:00 | 00:00

LISTEN
PAUSE
ERROR

Krmg weather on demand

00:00 | 00:00

Science

    “O death, where is thy sting?” For the world’s oldest known spider, that biblical verse took on new meaning after the arachnid was killed by a wasp sting, Time reported. >> Read more trending news The spider, tabbed as Number 16 by Australian scientists, died after a record 43 years, researchers said Monday. The female trapdoor tarantula lived in Western Australia’s Central Wheatbelt area, according to Agence France-Press reports. The spider broke the record of the previous spider, a tarantula that lived for 28 years in Mexico, according to a study published in January in the journal Pacific Conservation Biology. Number 16 was observed during a spider population study in 1974, Time reported. “To our knowledge, this is the oldest spider ever recorded, and her significant life has allowed us to further investigate the trapdoor spider’s behavior and population dynamics,” said Curtin University’s Leanda Mason, the study’s lead author. Speaking to the Telegraph, Mason said team members were “really miserable” over the spider’s death, TheTelegraph reported. Trapdoor spiders are common in Australia and typically live between five and 20 years, according to the Australian Museum.
  • Chemotherapy and radiation are common treatments for lung cancer. However, immunotherapy may be able to help double a patient’s survival, according to a new report. >> Read more trending news Researchers from New York University’s Perlmutter Cancer Center recently conducted a study, published in the New England Journal of Medicine, to determine which treatments were most effective for those newly diagnosed with lung cancer. To do so, they examined 616 people with non-squamous non-small cell lung cancer from 118 international sites. The participants did not have genetic changes in the EGFR or ALK genes, which have both been linked to the rapid reproduction of cells.  >> Related: Healing process after breast cancer surgery could cause cancer to spread in mice, study says About 400 of the subjects underwent pembrolizumab, a form of immunotherapy that helps destroy cancer cells; platinum therapy, a procedure that uses cell damaging agents; and pemetrexed, a chemotherapy drug that targets the lungs. The other 200 only received platinum therapy and pemetrexed with a saline placebo.  After analyzing the results, they found the risk of death was reduced by 51 percent for those treated with pembrolizumab, platinum therapy and pemetrexed, compared with those who only got chemo. Furthermore, those with the combined therapy also had a 48 percent decreased chance of progression or death.  >> Related: Groundbreaking 'cancer vaccine' set for human trials by the end of the year Suresh Ramalingam, deputy director at Emory University’s Winship Cancer Institute, told The Atlanta Journal-Constitution the finding is “very important” as “it moves the milestone forward.” “This study shows that by combining the two treatments, you can maximize or even improve patient outcomes. From that standpoint, it does shift the treatment approach to lung cancer in a positive way,” said Ramalingam, who was not a part of the trial. By using both approaches together, doctors can create a multiplying effect. During chemotherapy, cells die and leave behind protein. Immunotherapy activates the immune system, aiding its ability to kill any remaining cancer cells. >> Related: New cancer 'vaccine' completely wipes out tumors in mice -- human trials are on way The NYU researchers did note there are severe side effects to the combination treatment, including nausea, anemia, fatigue and an increased risk of acute kidney injury.  However, Ramalingam believes the trial gives experts the ammunition to test the approach in many other cancers. He also said there are several ways to treat different types of the disease, and people should understand that some tumors may need to be tackled differently. For example, he recently led a separate, large clinical trial that targeted lung cancer patients with the EGFR mutation, unlike the NYU analysts. As a result of his findings, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration expanded the use of a lung cancer pill called Tagrisso to those with the EGFR gene. >> Related: Pharmaceutical company touts 'breakthrough' cancer treatment While it was initially only used for individuals whose lung cancer worsened after treatment with other EGFR therapies, Ramalingam and his team proved the medication almost doubled the survival outcome for newly diagnosed lung cancer patients with the EGFR mutation. In fact, it resulted in better outcomes than chemotherapy and immunotherapy.  “Given all these exciting advances that there are in lung cancer, patients should not settle for what’s been told,” Ramlingam recommended. “Basically get a second option or go to a major center that specializes in lung cancer to make sure they’re getting the cutting-edge treatment options that are out there.”
  • Pollution has negative effects on our health, but scientists may be able to better combat the issue with a plastic-eating enzyme they discovered accidentally.  >> Read more trending news Researchers from the University of Portsmouth and the U.S. Department of Energy’s National Renewable Energy Laboratory recently conducted a study, published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, to examine the natural molecules and chemicals found at a waste recycling center in Japan.  During their assessment, they discovered that the enzyme, Ideonella sakaiensis 201-F6, can “eat” polyethylene terephthalate (PET), the material used to make plastic bottles.  While they intended to better understand the structure of it, they actually engineered an enzyme that breaks down PET products.  >> Related: Soaps and paint pollute air as much as car emissions, study shows “This unanticipated discovery suggests that there is room to further improve these enzymes, moving us closer to a recycling solution for the ever-growing mountain of discarded plastics,” co-author John McGeehan said in a statement.  The scientists said PET can persist in the environment for hundreds of years. The chemicals can seep into the soil, affecting the groundwater and infecting drinking water. >> On AJC.com: Climate change will internally displace 143 million people by 2050, scientists warn While the analysts called their discovery a “modest” improvement, they hope to continue their investigations to improve the enzyme with the help of protein tools. They said they believe their work will be used to industrially break down plastics in a fraction of the time.  “We can all play a significant part in dealing with the plastic problem,” McGeehan said, “but the scientific community who ultimately created these ‘wonder-materials’ must now use all the technology at their disposal to develop real solutions.” 
  • According to research from a U.K. medical school, having a sweet tooth may be linked with lower body fat. Researchers from the University of Exeter Medical School in Exeter, England, recently conducted a study, published in Cell Press, to explore the hormones that might be associated with fat loss.  >> Read more trending news  To do so, they examined the health records of more than 450,000 individuals who allowed their data to be included in a biobank in the U.K. The documents contained blood samples, questionnaires on diet and genetic information.  Related: 9 healthy-sounding foods that have more sugar than a Krispy Kreme doughnut After analyzing the results, they found that people with a gene variation of FGF21 have less body fat than others. Previous studies suggest that people with this particular gene variation crave and eat more sugary foods than others.  “It sort of contradicts common intuition that people who eat more sugar should have less body fat,” coauthor Niels Grarup said in a statement. “But it is important to remember that we are only studying this specific genetic variation and trying to find connections to the rest of the body. This is just a small piece of the puzzle describing the connection between diet and sugar intake and the risk of obesity and diabetes.” Related: Sugar can fuel cancerous cells, study says They also noted that those with a “genetic sweet tooth” have a slightly higher hypertension risk and also more fat around the waist than hips. This body type, known as the apple shape, can increase heart attack risk, especially among women.  “Now that so many people are involved in the study, it gives our conclusions a certain robustness. Even though the difference in the amount of body fat or blood pressure level is only minor depending on whether or not the person has this genetic variation or not, we are very confident that the results are accurate,” Grarup said. Scientists now hope to use their newfound knowledge for future investigations. They want to develop treatment for obesity and diabetes that will specifically target FGF21.
  • A woman from Washington state claims that an Ancestry.com DNA test identified her parents' fertility doctor as her biological father. >> RELATED STORY: Can police legally obtain your DNA from 23andMe, Ancestry? USA Today reported that Kelli Rowlette, 36, of Benton County, initially believed that Ancestry had botched her DNA test last July when Gerald Mortimer, someone she had never met, was identified as her father, according to a lawsuit she filed last week in Idaho.  >> Parents find long-lost daughter after 24-year search According to the lawsuit, Rowlette's now-divorced parents, Sally Ashby and Howard Fowler, lived in Idaho when they started seeing Mortimer, then a doctor with the Obstetrics and Gynecology Associates of Idaho Falls, in 1979, USA Today reported. Mortimer suggested the couple, who faced fertility struggles while trying to conceive, try artificial insemination using an '85 percent mixture of [Fowler's] genetic material, and 15 percent of the mixture would be from anonymous donor,' the lawsuit says, according to CBS News.  According to the Washington Post, although 'the couple requested a donor who was in college and taller than 6 feet with brown hair and blue eyes,' the lawsuit alleges that Mortimer, who didn't fit that description, used his own 'genetic material' instead without telling them. >> Read more trending news  After Rowlette got her test results, she said she complained to her mother, who later examined the results and recognized the name of her former fertility doctor. Ashby told Fowler the news, and the pair grappled with whether to tell Rowlette who Mortimer was, the lawsuit says. Three months later, Rowlette found Mortimer named as her delivery doctor on her birth certificate, the lawsuit says. The lawsuit accuses Mortimer and his former practice of 'medical negligence, fraud, battery, negligent infliction of emotional distress, and breach of contract,' the Washington Post reported.
  • Need a way to hold on to your memories forever? One startup is offering a special, but fatal, procedure to help you keep your brain active. >> Read more trending news Researchers at Nectome, a medical company founded by MIT graduates, have discovered a way to maintain brain functionality after death with high-tech embalming, a process used to prevent a body from decay.  “Our mission is to preserve your brain well enough to keep all its memories intact: from that great chapter of your favorite book to the feeling of cold winter air, baking an apple pie, or having dinner with your friends and family,” co-founders Robert McIntyre and Michael McCanna wrote on the business’ website.  >> On AJC.com: If you don’t get enough sleep, your brain could start eating itself They will target patients suffering from terminal illnesses. The individuals will be sedated, connected to heart and lung machines, and injected with the embalming chemicals while they are alive.  The procedure is “100 percent fatal,” the founders warned, but the solution “can keep a body intact for hundreds of years, maybe thousands, as a statue of frozen glass.” The analysts believe their investigations will help future scientists “recreate consciousness” and retrieve information from the brain’s molecular details.  >> Related: A few glasses of wine a day can keep your brain ‘clean,’ study says “You can think of what we do as a fancy form of embalming that preserves not just the outer details but the inner details,” McIntyre told MIT Technology Review. “If the brain is dead, it’s like your computer is off, but that doesn’t mean the information isn’t there,” added Ken Hayworth, a neuroscientist and president of the Brain Preservation Foundation -- the organization that awarded McIntyre for his recent work on preserving the pig brain. >> Related: Scientists worry brain-wasting 'zombie deer' disease could spread to humans The surgery is not yet available to the public as they are still unsure if the memories will be found in the dead tissues. However, they are inviting prospective customers to join a wait list for a $10,000 deposit, which is fully refundable. So far, 25 people have signed up.  “When a generation of people die, we lose all their collective wisdom. You can transmit knowledge to the next generation, but it’s harder to transmit wisdom, which is learned,” McIntyre said. “That was fine for a while, but we get more powerful every generation. The sheer immense potential of what we can do increases, but the wisdom does not.”
  • A small, newly discovered asteroid passed near Earth earlier his week and a second one is expected to follow suit Friday, according to scientists with NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory. >> Read more trending news The asteroids were spotted Sunday by researchers at the NASA-funded Catalina Sky Survey near Tucson, Arizona. The first, dubbed 2018 CC, passed within about 114,000 miles of Earth around 3:10 p.m. EST Tuesday, according to NASA. Scientists estimated the asteroid was 50-100 feet in diameter. The second asteroid, called 2018 CB, will pass near Earth around 5:30 p.m. EST Friday at distance of about 39,000 miles, less than one-fifth of the distance between Earth and the moon, according to NASA. It’s slightly larger than the first asteroid, between 50 and 130 feet in diameter. >> Related: Asteroid passes inside Earth’s satellite ring, ’20 times closer than moon’ 'Although 2018 CB is quite small, it might well be larger than the asteroid that entered the atmosphere over Chelyabinsk, Russia, almost exactly five years ago, in 2013,' Paul Chodas, manager of the Center for Near-Earth Object Studies at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, said in a news release.  >> Related: NASA finds 'lost' lunar spacecraft orbiting moon nearly a decade after it disappeared In February 2013, a fireball lit the skies above Chelyabinsk as a small asteroid entered Earth’s atmosphere. The asteroid was estimated to be 55-65 feet in diameter. 'Asteroids of this size do not often approach this close to our planet -- maybe only once or twice a year,' Chodas said.
  • A monster space rock classified by NASA as 'potentially hazardous' is headed toward Earth. Asteroid 2002 AJ129 – which at 0.7 miles is wider than the tallest building in the U.S. (New York's One World Trade Center) stacked on top of itself – is predicted to miss our planet, according to Metro. However, it will pass relatively close in terms of outer space. >> On AJC.com: NASA: Asteroid could destroy Earth in 22nd century NASA classifies any space object surpassing 459 feet wide and passing within 4,660,000 miles of Earth as 'hazardous,' according to a 2013 report on the space agency's website. There are about 1,000 such known space objects monitored by NASA. This asteroid is more than eight times wider than the minimum (3,696 feet) and will pass within just over half the minimum distance (2,615,128 miles) to our planet. >> Read more trending news  For a reference point, the moon orbits Earth at a distance of about 238,855 miles. The giant asteroid is expected to 'narrowly' miss our planet on Feb. 4, whizzing past us at a whopping 67,000 miles per hour. It will be the biggest and fastest space object to fly near Earth this year, according to The Daily Star.
  • The fireball lit up the sky just after 8 p.m. Tuesday. >> Click here to watch The dashboard cam video was shared by Mike Austin as he was driving north on I-75 near Bloomfield Hills, north of Detroit, Michigan.  >> On WHIO.com: 2017 fireball caught on WHIO-TV weather camera The fireball also was seen from northwest Ohio and southwest Ontario, Canada.  >> Read more trending news  It is not known whether the meteorite dissipated in the atmosphere or made it to the ground or into Lake Michigan.
  • The holiday season is officially over, and many are now looking at their New Year’s resolutions, which may include maintaining a healthier lifestyle. >> Read more trending news To get a head start, some are participating in Dry January, a month-long break from alcohol. But how effective is it? Researchers from the University of Sussex conducted a study, published in Health Psychology, to find out.  They examined more than 850 individuals who gave Dry January a try. They then followed up with a questionnaire one month later and another six months later. >> Related: Just one drink a day can increase your risk of cancer, study warns After analyzing the results, they found that after six months, participants said they drank less and were not getting drunk as much. In fact, 72 percent of the subjects had maintained lower levels of harmful drinking and 4 percent were still not drinking after six months. After just one month, about 62 percent reported having better sleep, 62 percent said they had more energy and 49 percent experienced weight loss. >> Related: Women who use IUDs may have reduced risk of cervical cancer, study says The changes were also seen for those who did not make it to the end of the challenge. “Even if participants took part but didn’t successfully complete the 31 days, it generally led to a significant decrease across all the measures of alcohol intake,” Richard de Visser said in a statement. The scientists believe their findings prove the challenge can be used to help reduce drinking long-term, added Emily Robinson, director of campaigns at Alcohol Concern, a U.K. charity to combat alcohol harm. “This research,” she said, “is the proof of how, with the help, advice and support we offer throughout the month, our model can really change behaviour and reduce drinking.”