HEALTH NOTES: A computer mouse is the biggest hotspot for bacteria in the office


For those looking for more excuses not to return to the office, researchers have discovered workplace hot spots for bacteria and other “contaminants.”

A team from cleaning brand supplier Chicopee cleaned the office “touch points” for bacteria, yeasts and molds, collectively known as colony-forming units.

The computer mouse was the worst offender, with 11 times more colony-forming units than a toilet seat.

Outside of the office, the kitchen was home to the most germs, with a kettle and fridge that didn’t come out badly.

Fear of catching Covid may cause you to seek out hand sanitizer, but sanitizer bottles also contain high levels of mold spores.

The company did not disclose which offices it was targeting.

A team from cleaning brand supplier Chicopee cleaned the office “touch points” for bacteria, yeasts and molds, collectively known as colony-forming units. The computer mouse was the worst offender, with 11 times more colony-forming units than a toilet seat (file photo)

Eat sugar without gaining weight

Some people can carry a gene which means that no matter how much sugar they eat, they never gain weight.

Scientists at the University of Copenhagen have found that DNA variations change the way sugar is absorbed.

In some cases, it travels to the intestine and is then excreted, rather than being absorbed into the blood.

Unfortunately, this mutation is thought to be limited to just two to three percent of Greenlanders, who are likely to have developed the gene due to their diet low in sugar, high in meat and fish.

Professor Anders Albrechtsen said: “Adult Greenlanders with the variation have a lower BMI, weight, fat percentage and cholesterol level.”

It is hoped that the scientists’ findings will lead to a drug that balances the absorption of sugar, preventing obesity and heart disease.

New drug hope for people with breast cancer

Women with genetic breast cancer will be offered a new medicine that can slow the progression of the disease and increase survival.

The UK regulatory body, the Medicines and Health Products Regulatory Agency, has approved Piqray (alpelisib) from Novartis for patients whose breast cancer carries the PIK3CA gene mutation.

The drug, which is combined with the drug fulvestrant, offers hope to those who find that standard hormone therapy fails to stop their cancer from growing.

It will be offered to people with locally advanced disease, which means cancer grows but still in the breast and nearby lymph nodes, and metastatic cancer, where tumor cells have spread throughout the body.

Unlike hormone therapy, alpelisib binds to specific receptors in PIK2CA tumor cells, blocking the chemical signals that allow them to grow.

No Evidence of So-called ‘Hangover Cure’ Actually Works, Research Finds

Many swear by a fry – or maybe dog hair – after a night of heavy drinking.

However, there is no evidence that a hangover “cure” works. Scientists at King’s College London analyzed 21 studies looking at the effectiveness of various hangover remedies, such as clove extract, red ginseng, and Korean pear juice.

While some have shown promise, scientists have concluded that the evidence for their effectiveness is weak, with no study examining the same ‘cure’.

Lead author Dr Emmert Roberts said: “Right now, the surest way to prevent hangover symptoms is to abstain from alcohol or drink in moderation.”

Many seem to heed this advice, with one in three drinkers opting for alcohol-free or low-alcohol options, according to a study by the Portman Group.


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