Colon cancer blood test nears FDA approval

Daily Edition • May 29, 2024


Each year for nearly two decades, Google has called upon young artists around the country to submit drawings to the Doodle for Google contest. The winner gets to see their work displayed on the search engine’s homepage — an immense honor given that the site sees nearly 6 million searches per minute. The finalists are in for the 2024 contest, which asked participants to incorporate their wishes for the next 25 years in their doodles. Vote for your favorite.

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Blood Test That Can Detect Colorectal Cancer Nears FDA Approval

When you think of colorectal cancer screenings, a colonoscopy is likely the first thing that comes to mind. However, that could soon change, as a straightforward blood test that can detect the disease is getting closer to gaining approval by the Food and Drug Administration.

Developed by Guardant Health, the screening method detected 83.1% of colorectal cancer cases in a clinical trial. And unlike other, more invasive tests, the procedure is done via a simple blood draw with no preparation on the patient end required.

Last week, the majority of independent advisors at an FDA panel meeting concluded that the tool is safe and its benefits outweigh any risks, an important milestone at a time when colorectal cancer rates are rising among young people and early detection is essential. A decision on the tool is expected later this year — in the meantime, learn more about how it works.

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All About the NHL’s Inaugural “Stanley Pup” Competition

Rescue dogs are hitting the rink! For the first time, the NHL is hosting a wholesome hockey competition that gives canines in need of fur-ever homes the chance to show off their skills and catch the eyes of potential adopters. Aptly named the Stanley Pup, it will be broadcast the day before the Stanley Cup Final is slated to begin.

“The show is sure to be the biggest night of the year for dog-loving hockey fans,” creator and producer Michael Levitt said in a statement. “The cuteness overload is going to be off the charts! I can’t wait to show viewers how special rescue dogs are and how profoundly they enhance our lives when we welcome them into our families.”

During the hourlong special, held in partnership with Petco Love, 16 pups will represent the 2024 playoff teams. The show will also feature special appearances by well-known dog lovers, including Kristin Chenoweth and Miranda Lambert.

It will air on the NHL Network and ESPN+ on Friday, June 7, at 8 p.m. ET. Get to know some of the dogs participating in the inaugural competition and take a peek at them in action.


Toxic Emissions From Oil Refineries Are “Down Significantly,” Report Finds

Oil refineries are a notorious source of harmful pollutants. But over the years, the Environmental Protection Agency has put regulations and oversight in place to monitor emissions — and according to a new analysis from the Environmental Integrity Project, these efforts seem to be working.

The report from the watchdog group showed that oil refineries’ emission of benzene, a chemical known for causing cancer and other health issues, has gone “down significantly” in recent years. Of the 115 refineries in the U.S., only six had average annual benzene levels exceeding the EPA’s “action level” in 2023, a decrease from 12 at the end of 2020.

It’s a big improvement, and benzene is especially nasty,” Eric Schaeffer, the group’s executive director and a former senior EPA enforcement official, told The Washington Post.

The outlet called the reduction an “environmental success story” — one that could also potentially curb cancer rates in the disadvantaged communities that are most affected by pollution. “We complain a lot,” Schaeffer said. “It’s our job to point out problems that need attention … but we wanted to recognize a positive trend.”

In Other News

  1. Colorado is the first state to enact legislation regulating artificial intelligence programs in an effort to prevent “algorithmic discrimination.”
  2. A groundbreaking pill for postpartum depression is reaching patients nearly a year after its approval, and the psychiatrists prescribing it say it’s working.
  3. The Notre Dame restoration reached a major milestone as the original cross was reinstalled atop the famed cathedral last week.
  4. Indie bookshops are still riding the post-pandemic boom, with more than 200 stores opening in the U.S. in 2023.
  5. Sunken treasure: An American submarine from World War II was found 3,000 feet below the ocean’s surface off the coast of the Philippines.

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Inspiring Story

Pilot, trailblazer, and role model

Theresa M. Claiborne, the first Black female pilot in the U.S. Air Force, is retiring after flying for more than four decades. But she’s not done with aviation just yet: Claiborne is now on a mission to support and mentor future Black pilots through her nonprofit Sisters of the Skies. “If they can see it, they can be it,” she said.

Photo of the Day

These people aren’t accidentally falling down a steep slope — the truth is actually stranger. They’re chasing after a wheel of double Gloucester cheese for the annual Cooper’s Hill cheese rolling competition in England. Watch a video from the hilarious event, which took place Monday.

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