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Karen Kaplan
Works at Los Angeles Times
Attended Massachusetts Institute of Technology
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Karen Kaplan

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This rover was built to travel about 0.6 miles on Mars. As of this week, it has covered 26.2 miles -- enough to finish an Olympic marathon. And it only took 11 years and 2 months. Congratulations Opportunity!
How long does it take to complete a marathon on Mars? About 11 years and two months – if you’ve got six wheels and a solar-powered battery.
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The more scientists study exoplanet systems, the more our solar system looks like an outlier. If we were more typical, we'd have a lot more planets in the inner solar system -- close to Mercury's orbit. A new study posits that our solar system did have more planets in the past, but they were destroyed by a wandering Jupiter.
Before Mercury, Venus, Earth and Mars occupied the inner solar system, there may have been a previous generation of planets that were bigger and more numerous – but were ultimately doomed by Jupiter, according to a new study.
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Here's a sad way children in military families are paying the price of war: More attempted suicides. In California, 12% of children with a parent in the military said they'd tried to kill themselves in the past year. For other kids, the figure was 7%
California high school students who have a parent in the military are far more likely than those from civilian families to have recently attempted suicide, according to a new study.
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The longer babies were breast-fed, the more money they earned when they were 30 years old. This is what researchers in Brazil discovered when they checked in with adults who joined a research study shortly after they were born in 1982. Higher IQs seem to be the primary  mechanism for linking longer breastfeeding to higher incomes. Study is in Lancet Global Health.
It pays to breast-feed – for babies. When they grow up, that steady diet of ;breast milk may boost their monthly income by up to 39%, according to a new report.
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Karen: Though without any reference to outcomes of Brazilian investigations, the world may find it interesting to know that this technologist had rare privilege of having enjoyed motherly breastmilk for 4 solid years from birth. Reasons are unclear.
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Perhaps pornography isn't as bad as you think? Researchers at UCLA and Concordia University did some mythbusting and reported their results in a medical journal.
Can surfing the Internet for porn make you a better lover?
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Scientists studying chameleon skin have discovered the secret to the lizards' color-changing prowess: Rather than relying purely on pigments, the animals use photonic nanocrystals in their skin to manipulate light with exquisite precision.
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Karen Kaplan

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For nurses, it really pays to be a man. Registered nurses who are male earn nearly $11,000 more per year than RNs who are female, new research shows. Only about half of that difference can be explained by factors like education, work experience and clinical specialty.  That leaves a $5,148 salary gap that effectively discriminates against women, who make up the vast majority of the nursing workforce, according to a study published Tuesday in JAMA. Approximately 2.5 million women — and the families they support — are being shortchanged by the gender-based pay difference, say the researchers who conducted the study
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If you happened to sleep last night (or you just don't live in Europe) and you'd like to see the total solar eclipse, check out our photo gallery here: http://lat.ms/1x6BEbD
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Unemployment is a public health problem, according to a study by Emory University researchers. The reason: It significantly increases the risk of depression. Among younger adults between the ages of 18 and 25, being unemployed more than triples the risk. For people with a disability, it's even worse.
Unemployment isn’t just bad for your bank account. It can also do serious damage to mental health – especially for younger adults who are just starting out in life, new research shows.
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This might as well be a mug shot. Burmese pythons like this are responsible for the virtual disappearance of marsh rabbits in Everglades National Park. A study in Proceedings of the Royal Society B offers a smoking gun. Unfortunately, many bunnies were harmed in the course of this study.
A life-and-death battle is raging in the freshwater swamp of Florida Everglades National Park , and it pits native mammals against massive invasive pythons that can grow up to 19 feet in length.
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For most people, taking aspirin or other NSAIDs will decrease your risk of colorectal cancer by about one-third. But for a few, those drugs actually INCREASE the risk. How do you know which group you're in? A new study identifies three small DNA variants that appear to have the answer.
For most people, a regular dose of aspirin, Advil, Aleve or certain other over-the-counter painkillers can reduce the risk of colorectal cancer by about one-third. But for some people, these same pills make colorectal cancer more likely.
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Attention Chantix users: Be careful about drinking while you're taking this drug. The FDA has documented dozens of cases of people blanking out and getting seriously inebriated after drinking just a modest amount of alcohol. In one case, a Chantix user who drank wound up causing a motor vehicle accident and was arrested. Chantix can also cause seizures, the FDA warns.
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration is warning smokers who are trying to quit that they may have trouble tolerating alcohol if they are taking Chantix.
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Have her in circles
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  • Los Angeles Times
    Editor for Science & Medicine, present
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Editor for Science & Medicine at the Los Angeles Times. Many of my posts appear on Booster Shots and Science Now.
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  • Massachusetts Institute of Technology
    Economics
  • Massachusetts Institute of Technology
    Political Science
  • Columbia University
    Journalism
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Karen Kaplan's +1's are the things they like, agree with, or want to recommend.
Welcome to Elephant Heart Jewelry - Beautiful Hand-Made Necklaces, Earri...
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Welcome to Elephant Heart Jewelry. Our newly enhanced website features over 120 beautiful, hand-made necklaces, earrings and bracelets.

A window to the brain? It's here, says UC Riverside team
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Engineers fashion a zirconium based window pane and use it to optically scan a mouse's brain.

Ostrich necks provide clues to how sauropod dinosaurs moved, ate
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How did sauropod dinosaurs move their heads? When they stood, were their super-long necks stretched up high to the treetops like a giraffe's

Ants make tough choices better when working in groups, study says
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Our society often touts teamwork, but when faced with an easy task, groups may actually perform worse than individuals – at least when the g

Addiction expert weighs in on Mayor Bob Filner's therapy plan
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San Diego Mayor Bob Filner, 70, announced Friday that he will enter a “behavioral counseling clinic” on Aug. 5 to deal with issues relating

Tall women have higher cancer risk; are smoking, drinking to blame?
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The taller a postmenopausal woman is, the greater risk she faces of developing cancer, according to a new study.

Ramadan fast survival guide will help you stay fit and healthy
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We're about halfway through the Islamic holy month of Ramadan . This is the time of year when an estimated 1.6 million Muslims worldwide abs

You may be safer living in the city than the country, study finds
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Want to keep your family safe? Then raise your kids in the city.

Are doctors passing the buck on healthcare costs?
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Physicians are concerned about skyrocketing healthcare costs -- but most don't think they have "major responsibility" for reducing those cos

Another way TV is harmful to kids: By falling on them
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The nation's pediatricians keep saying that television can be harmful for babies and toddlers, but this time, they mean it literally. A new

Teens inhaling blow-gun darts
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Don’t run with scissors, and don’t inhale homemade blow-gun darts.

Cassini takes inter-planetary portrait. What happens next?
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So you’ve waved at Saturn and had your picture taken by Cassini from nearly 900 million miles away. Now what?

It's time to 'Wave at Saturn' and smile for an interplanetary portrait
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It’s time to get ready for your not-so-close-up. NASA’s Cassini spacecraft on the far side of Saturn will snap a long-distance portrait of E

Why do cigarettes and booze go together? Stress may be the key
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Just in time for the summer cocktail season, there's a research finding that offers a new recipe for excessive alcohol consumption. Let's ca

Evolution not as unpredictable as thought, study says
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Say you could hop into a DeLorean and travel back to when life on Earth began. Would fish migrate from water to land? Would the dinosaurs go

Avoiding estrogen therapy proved deadly for nearly 50,000: study
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Hormone replacement therapy has plummeted among U.S. women since the Women’s Health Initiative cut short its Estrogen Plus Progestin Trial i

Attempt to steer McDonald's diners toward smaller meals backfires
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You might think that customers buying their lunch at McDonald’s would order meals with fewer calories if someone handed them a slip of paper

Dinosaurs had teeth to spare -- lots of them
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Dinosaurs almost bankrupted the tooth fairy. New research shows that the lumbering plant-eaters called sauropods produced new teeth as often

Scientists may have found the source of all the gold in the universe
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Astronomers panning the heavens for glints of gamma-ray bursts have struck gold. No, really. They found gold – so much of it, in fact, that

Florida man awakens in Palm Springs ER speaking only Swedish. Why?
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It's a story that is captivating people on both sides of the Atlantic.