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Can brain damage help you quit smoking?

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According to New Scientist online, a little brain damage might go a long way with smokers trying to quit. Scientists at the University of Southern California in LA were intrigued by a heavy smoker (40 cigarettes a day) who immediately lost the urge to light up once his insula was damaged. In follow-up studies, 70% of smokers with damage to that tiny part of the brain also managed to kick the habit with ease. While the research is all positive, the hope is that in the future surgeons will be able to tamper with the insula to ease addicts away from their vices without experiencing any withdrawal syndromes.
Read more here at New Scientist.

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Sylke Rohrlach, Wikimedia Commons // CC BY-SA 2.0
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Animals
These Strange Sea Spiders Breathe Through Their Legs
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Sylke Rohrlach, Wikimedia Commons // CC BY-SA 2.0

We know that humans breathe through their lungs and fish breathe through their gills—but where exactly does that leave sea spiders?

Though they might appear to share much in common with land spiders, sea spiders are not actually arachnids. And, by extension, they don't circulate blood and oxygen the way you'd expect them to, either.

A new study from Current Biology found that these leggy sea dwellers (marine arthropods of the class Pycnogonida) use their external skeleton to take in oxygen. Or, more specifically: They use their legs. The sea spider contracts its legs—which contain its guts—to pump oxygen through its body.

Somehow, these sea spiders hardly take the cake for Strangest Spider Alive (especially because they're not actually spiders); check out, for instance, our round-up of the 10 strangest spiders, and watch the video from National Geographic below:

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Food
How to Make Perfect Fried Chicken, According to Chemistry
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Cooking amazing fried chicken isn’t just art—it’s also chemistry. Learn the science behind the sizzle by watching the American Chemical Society’s latest "Reactions" video below.

Host Kyle Nackers explains the three important chemical processes that occur as your bird browns in the skillet—hydrolysis, oxidation, and polymerization—and he also provides expert-backed cooking hacks to help you whip up the perfect picnic snack.

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