SPLASH! milk science update: December 2014 issue

This month’s issue features novel vitamin B12 absorption via dairy, a breast pump hackathon, dairy’s value for Samburu children, and chemical messages from our mother’s milk.

A Case for Vitamin B12 “Smuggling”

A Case for Vitamin B12 "Smuggling"

Memory loss, depression, numbness, seizures—those are some of the potentially irreversible symptoms suffered by people lacking vitamin B12. A recent study suggests that a protein found in cow's milk stimulates vitamin B12 uptake via an alternate route. This protein might be used as a natural source to treat vitamin B12 malabsorption. Read More...

MIT’s Hackathon Revolutionizes the Breast Pump

MIT’s Hackathon Revolutionizes the Breast Pump

Users invariably complain that breast pumps are uncomfortable to the point of painful, noisy and physically prevents them from performing other tasks. In both the verbal and adjectival sense, the breast pump sucks in its current forms! Which is why MIT Media Lab recently hosted a "hackathon"—a collective and competitive brain storming session with the aim of redesigning the breast pump from scratch. Among the offerings of the dozen or so teams that took part, two newfangled pump ideas have caught SPLASH!’s eye. Read More...

Dairy’s Value for Samburu Children

Dairy’s Value for Samburu Children

Over the last several decades, environmental changes and political pressures have forced many pastoralist populations, such as the Samburu of Kenya, to abandon their nomadic herding lifestyle for one focused more on agriculture. In addition to becoming more sedentary, these populations have decreased their livestock holdings, and with that, their milk consumption. What does this dramatic shift in livelihood mean for the health of a population with such a long history of milk dependence? Read More...

Stop, Slow, & Go: Hormonal Signals from Mother’s Milk

Stop, Slow, & Go: Hormonal Signals from Mother's Milk

Hormones are not just for women! From babies to the elderly, both females and males have these chemical messengers circulating throughout their bodies. Astonishingly, milk contains hormones too. Read More...