It’s a bad time to be a drunken cockroach, chaps

Weekender, of course, is a teetotaler with many friends and an absolutely enormous corn on our foot. So it is merely in the spirit of science that we offer a study from the Institute of Medical Science and Jeju National University in South Korea, which found that eating asparagus may help cure unwanted hangovers.

It’s all about the amino acids and minerals, researcher B.Y. Kim told UPI.

“Cellular toxicities were significantly alleviated in response to treatment with the extracts of asparagus leaves and shoots,” he said. “These results provide evidence of how the biological functions of asparagus can help alleviate alcohol hangover and protect liver cells.” An offer of a nice tip if ever there was one.

Elsewhere, it’s all about mutants this week. According to California Polytechnic State University researcher Patrick Lin, the United States military is amidst research into mutant powers.

The scientist and Maxwell Mehlman and Keith Abney, his colleagues, have written a study which calls for a bit of thought on the ways that humans will be enhanced to give more strength, stamina, thinking, courage and all the rest.

“Are there ethical, legal, psycho-social or operational limits on the extent to which a warfighter may be enhanced?,” wrote the scientist. “Somewhere in between robotics and biomedical research, we might arrive at the perfect future warfighter: one that is part machine and part human, striking a formidable balance between technology and our frailties.”

Given that in the past, fighters have been experimented on with everything from amphetamines to LSD, nerve gas and lord knows what else, quite often without their knowledge, the likelihood that this is on a dark path already is pretty high. As, presumably, the soldiers will be.

Not much more fun to be a cockroach at the moment, after artist Brittany Ransom created a cyborg roach that could be controlled by Twitter; at the end of December, you could command it by posting things like #TweetRoachLeft, a command that would be translated into stimuli then sent to the roach’s antennae. Humans are ace.

Finally, a new Plos One-published study reckons that because of cosmic radiation on long journeys through space, astronauts could well speed up the onset of Alzheimer’s disease. It’s already thought that the radiation exposure could bring on cancer as well as possible cardiovascular and musculoskeletal impacts. It’s very, very hard to block the radiation apparently. Weekender wonders if they’ve tried feeding the astronauts asparagus yet, and if not, why not?