Sergey Uryadnikov /

A Tulane expert in viral epidemics raging in West Africa says it’s time to expand experimental treatments. Some are showing promise.

Plaquemines Parish

Plaquemines Parish officials are partnering with the Army Corps of Engineers on a new coastal dredging initiative.

The plan is to use sediment dredged from the Mississippi River shipping channel to create 300 to 600 acres of marsh habitat. This will help create a natural buffer against storm surge.

Colonel Rick Hansen is commander of the New Orleans District office of the Army Corps of Engineers.

Louisiana Universities Marine Consortium

A scientist who has studied the low-oxygen dead zone off the Louisiana coast for 30 years says it’s still about the size of Connecticut.

Nancy Rabalais of Louisiana Universities Marine Consortium says it covers just over 5,000 square miles.

That’s triple the goal set by federal officials for next year. 

“The average size is now three times larger than the goal," she said. "And the goal was to reach that size by 2015, and it’s 2014. So that should tell us something about progress.”  

Top academics and practitioners in the field of environmental restoration are in New Orleans this week, meeting as part of the 2014 Conference of Ecological and Ecosystem Restoration.

Experts will be sharing coastal restoration examples from the Gulf of Mexico to the Persian Gulf, from Southeast Asia's Mekong Delta to the Mississippi Delta.

Allen Shimada / Wikimedia

Some studies have found a one in three chance that the fish on our restaurant plates or in the seafood case at the supermarket is mislabeled. A cheaper fish like tilapia may be sold as red snapper, for example.

Cheryl delPozzal / It's New Orleans

New Orleans DNA research companies Renaissance RX and GenoVive are changing our concept of dieting and medication.

GenoVive founder Victor Castellon joins Peter Ricchiuti on Out to Lunch to explain how specific DNA-based diet and exercise programs can target your unique metabolism to be effective from the very first day you start your personal weight loss and health improvement program.

Dr. Charles Wood, now a radiation oncologist at the Mary Bird Perkins Cancer Center, thought he was communicating well with all his patients while in training in Philadelphia a decade ago. But he found that twice as many non-white than white patients there believed they'd been treated in a clinical trial unknowingly.

University of New Orleans

The University of New Orleans has been awarded an 18-month $200,000 grant from the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation to protect sea turtles.

The project is aimed at improving a device used on shrimp boats.

That device is called an “excluder.”

It allows a captured sea turtle to escape when it’s caught up in a net.

Since 1978, all sea turtles in U.S. coastal waters have been classified as either threatened or endangered.

ForestWander / wikimedia commons

Spring is in the air and so are the allergens! Yes, it’s allergy season. While it might seem counterintuitive, most experts agree that as we spend more and more time indoors, our allergic reactions increase. And while allergens typically trigger cold-like symptoms such as sniffling and sneezing, they can also trigger asthma attacks.

Cocoa has been used as a health elixir for centuries, going back to the Incas. Dr. John Finley discusses the LSU AgCenter's study that revealed some of the compounds that make cocoa so beneficial.