Associated Press

Study: Football concussions and resuming play vary by age

CHICAGO (AP) -- Younger football players are more likely to return to the field less than a day after suffering concussions than those in high school and college, according to a new study.

No more ties? Spelling Bee to get harder words

WASHINGTON (AP) -- After two straight years of ties, the Scripps National Spelling Bee is adding more sting: The championship rounds will last longer, and the words will be harder.

The bee, now televised in prime time by ESPN, has exploded in popularity over the past two decades. And the spellers have gotten increasingly savvy. So instead of sticking to a list of 25 "championship words" selected weeks earlier, the final rounds could have as many as 75 words. And the organizers can choose harder words on the fly if the spellers don't appear to be struggling.

Sushi alert: Grim outlook for bluefin tuna

TOKYO (AP) -- The latest scientific assessment paints a likely bleak future for the Pacific bluefin tuna, a sushi lovers' favorite whose population has dropped by more than 97 percent from its historic levels.

A draft summary of a report by the International Scientific Committee for Tuna and Tuna-like Species in the North Pacific Ocean seen by The Associated Press shows the current population of bluefin tuna is estimated at 2.6 percent of its "unfished" size. A previous assessment put the population at an already dire 4.2 percent.

WHO: Diabetes rises fourfold over last quarter-century

GENEVA (AP) -- Excessive weight, obesity, aging and population growth drove a nearly four-fold increase in worldwide cases of diabetes over the last quarter-century, affecting 422 million people in 2014, the World Health Organization reported Wednesday.

Panama Papers could add to outrage in US prez race

The revelations in the Panama Papers could add to the populist outrage in the U.S. presidential race by confirming many of the fears of Bernie Sanders supporters on the left and contributing to the distrust that drives people to Donald Trump on the right.
So far, the 11.5 million leaked documents have shed light mostly on foreign figures such as the prime minister of Iceland, who resigned Tuesday after the public learned that he used a shell company to shelter large sums of money while his country's economy foundered. The reaction in the U.S. has been relatively muted.

Scientists blame El Nino, warming for 'gruesome' coral death

The coral on the South Pacific sea floor around Kiritimati (more commonly known as Christmas Island) looked like a boneyard in November - stark, white and lifeless. But there was still some hope.

In April, color returned with fuzzy reds and browns, but that's not good news. Algae has overtaken the lifeless coral on what had been some of the most pristine coral reefs on the planet, said University of Victoria coral reef scientist Julia Baum said after dozens of dives in the past week. Maybe 5 percent will survive, she estimated.

How to protect your data and avoid being hacked

NEW YORK (AP) -- The government hack of an iPhone used by a San Bernardino killer serves as a reminder that phones and other electronic devices aren't impenetrable vaults.

While most people aren't targets of the NSA, FBI or a foreign government, hackers are looking to steal the financial and personal information of ordinary people. Your phone stores more than just selfies. Your email account on the phone, for instance, is a gateway to resetting banking and other sensitive passwords.

Study: Amateur football hits linked to later difficulty

BOSTON (AP) -- The more hits to the head an amateur football player takes, the greater the risk that he will be depressed, have difficulty making decisions or develop other forms of cognitive impairment as an adult, a preliminary study suggests.

The study by Boston University researchers published in the Journal of Neurotrauma on Thursday is the first of its kind to look at the connection between the cumulative number of impacts sustained from youth football through college and later-in-life mental difficulties, according to Dr. Robert Stern, one of the co-authors.

Pope at Easter recalls victims of 'blind, brutal terrorism'

VATICAN CITY (AP) -- Pope Francis tempered his Easter Sunday message of Christian hope with a denunciation of "blind" terrorism, recalling victims of attacks in Europe, Africa and elsewhere, as well as expressing dismay that people fleeing war or poverty are being denied welcome as European countries squabble over the refugee crisis.

After a bleak week in Europe, pope to offer message of hope

VATICAN CITY (AP) -- Pope Francis is set to preside over a solemn vigil service to usher in the hope-filled Easter celebrations after a dark week in Europe.

Francis will baptize 12 adults during the Easter Vigil on Saturday night in St. Peter's Basilica. A few hours later he'll preside over Easter Sunday Mass and offer his annual Easter blessing.

Francis is expected to offer a message of hope following his bleak condemnations on Good Friday of the attacks in Brussels and elsewhere by Islamic extremists.

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