Δευτέρα, 16 Ιουνίου 2014

ScienceDaily: Top Health News

ScienceDaily: Top Health News


Diabetes risk: Understanding the unique nature of children's bodies and brains

Posted: 15 Jun 2014 11:38 AM PDT

With the increase in childhood obesity and the associated increase in type 2 diabetes among children and adolescents, there is growing interest in how children's bodies process the foods they eat and how obesity and diabetes begin to develop at early ages.

The girl who couldn't stop laughing

Posted: 15 Jun 2014 11:36 AM PDT

A six-year-old Bolivian girl presented with an unusual medical symptom: uncontrollable and inappropriate fits of laughter. "She was considered spoiled, crazy, even devil-possessed," according to those who knew her. Then medical researchers discovered a hamartoma -- a small tumor pressing on the temporal lobe of her brain.

Exploring a parasitic tunnel boring machine: Parasitic worm genome and biology provides a solid basis for the development of new interventions

Posted: 15 Jun 2014 11:36 AM PDT

Researchers have deduced essential biological and genetic information from the genome sequence of the whipworm, an intestinal parasitic worm that infects hundreds of millions of people in developing countries. This information acts as the foundation for the development of new strategies and treatments against this debilitating parasite.

Patients with type 2 diabetes taking JANUVIA® (sitagliptin), metformin initiated insulin therapy at a slower rate compared to patients taking a sulfonylurea, metformin

Posted: 14 Jun 2014 12:03 PM PDT

A late-breaking observational study has been released that assessed the differences in time to initiation of insulin use and the proportion of the population initiating insulin among patients with type 2 diabetes taking the combination of JANUVIA® (sitagliptin) and metformin, and patients taking the combination of a sulfonylurea and metformin.

Patients with type 2 diabetes undergoing intensification of insulin therapy experienced less nighttime hypoglycemia while being treated with Januvia (Sitagliptin) compared to placebo

Posted: 14 Jun 2014 12:03 PM PDT

New post-hoc analysis shows patients with type 2 diabetes undergoing intensification of insulin therapy experienced less nighttime hypoglycemia while being treated with Januvia compared to placebo.

Gun violence and mental illness: Study addresses perception vs. reality

Posted: 13 Jun 2014 07:17 AM PDT

Gun violence in America can be reduced, concludes an international team of scholars who analyzed dozens of studies on gun violence and mental illness. The researchers found that mass murderers with mental health problems, while they receive a tremendous amount of media attention, are not typical of those who commit violent crimes, and the vast majority of those with serious mental illness do not engage in violent acts.

BRCA test results affect patients' breast cancer surgery plans

Posted: 13 Jun 2014 07:17 AM PDT

Seven in 10 women with breast cancer who learned before surgery they have BRCA gene mutations changed their surgical plan, often to a more extensive procedure that would reduce future cancer risk, researchers have found. The authors therefore recommend that women who meet genetic testing guidelines get the tests before surgery.

Movies with gory, disgusting scenes more likely to capture, engage audience

Posted: 12 Jun 2014 11:23 AM PDT

People exposed to core disgusts (blood, guts, body products) showed higher levels of attention the more disgusting the content grew, even though they had negative reactions to the content. The findings suggested that socio-moral disgust-eliciting content elicited a slower response, characterized by one of initial attention and increasing negativity and arousal, and was remembered better before, at and after the onset of disgust. Both core disgusts saw more of an immediate negativity and defensive response.

Opioid use prior to spine surgery linked to diminished patient reported outcomes

Posted: 12 Jun 2014 11:23 AM PDT

The use of opioid pain relievers (prescription medications, such as Percocet) have been linked to less improvement and higher levels of dissatisfaction following spine surgery, a study finds. "We have demonstrated that increasing amounts of preoperative opioid consumption may have a harmful effect on patient reported outcomes in those undergoing spinal surgery," said study's lead author.

Early childhood programs yield long-term gains for children in developing nations

Posted: 12 Jun 2014 11:22 AM PDT

Early childhood programs that have been shown to give significant, long-term cognitive and economic benefits to children in the United States, also can greatly benefit children in developing nations, a study finds. "These findings help us understand the mechanism to effectively shape public policy," a researcher said. "It shows once again that investing in the early years of disadvantaged children is more than a social justice imperative -- it is an economic imperative that has far-reaching implications for developing nations."

Testing Parkinson's disease immune-based drugs: New models

Posted: 12 Jun 2014 10:23 AM PDT

Using powerful, newly developed cell culture and mouse models of sporadic Parkinson's disease (PD), researchers have demonstrated that immunotherapy with specifically targeted antibodies may block the development and spread of PD pathology in the brain. By intercepting the distorted and misfolded alpha-synuclein (α-syn) proteins that enter and propagate in neurons, creating aggregates, the researchers prevented the development of pathology and also reversed some of the effects of already-existing disease.

Personal resiliency paramount for future disasters

Posted: 12 Jun 2014 10:23 AM PDT

Individuals need to build disaster readiness and resiliency in order to better recover from the effects of earthquakes, tsunamis, hurricanes, tornadoes, wildfires and other natural disasters, experts say. Those who prepare well for disasters are more likely to have a sense of spiritual and emotional well-being and be satisfied with their life.

African Americans respond better to first-line diabetes drug than whites

Posted: 12 Jun 2014 10:23 AM PDT

African Americans taking the diabetes drug metformin saw greater improvements in their blood sugar control than white individuals who were prescribed the same medication, according to a new study. Metformin is the most common oral medication prescribed for diabetes. It decreases the amount of glucose produced by the liver and helps the body respond better to insulin, the hormone that helps carry sugar from the bloodstream into cells.

Time-lapse study reveals bottlenecks in stem cell expansion

Posted: 12 Jun 2014 09:13 AM PDT

Human pluripotent stems cells have the ability to produce any cell type in the body. Now, a time-lapse study of human embryonic stems cells has identified bottlenecks restricting the formation of colonies, a discovery that could improve their use in regenerative medicine. "We study pluripotent stem cells, which have huge potential for use in regenerative medicine due to their ability to become any cell in the human body. A pre-requisite for this is maintaining large numbers of undifferentiated cells in culture," noted one researcher.

Changes in genetic testing recommendations strengthen patient autonomy

Posted: 12 Jun 2014 09:13 AM PDT

Recent modifications in recommendations regarding incidental findings in genetic testing from the American College of Medical Genetics and Genomics depart from the college's 2013 recommendations in favor of an individualized approach. Experts have published a review of the updated 2014 recommendations.

Heart rate variability may predict risk of disease in premature infants

Posted: 12 Jun 2014 08:46 AM PDT

Measuring variability of heart rate may identify premature infants at risk of developing necrotizing enterocolitis, a serious inflammatory condition that can lead to death, according to researchers. Necrotizing enterocolitis, or NEC, may lead to destruction of the intestinal wall and vital organ failure. It affects 6 to 10 percent of premature infants within the first two weeks of life.

Standing up gets groups more fired up for team work

Posted: 12 Jun 2014 08:46 AM PDT

Chairs provide great support during long meetings, but they may also be holding us back. Standing during meetings boosts the excitement around creative group processes and reduces people's tendency to defend their turf, according to a new study. The participants wore small sensors around their wrists to measure "physiological arousal" -- the way people's bodies react when they get excited. When a person's arousal system becomes activated, sweat glands around the feet and hands release bursts of moisture. The sensors pass a small current of electricity through the skin to measure these moisture bursts.

Blood product sterilization taken too far?

Posted: 12 Jun 2014 07:49 AM PDT

Certain processes used to sterilize blood products could potentially cause serious health issues in transfusion recipients, according to an international study. These processes purportedly alter the blood platelets to the extent of preventing them from carrying out their functions correctly and may be the cause of hemorrhages observed in patients having received treated blood.

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