Rabu, 13 Oktober 2010

ScienceDaily Health Headlines

for Wednesday, October 13, 2010

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Long-term benefits of transcranial magnetic stimulation for depression supported by new study (October 13, 2010) -- In a study to determine the durability and long-term effects of transcranial magnetic stimulation, psychiatric researchers have found the non-invasive, non-drug therapy to be an effective, long-term treatment for major depression. ... > full story

Metabolic status before pregnancy predicts subsequent gestational diabetes, study finds (October 13, 2010) -- Cardio-metabolic risk factors such as high blood sugar and insulin, and low high density lipoprotein cholesterol that are present before pregnancy, predict whether a woman will develop diabetes during a future pregnancy, according to a new study. ... > full story

Second-generation device more effective in capturing circulating tumor cells (October 13, 2010) -- A redesigned version of the CTC-Chip -- a microchip-based device for capturing rare circulating tumor cells -- appears to be more effective and should be easier to manufacture than the original. Called the HB-(herringbone) Chip, the new device also may provide more comprehensive and easily accessible data from captured tumor cells. ... > full story

Clinical trials demonstrate effective weight loss strategies for obese and overweight adults (October 13, 2010) -- Lifestyle interventions, including physical activity and structured weight loss programs, can result in significant weight loss for overweight, obese and severely obese adults, according to two new reports. ... > full story

Selective strategy could lead to new approaches against schizophrenia (October 13, 2010) -- A new class of compounds identified by researchers could be developed into drugs for the treatment of schizophrenia. The compounds enhance signaling by molecules in the brain called NMDA receptors, which scientists believe are functioning at low levels in people with schizophrenia. ... > full story

Better way to study proteins in the body: Could streamline development of drugs (October 13, 2010) -- Using a combination of high-powered computers and advanced experimental magnetic resonance data, a biophysical chemist has developed techniques that improve the way scientists can study and predict the structure and dynamics of proteins found in the human body. His innovations could ultimately shorten the time it takes researchers to develop new, more effective drugs and better understand biomedical processes that underlie a variety of health conditions. ... > full story

Prenatal treatment of congenital toxoplasmosis could reduce risk of brain damage (October 13, 2010) -- Prenatal treatment of congenital toxoplasmosis with antibiotics might substantially reduce the proportion of infected fetuses that develop serious neurological sequelae (brain damage, epilepsy, deafness, blindness or developmental problems) or die, according to new research. ... > full story

Struggling for breath: Videogame technology documents abnormal breathing patterns in patients with sunken chest (October 13, 2010) -- Patients with a common chest deformity known as sunken chest exhibit abnormal breathing patterns. The findings were the result of a side-by-side comparison of patients with normal chests and patients who suffer from the chest wall deformity known as pectus excavatum. ... > full story

End-of-life care patterns shift for patients with heart failure in both US and Canada (October 13, 2010) -- Health care in the last six months of life has become progressively more expensive for patients with heart failure both among Medicare beneficiaries in the United States and older adults in Canada, with a high rate of hospitalizations in the final six months of life in both countries. Also, more men are dying of prostate cancer are receiving hospice care, but that the timing of hospice referral remains poor. ... > full story

Gene linked to drug resistance in malaria pinpointed (October 12, 2010) -- Scientists have shed light on how malaria is able to resist treatment with a leading drug. Researchers have identified a gene that enables the parasite that causes the infection to resist treatment with the plant-based remedy artemisinin. ... > full story

Breast-healthy lifestyle worthwhile, study confirms (October 12, 2010) -- Having a family history of breast cancer can lead some people to wonder if their risk is out of their control. However, a study of more than 85,000 postmenopausal women observed that regular physical activity, maintaining a healthy weight, and drinking less alcohol lowers breast cancer risk for women with, and without a family history of the disease. ... > full story

Pediatric hospitalizations for ATV-related injuries more than double (October 12, 2010) -- All-terrain vehicles (ATVs) are associated with a significant and increasing number of hospitalizations for children in the US, according to a new report. Over a nine-year period (1997-2006) hospitalizations for ATV injuries increased 150 percent among youth younger than 18 years, with important demographic variations. ... > full story

Personal genetic profiling services lack evidence for claims (October 12, 2010) -- Direct-to-consumer personal genetic profiling services that claim to predict people's health risks by analyzing their DNA are often inconclusive and companies that sell them should provide better information about the evidence on which the results are based, say researchers. ... > full story

How immune response in pregnancy may lead to brain dysfunction in offspring (October 12, 2010) -- A pregnant woman's immune response to viral infections may induce subtle neurological changes in the unborn child that can lead to an increased risk for neurodevelopmental disorders including schizophrenia and autism. Research provides new insights into how this may happen and suggests potential strategies for reducing this risk. ... > full story

New clues to origin of diabetes: Mutant gene protein can derail normal insulin production in animal pancreatic beta cells (October 12, 2010) -- Scientists have identified events inside insulin-producing pancreatic cells that set the stage for a neonatal form of non-autoimmune type 1 diabetes, and may play a role in type 2 diabetes as well. The results point to a potential target for drugs. ... > full story

Hope for a new treatment for bone cancer: Can 'friendly' bacteria kill cancer cells? (October 12, 2010) -- Children and young people who are diagnosed with bone cancer could benefit from better treatment in the future, thanks to new research that is testing a theory that 'friendly bacteria' can be used to kill bone cancer cells. ... > full story

Traditional health practices popular among older people who choose not to have flu vaccine (October 12, 2010) -- Eating steamed pears and being rubbed with a coin are just some of more unusual indigenous health practices used by older people worldwide to ward off, or treat, influenza. Nurse researchers studied nine countries with different health care systems: the UK, Canada, Indonesia, China, Greece, Turkey, South Korea, Brazil and Nigeria. They wanted to find out why so many were failing to meet the 75 percent annual influenza vaccination rate recommended by the World Health Organization. ... > full story

Achilles' heel in aggressive breast tumors uncovered (October 12, 2010) -- In an unexpected twist, researchers find that the loss of a single protein, Nedd9, initially slows cancer formation but then makes the tumors that do arise more aggressive. The good news, though, is that the lack of Nedd9 also makes the aggressive tumors more sensitive to a class of drugs that are already used in the clinic. ... > full story

Step closer to drug treatment for cystic fibrosis? (October 12, 2010) -- New research may move scientists closer to a cure for cystic fibrosis, one of the most common fatal genetic diseases. ... > full story

New way to classify personality disorders proposed (October 12, 2010) -- New research is playing a key role in the effort to change the way mental health clinicians classify personality disorders. ... > full story

Too much light at night at night may lead to obesity, study finds (October 12, 2010) -- Persistent exposure to light at night may lead to weight gain, even without changing physical activity or eating more food, according to new research in mice. Researchers found that mice exposed to a relatively dim light at night over eight weeks had a body mass gain that was about 50 percent more than other mice that lived in a standard light-dark cycle. ... > full story

Neural pathways governing switching of fear responses in zebrafish identified (October 12, 2010) -- A new study on the behavior of the zebrafish has uncovered a key role for a region of the brain on the development of fear responses. The discovery provides valuable insights applicable to the treatment of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and other mental illnesses. ... > full story

Better way developed to see molecules at work in living brain cells (October 12, 2010) -- By creating a better way to see molecules at work in living brain cells, researchers are helping elucidate molecular mechanisms of synapse formation. These studies could also help further understanding of how synapses go awry in developmental diseases such as autism and Fragile X syndrome. ... > full story

How serotonin works: Findings point to new treatments for schizophrenia and depression (October 12, 2010) -- Scientists have shown for the first time that the neurotransmitter serotonin uses a specialized signaling pathway to mediate biological functions that are distinct from the signaling pathways used by hallucinogenic substances. The new findings could have a profound effect on the development of new therapies for a number of disorders, including schizophrenia and depression. ... > full story

Physical symptoms prevalent no matter what stage of cancer including remission (October 12, 2010) -- Twenty-two physical symptoms associated with cancer -- symptoms often unrecognized and under-treated -- are prevalent in all types of cancers regardless of whether the patient is newly diagnosed, undergoing treatment or is a cancer survivor, according to researchers. ... > full story

Screen time linked to psychological problems in children (October 12, 2010) -- Children who spend longer than two hours in front of a computer or television screen are more likely to suffer psychological difficulties, regardless of how physically active they are. ... > full story

Ibuprofen offers relief for many with migraine headaches (October 12, 2010) -- For many people suffering from migraine headaches, over-the-counter ibuprofen -- Advil and Motrin are well-known brands -- might be enough to relieve the pain. ... > full story

Invasive honeysuckle increase risk of tick-borne disease in suburbs (October 12, 2010) -- We often read about dreadful new zoonoses -- animal diseases that are now infecting people -- that have jumped species in distant parts of the world such as Asia or Africa and are now headed our way. But Missouri has its own new zoonoses, tick-borne diseases whose spread is encouraged by pest species such as white-tailed deer and invasive plants such as bush honeysuckle. In Missouri as in Africa or Asia, the loss of a biodiversity takes a toll in human health. ... > full story

Estrogen therapy may be associated with kidney stones in postmenopausal women (October 12, 2010) -- Use of estrogen therapy is associated with an increased risk of developing kidney stones in postmenopausal women, according to a new study. ... > full story

Is infertility more common in women with epilepsy? (October 12, 2010) -- Women with epilepsy may be more likely to experience infertility, according to new research. The study of women in India found that women with epilepsy experienced infertility at more than twice the rate of that found in the general population. The research also found that women who were taking multiple epilepsy drugs were more likely to be infertile than those taking fewer drugs or no drugs for epilepsy. ... > full story

On the trail of the epigenetic code: Test system on Drosophila should provide the key to histone function (October 12, 2010) -- Test system on fruit flies should provide the key to histone function. The genetic inherited material DNA was long viewed as the sole bearer of hereditary information. The function of its packaging proteins, the histones, was believed to be exclusively structural. Additional genetic information can be stored, however, and passed on to subsequent generations through chemical changes in the DNA or histones. Scientists have succeeded in creating an experimental system for testing the function of such chemical histone modifications and their influence on the organism. ... > full story

So that’s why we’re allergic to sun creams (October 12, 2010) -- What happens to sunscreens when they are exposed to sunlight? And how is the skin affected by the degradation products that form? This has been the subject of recent research in Sweden. ... > full story

Insulin resistance may be associated with stroke risk (October 12, 2010) -- Insulin resistance, a condition in which insulin produced by the body becomes less effective in reducing blood glucose levels, appears to be associated with an increased risk of stroke in individuals without diabetes, according to a new study. ... > full story

Meta-analysis shows no heart benefits for folic acid supplements (October 12, 2010) -- Use of folic acid supplements appears to lower blood levels of the amino acid homocysteine -- theorized to be a risk factor for heart and blood vessel disease -- but does not appear to be associated with reduced rates of cardiovascular events, cancer or death over a five-year period, according to a meta-analysis of previously published studies. ... > full story

Patients and doctors are being misled by published data on medicines, Germany study suggests (October 12, 2010) -- The drug reboxetine is, overall, an ineffective and potentially harmful antidepressant, according to a comprehensive study of the evidence by a team of researchers in Germany. The study also shows that nearly three quarters of the data on patients who took part in trials of reboxetine were not published until now, and that the published data on the drug overestimate the benefits and underestimate the harms of treatment -- all underlining the urgent need for mandatory publication of all clinical trial results. ... > full story

Economic advantage to pediatric ondansetron administration in emergency departments (October 12, 2010) -- In a new study, researchers performed a cost analysis of the emergency department administration of oral ondansetron to children with dehydration and vomiting secondary to gastroenteritis and found that this treatment could provide substantial economic, as well as clinical, benefit. ... > full story

National committee releases findings on transforming and improving the nursing profession (October 12, 2010) -- Still hampered by workforce shortages and barriers that impede their ranks from delivering health care to the full extent of their education and training, nurses may have gotten the much-needed shot in the arm they need to transform their profession with the release of an Institute of Medicine report recommending sweeping changes for improving their profession. ... > full story

No quick fix for peripheral artery disease; Repeat hospitalizations drive costs up in U.S. (October 12, 2010) -- Peripheral artery disease (PAD) is a progressive and costly disease, but remains under-diagnosed and under treated. While current PAD treatments are effective at clearing artery blockages in the lower leg, high recurrence rates and the subsequent need for repeat procedures are costly. More widespread use of diagnostic tests and preventive strategies early in the disease course may help slow PAD's progression and minimize the risk of poor outcomes, according to a new study. ... > full story

Considerable proportion of patients with advanced cancer continue to undergo common cancer screening (October 12, 2010) -- A sizable proportion of patients with advanced cancer and a life expectancy of only a few years continue to undergo common cancer screening tests that are unlikely to provide meaningful benefit, according to a new study. ... > full story

Rates of blood transfusions for coronary artery bypass graft surgery varies widely among US hospitals (October 12, 2010) -- A study that includes data on more than 100,000 patients who underwent coronary artery bypass graft surgery finds that there is wide variability among hospitals in the US on the use of blood transfusions, without a large difference in the rate of death, suggesting that many transfusions may be unnecessary, according to a new study. ... > full story

Restrictive use of blood transfusions during cardiac surgery shows comparable outcomes (October 12, 2010) -- Use of stricter guidelines for the use of red blood cell transfusions for patients undergoing cardiac surgery was associated similar rates of death and severe illness compared to patients who received more transfusions, according to a new study. ... > full story

Fittest hepatitis C viruses infect transplanted livers (October 11, 2010) -- Not all viruses are created equal. In liver transplant patients with chronic hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection, only viruses that can dodge the immune response invade the new liver, according to a new study. ... > full story

New findings on autoimmune diseases (October 11, 2010) -- A deficiency in one of the immune system’s enzymes affects the severity of autoimmune diseases such as MS, and explains why the course of these diseases can vary so much. New findings give an insight into how this enzyme deficiency can be diagnosed, and could lead to new medicines, reveals new research from Sweden. ... > full story

When in Rome: Study-abroad students increase alcohol intake, study finds (October 11, 2010) -- For most American students, spending a semester or two studying in a foreign country means the opportunity to improve foreign language skills and become immersed in a different culture. For others, studying abroad is more like a prolonged spring break. In a new study, researchers report that American study abroad students doubled how much they drank while they were away. ... > full story

Study links male Y chromosome variants with the risk of coronary heart disease (October 11, 2010) -- Scientists in the UK have shown that genetic variations in the Y chromosome affect a male's risk of coronary heart disease. ... > full story

Study details structure of potential target for HIV and cancer drugs (October 11, 2010) -- In a technical tour de force, structural biologists have determined the three-dimensional structure of a molecule involved in HIV infection and in many forms of cancer. The high-resolution structure sheds light on how the molecule functions and could point to ways to control its activity, potentially locking out HIV and stalling cancer's spread. ... > full story

Three-way control of fetal heart-cell proliferation could help regenerate cardiac cells (October 11, 2010) -- Heart muscle cells do not normally replicate in adult tissue, but multiply with abandoned during development. This is why the loss of heart muscle after a heart attack is so dire -- you can't grow enough new heart muscle to make up for the loss. Researchers describe the interconnections between three-molecules that control fetal, heart-muscle-cell proliferation in a mouse model that will help cardiologists better understand the natural repair process after heart attacks. ... > full story

Family therapy for anorexia twice as effective as individual therapy, researchers find (October 11, 2010) -- Family-based therapy, in which parents of adolescents with anorexia nervosa are enlisted to interrupt their children's disordered behaviors, is twice as effective as individual psychotherapy at producing full remission of the disease, new research shows. ... > full story

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