Kamis, 18 November 2010

ScienceDaily Health Headlines

for Thursday, November 18, 2010

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Regenerative stem cell therapy offers new hope for treating cardiovascular disease (November 18, 2010) -- Physician researchers are revolutionizing treatment of cardiovascular disease by utilizing patients' own stem cells to regenerate heart and vascular tissue. ... > full story

New drug targets vitamin D receptors in hormone resistant prostate cancers (November 18, 2010) -- A new anti-cancer drug aimed at vitamin D receptors on cancer cells has prompted encouraging responses in the levels of PSA (prostate specific antigen) in men with prostate cancer that has become resistant to hormonal therapies. ... > full story

Listeners' brains respond more to native accent speakers; Imaging study suggests accents are subtle 'insider' or 'outsider' signal to the brain (November 18, 2010) -- The brains of Scots responded differently when they listened to speakers with Scottish accents than to speakers with American or British accents, a new study has found. Understanding how our brains respond to other accents may explain one way in which people have an unconscious bias against outsiders. ... > full story

Scientists identify antivirus system (November 18, 2010) -- Viruses have led scientists to the discovery of a security system in host cells. Viruses that cause disease in animals beat the security system millennia ago. But now that researchers are aware of it, they can explore the possibility of bringing the system back into play in the fight against diseases such as sudden acute respiratory syndrome (SARS), West Nile virus, dengue and yellow fever. ... > full story

Novel genetic mutation that causes the most common form of eye cancer discovered (November 18, 2010) -- A new study has revealed the discovery of a novel oncogene that is associated with uveal melanoma, the most common form of eye cancer. ... > full story

Fighting America’s 'other drug problem': Researchers find key to combating medication non-adherence (November 18, 2010) -- Non-adherence to medications costs thousands of lives and billions of dollars each year in the United States alone. Now, researchers have developed an intervention strategy that is three times more effective than previously studied techniques at improving adherence in patients. ... > full story

Women who stutter have different brain connections than men who stutter; Findings may help explain why more men than women stutter (November 18, 2010) -- According to new research, women who stutter show brain patterns that are distinct from men who stutter. Finding diagnostic brain markers that are unique to people who stutter could help scientists develop treatments that target those areas in the future. ... > full story

Broad new technique for screening proteins devised (November 17, 2010) -- Scientists have developed a powerful new method for detecting functional sites on proteins. The technique may have broad applications in basic research and drug development. ... > full story

Small clumps of tau protein disrupt memory; Animal study suggests possible target for Alzheimer’s disease therapies (November 17, 2010) -- Too many small aggregates of a protein called tau in the brain can directly interfere with memory, according to new animal research. ... > full story

Brain region responsible for speech illusion identified; Study explains how visual cues disrupt speech perception (November 17, 2010) -- Watching lips move is key to accurately hearing what someone says. The McGurk Effect, an auditory phenomenon in which viewing lips moving out of sync with words creates other words, has been known since the 1970s; now researchers have pinpointed the brain region responsible for it. ... > full story

Upending conventional wisdom, certain virus families are ancient (November 17, 2010) -- Certain families of single-stranded DNA virus are more than 40 to 50 million years old, according to new research. The investigators found remnants of circoviruses and parvoviruses in the genomes of diverse vertebrates from fishes to birds and mammals that had been integrated into their genomes at different times from the recent past to more than 50 million years ago. ... > full story

Development of a safer vaccine for Alzheimer’s disease; Mouse study suggests new vaccine approach that may avoid side effects (November 17, 2010) -- A new vaccine protects against memory problems associated with Alzheimer's disease, but without potentially dangerous side effects, a new animal study reports. ... > full story

Low-allergenic wines could stifle sniffles and sneezes in millions of wine drinkers (November 17, 2010) -- Scientists have identified a mysterious culprit that threatens headaches, stuffy noses, skin rash and other allergy symptoms when more than 500 million people worldwide drink wine. The discovery could help winemakers in developing the first low allergenic vintages -- reds and whites with less potential to trigger allergy symptoms, they say. ... > full story

How anthrax bacteria impair immune response (November 17, 2010) -- Researchers have determined a key mechanism by which Bacillus anthracis bacteria initiate anthrax infection despite being greatly outnumbered by immune system scavenger cells. The finding, made by studying genetically modified mice, adds new detail to the picture of early-stage anthrax infection and supports efforts to develop vaccines and drugs that would block this part of the cycle. ... > full story

What you see changes where you hear: Exposure to light for only milliseconds alters perceived source of sound (November 17, 2010) -- New research shows that the perceived location of a noise depends in part on the sights noticed before the sound. The results have implications for the development of hearing aids and rehabilitation from brain injury. ... > full story

Personalized treatment for ovarian cancer (November 17, 2010) -- Researchers have shown that point mutations -- misspellings in a single letter of genetic code -- that drive the onset and growth of cancer cells can be detected successfully in advanced ovarian cancer using a technique called OncoMap. The finding opens the way for personalized medicine. ... > full story

Smoke from fireworks is harmful to health, study suggests (November 17, 2010) -- The metallic particles in the smoke emitted by fireworks pose a health risk, particularly to people who suffer from asthma, new research shows. ... > full story

Common strain of bacteria found in patients with cystic fibrosis in Canada; associated with greater risk of death (November 17, 2010) -- A common transmissible strain of the bacteria Pseudomonas aeruginosa has been identified among cystic fibrosis (CF) patients in Canada, suggesting that cross-infection has occurred widely between CF centers in the United Kingdom and Canada, according to a new study. Infection with this strain among Canadian CF patients has been associated with an increased risk of death or lung transplantation. ... > full story

Feed likely source of salmonella contamination on pig farms (November 17, 2010) -- Commercial feed appears to be a source of Salmonella contamination in commercial swine production units, according to a new article. Moreover, nearly half of isolates found in pigs were multidrug resistant. The findings suggest that pork could be a source of human infection. They also strongly question the conventional wisdom that processed feed is not a source of contamination. Heat treatment during processing has been thought to kill any bacterial contaminants. ... > full story

Impulsive behavior in males increases after periods of heavy drinking (November 17, 2010) -- Alcohol is known to cause an increase in impulsive behavior in individuals, which can not only be dangerous for themselves, but for others as well. A new study on adolescent males indicate that risky behavior may actually increases over time after periods of heavy drinking. ... > full story

Stunning details of brain connections revealed (November 17, 2010) -- Researchers applying a state-of-the-art imaging system to brain-tissue samples from mice, have been able to quickly and accurately locate and count the myriad connections between nerve cells in unprecedented detail, as well as to capture and catalog those connections' surprising variety. ... > full story

Immune system involved in depression, animal study suggests (November 17, 2010) -- A new animal study suggests the immune system plays a role in depression. Activation of the immune system caused mice to learn to run less on wheels in their cages -- an activity they normally like. The mice resumed their normal activity when the action of interleukin-6, an immune hormone that carries "sickness" signals to the brain, was blocked. ... > full story

Heart surgeries can trigger strokes, seizures and other neurological complications (November 17, 2010) -- Strokes, seizures and other neurological complications related to heart surgery account for "considerable morbidity and mortality," researchers report. ... > full story

People who stutter show abnormal brain activity when reading and listening (November 17, 2010) -- A new imaging study finds that people who stutter show abnormal brain activity even when reading or listening. The results suggest that individuals who stutter have impaired speech due to irregular brain circuits that affect several language processing areas -- not just the ones for speech production. ... > full story

Language may help create, not just convey, thoughts and feelings (November 17, 2010) -- The language we speak may influence not only our thoughts, but our implicit preferences as well. Psychologists found that bilingual individuals' opinions of different ethnic groups were affected by the language in which they took a test examining their biases and predilections. ... > full story

Enzyme action could be target for diabetes, heart disease treatments (November 17, 2010) -- Cardiac researchers have found a new cellular pathway that could help in developing therapeutic treatments for obesity-related disorders, like diabetes and heart disease. ... > full story

Infant estrogen levels tracked through diaper research (November 17, 2010) -- With the help of babies and more than 5,000 of their diapers, researchers have developed an accurate, noninvasive method to determine estrogen levels in infants. ... > full story

New, much faster, more accurate diagnostic for influenza and respiratory syncytial virus (November 17, 2010) -- A new, fully automated system is much quicker, and more accurate in diagnosing influenza A and B, and respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) A and B than conventional alternatives, according to new research. The new technology promises faster and more appropriate treatment of patients. ... > full story

Why you can listen at cocktail parties: Songbirds' individual brain cells are tuned to particular sounds (November 17, 2010) -- Nerve cells in the brains of songbirds are sensitive to specific sounds, and only respond when those sounds occur during communication, a recent study shows. The finding helps explain people's ability to listen to a conversation while in a noisy environment -- the "cocktail party effect." ... > full story

Length of pregnancy influenced by placenta structure (November 17, 2010) -- The nine-month pregnancy in humans is influenced by the structure of the placenta, according to new research into the evolution of reproduction in mammals which ends a 100-year mystery. ... > full story

MRI scans show structural brain changes in people at risk for Alzheimer's disease (November 17, 2010) -- New results from a study by neuroscientists suggest that people at risk of developing Alzheimer's disease exhibit a specific structural change in the brain that can be visualized by brain imaging. The findings may help identify those who would most benefit from early intervention. ... > full story

New 3-D model of RNA 'core domain' of enzyme telomerase may offer clues to cancer, aging (November 17, 2010) -- Biochemists have produced a three-dimensional structural model of telomerase's RNA "core domain." Telomerase is an enzyme that helps maintain telomere DNA -- the DNA found at the very ends of chromosomes -- and plays an important role in aging and cancer. ... > full story

Antibiotic treatment for ear infections in kids provides only modest benefits, study finds (November 17, 2010) -- Using antibiotics to treat newly diagnosed acute ear infections among children is modestly more effective than no treatment, but comes with a risk of side effects, according to a new study designed to help advise efforts to rewrite treatment guidelines for the common illness. ... > full story

Human study shows greater cognitive deficits in marijuana users who start young (November 17, 2010) -- New research shows that people who start using marijuana at a young age and those who use the greatest amount of marijuana may be the most cognitively impaired. ... > full story

Damaged organs linked to change in biochemical wave patterns (November 17, 2010) -- By examining the distinct wave patterns formed from complex biochemical reactions within the human body, diseased organs may be more effectively identified, says a researcher who has developed a model that simulates how these wave patterns are generated. ... > full story

Protein with cardioprotective capabilities during heart attack discovered (November 17, 2010) -- Researchers have discovered a new protein that could be cardioprotective during heart attack, potentially leading to more targeted treatments for patients at risk. ... > full story

Never-smokers fare far better than smokers after radiation therapy for head and neck cancer (November 17, 2010) -- Patients with head and neck cancer who have never smoked have much better survival rates after radiation therapy than patients with a history of smoking, new research has found. ... > full story

Energy drink use may lead to alcohol dependence (November 17, 2010) -- Many adolescents and college students innocently ingest large amounts of energy drinks to stay awake. But, new research shows that energy drink over-use is strongly linked with increased risks of engaging in episodes of heavy drinking and developing alcohol dependence. ... > full story

Bioengineers provide adult stem cells with simultaneous chemical, electrical and mechanical cues (November 17, 2010) -- Bioengineers have achieved the "Triple Crown" of stem cell culture -- they created an artificial environment for stem cells that simultaneously provides the chemical, mechanical and electrical cues necessary for stem cell growth and differentiation. Building better microenvironments for nurturing stem cells is critical for realizing the promises of stem-cell-based regenerative medicine, including cartilage for joint repair, cardiac cells for damaged hearts, and healthy skeletal myoblasts for muscular dystrophy patients. ... > full story

Cancer drug target is promising lead for new TB treatments (November 17, 2010) -- A key enzyme in Mycobacterium tuberculosis that enables the microbe to reproduce rapidly could be a golden target for new drugs against tuberculosis, according to a new study. The human equivalent of this enzyme has been targeted in some cancer treatments as well as in immunosuppressive chemotherapies. Scientists have now shown that inhibiting the same enzyme in M. tuberculosis effectively kills the bacterial cells. ... > full story

Statin RX may be overprescribed in healthy people without evidence of diseased arteries, study suggests (November 17, 2010) -- Rolling back suggestions from previous studies, a new study of 950 healthy men and women has shown that taking daily doses of a cholesterol-lowering statin medication to protect coronary arteries and ward off heart attack or stroke may not be needed for everyone. ... > full story

US scientists significantly more likely to publish fake research, study finds (November 17, 2010) -- US scientists are significantly more likely to publish fake research than scientists from elsewhere, finds a trawl of officially withdrawn (retracted) studies. ... > full story

New treatment for lung cancer shows promise (November 16, 2010) -- A new inhalable dry powder treatment for lung cancer shows a significant increase in survival rates and is far less invasive than current treatment options, which frequently include radiation and surgery. ... > full story

Reducing blood transfusions improves patient safety and cuts costs, study finds (November 16, 2010) -- A study has demonstrated how hospitals can improve patient safety and cut costs by reducing the number of blood transfusions. ... > full story

How do folded structures form? (November 16, 2010) -- What do the convolutions of the brain, the emergence of wrinkles, the formation of mountain chains, and fingerprints have in common? All these structures, albeit very different, result from the same process: the compression of a 'rigid membrane'. Scientists have now shed light on one of the mysteries underlying the formation of such folded structures. This work will make it possible to better understand and thus predict their emergence. ... > full story

Binge drinking in adolescence changes stress response in adulthood (November 16, 2010) -- Alcohol exposure during adolescence alters the body's ability to respond to stress in adulthood, according to new animal research. Because problems regulating stress are associated with behavioral and mood disorders, the findings may indicate that binge drinking in adolescence leads to increased risk of anxiety or depression in adulthood. ... > full story

Size of hippocampus may indicate early dementia (November 16, 2010) -- The size of the part of the brain known as the hippocampus may be linked to future dementia, reveals new research from Sweden. ... > full story

Risk factors that lead to bicycling injuries in city traffic (November 16, 2010) -- The streets of New York City can be dangerous for bicyclists, but they can be especially risky for young adult male bicyclists who don't wear helmets, have too much to drink, or are listening to music through earphones, a group of investigators report. ... > full story

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