Selasa, 29 Maret 2011

ScienceDaily Health Headlines

for Tuesday, March 29, 2011

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Human virus linked to deaths of endangered mountain gorillas; Finding confirms that serious diseases can pass to gorillas from people (March 29, 2011) -- For the first time, a virus that causes respiratory disease in humans has been linked to the deaths of wild mountain gorillas, reports a team of researchers in the United States and Africa. ... > full story

Viral replicase points to potential cancer therapy (March 29, 2011) -- Alpha viruses, such as Sindbis virus, carry their genetic information on a single strand of RNA. They use a protein, replicase, to produce double stranded RNA (dsRNA) inside infected cells, which initiates the host's immune response. New research demonstrates that an artificial plasmid coding for the replicase genes of Sindbis virus causes regression and destruction of lung cancer, or melanoma, cells in mice. ... > full story

Follow-up program helps detect melanoma earlier in high-risk patients (March 29, 2011) -- A follow-up program for patients at high risk of developing skin cancer appears to be associated with the detection of melanomas at early stages and with good prognosis, according to a new study. ... > full story

Malaria as a complication to landmines and war injuries (March 29, 2011) -- Malaria can complicate the course of disease in poor farmers with landmine injuries in underdeveloped countries, where both malaria and war injuries are frequent causes of illness and death. New research charts the extent and effect of malaria on war-injured people and studied the potential for preventing them contracting the disease. ... > full story

Will we hear the light? Surprising discovery that infrared can activate heart and ear cells (March 29, 2011) -- Scientists have used invisible infrared light to make rat heart cells contract and toadfish inner-ear cells send signals to the brain. The discovery someday might improve cochlear implants for deafness and lead to devices to restore vision, maintain balance and treat movement disorders like Parkinson's. ... > full story

Predicting serious drug side effects before they occur (March 29, 2011) -- All medications have side-effects from common aspirin to herbal remedies and from standard anticancer drugs to experimental immunosuppressants. However, predicting important side effects, serious adverse drug reactions, ADRs, is with current understanding almost impossible. However, a neural network technology trained with past data could give drug companies and healthcare workers a new tool to spot the potential for ADRs with any given medication. ... > full story

Pioneering treatment could help people with severe depression (March 29, 2011) -- Pioneering neurosurgical treatment, which very accurately targets brain networks involved in depression, could help people who suffer with severe and intractable depression. ... > full story

Many elderly men are undergoing unnecessary PSA screenings, researchers find (March 29, 2011) -- A new study on the use of prostate-specific antigen (PSA)-based prostate cancer screening in the United States found that many elderly men may be undergoing unnecessary prostate cancer screenings. Using data from surveys conducted in 2000 and 2005, researchers report that nearly half of men in their seventies underwent PSA screening in the past year -- almost double the screening rate of men in their early fifties, who are more likely to benefit from early prostate cancer diagnosis and treatment. Further, men aged 85 and older were screened just as often as men in their early fifties. ... > full story

Most U.S. states unclear about storage, use of babies' blood samples, new study finds (March 29, 2011) -- State laws and policies governing the storage and use of surplus blood samples taken from newborns for routine health screenings range from explicit to non-existent, leaving many parents ill-informed about how their babies' left over blood might be used, according to a new article. ... > full story

No two of us are alike -- even identical twins: Pinpointing genetic determinants of schizophrenia (March 28, 2011) -- Just like snowflakes, no two people are alike, even if they're identical twins according to new genetic research. Scientists have been working to determine the genetic sequencing of schizophrenia using identical or monozygotic twins. ... > full story

Acute myeloid leukemia: Researchers find genetic conspirators (March 28, 2011) -- Researchers have described how the most common gene mutation found in acute myeloid leukemia starts the process of cancer development and how it can cooperate with other mutations to cause full-blown leukemia. The researchers suggest that three critical steps can transform normal blood cells into leukemic ones. By charting the route towards cancer, the study identifies processes that might could be targets for new treatments for patients with acute myeloid leukemia. ... > full story

Some women worry too much about breast cancer returning, study finds (March 28, 2011) -- Most women face only a small risk of breast cancer coming back after they complete their treatment. Yet a new study finds that nearly half of Latinas who speak little English expressed a great deal of worry about recurrence. ... > full story

Cancer risk of backscatter airport scanners is low, analysis suggests (March 28, 2011) -- Calculations by researchers estimate that the cancer risk associated with one type of airport security scanners is low based on the amount of radiation these devices emit, as long as they are operated and function correctly. ... > full story

Twinkle, twinkle, quantum dot: New particles can change colors and tag molecules (March 28, 2011) -- Engineers have invented a new kind of nano-particle that shines in different colors to tag molecules in biomedical tests. These tiny plastic nano-particles are stuffed with even tinier bits of electronics called quantum dots. Like little traffic lights, the particles glow brightly in red, yellow, or green, so researchers can easily track molecules under a microscope. ... > full story

Taking blood pressure to new lows -- with lasting results (March 28, 2011) -- Interventional radiologists have completed the first human randomized controlled trial of a procedure that uses high-frequency energy to deactivate the nerves near the kidneys (or in the renal artery) that are linked to high blood pressure. These results confirm that this may be an effective therapy for reducing and controlling resistant hypertension when current medications have failed. ... > full story

Possible new target for treatment of multiple sclerosis (March 28, 2011) -- Multiple sclerosis is a disabling autoimmune disease in which nerve fibers are attacked by the patient's own immune system. Researchers have now identified a new mechanism that contributes to nerve fiber damage -- and shown that this damage can be reversed. ... > full story

Cancer drug shows promise for treating scleroderma (March 28, 2011) -- A drug approved to treat certain types of cancer has shown promising results in the treatment of patients with scleroderma, according to results from an open-label Phase II trial. While the drug's efficacy must be demonstrated in a Phase III trial, the gold standard for testing a drug, researchers are optimistic that Gleevec could potentially be a weapon against the chronic connective tissue disease for which a treatment has remained elusive. ... > full story

Genetic link to attempted suicide identified (March 28, 2011) -- A study of thousands of people with bipolar disorder suggests that genetic risk factors may influence the decision to attempt suicide. Researchers have identified a small region on chromosome 2 that is associated with increased risk for attempted suicide. This small region contains four genes, including the ACP1 gene, and the researchers found more than normal levels of the ACP1 protein in the brains of people who had committed suicide. This protein is thought to influence the same biological pathway as lithium, a medication known to reduce the rate of suicidal behavior. ... > full story

Scientists link DNA 'end-caps' length to diabetes risk; New role for short telomeres (March 28, 2011) -- New evidence has emerged from studies in mice that short telomeres or "caps" at the ends of chromosomes may predispose people to age-related diabetes, according to scientists. ... > full story

Outcomes improved by longer delays between heart attacks and elective surgeries, study finds (March 28, 2011) -- Recent heart attack patients should wait longer than currently recommended before undergoing elective surgery, a new study suggests. ... > full story

Babies who sleep with smoker parents exhibit high nicotine levels (March 28, 2011) -- "Third-hand smoke" stuck to skin or clothing is responsible for the high nicotine levels seen in babies who share a bedroom with their smoker parents, according to a new study in Spain. The study also shows that ventilating bedrooms is not effective in reducing the levels of toxins from passive smoking. ... > full story

Researchers tie Parkinson's drugs to impulse control problems (March 28, 2011) -- Researchers found that dopamine agonists used in treating Parkinson's disease result in impulse control disorders in as many as 22 percent of patients. ... > full story

When you cough up green or yellow phlegm you need to be prescribed antibiotics, right? (March 28, 2011) -- Prescribing antibiotics for patients with discoloured phlegm caused by acute cough has little or no effect on alleviating symptoms and recovery, a new study in the UK has found. ... > full story

Why some children are harmed by mother's alcohol, but others aren't (March 28, 2011) -- Why does one woman who drinks alcohol during pregnancy have a child with behavioral or learning problems while another woman who also drinks has a child without these problems? New research shows one answer is a gene variation passed on by the mother to her son. This makes a fetus vulnerable to even moderate alcohol exposure by disrupting the balance of thyroid hormones in the brain. In the future, vulnerable women could be identified and given dietary supplements to correct the problem. ... > full story

Advanced technology reveals activity of single neurons during seizures (March 28, 2011) -- The first study to examine the activity of hundreds of individual human brain cells during seizures has found that seizures begin with extremely diverse neuronal activity, contrary to the classic view that they are characterized by massively synchronized activity. The researchers also observed pre-seizure changes in neuronal activity both in the cells where seizures originate and in nearby cells. ... > full story

Walnuts are top nut for heart-healthy antioxidants (March 28, 2011) -- A new scientific study positions walnuts in the number one slot among a family of foods that lay claim to being among Mother Nature's most nearly perfect packaged foods: Tree and ground nuts. A new analysis shows that walnuts have a combination of more healthful antioxidants and higher quality antioxidants than any other nut. ... > full story

Blood pressure control system found in kidney's structural units (March 28, 2011) -- A new finding shows how the million working units in the kidney regulate salt handling. This identifies a new possible therapeutic target for treating high blood pressure. ... > full story

Eye movement differs in British and Chinese populations (March 28, 2011) -- Scientists have found that eye movement patterns of Chinese people, born and raised in China, are different to those of Caucasian people living in Britain. ... > full story

Structure of DNA repair complex reveals workings of powerful cell motor (March 28, 2011) -- Over the last years, researchers have steadily built a model of how a powerful DNA repair complex works. Now, a new discovery provides revolutionary insights into the way the molecular motor inside the complex functions -- findings they say may have implications for treatment of disorders ranging from cancer to cystic fibrosis. ... > full story

People at risk of Alzheimer's may now be able to delay the onset of their first symptoms (March 28, 2011) -- For elderly subjects at risk of developing Alzheimer's disease, research shows that hope may lie in brain plasticity. ... > full story

New drug approved for treating most common type of lupus (March 28, 2011) -- A new drug -- Benlysta (belimumab) -- has been approved by the US Food and Drug Administration. Benlysta, which treats the most common type of lupus, is the first in a new class of pharmaceuticals that prevents the body from attacking its own critical tissues. ... > full story

Red tape for clinical trial consent can be lethal: Experts (March 28, 2011) -- Current rules requiring researchers to obtain consent for patients to take part in clinical trials in emergency situations are causing life-threatening delays to treatment, experts have argued. ... > full story

'Can you hear me now?' How neurons decide how to transmit information (March 28, 2011) -- There are billions of neurons in the brain and at any given time tens of thousands of these neurons might be trying to send signals to one another. Much like a person trying to be heard across a crowded room, neurons must figure out the best way to get their message heard above the din. Researchers have now found two ways that neurons accomplish this, establishing a fundamental mechanism by which neurons communicate. ... > full story

When the body attacks itself (March 28, 2011) -- Those afflicted with psoriasis, rheumatoid arthritis and kidney inflammation are all victims of their own immune system; their bodies are attacking healthy cells. Medicines targeted at one troublesome enzyme could make life easier for people suffering from these conditions. ... > full story

Inadequate diet can lead to anemia in postmenopausal women (March 28, 2011) -- A new study indicates that inadequate nutrition is linked to a greater risk of anemia in postmenopausal women. ... > full story

Great Depression did not significantly improve life expectancy in United States, study finds (March 28, 2011) -- A new provides a fresh perspective on the Great Depression of the 1930s. A widely held view is that there were remarkable improvements in life expectancy of over five years. Using data from urban populations, researchers found that it was actually associated with an increase in suicides but reduction in motor-vehicle accidents, a pattern consistent with the impacts of the current recession in Europe and the U.S. ... > full story

International Diabetes Federation supports surgery to treat diabetes (March 28, 2011) -- Bariatric surgery should be considered earlier in the treatment of eligible patients to help stem the serious complications that can result from diabetes, according to an International Diabetes Federation (IDF) position statement presented by leading experts at the 2nd World Congress on Interventional Therapies for Type 2 Diabetes in New York. ... > full story

Stem cell therapy for age-related macular degeneration moves a step closer to reality (March 27, 2011) -- The notion of transplanting adult stem cells to treat or even cure age-related macular degeneration has taken a significant step toward becoming a reality. Researchers have now demonstrated, for the first time, the ability to create retinal cells derived from human-induced pluripotent stem cells that mimic the eye cells that die and cause loss of sight. ... > full story

Do all student athletes need heart screenings? (March 27, 2011) -- Parents may be wondering if enough is being done to identify athletes at risk for dying suddenly. In response, some communities have started programs to perform more extensive heart testing, including electrocardiograms. Yet some experts do not support such community programs due to a lack of evidence that they are able to reduce the number of sudden deaths. ... > full story

Don't shuffle on slippery surfaces (March 27, 2011) -- Biomechanics researchers conclude that moving quickly in a forward, firm-footed stance across a slippery surface is less likely to lead to a fall than if you move slowly. ... > full story

Asthma drug could help control or treat Alzheimer's disease (March 27, 2011) -- A drug used to treat asthma has been shown to help reduce the formation of amyloid beta, a peptide that is implicated in the development of Alzheimer's disease, and the subsequent build up of amyloid plaques in the brain by more than 50 percent. ... > full story

Blood glucose levels that predict 10-year risk of retinopathy identified (March 27, 2011) -- Individuals who have higher blood glucose levels and poorer control of those levels over time appear more likely to develop eye-related complications 10 years later, according to a new article. ... > full story

Micro-RNA's contribute to risk for panic disorder (March 27, 2011) -- Studies in twin pairs suggest that 40% of the risk for panic disorder is heritable, yet the manner in which genes contribute to the risk for panic disorder is far from clear. To date, variations in a growing number of genes have been implicated in the risk for panic disorder, but the magnitude of the impact of each individual gene is relatively small. A new study now implicates one type of molecular switch, microRNAs (miRNAs), in panic disorder. ... > full story

Eye development error can cause cataracts, glaucoma (March 27, 2011) -- Scientists show that RNA granules -- a key player in messenger RNA processing -- can affect eye development, leading to juvenile cataracts in humans and mice. The research also demonstrates the first connection between RNA granules and glaucoma, as both humans and mice developed glaucoma. ... > full story

Trigger found for autoimmune heart attacks: Research may point toward new ways to diagnose and treat heart disease in people with Type 1 diabetes (March 27, 2011) -- People with type 1 diabetes, whose insulin-producing cells have been destroyed by the body's own immune system, are particularly vulnerable to a form of inflammatory heart disease (myocarditis) caused by a different autoimmune reaction. Scientists have revealed the exact target of this other onslaught. ... > full story

Multiplexing in the visual brain (March 27, 2011) -- Imagine sitting in a train at the railway station looking outside: Without analyzing the relative motion of object contours across many different locations at the same time, it is often difficult to decide whether it's your train that starts moving, or the one at the opposite track. How are these diverse information conveyed simultaneously through the network of millions of activated nerve cells in the visual brain? ... > full story

Living at high altitude reduces risk of dying from heart disease: Low oxygen may spur genes to create blood vessels (March 26, 2011) -- Researchers have found that people living at higher altitudes have a lower chance of dying from heart disease and live longer. ... > full story

Supervised weight training safe for pregnant women, study suggests (March 26, 2011) -- Despite decades of doctors' reluctance to recommend weight training to pregnant women, a new study has found that a supervised, low-to-moderate intensity program is safe and beneficial. ... > full story

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