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Tuesday, October 14, 2014

ScienceDaily: Top Health News

ScienceDaily: Top Health News

Greater rates of mitochondrial mutations discovered in children born to older mothers

Posted: 13 Oct 2014 12:28 PM PDT

The discovery of a 'maternal age effect' could be used to predict the accumulation of mitochondrial DNA mutations in maternal egg cells -- and the transmission of these mutations to children. These mutations cause more than 200 diseases and contribute to others such as diabetes, cancer, Parkinson's disease, and Alzheimer's disease.

Chemical derived from broccoli sprouts shows promise in treating autism

Posted: 13 Oct 2014 12:26 PM PDT

Results of a small clinical trial suggest that a chemical derived from broccoli sprouts -- and best known for claims that it can help prevent certain cancers -- may ease classic behavioral symptoms in those with autism spectrum disorders.

An end to needle phobia: Device could make painless injections possible

Posted: 13 Oct 2014 11:16 AM PDT

Imagine no tears during infant vaccines and no fear of the needle for those old enough to know what's coming. Such painless injections could be possible with a device that applies pressure and vibration while the needle is inserted in the skin, according to a study.

Take note: Jazz and silence help reduce heart rate after surgery, study shows

Posted: 13 Oct 2014 11:16 AM PDT

Researchers are one step closer to confirming what people in New Orleans have known for decades: Jazz is good for you. Patients undergoing elective hysterectomies who listened to jazz music during their recovery experienced significantly lower heart rates, suggests a study.

Moderate levels of 'free radicals' found beneficial to healing wounds

Posted: 13 Oct 2014 09:31 AM PDT

Long assumed to be destructive to tissues and cells, 'free radicals' generated by the cell's mitochondria -- the energy producing structures in the cell -- are actually beneficial to healing wounds.

New cancer drug to begin trials in multiple myeloma patients

Posted: 13 Oct 2014 09:30 AM PDT

A new cancer drug has been developed, which researchers plan to trial in multiple myeloma patients by the end of next year. The researchers report how the drug, known as DTP3, kills myeloma cells in laboratory tests in human cells and mice, without causing any toxic side effects, which is the main problem with most other cancer drugs. The new drug works by stopping a key process that allows cancer cells to multiply.

Research findings could pave way for a fructose tolerance test

Posted: 13 Oct 2014 09:30 AM PDT

The FGF21 hormone may be a reliable predictor of altered fructose metabolism and provide the basis for a "fructose tolerance test," researchers report. Determining the body's metabolic response to fructose has been a difficult task, researchers say and consequently, there is no equivalent test to warn of impaired or altered fructose metabolism. That may soon change, thanks to new research.

Bio-inspired 'nano-cocoons' offer targeted drug delivery against cancer cells

Posted: 13 Oct 2014 07:39 AM PDT

Biomedical engineering researchers have developed a drug delivery system consisting of nanoscale "cocoons" made of DNA that target cancer cells and trick the cells into absorbing the cocoon before unleashing anticancer drugs.

Suicide and gender roles: Reporting distorts reality

Posted: 13 Oct 2014 06:02 AM PDT

Men angry and rejected, women sociable and mentally ill -- a current study demonstrates that these gender stereotypes prevail when daily newspapers report on suicide. This has far-reaching consequences, the investigators say.

Antibiotic resistance: Bacterial defense policies

Posted: 13 Oct 2014 06:02 AM PDT

High-resolution cryo-electron microscopy has now revealed in unprecedented detail the structural changes in the bacterial ribosome which results in resistance to the antibiotic erythromycin.

Programming computers in everyday language

Posted: 13 Oct 2014 06:02 AM PDT

Computers speak a language of their own. They can only be programmed by those, who know the code. Computer scientists are now working on software that directly translates natural language into machine-readable source texts. In this way, users may generate own computer applications in a few sentences. The challenge to be managed is that people do not always describe processes in a strictly chronological order. A new analysis tool serves to automatically order the commands in the way they are to be executed by the computer. 

Ebola's deadly toll on healthcare workers

Posted: 13 Oct 2014 06:02 AM PDT

Since its first outbreak in Guinea in December, 2013, Ebola has hit West African healthcare providers disproportionately hard. Hundreds of healthcare workers have been infected, many of whom have died, according to the World Health Organization.

Chewing gum while fasting before surgery is safe, study finds

Posted: 13 Oct 2014 05:59 AM PDT

It is well known that patients should avoid eating and drinking before surgery to help prevent complications while under anesthesia. But is it safe to chew gum? Although chewing gum significantly increases the volume of liquids in the stomach, it is safe to administer sedatives or anesthesia to patients who have chewed gum while fasting before surgery, reports a new study.

CDC confirms healthcare worker who provided care for first patient positive for Ebola

Posted: 12 Oct 2014 07:22 PM PDT

Today, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) confirmed test results reported late last night by the Texas Department of State Health Services' public health laboratory showing that a healthcare worker at Texas Presbyterian Hospital is positive for Ebola. The healthcare worker, who provided care for the Dallas index patient, was isolated soon after symptoms started and remains so now.

Atomic map reveals clues to how cholesterol is made

Posted: 12 Oct 2014 10:48 AM PDT

In spite of its dangerous reputation, cholesterol is in fact an essential component of human cells. By mapping the structure of a key enzyme involved in making it, researchers have gained new insight into this complex process with implications for understanding and treating disease, including high cholesterol.

Efficacy of 'natural' bed bug pesticides compared

Posted: 12 Oct 2014 10:48 AM PDT

The efficacy of nine essential oil-based products and two detergents that are labeled and marketed for bed bug control were evaluated by researchers. When the researchers sprayed the 11 non-synthetic pesticides directly on bed bug nymphs, they found that only two -- EcoRaider (1% geraniol, 1% cedar extract, and 2% sodium lauryl sulfate) and Bed Bug Patrol (0.003% clove oil, 1% peppermint oil, and 1.3% sodium lauryl sulfate) -- killed more than 90 percent of them.

Bioinspired coating for medical devices repels blood, bacteria

Posted: 12 Oct 2014 10:48 AM PDT

Medical devices implanted in the body or in contact with flowing blood present two critical, life-threatening challenges for doctors treating their patients: blood clotting and bacterial infection. A team of scientists and engineers has developed a new surface coating for medical devices using FDA-approved materials. The coating repelled blood from more than 20 medically relevant substrates the team tested -- made of plastic to glass and metal -- and also suppressed biofilm formation.

New cells meant to form blood vessels developed, treat peripheral artery disease

Posted: 12 Oct 2014 10:48 AM PDT

A technique to jump-start the body's systems for creating blood vessels has been developed by scientists, opening the door for potential new treatments for diseases whose impacts include amputation and blindness.

Novel culture system replicates course of Alzheimer's disease, confirms amyloid hypothesis

Posted: 12 Oct 2014 10:48 AM PDT

An innovative laboratory culture system has succeeded, for the first time, in reproducing the full course of events underlying the development of Alzheimer's disease. Using this system, investigators provide the first clear evidence supporting the hypothesis that deposition of beta-amyloid plaques in the brain is the first step in a cascade leading to the devastating neurodegenerative disease.

Obesity accelerates aging of the liver, researchers find using novel biological aging clock

Posted: 10 Oct 2014 05:41 AM PDT

Using a recently developed biomarker of aging known as an epigenetic clock, researchers have found, for the first time, that obesity greatly accelerates aging of the liver. "Given the obesity epidemic in the Western world, the results of this study are highly relevant for public health," the lead investigator said.

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