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Blood Test Identifies Heart-transplant Rejection Earlier than Biopsy Can

June 19, 2014 9:56 am | News | Comments

Stanford University researchers have devised a noninvasive way to detect heart-transplant rejection weeks or months earlier than previously possible. The test, which relies on the detection of increasing amounts of the donor’s DNA in the blood of the recipient, does not require the removal of any heart tissue.

Heart Rate Variability May Predict Risk of Disease in Premature Infants

June 13, 2014 1:34 pm | News | Comments

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 Penn State College of Medicine 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.

Zebrafish Yield Insights into Treating Heart Disease

June 12, 2014 1:53 pm | News | Comments

Using a zebrafish model, investigators have identified a drug compound that appears to reverse arrhythmogenic cardiomyopathy (ACM), a hereditary disease and leading cause of sudden death in young people.             

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‘Tomato Pill’ Improves Blood Vessel Function

June 10, 2014 12:58 pm | News | Comments

A daily supplement of an extract found in tomatoes may improve the function of blood vessels in patients with cardiovascular disease, according to new research.                          

Newborns Exposed to Allergens May Have Lower Allergy, Asthma Risk

June 9, 2014 12:57 pm | News | Comments

Infants exposed to rodent and pet dander, roach allergens and a wide variety of household bacteria in the first year of life appear less likely to suffer from allergies, wheezing and asthma, according to a new study.          

Review Summarizes Research on Marijuana’s Negative Health Effects

June 6, 2014 1:52 pm | News | Comments

The current state of science on the adverse health effects of marijuana use links the drug to several significant adverse effects including addiction, a new review reports.                       

Breaking News: Air Pollution Linked to Autism, Schizophrenia

June 5, 2014 3:00 pm | News | Comments

A new study shows how exposure to air pollution early in life produces harmful changes in the brains of mice, including an enlargement of part of the brain that is seen in humans who have autism and schizophrenia.           

Heart-shocking ‘Shirt’ Could Save Lives

June 3, 2014 1:46 pm | News | Comments

Biomedical engineering students have designed a lightweight, easy-to-conceal shirt-like garment to deliver life-saving shocks to patients experiencing serious heart problems. The students say their design improves upon a wearable defibrillator system that is already in use.

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Young Women Fare Worse than Young Men After Heart Attack

June 3, 2014 1:02 pm | News | Comments

Women age 55 or younger may fare worse than their male counterparts after having a heart attack, according to new research presented at the American Heart Association’s Quality of Care and Outcomes Research Scientific Sessions 2014. Researchers studied records and interviews of 3,501 people (67 percent women) who had heart attacks in the United States and Spain in 2008-12.

Cystic Fibrosis, Diabetes Link Explained

June 2, 2014 12:15 pm | News | Comments

Many people with cystic fibrosis develop diabetes. The reasons for this have been largely unknown, but now researchers have identified a molecular mechanism that contributes to the raised diabetes risk.              

Using a Baby’s Cord Blood to Repair its Brain

May 28, 2014 2:01 pm | News | Comments

Lack of blood flow and oxygen delivery to a baby during labor and delivery can result in a condition known as hypoxic-ischemic encephalopathy (HIE), which is treated by whole body cooling. Now, researchers report on the feasibility of using a baby’s own cord blood cells to aid the injured brain in repairing itself.

Coating Stents with Vitamin C Could Reduce Clotting Risks

May 28, 2014 1:51 pm | News | Comments

Every year, more than 1 million people in the U.S. who have suffered heart attacks or chest pain from blocked arteries have little mesh tubes called stents inserted into their blood vessels to prop them open. The procedure has saved many lives, but it still has potentially deadly downsides. Now scientists are reporting that coating stents with vitamin C could lower the implants’ risks even further.

Sudden Cardiac Death Risk Tied to Protein Overproduction

May 28, 2014 12:57 pm | News | Comments

A genetic variant linked to sudden cardiac death leads to protein overproduction in heart cells, scientists report. The discovery adds to scientific understanding of the causes of sudden cardiac death and of possible ways to prevent it.    

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Breaking News: High Cholesterol Linked to Lower Fertility

May 20, 2014 1:00 pm | News | Comments

High cholesterol levels may impair fertility in couples trying to achieve a pregnancy, according to a new study. Couples in which each partner had a high cholesterol level took the longest time to reach pregnancy, the study showed.    

Racing the Clock to Help Young Patients with Old Hearts

May 20, 2014 11:27 am | News | Comments

Children with progeria, a rare disorder that causes premature aging, die in their teens of ailments that are common in octogenarians: heart failure and stroke. Kan Cao, a University of Maryland assistant professor of cell biology and molecular genetics, urgently wants to help find a cure. Cao and her colleagues have taken a big step in that direction, showing that a toxic protein destroys muscle cells inside the patients’ arteries.

Study Finds Limited Benefit for Vitamin D in Asthma Treatment

May 19, 2014 1:46 pm | News | Comments

Adding vitamin D to asthma treatment to improve breathing only appears to benefit patients who achieve sufficient levels of the supplement in the blood. Overall, the ability to control asthma did not differ between a study group that received vitamin D supplements and a group that received placebo, according to new research.

Red Wine May Not Prevent Heart Disease, Prolong Life

May 16, 2014 10:39 am | News | Comments

There is bad news for those who believe drinking red wine is protecting their hearts and extending their lives. A study found that a plant compound in grapes—resveratrol—may not provide such health benefits. The nine-year study found resveratrol had no significant effect on longevity, inflammation, cardiovascular disease, or cancer.

Hazardous Flame Retardants Found in Child Care Settings

May 15, 2014 11:17 am | News | Comments

A new study of preschools and day care centers finds that flame retardants are prevalent indoors, potentially exposing young children to chemicals known to be hazardous.                       

Caffeine Helps Premature Babies Breathe Easier

May 15, 2014 11:12 am | News | Comments

The caffeine in coffee that might help get you going in the morning can be lifesaving for premature babies. For more than a decade, neonatologists have routinely given premature newborns caffeine as a respiratory stimulant, helping their immature lungs and brains remember to breathe.

Researchers ID Gene That Causes Obesity-related Metabolic Syndrome

May 15, 2014 11:05 am | News | Comments

New research has identified a genetic mutation responsible for the cluster of cardiovascular risk factors that comprise the obesity-related metabolic syndrome.                          

E-Cigarettes Expose People to More than ‘Harmless’ Water Vapor

May 14, 2014 1:00 pm | News | Comments

In a major scientific review of research on e-cigarettes, scientists found that industry claims about the devices are unsupported by the evidence to date, including claims that e-cigarettes help smokers quit.             

Vitamin D Could Slow Diabetes-related Heart Complications

May 13, 2014 1:21 pm | News | Comments

Researchers are evaluating whether vitamin D can slow the development of cardiovascular problems in African Americans with diabetes. They are more likely to die from cardiovascular disease than Caucasians with diabetes.         

Heart Disease-on-a-chip

May 12, 2014 1:52 pm | News | Comments

Harvard scientists have merged stem cell and “organ-on-a-chip” technologies to grow, for the first time, functioning human heart tissue carrying an inherited cardiovascular disease. The research appears to be a big step forward for personalized medicine, because it is working proof that a chunk of tissue containing a patient’s specific genetic disorder can be replicated in the laboratory.

'Bad' Cholesterol Helps Cancer Spread

May 7, 2014 12:48 pm | News | Comments

In a world-first, researchers have discovered one of the main reasons behind why cancer spreads throughout the body: the help of "bad" cholesterol. The research found that LDL regulates the machinery that controls cell migration.       

Novel Antioxidant Makes Old Arteries Seem Young Again

May 6, 2014 2:18 pm | News | Comments

An antioxidant that targets specific cell structures—mitochondria—may be able to reverse some of the negative effects of aging on arteries, reducing the risk of heart disease, according to a new study by the University of Colorado Boulder.

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