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Nanoparticles Treat Muscular Dystrophy in Mice

February 12, 2014 11:45 am | News | Comments

Researchers at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis have demonstrated a new approach to treating muscular dystrophy. Mice with a form of this muscle-weakening disease showed improved strength and heart function when treated with nanoparticles loaded with rapamycin, an immunosuppressive drug recently found to improve recycling of cellular waste.

New NIST Method Evaluates Response to Oxidation in Live Cells

February 12, 2014 11:07 am | News | Comments

Researchers at the NIST developed a new method for accurately measuring a key process governing a wide variety of cellular functions that may become the basis for a "health checkup" for living cells. The technique measures changes in a living cell's internal redox (reduction-oxidation) potential, a chemistry concept that expresses the favorability of reactions in which molecules or atoms either gain or lose electrons. 

Exercise Targets Cellular Powerhouses to Improve Heart Function

February 12, 2014 10:36 am | News | Comments

Whether lifting weights in a gym or just walking around the block, exercise has many benefits, such as helping people lose weight and build stronger muscles. Some studies suggest that it may reduce the risk of developing cancer and other diseases. Researchers now report that moderate, long-term physical activity appears to improve cardiovascular health in mice by targeting the heart cells’ powerhouses—the mitochondria.

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Computer Models Help Decode Cells that Sense Light Without Seeing

February 10, 2014 12:01 pm | News | Comments

Researchers have found that the melanopsin pigment in the eye is potentially more sensitive to light than its more famous counterpart, rhodopsin, the pigment that allows for night vision. Recent studies revealed the existence of a small number of intrinsically photosensitive nervous cells that regulate non-visual light responses.

A Microchip for Metastasis

February 7, 2014 11:32 am | News | Comments

In an attempt to learn how and why certain cancers spread to specific organs, researchers have developed a three-dimensional microfluidic platform that mimics the spread of breast cancer cells into a bonelike environment.         

WADA to Resume HGH Testing, 'Outraged' by New Drug

February 7, 2014 11:19 am | by Graham Dunbar, Associated Press | News | Comments

Testing for HGH, including samples from Sochi Olympic athletes, should resume after being stalled by an appeal case ruling last year, WADA director-general David Howman said. WADA also said it was "totally outrageous" that a Russian scientist reportedly offered to sell a potent and undetectable new muscle-building drug to undercover journalists. The substance, known as full size MGF, has only been trialed on animals.

Nutritional Supplement Improves Cognitive Performance in Older Adults

February 6, 2014 4:13 pm | News | Comments

Declines in the underlying brain skills needed to think, remember, and learn are normal in aging. Therapies to improve the cognitive health of older adults are critically important for lessening declines in mental performance as people age.

New Evidence Shows Increase in Obesity May be Slowing, But Not by Much

February 6, 2014 12:00 pm | News | Comments

In his 2014 State of the Union address, President Obama referred to an August 2013 CDC study that showed a decline in the obesity rate among low-income preschool children. While the CDC report’s data is encouraging, a new study published by University of Illinois kinesiology and community health professor Ruopeng An shows the notion that the American obesity epidemic has begun to reverse may be premature.

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Stopping Liver Failure from Painkiller Overdose

February 5, 2014 8:46 am | News | Comments

University of Adelaide researchers have identified a key step for the future prevention of liver failure resulting from taking too much of the everyday painkiller paracetamol (also known as acetaminophen). The study pinpoints a target for new treatments to prevent the potentially lethal consequences of paracetamol overdose.

CVS Caremark Plans to Stop Tobacco Products Sales

February 5, 2014 8:07 am | by Michael Felberbaum - AP Business Writers - Associated Press | News | Comments

CVS Caremark is kicking the habit of selling tobacco products at its more than 7,600 drugstores nationwide as it focuses more on providing health care. The nation's second-largest drugstore chain said Wednesday that it will phase out cigarettes, cigars and chewing tobacco by Oct. 1, a move that will cost about $2 billion in annual revenue.

Testing Nanomedicine With Blood Cells On A Microchip

February 5, 2014 7:42 am | News | Comments

Designing nanomedicine to combat diseases is a hot area of scientific research, primarily for treating cancer, but very little is known in the context of atherosclerotic disease. Scientists have engineered a microchip coated with blood vessel cells to learn more about the conditions under which nanoparticles accumulate in the plaque-filled arteries of patients with atherosclerosis.

Scientists Call for Screening Mammography Every Two Years for Most Women

February 4, 2014 11:57 am | News | Comments

Adoption of new guidelines recommending screening mammography every two years for women ages 50 to 74 would result in breast cancer screening that is equally effective, while saving the United States $4.3 billion a year in health care costs, according to a study led by UC San Francisco.

Biologic Agents Provide Relief for Children Newly Diagnosed with Crohn’s Disease

February 4, 2014 11:43 am | News | Comments

Children newly diagnosed with Crohn’s disease may benefit from early treatment with the biologic drugs known as anti-TNF-α agents. Researchers compared the effectiveness of early (within three months after diagnosis) treatment with anti-TNF-α inhibitors, compared with early treatment with immunomodulatory drugs, in attaining clinical remission and facilitating growth in children with Crohn's disease.

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Study Suggests Women 35 and Older are at Decreased Risk of Having Anatomically Abnormal Child

February 3, 2014 11:28 am | News | Comments

In a study to be presented on Feb. 6 at 3 p.m. CST, at the Society for Maternal-Fetal Medicine’s annual meeting, The Pregnancy Meeting, in New Orleans, researchers will report that women ages 35 and older are at a decreased risk of having a child with a major congenital malformation, after excluding chromosomal abnormalities.

New Treatment Could Reduce Kids' Peanut Allergies

January 29, 2014 7:07 pm | by Maria Cheng - AP Medical Writer - Associated Press | News | Comments

An experimental therapy that fed children with peanut allergies small amounts of peanut flour has helped more than 80 percent of them safely eat a handful of the previously worrisome nuts. Although experts say the results of the carefully monitored study are encouraging, they warn it isn't something that parents should try at home.

Study: Kids' Obesity Risk Starts Before School Age

January 29, 2014 5:07 pm | by By Marilynn Marchione - AP Chief Medical Writer - Associated Press | News | Comments

Those efforts to fight obesity in schools? Think younger. A new study finds that much of a child's "weight fate" is set by age 5, and that nearly half of kids who became obese by the eighth grade were already overweight when they started kindergarten.

Scientists Reveal Cause of One of the Most Devastating Pandemics in Human History

January 28, 2014 2:08 pm | Videos | Comments

An international team of scientists has discovered that two of the world’s most devastating plagues – the plague of Justinian and the Black Death, each responsible for killing as many as half the people in Europe—were caused by distinct strains of the same pathogen, one that faded out on its own, the other leading to worldwide spread and re-emergence in the late 1800s.

Critical Protein Discovered for Healthy Cell Growth in Mammals

January 28, 2014 1:46 pm | News | Comments

A team of researchers has discovered a protein that is required for the growth of tiny, but critical, hair-like structures called cilia on cell surfaces. The discovery has important implications for human health because lack of cilia can lead to serious diseases such as polycystic kidney disease, blindness, and neurological disorders.

Scientists Find Genetic Mechanism Linking Aging to Specific Diets

January 28, 2014 1:39 pm | News | Comments

Your best friend swears by the Paleo Diet. Your boss loves Atkins. Your sister is gluten-free, and your roommate is an acolyte of Michael Pollan. So who’s right? Maybe they all are. Researchers identified a collection of genes that allow an organism to adapt to different diets and showed that without the genes, even minor tweaks to diets can cause premature aging and death.

Detecting Sickness by Smell

January 23, 2014 12:35 pm | News | Comments

A new study shows that humans are able to smell sickness in someone whose immune system is highly active within just a few hours of exposure to a toxin. The researchers say there is anecdotal and scientific evidence suggesting that diseases have particular smells.

Hearing Loss Linked to Brain Tissue Loss

January 23, 2014 12:29 pm | News | Comments

Although the brain becomes smaller with age, the shrinkage seems to be fast-tracked in older adults with hearing loss, according to the results of a new study.                          

Can Fish Oil Preserve Brain Cells?

January 23, 2014 11:50 am | News | Comments

People with higher levels of the omega-3 fatty acids found in fish oil may also have larger brain volumes in old age equivalent to preserving one to two years of brain health, according to a new study.                

Probability of Blindness from Glaucoma Has Nearly Halved

January 22, 2014 8:30 am | News | Comments

The probability of blindness due to the serious eye disease glaucoma has decreased by nearly half since 1980, according to a new study.  The researchers speculate that advances in diagnosis and therapy are likely causes for the decrease.  

Happy People Are Healthier, Too

January 22, 2014 8:30 am | News | Comments

People who enjoy life maintain better physical function in their daily activities and keep up faster walking speeds as they age, compared with people who enjoy life less, according to a new study.               

Genome of Intestinal Disease Bacteria to be Sequenced

January 22, 2014 8:30 am | News | Comments

Researchers are set to decipher the genomes of a main bacterial cause of food poisoning, which results in over 21,000 hospital admissions and 100 deaths each year.                           

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