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Tag Archives: Press

New strategy could uncover genes at the root of psychiatric illnesses

New strategy could uncover genes at the root of psychiatric illnesses

Understanding the basis of psychiatric disorders has been extremely challenging because there are many genetic variants that may increase risk but are insufficient to cause disease. Now investigators reporting in the July 3rd issue of the Cell Press journal Cell Stem Cell describe a strategy that may help reveal how such “subthreshold” genetic risks interact with other risk factors or environmental exposures to affect the development of the nervous system Continue reading

Explaining ‘healthy’ obesity

Explaining ‘healthy’ obesity

Up to one-quarter of individuals currently labeled as obese are actually metabolically healthy and do not have a high risk of developing type 2 diabetes. Though obesity is a major risk factor for diabetes, the two conditions aren’t always linked. A study published by Cell Press July 3rd in the journal Cell sheds light on a possible explanation, revealing that high levels of a molecule called heme oxygenase-1 (HO-1) are linked to poor metabolic health and an increased risk of type 2 diabetes in obese humans Continue reading

Fruit fly research may reveal what happens in female brains during courtship, mating

Fruit fly research may reveal what happens in female brains during courtship, mating

What are the complex processes in the brain involved with choosing a mate, and are these processes different in females versus males? It’s difficult to study such questions in people, but researchers are finding clues in fruit flies that might be relevant to humans and other animals. Continue reading

Deep brain stimulation improves non motor symptoms in Parkinson’s disease as well as motor symptoms

Deep brain stimulation improves non motor symptoms in Parkinson’s disease as well as motor symptoms

Deep brain stimulation (DBS) has become a well-recognized non-pharmacologic treatment that improves motor symptoms of patients with early and advanced Parkinson’s disease. Evidence now indicates that DBS can decrease the number and severity of non motor symptoms of patients with Parkinson’s disease (PD) as well, according to a review published in the Journal of Parkinson’s Disease . Continue reading

Deep brain stimulation improves non motor symptoms in Parkinson’s disease as well as motor symptoms

Deep brain stimulation improves non motor symptoms in Parkinson’s disease as well as motor symptoms

Deep brain stimulation (DBS) has become a well-recognized non-pharmacologic treatment that improves motor symptoms of patients with early and advanced Parkinson’s disease. Evidence now indicates that DBS can decrease the number and severity of non motor symptoms of patients with Parkinson’s disease (PD) as well, according to a review published in the Journal of Parkinson’s Disease Continue reading

Mitochondrial mutation linked to congenital myasthenic syndrome

Mitochondrial mutation linked to congenital myasthenic syndrome

Although significant progress has been made over the last 25 years to identify genetic abnormalities associated with congenital myasthenic syndromes (CMS), many patients remain genetically undiagnosed. A report in the inaugural issue of the Journal of Neuromuscular Diseases identifies a gene defect in mitochondria, specifically the citrate carrier SLC25A1, that may underlie deficits in neuromuscular transmission seen in two siblings. “While mitochondrial gene defects can cause a myriad of neurological disorders including myopathies and neuropathies, these have not been specifically implicated in defects of the neuromuscular junction,” says Hanns Lochmüller, MD, Professor of Experimental Myology, Institute of Genetic Medicine, MRC Centre for Neuromuscular Diseases, Newcastle University, Newcastle upon Tyne, UK. Continue reading

How cone snail venom minimizes pain

How cone snail venom minimizes pain

The venom from marine cone snails, used to immobilize prey, contains numerous peptides called conotoxins, some of which can act as painkillers in mammals. A recent study in The Journal of General Physiology provides new insight into the mechanisms by which one conotoxin, Vc1.1, inhibits pain. The findings help explain the analgesic powers of this naturally occurring toxin and could eventually lead to the development of synthetic forms of Vc1.1 to treat certain types of neuropathic pain in humans. Continue reading

Linking vascular inflammation to obesity and atherosclerosis

Linking vascular inflammation to obesity and atherosclerosis

A study in The Journal of Experimental Medicine shows that IκB kinase β (IKKβ) functions in smooth muscle cells to regulate vascular inflammatory responses and atherosclerosis development. Inflammatory responses are the driving force of atherosclerosis, a process that involves the hardening and thickening of artery walls due to excess fatty deposits Continue reading

Humans have a nose for gender: Chemical cues influence perceptions of movement as more masculine or feminine

Humans have a nose for gender: Chemical cues influence perceptions of movement as more masculine or feminine

The human body produces chemical cues that communicate gender to members of the opposite sex, according to researchers who report their findings in the Cell Press journal Current Biology on May 1. Whiffs of the active steroid ingredients (androstadienone in males and estratetraenol in females) influence our perceptions of movement as being either more masculine or more feminine Continue reading

Malnutrition during pregnancy may affect the health of future generations

Malnutrition during pregnancy may affect the health of future generations

New research reveals how environmental factors in the womb can predispose not only the mother’s own offspring but also the grandoffspring to metabolic disorders like liver disease. Researchers reporting in the Cell Press journal Cell Metabolism found for pregnant mice that are malnourished — experiencing a 50% caloric restriction during the last week of pregnancy — that their offspring are at first growth restricted and have low birth weight but then go on to become obese and diabetic as they age. Strikingly, in a domino effect, the offspring of the growth-restricted males also inherit the predisposition to metabolic abnormalities. Continue reading