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Male health linked to testosterone exposure in womb, study finds

Male health linked to testosterone exposure in womb, study finds

Men’s susceptibility to serious health conditions may be influenced by low exposure to testosterone in the womb, new research suggests. A study has revealed how men’s testosterone levels may be determined before they are born. Understanding why some men have less of the hormone than others is important because testosterone is crucial for life-long health Continue reading

Regulating legal marijuana could be guided by lessons from alcohol, tobacco, study says

Regulating legal marijuana could be guided by lessons from alcohol, tobacco, study says

As U.S. policymakers consider ways to ease prohibitions on marijuana, the public health approaches used to regulate alcohol and tobacco over the past century may provide valuable lessons, according to new RAND Corporation research. Recent ballot initiatives that legalized marijuana in Colorado and Washington for recreational uses are unprecedented. Continue reading

Treating depression in Parkinson’s Disease patients: New research

Treating depression in Parkinson’s Disease patients: New research

A group of scientists from the University of Kentucky College of Medicine and the Sanders-Brown Center on Aging has found interesting new information in a study on depression and neuropsychological function in Parkinson’s disease (PD). Published in the journal Psychiatry Research , the study, which assessed cognitive function in depressed and non-depressed patients with PD, found that the dopamine replacement therapy commonly used to treat motor symptoms of Parkinson’s disease was associated with a decline in cognitive performance among depressed Parkinson patients. In contrast, non-depressed Parkinson patients’ cognitive function improved on dopamine replacement therapy Continue reading

Treating depression in Parkinson’s Disease patients: New research

Treating depression in Parkinson’s Disease patients: New research

A group of scientists from the University of Kentucky College of Medicine and the Sanders-Brown Center on Aging has found interesting new information in a study on depression and neuropsychological function in Parkinson’s disease (PD). Published in the journal Psychiatry Research , the study, which assessed cognitive function in depressed and non-depressed patients with PD, found that the dopamine replacement therapy commonly used to treat motor symptoms of Parkinson’s disease was associated with a decline in cognitive performance among depressed Parkinson patients. In contrast, non-depressed Parkinson patients’ cognitive function improved on dopamine replacement therapy Continue reading

How the immune system protects children from malaria

How the immune system protects children from malaria

According to a study published today in PLOS Pathogens , children who live in regions of the world where malaria is common can mount an immune response to infection with malaria parasites that may enable them to avoid repeated bouts of high fever and illness and partially control the growth of malaria parasites in their bloodstream. The findings may help researchers develop future interventions that prevent or mitigate the disease caused by the malaria parasite. Continue reading

Gene variant raises risk for aortic tear, rupture

Gene variant raises risk for aortic tear, rupture

Researchers from Yale School of Medicine and Celera Diagnostics have confirmed the significance of a genetic variant that substantially increases the risk of a frequently fatal thoracic aortic dissection or full rupture. The study appears online in PLOS ONE . Thoracic aortic aneurysms, or bulges in the artery wall, can develop without pain or other symptoms Continue reading

Tracking flu levels with Wikipedia

Tracking flu levels with Wikipedia

Can monitoring Wikipedia hits show how many people have the flu? Researchers at Boston Children’s Hospital, USA, have developed a method of estimating levels of influenza-like illness in the American population by analysing Internet traffic on specific flu-related Wikipedia articles. David McIver and John Brownstein’s model, publishing in PLOS Computational Biology on April 17th, estimates flu levels in the American population up to two weeks sooner than data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention becomes available, and accurately estimates the week of peak influenza activity 17% more often than Google Flu Trends data Continue reading

Radiation therapy for cervical cancer increases risk for colorectal cancer

Radiation therapy for cervical cancer increases risk for colorectal cancer

Researchers at the University of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston are the first to recommend that young women treated with radiation for cervical cancer should begin colorectal cancer screening earlier than traditionally recommended. The UTMB researchers, finding a high incidence of secondary colorectal cancers among cervical cancer survivors treated with radiation, offer new recommendations that the younger women in this group begin colorectal cancer screening about eight years after their initial cervical cancer diagnosis instead of waiting until age 50 Continue reading

More effective kidney stone treatment, from macroscopic to nanoscale

More effective kidney stone treatment, from macroscopic to nanoscale

Researchers in France have hit on a novel method to help kidney stone sufferers ensure they receive the correct and most effective treatment possible. Kidney stones represent a major medical problem in the western and developing world. If left untreated, apart from being particularly painful, they can lead to renal failure and other complications. Continue reading

Fighting neuroblastomas by blocking DNA replication, repair

Fighting neuroblastomas by blocking DNA replication, repair

Neuroblastoma is one of the deadliest childhood cancers, accounting for 15 percent of pediatric cancer deaths. For patients with high-risk neuroblastomas, the five-year survival rate is 40 to 50 percent even with the most rigorous treatments available today. But those odds may improve soon, thanks to a new compound developed by City of Hope scientists Continue reading