Thursday, February 25

Health

Study suggests liquid biopsy for colorectal cancer could guide therapy for tumours
Health, Lifestyle

Study suggests liquid biopsy for colorectal cancer could guide therapy for tumours

A new study from Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis demonstrates that a liquid biopsy examining blood or urine can help gauge the effectiveness of therapy for colorectal cancer that has just begun to spread beyond the original tumour. Such a biopsy can detect lingering disease and could serve as a guide for deciding whether a patient should undergo further treatments due to some tumour cells evading an initial attempt to eradicate cancer. The study appears online in the Journal of Clinical Oncology Precision Oncology, a journal of the American Society of Clinical Oncology. While a few liquid biopsies have been approved by the Food and Drug Administration, mostly for lung, breast, ovarian, and prostate cancers, none has been approved for colorectal cancer. Patie...
Study: Tiny population of neurons may have big role in depression
Health, Lifestyle

Study: Tiny population of neurons may have big role in depression

Scientists from the Medical College of Georgia at Augusta University claim that a tiny population of neurons known to be important to appetite appear to also have a significant role in depression that results from unpredictable, chronic stress. Scientists report the first evidence that not short-term stress, like a series of tough college exams, rather chronic, unpredictable stress like that which erupts in our personal and professional lives, induces changes in the function of AgRP neurons that may contribute to depression. These AgRP neurons reside exclusively in the bottom portion of the hypothalamus called the arcuate nucleus, or ARC, and are known to be important to energy homeostasis in the body as well prompting us to pick up a fork when we are hungry and see food. The small ...
New study on potential drug target for HIV
Health, Lifestyle

New study on potential drug target for HIV

The researchers from The University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio (UT Health San Antonio) have discovered that a human protein named SAMHD1 recognizes a unique molecular pattern in nucleic acids. This pattern, called 'phosphorothioate', may act as a signal for action to the human body defence system and henceforth could be a step forward in the fight against HIV/AIDS. The study compares the process to a sentinel atop a palace wall who sees an invading horde in the distance and calls the troops to battle stations. Humans possess a formidable multi-layered defense system that protects us against viral infections. A better understanding of these defenses and the tricks that viruses use to evade them could open novel avenues for treating viral infections and possibly other di...
England, Scotland may have observed more deaths due to obesity, exce
Health, Lifestyle

England, Scotland may have observed more deaths due to obesity, exce

Obesity and excess body fat may have contributed to more deaths in England and Scotland than smoking since 2014, according to research. The new research was published in the open-access journal BMC Public Health. Between 2003 and 2017 the percentage of deaths attributable to smoking is calculated to have decreased from 23.1% to 19.4% while deaths attributable to obesity and excess body fat are calculated to have increased from 17.9% to 23.1%. The authors estimate that deaths attributable to obesity and excess body fat overtook those attributable to smoking in 2014. Jill Pell, at the University of Glasgow, United Kingdom, the corresponding author said: "For several decades smoking has been a major target of public health interventions as it is a leading cause of avoidable deaths. As a re...
Study sheds light on how women make choices about surgery to prevent ovarian cancer
Health, Lifestyle

Study sheds light on how women make choices about surgery to prevent ovarian cancer

A study by researchers at Queen Mary University in London has investigated how women who are at high risk of ovarian cancer make choices about possible preventive surgery. Women who have BRCA1 and BRCA2 genetic mutations have a 17-44% lifetime risk of ovarian cancer. Scientists now believe that most ovarian cancers begin in the fallopian tubes, and so women at high risk can choose to undergo surgery to remove both their fallopian tubes and ovaries to reduce their risk. For those who have not yet reached menopause, there are difficult decisions around the order and timing of surgeries, as removing the ovaries will induce menopause. The women interviewed were 24 participants in the UK PROTECTOR trial, in which removal of tubes as an initial step, and delayed removal of ovaries in a second ...
Rabies treatment demonstrated as safe, effective for use in children in first pediatric trial
Health, Lifestyle

Rabies treatment demonstrated as safe, effective for use in children in first pediatric trial

A treatment, known as KEDRAB (Rabies Immune Globulin [Human]), currently used in the prevention of rabies has been demonstrated to be safe and effective for patients age 17 and under. Results published today in Human Vaccines & Immunotherapeutics report the first and only pediatric trial of any human rabies immunoglobulin (HRIG) currently available in the US. Findings have been submitted to the US Food and Drug Administration for review. In the United States, someone is treated for possible exposure to rabies every 10 minutes. Globally, the World Health Organization (WHO) estimates that rabies causes 59,000 human deaths annually in over 150 countries, with 95% of cases occurring in Africa and Asia - however, they concede it is likely a gross underestimate of the true burden of diseas...
Study highlights link between mental disorders and gene readouts
Health, Lifestyle

Study highlights link between mental disorders and gene readouts

Research by the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) claims that the distinctions in the expression of gene transcripts that construct human body cells may hold the way to understand how mental issues with shared hereditary danger factors bring about various examples of onset, symptoms, side effects, course of ailment, and treatment reactions. Findings from the study, conducted by researchers at the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH), part of the National Institutes of Health, appear in the journal Neuropsychopharmacology. "Major mental disorders, such as schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, and major depressive disorder, share common genetic roots, but each disorder presents differently in each individual," said Francis J. McMahon, M.D., a senior author of the study and chief ...
Researchers shed light on routinely imaging brain tumour
Health, Lifestyle

Researchers shed light on routinely imaging brain tumour

A team of researchers explored the best way to monitor brain tumour. The article is the work of a large collaboration of UK experts and stakeholders who met to discuss the value of routinely imaging brain tumour patients to assess their tumour treatment response, which is known as "interval imaging". The results of the study have been published in the open-access journal Frontiers in Oncology. Their verdict: there is very limited evidence to support the practice at present. However, the article also discusses how future research could determine and maximize the value of interval imaging by assessing its cost-effectiveness and how it affects patient quality of life, treatment, and survival. Medical staff use brain scans at predetermined times to assess if a brain tumour patient is respon...
Scientists develop platform to advance medicine research for cancer
Health, Lifestyle

Scientists develop platform to advance medicine research for cancer

A new study published in Genome Biology features a new personalised platform developed by the Cleveland Clinic researchers that will help to accelerate advanced research on genomic medicine and genome-informed drug therapies for cancer mutations. Known as My Personal Mutanome (MPM), the platform features an interactive database that provides insight into the role of disease-associated mutations in cancer and prioritises mutations that may be responsive to drug therapies. "Although advances in sequencing technology have bestowed a wealth of cancer genomic data, the capabilities to bridge the translational gap between large-scale genomic studies and clinical decision making were lacking," said Feixiong Cheng, Ph.D., assistant staff in Cleveland Clinic's Genomic Medicine Institute, and the ...
Women at increased risk of fatal, nighttime cardiac arrest: Study
Health, Highlights, Lifestyle

Women at increased risk of fatal, nighttime cardiac arrest: Study

Women are at a higher risk than men to suffer sudden death due to cardiac arrest during nighttime hours, suggested a new study. The findings were published in the journal 'Heart Rhythm'. The study, led by the Center for Cardiac Arrest Prevention in the Smidt Heart Institute, has found for the first time that during nighttime hours, women are more likely than men to suffer sudden death due to cardiac arrest. "Dying suddenly during nighttime hours is a perplexing and devastating phenomenon," said Sumeet Chugh, MD, senior author of the study and director of the Center for Cardiac Arrest Prevention. "We were surprised to discover that being female is an independent predictor of these events," added Chugh. Medical experts are mystified, Chugh said, because, during these late hours, most pat...
Grape consumption may protect against UV damage to skin
Health, Lifestyle

Grape consumption may protect against UV damage to skin

A recent human study published in the Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology found that consuming grapes protected against ultraviolet (UV) skin damage. Study subjects showed increased resistance to sunburn and a reduction in markers of UV damage at the cellular level. Natural components found in grapes known as polyphenols are thought to be responsible for these beneficial effects. The study, conducted at the University of Alabama, Birmingham and led by principal investigator Craig Elmets, M.D., investigated the impact of consuming whole grape powder - equivalent to 2.25 cups of grapes per day - for 14 days against photodamage from UV light. Subjects' skin response to UV light was measured before and after consuming grapes for two weeks by determining the threshold dose of UV r...
Pandemic increases substance abuse, mental health issues for those struggling with obesity
Health, Lifestyle

Pandemic increases substance abuse, mental health issues for those struggling with obesity

The COVID-19 pandemic is having a detrimental impact on substance use, mental health, and weight-related health behaviors among people with obesity">obesity, according to a new study by researchers at UT Southwestern and the UTHealth School of Public Health. The study, published in the journal Clinical Obesity, surveyed 589 patients with obesity">obesity who are enrolled in the UT Southwestern Weight Wellness Program, multidisciplinary weight management, and post-bariatric care clinic. Nearly half of the group reported using recreational drugs and alcohol, and 10 percent reported increased use since the start of the pandemic. Seventeen of the patients have tested positive for COVID-19. Almost a quarter (24.3 percent) of the patients reported using opioids in the 30 days preceding ...
Lower risk of Parkinson’s disease associated with prostate medication
Health, Lifestyle

Lower risk of Parkinson’s disease associated with prostate medication

The recent findings of a large observational study suggest that a lower risk of developing Parkinson's disease is associated with taking a particular type of medication, that is used for the treatment of enlarged prostate. This study led by researchers from the University of Iowa, with colleagues in Denmark and China, has been published in the journal, JAMA Neurology. It provides compelling evidence that terazosin, and similar medications, might have the potential to prevent or delay the development of Parkinson's disease. The new study used data on almost 300,000 older men from two large, independent patient datasets--the Truven Health Analytics MarketScan database in the United States and national health registries in Denmark--to investigate whether taking terazosin is associated with ...
Covid-19 patients have higher risk of dying after cardiac arrest
Health, Lifestyle

Covid-19 patients have higher risk of dying after cardiac arrest

A new study has found that COVID-19 patients who suffer cardiac arrest have a higher probability of dying in comparison to those who are not infected with it. Women particularly have a nine times higher chance of dying due to the same reason. According to research published in the 'European Heart Journal', the study from Sweden included 1946 people who suffered a cardiac arrest out of hospital (OHCA) and 1080 who suffered one in hospital (IHCA) between 1 January and 20 July. During the pandemic phase of the study, COVID-19 was involved in at least 10 percent of all OHCAs and 16 percent of IHCAs. Coronavirus patients who had an OHCA had a 3.4-fold increased risk of dying within 30 days, while IHCA patients had a 2.3-fold increased risk of dying within 30 days. None of these patients had b...
World Cancer Day: Understanding role of nutrition, lifestyle changes to control cancer
Health, Lifestyle

World Cancer Day: Understanding role of nutrition, lifestyle changes to control cancer

People across the globe need to be aware regarding nutrition and other lifestyle changes that can be implemented to help them recover and potentially reduce the risk of same cancer recurring or a new one developing. World Cancer Day, which is observed to spread awareness, inspire change and reduce the global impact of cancer, is celebrated on February 4, every year. On this World Cancer Day, let's dive into the role of nutrition and lifestyle changes in order to reduce the risk of the deadly disease. Cancer doesn't develop overnight and certain lifestyle changes and foods can help us in preventing the life-threatening disease. Although the crucial role of nutrition on wellbeing was known several hundreds of years ago in ancient healing methods such as traditional Chinese medicine, it oft...