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  • March 4, 2015
  • 07:03 PM
  • 3 views

Team accidentally finds key to DNA vaccination and genetic engineering

by Dr. Jekyll in Lunatic Laboratories

It might have been an accident, but for some lucky researchers accidents are a good thing. In this particular case, scientists have discovered a new way to manipulate how cells function, a finding that might help advance an experimental approach to improving public health: DNA vaccines, which could be more efficient, less expensive and easier to store than traditional vaccines.
... Read more »

  • March 4, 2015
  • 04:02 PM
  • 9 views

A study of twins shows that autism is largely genetic

by Dr. Jekyll in Lunatic Laboratories

In the fight against misinformation about autism it seems science is starting to come out on top, finally. A new study hopes to add to the recent advancements made in the understanding of autism, which finds that a substantial genetic and moderate environmental influences were associated with risk of autism spectrum disorder (ASD) and broader autism traits in a study of twins.... Read more »

Colvert, E., Tick, B., McEwen, F., Stewart, C., Curran, S., Woodhouse, E., Gillan, N., Hallett, V., Lietz, S., Garnett, T.... (2015) Heritability of Autism Spectrum Disorder in a UK Population-Based Twin Sample. JAMA Psychiatry. DOI: 10.1001/jamapsychiatry.2014.3028  

  • March 4, 2015
  • 08:30 AM
  • 11 views

Taking Care of your Pet Rabbit

by CAPB in Companion Animal Psychology Blog

Rabbits are the third most popular pet, but how should you look after them?A study by Nicola Rooney (University of Bristol) et al asked 1254 rabbit owners about how they housed, fed, played with and otherwise cared for their rabbit. The good news is that “many pet rabbits were found to be in good health, had compatible companions and were provided with enriched living areas.” But there were also many areas where things could be improved. The most common type of rabbit was a Lop, followe........ Read more »

Rooney NJ, Blackwell EJ, Mullan SM, Saunders R, Baker PE, Hill JM, Sealey CE, Turner MJ, & Held SD. (2014) The current state of welfare, housing and husbandry of the English pet rabbit population. BMC research notes, 942. PMID: 25532711  

  • March 4, 2015
  • 04:41 AM
  • 16 views

Asthma and autism: a spanner in the works?

by Paul Whiteley in Questioning Answers

As happens so many times in autism research, spanners are thrown in works. Take the paper from Ousseny Zerbo and colleagues [1] who concluded that: "children with autism have elevated prevalence of specific immune-related comorbidities". Nothing surprising about that finding based on the volumes of other research which seemed to have reached similar conclusions (see here).Then the spanner: "asthma was diagnosed significantly less often" in autism cases compared with asymptomatic controls. Asthma........ Read more »

Zerbo O, Leong A, Barcellos L, Bernal P, Fireman B, & Croen LA. (2015) Immune Mediated Conditions in Autism Spectrum Disorders. Brain, behavior, and immunity. PMID: 25681541  

  • March 3, 2015
  • 04:41 PM
  • 26 views

Protein Suppresses Appetite More Than Fat or Carbohydrates

by Marie Benz in MedicalResearch.com

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Anestis Dougkas, MSc, PhD Food for Health Science Centre Lund University Lund, Sweden MedicalResearch: What is the background for this study? Dr. Dougkas: There has been an increased interest in the macronutrient profile of diets and meals as … Continue reading →... Read more »

MedicalResearch.com Interview with:, & Anestis Dougkas, MSc, PhD. (2015) Protein Suppresses Appetite More Than Fat or Carbohydrates. MedicalResearch.com. info:/

  • March 3, 2015
  • 03:12 PM
  • 25 views

Vegetarian Protein Sufficient For Appetite Control and Weight Loss

by Marie Benz in MedicalResearch.com

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Dr. Alex Johnstone PhD Rowett Institute of Nutrition and Health Aberdeen   Medical Research: What is the background for this study? Response: Previous work has indicated that high-protein (30% of diet as protein) meat-based weight loss diets … Continue reading →... Read more »

MedicalResearch.com Interview with:, Dr. Alex Johnstone PhD, Rowett Institute of Nutrition and Health, & Aberdeen. (2015) Vegetarian Protein Sufficient For Appetite Control and Weight Loss. MedicalResearch.com. info:/

  • March 3, 2015
  • 02:41 PM
  • 26 views

Early life stress may result in a serotonin deficiency

by Dr. Jekyll in Lunatic Laboratories

If you have experienced — or are experiencing — mood disorders like anxiety or depression, you know about SSRI’s and chances are they didn’t do much for you. In fact studies indicate that the majority of people with mood and anxiety disorders who receive Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitors (SSRI’s) are not helped by these medications. Sadly, they are the most commonly prescribed class of antidepressant medications, this is because SSRIs are designed to increase serotonin levels, a ........ Read more »

  • March 3, 2015
  • 06:21 AM
  • 15 views

Screening Men with ED For Heart Disease May Be Cost Effective

by Marie Benz in MedicalResearch.com

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Alexander W. Pastuszak, MD, PhD Male Reproductive Medicine and Surgery Scott Department of Urology Baylor College of Medicine Houston, TX   Medical Research: What is the background for this study? Dr. Pastuszak: The link between erectile dysfunction … Continue reading →... Read more »

MedicalResearch.com Interview with:, & Alexander W. Pastuszak, MD, PhD. (2015) Screening Men with ED For Heart Disease May Be Cost Effective. MedicalResearch.com. info:/

  • March 3, 2015
  • 05:19 AM
  • 28 views

Schizophrenia and the risk of fractures

by Paul Whiteley in Questioning Answers

The systematic review and meta-analysis published by Brendon Stubbs and colleagues [1] provides some food for thought for healthcare providers and others looking at the wider implications following a diagnosis of schizophrenia. "People with schizophrenia are at significantly increased risk of fractures" was the conclusion reached based on the collected analysis of tens of thousands of people diagnosed with schizophrenia compared with nearly 4 million controls.My immediate thought (and tweet) whe........ Read more »

Stubbs B, Gaughran F, Mitchell AJ, De Hert M, Farmer R, Soundy A, Rosenbaum S, & Vancampfort D. (2015) Schizophrenia and the risk of fractures: a systematic review and comparative meta-analysis. General hospital psychiatry. PMID: 25666994  

  • March 2, 2015
  • 09:12 PM
  • 6 views

More Physicians Per Capita Means More Prescriptions Per Capita

by Marie Benz in MedicalResearch.com

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Eili Y. Klein Ph.D. Assistant Professor Department of Emergency Medicine Johns Hopkins University Baltimore, MD 21209 Medical Research: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings? Dr. Klein: Antibiotic prescriptions rates vary widely … Continue reading →... Read more »

MedicalResearch.com Interview with:, & Eili Y. Klein Ph.D. Assistant Professor. (2015) More Physicians Per Capita Equals More Prescriptions Per Capita. MedicalResearch.com. info:/

  • March 2, 2015
  • 08:05 PM
  • 6 views

IMAGINE Trial: Worse Outcomes For Women Than Men After CABG

by Marie Benz in MedicalResearch.com

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Saskia Haitjema MD PhD candidate Division Heart and Lung, Laboratory of Experimental Cardiology University Medical Center Utrecht Medical Research: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings? Response: Although cardiovascular diseases are often … Continue reading →... Read more »

MedicalResearch.com Interview with:, & Saskia Haitjema MD PhD candidate. (2015) IMAGINE Trial: Worse Outcomes For Women Than Men After CABG. MedicalResearch.com. info:/

  • March 2, 2015
  • 04:43 PM
  • 40 views

Drug already on the market could help treat MS and other neurological diseases

by Dr. Jekyll in Lunatic Laboratories

Multiple sclerosis, unless you suffer from nerve damage it is a pain you (thankfully) will never have to feel. In most cases, treating the brutal pain caused by this (and other neurological diseases) is the only help that can be offered to people. The pain is caused by damage to myelin, the fatty insulator that enables communication between nerve cells, which characterizes multiple sclerosis (MS) and other devastating neurological diseases.... Read more »

Abiraman, K., Pol, S., O'Bara, M., Chen, G., Khaku, Z., Wang, J., Thorn, D., Vedia, B., Ekwegbalu, E., Li, J.... (2015) Anti-Muscarinic Adjunct Therapy Accelerates Functional Human Oligodendrocyte Repair. Journal of Neuroscience, 35(8), 3676-3688. DOI: 10.1523/JNEUROSCI.3510-14.2015  

  • March 2, 2015
  • 04:40 PM
  • 4 views

Medicare RAC Audits Fraught With Delays, High Costs and Lack of Transparency

by Marie Benz in MedicalResearch.com

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Ann M. Sheehy, M.D., M.S. Associate Professor Division Head, Hospital Medicine University of Wisconsin Department of Medicine MedicalResearch: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings? Dr. Sheehy: Outpatient (observation) and inpatient status … Continue reading →... Read more »

MedicalResearch.com Interview with:, & Ann M. Sheehy, M.D., M.S. (2015) Medicare RAC Audits Fraught With Delays, High Costs and Lack of Transparency. MedicalResearch.com. info:/

  • March 2, 2015
  • 04:49 AM
  • 42 views

Systemic low grade inflammation and bowel issues in autism?

by Paul Whiteley in Questioning Answers

The paper from Katarina Babinská and colleagues [1] (open-access here) presents an interesting, if preliminary take on two potentially important issues linked to at least some cases of autism: gastrointestinal (GI) issues and inflammation (see here and see here respectively).Detailing the examination of plasma levels of a compound called high mobility group box 1 protein (HMGB1), a protein which has the apparent ability to 'bend DNA' and has some pretty potent immune effects [2] (one paper........ Read more »

  • March 1, 2015
  • 03:20 PM
  • 57 views

Science shows intermittent fasting diet could extend life

by Dr. Jekyll in Lunatic Laboratories

Think of it as interval training for the dinner table. Proponents of fasting style diets will be first to tell you there are health benefits, heck we've even covered some of the science here at the labs. Well new research shows that putting people on a intermittent fasting (or IF) diet may mimic some of the benefits of actual fasting, and that (ironically enough given their popularity) adding antioxidant supplements counteracts those benefits.... Read more »

  • March 1, 2015
  • 03:52 AM
  • 71 views

Vitamin D status affecting autoimmune disease risk?

by Paul Whiteley in Questioning Answers

I want to bring the paper from Tea Skaaby and colleagues [1] to your attention for today's brief blog post and their observation that there may be: "a possible protective role of a higher vitamin D status on autoimmune disease". Autoimmune disease by the way, reflects a breakdown in communication and tolerance of 'self' whereby the body attacks healthy tissue.Their findings, based on an analysis of "a total of 12,555 individuals from three population-based studies with measurements of vitam........ Read more »

  • February 28, 2015
  • 10:04 AM
  • 101 views

Meditating For Alice In Wonderland Syndrome

by Chiara Civardi in United Academics

Dear Alice’s fan, this poem by Shel Silverstein is titled ‘Alice’ and now it’s your turn: are you ready to go down the rabbit hole again and be guided in our mind’s wonderland? So, let’s see what the blow up-potion and the shrinking-cake are made of.... Read more »

  • February 27, 2015
  • 07:04 PM
  • 70 views

ME/CFS is real: confirmation if it is needed...

by Paul Whiteley in Questioning Answers

"Scientists discover robust evidence that chronic fatigue syndrome is a biological illness" went the title of the press release for the study by Mady Hornig and colleagues [1] (open-access) detailing an immune 'signature' and also possible staging of the illness.I couldn't help but wince at some of the media headlines reporting on this study as 'proof' that chronic fatigue syndrome / myalgic encephalomyelitis (CFS/ME) is a real illness. As I've indicated before on this blog (see here) anyon........ Read more »

Mady Hornig, José G. Montoya, Nancy G. Klimas, Susan Levine, Donna Felsenstein, Lucinda Bateman, Daniel L. Peterson, C. Gunnar Gottschalk, Andrew F. Schultz, Xiaoyu Che.... (2015) Distinct plasma immune signatures in ME/CFS are present early in the course of illness. Science Advances, 1(1). info:/http://dx.doi.org/10.1126/sciadv.1400121

  • February 27, 2015
  • 05:23 PM
  • 64 views

New compounds protect nerves from the damage of MS

by Dr. Jekyll in Lunatic Laboratories

Autoimmune diseases are tough to live with, frankly we don’t really understand the reasons they start at all, how to treat them, or even where to start in forming a cure. Well there might be some good news — as far as a treatment goes anyway — a newly characterized group of pharmacological compounds block both the inflammation and nerve cell damage seen in mouse models of multiple sclerosis.... Read more »

Haines, J., Herbin, O., de la Hera, B., Vidaurre, O., Moy, G., Sun, Q., Fung, H., Albrecht, S., Alexandropoulos, K., McCauley, D.... (2015) Nuclear export inhibitors avert progression in preclinical models of inflammatory demyelination. Nature Neuroscience. DOI: 10.1038/nn.3953  

  • February 27, 2015
  • 04:37 AM
  • 54 views

Hyperprolactinemia and risperidone use in autism

by Paul Whiteley in Questioning Answers

The findings reported by Yaowaluck Hongkaew and colleagues [1] (open-access) on prolactin levels being "positively and significantly associated with risperidone dose" in cases of children and adolescents diagnosed with an autism spectrum disorder (ASD) is the point of discussion today.Prolactin by the way, is the hormone most commonly associated with stimulating breast development and milk production in women. To quote from the US National Institute of Health (NIH) entry on prolactin: "There is ........ Read more »

Hongkaew Y, Ngamsamut N, Puangpetch A, Vanwong N, Srisawasdi P, Chamnanphon M, Chamkrachchangpada B, Tan-Kam T, Limsila P, & Sukasem C. (2015) Hyperprolactinemia in Thai children and adolescents with autism spectrum disorder treated with risperidone. Neuropsychiatric disease and treatment, 191-6. PMID: 25653528  

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