Medical News

  • More women in US receive 3-D mammography but disparities remain
    Use of 3-D mammography, an advanced form of breast cancer screening, has risen rapidly in recent years, according to Yale researchers in a new study. But adoption of the technology varies widely, reflecting emerging disparities in care, they said. Read more »
  • Performance-enhancing bacteria found in the microbiomes of elite athletes
    New research has identified a type of bacteria found in the microbiomes of elite athletes that contributes to improved capacity for exercise. These bacteria, members of the genus Veillonella, are not found in the guts of sedentary people. Read more »
  • New therapy targets gut bacteria to prevent and reverse food allergies
    Every three minutes, a food-related allergic reaction sends someone to the emergency room in the U.S. Currently, the only way to prevent a reaction is for people with food allergies to completely avoid the food to which they are allergic. Researchers are actively seeking new treatments to prevent or reverse food allergies in patients. Recent insights about the microbiome—the complex ecosystem of microorganisms that live in the gut and other body sites—have suggested that an altered gut microbiome may play a pivotal role in the development of food allergies. A new study, led by investigators from Brigham and Women's Hospital and Boston Children's Hospital, identifies the species of bacteria in the human infant gut that protect against food allergies, finding changes associated with the development of food allergies and an altered immune response. In preclinical studies in a mouse model of food allergy, the team found that giving an enriched oral formulation of five or six species of bacteria found in the human gut protected against food allergies and reversed established disease by reinforcing tolerance of food allergens. The team's results are published in Nature Medicine. Read more »
  • Alzheimer's missing link ID'd, answering what tips brain's decline
    Years before symptoms of Alzheimer's disease appear, two kinds of damaging proteins silently collect in the brain: amyloid beta and tau. Clumps of amyloid accumulate first, but tau is particularly noxious. Wherever tangles of the tau protein appear, brain tissue dies, triggering the confusion and memory loss that are hallmarks of Alzheimer's. Read more »
  • Settling the debate on serotonin's role in sleep
    Serotonin is a multipurpose molecule found throughout the brain, playing a role in memory, cognition, and feelings of happiness and other emotions. In particular, researchers have long debated serotonin's role in sleep: Does serotonin promote sleep, or its opposite, wakefulness? Read more »
  • Deportation worries fuel anxiety, poor sleep, among US-born Latinx youth
    The rise of anti-immigration rhetoric and policies in the United States following the 2016 presidential election may be taking its toll on the health of California's Latinx youth, including those who are U.S. citizens, suggests a new study led by University of California, Berkeley, researchers. Read more »
  • AMA Internal Medicine commentary highlights opportunity to discover modifiable risk factor for dementia
    In a commentary published in JAMA Internal Medicine, three Regenstrief Institute research scientists write that while they and other researchers have identified a strong and consistent link between anticholinergic drugs and cognitive impairment from observational studies, randomized clinical trials represent the only rigorous method to definitively establish a causal relationship between these frequently used drugs and various dementias. Read more »
  • Commonly prescribed drugs could increase the risk of dementia, says a new study
    The study, carried out by experts from the University of Nottingham and funded by the NIHR School for Primary Care Research, found that there was nearly a 50% increased risk of dementia among patients aged 55 and over who had used strong anticholinergic medication daily for three years or more. Read more »
  • Seeing the doctor? Relax, you'll remember more
    Some patients feel shame, anxiety or fear immediately before seeing their doctor, making them tense. But if they can relax and become calm, patients will likely pay attention to and better comprehend health messages, suggests a new University of Michigan study. Read more »
  • 'Brain fever' death toll passes 150 in Indian state
    The death toll from a brain disease that has stricken children in India's Bihar state rose above 150 on Monday as a court ordered an investigation into the crisis. Read more »
  • EU says no proof of "east-west" split in food quality
    European Union scientists have found no evidence of an "east-west divide" in the bloc's food quality, EU officials said Monday after eastern countries charged their consumers were short changed. Read more »
  • Physical evidence in the brain for types of schizophrenia
    In a study using brain tissue from deceased human donors, Johns Hopkins Medicine researchers say they found new evidence that schizophrenia can be marked by the buildup of abnormal proteins similar to those found in the brains of people with such neurodegenerative disorders as Alzheimer's or Huntington's diseases. Read more »
  • Immunotherapy and HDAC inhibition are anti-cancer besties
    Immunotherapies have revolutionized the care of many cancers, teaching the body's own immune cells to recognize and attack tumor cells. Leading the way are drugs known as checkpoint inhibitors, which block a kind of "white flag" that tumors wave as a peace signal to T cells that would very much like to kill them. Really, this white flag is a protein called PD-L1—many tumors coat themselves in it. When PD-L1 on the surface of a cancer cell sees its partner, PD1, on T cells, these T cells are tricked into letting the cancer cell live. To counteract this dirty trick, checkpoint inhibitor drugs block the functions of PD-L1 on tumor cells (e.g. atezolizumab) or PD1 on T cells (e.g. pembrolizumab), allowing T cells to go about their cancer-killing business. Read more »
  • Popular strategy for raising pregnancy rates in IVF fails to deliver improvement in large trial
    The increasingly popular trend for fertility clinics to freeze all IVF embryos for later transfer has been shown in a large multicentre randomised trial to offer no improvement in delivery rates over traditional 'fresh' embryo transfers. "Our findings give no support to a general freeze-all strategy in normally menstruating women," said investigator Dr. Sacha Stormlund from Copenhagen University Hospital in Denmark, who presents the results today at the 35th Annual Meeting of ESHRE. Read more »
  • Death toll in Indian encephalitis outbreak rises to 152
    India's Supreme Court on Monday directed state and national authorities to file reports to the court on an encephalitis outbreak in the eastern state of Bihar this month in which 152 children have died. Read more »
  • Helping the body's ability to grow bone
    For the first time, scientists have been able to study how well synthetic bone grafts stand up to the rigors and 'strains' of life, and how quickly they help bone re-grow and repair. Read more »
  • Study ties poor sleep to reduced memory performance in older adults
    A new study has found that variability in night-to-night sleep time and reduced sleep quality adversely affect the ability of older adults to recall information about past events. The study also found unexpected racial differences in the type of sleep patterns tied to lower memory performance across both younger and older African American research participants. Read more »
  • Early biomarker found for degenerative neurologic disease
    Researchers have discovered a novel radioligand that can effectively differentiate progressive supranuclear palsy (PSP) from similar brain disorders, allowing for earlier and more reliable diagnosis of the disease. Presented at the Society of Nuclear Medicine and Molecular Imaging's 2019 Annual Meeting, these findings bring physicians a step closer to being able to definitively diagnose PSP with imaging rather than waiting for confirmation upon autopsy. Read more »
  • Novel noninvasive molecular imaging for monitoring rheumatoid arthritis
    A first-in-human Phase 1/Phase II study demonstrates that intravenous administration of the radiopharmaceutical imaging agent technetium-99m (99mTc) tilmanocept promises to be a safe, well-tolerated, noninvasive means of monitoring rheumatoid arthritis disease activity. At present, there is no reliable noninvasive way to directly monitor inflammation in joints of RA patients. The study was presented at the 2019 Annual Meeting of the Society of Nuclear Medicine and Molecular Imaging (SNMMI). Read more »
  • Suicide rates are rising significantly among African American teens
    A large-scale study from The University of Toledo of young African Americans who have attempted or died by suicide suggests there is a greater need for mental health services in urban school districts, and that we need to do a better job in convincing parents and caregivers to safely secure firearms and ammunition in the home. Taking those measures, Dr. James Price said, could save lives. Read more »
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