Volume 9 Issue 40
Published - 14:00 UTC 08:00 EST 9-Feb-2007 
Next Update - 14:00 UTC 08:00 EST 10-Feb-2007

Editor: Susan K. Boyer, RN
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Wartime raises stress, blood pressure rates in military offspring

Children with parents in the military have higher blood pressure, heart rates and general stress levels than their peers during wartime, researchers say. more  

Folate and B12 may influence cognition in seniors

Folate and vitamin B12, two important nutrients for the development of healthy nerves and blood cells, may work together to protect cognitive function among seniors, reports a new epidemiological study from the Jean Mayer USDA Human Nutrition Research Center on Aging at Tufts University (USDA HNRCA). According to Martha Savaria Morris, PhD, epidemiologist at the USDA HNRCA, "we found a strong relationship between high folate status and good cognitive function among people 60 and older who also had adequate levels of vitamin B12." The study, published in the January 2007 issue of the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, also determined that low vitamin B12 status was associated with increased cognitive impairment. more

Medical therapy for restless legs syndrome may trigger compulsive gambling

Compulsive gambling with extreme losses -- in two cases, greater than $100,000 -- by people without a prior history of gambling problems has been linked to a class of drugs commonly used to treat the neurological disorder restless legs syndrome (RLS). A new Mayo Clinic study is the first to describe this compulsive gambling in RLS patients who are being treated with medications that stimulate dopamine receptors in the brain. The Mayo Clinic report appeared in the Jan. 23 issue of Neurology. more  

Lung cancer rates higher among female nonsmokers than previously believed

Not all lung cancer is due to a lifetime of smoking cigarettes. Sometimes the diagnosis is a mystery, and the stigma surrounding the disease makes it hard for patients to talk about. Now, researchers at the Stanford University School of Medicine and the Northern California Cancer Center have taken the first steps toward analyzing why people who never smoked get lung cancer. more

Revealing secret intentions in the brain  

Every day we plan numerous actions, such as to return a book to a friend or to make an appointment. How and where the brain stores these intentions has been revealed by John-Dylan Haynes from the Max Planck Institute for Human Cognitive and Brain Sciences, in cooperation with researchers from London and Tokyo. For the first time they were able to "read" participants' intentions out of their brain activity. This was made possible by a new combination of functional magnetic resonance imaging and sophisticated computer algorithms (Current Biology, 20th February 2007, online: 8th February). more

Does a component of niacin point the way to anti-aging drugs?  

In recent years, scientists have discovered that a family of enzymes called sirtuins can dramatically extend life in organisms as diverse as yeast, worms, and flies. They may also be able to control age-associated metabolic disorders, including obesity and type II diabetes. more

Reversal of symptoms in an autism spectrum disorder

The Rett Syndrome Research Foundation (RSRF) announces results of a landmark study reversing the symptoms of Rett Syndrome (RTT) in a genetic mouse model. The findings, by Adrian Bird, Ph.D., of the University of Edinburgh and Chairman of the RSRF Scientific Advisory Board, appear online in Science Express on February 8, 2007. Rett Syndrome is a severe childhood neurological disease that is the most physically disabling of the autism spectrum disorders. The experiments were funded by the Rett Syndrome Research Foundation (RSRF), the Wellcome Trust and the Rett Syndrome U.K./Jeans for Genes. more

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A drug can make you gamble.