MedicineWorld.Org
Your gateway to the world of medicine
Home
News
Cancer News
About Us
Cancer
Health Professionals
Patients and public
Contact Us
Disclaimer

Medicineworld.org: Archives of neurology news blog


Go Back to the main neurology news blog

Subscribe To Health Blog RSS Feed  RSS content feed What is RSS feed?

Archives Of Neurology News Blog From Medicineworld.Org


March 5, 2009, 6:01 AM CT

Safety of intravenous gammaglobulin treatment

Safety of intravenous gammaglobulin treatment
New research out of Wake Forest University School of Medicine identifies the presence of cardiovascular risk factors as an indicator of how likely it is that elderly, hospitalized patients who receive intravenous immunoglobulin (IVIg) therapy will have a stroke or heart attack.

An advance copy of the study appears online this week in the Journal of Neurology, the official publication of the European Neurological Society. It is scheduled to appear in a future print issue.

Previous to this study, physicians knew that administering intravenous immunoglobulin, or IVIg, could cause stroke or heart attack, but it was unclear when those serious side effects occurred.

"Stroke or heart attack has always been considered a fairly rare complication, but it's a catastrophic one," said James B. Caress, M.D., an associate professor of neurology and the study's lead researcher. Before this study, it was difficult for doctors to counsel patients about their risk for stroke or heart attack from IVIg therapy because prior reports could not identify which patients were at the highest risk, he added.

IVIg used in patients with autoimmune disorders, such as multiple sclerosis, and with immunodeficiencies is a drug made from human blood components. In patients who have an autoimmune disease, in which the body forms antibodies that attack its own tissues, IVIg can suppress the detrimental effects of those antibodies. In patients with advanced cancer, where the immune system is damaged from the tumor or chemotherapy, the drug boosts the immune system to stave off infections.........

Posted by: Daniel      Read more         Source


March 4, 2009, 6:24 AM CT

Where's Waldo?

Where's Waldo?
With assistance from the classic book character Where's Waldo?, scientists at Barrow Neurological Institute at St. Joseph's Hospital and Medical Center have recently made a major advance in understanding how the brain searches for objects of interest.

Susana Martinez-Conde, PhD, and fellow scientists Jorge Otero-Millan, Xoana Troncoso, PhD, Stephen Macknik, PhD, and Ignacio Serrano-Pedraza, PhD, recently conducted a study asking participants to find Waldo. As participants searched, their eye movements were simultaneously recorded. Results showed that the rate of microsaccades tiny, jerk-like fixational eye movements dramatically increased when participants found Waldo.

"This discovery helps explain human searching behavior, which can assist us in finding keys on a cluttered desk or recognizing a child's face on a playground," says Dr. Martinez-Conde.

The central role of microsaccades in visual perception has been a highly debated, and vaguely understood, topic among scientists for decades. The results from the Martinez-Conde lab may help explain the connection between microsaccades and search behavior, both in the normal brain, and in brains with visual or eye movement deficits.

"We now know there is a direct link between microsaccades and how we search for objects of interest," says Dr. Martinez-Conde. "This link can help with future advancements such as creating neural prosthetics for patients with brain damage or machines that can see as well as humans".........

Posted by: Daniel      Read more         Source


March 3, 2009, 6:02 AM CT

Schizophrenia linked to signaling problems

Schizophrenia linked to signaling problems
Schizophrenia could be caused by faulty signalling in the brain, as per new research published recently in the journal Molecular Psychiatry In the biggest study of its kind, researchers looking in detail at brain samples donated by people with the condition have identified 49 genes that work differently in the brains of schizophrenia patients in comparison to controls.

A number of of these genes are involved in controlling cell-to-cell signalling in the brain. The study, which was carried out by scientists at Imperial College London and GlaxoSmithKline, supports the theory that abnormalities in the way in which cells 'talk' to each other are involved in the disease.

Schizophrenia is thought to affect around one in 100 people. Symptoms vary but can include hallucinations, lack of motivation and impaired social functioning. The disorder has little physical effect on the brain and its causes are largely unknown.

Some researchers think that schizophrenia could be caused by the brain producing too much dopamine, partly because drugs that block dopamine action provide an effective therapy for the condition. Another theory is that the coat surrounding nerve cells, which is made of myelin, is damaged in people with schizophrenia. However, the newly released study observed that the genes for dopamine and for myelin were not acting any differently in schizophrenia patients compared with controls.........

Posted by: JoAnn      Read more         Source


February 27, 2009, 6:28 AM CT

Helping to mobilize MS patients

Helping to mobilize MS patients
The experimental drug fampridine (4-aminopyridine) improves walking ability in some individuals with multiple sclerosis (MS). That is the conclusion of a multi-center Phase 3 clinical trial, the results of which were published recently in the journal The Lancet

"This study indicates that fampridine could represent an important new way to treat multiple sclerosis and perhaps become the first drug to improve certain symptoms of the disease," said neurologist Andrew Goodman, M.D., chief of the Multiple Sclerosis Center at the University of Rochester Medical Center (URMC) and main author of the study. "The data suggest that, for a sub-set of MS patients, nervous system function is partially restored while taking the drug".

The study reviewed a sustained-release formulation of the drug, Fampridine-SR, which is being developed by Acorda Therapeutics, Inc. The company, which funded the study, submitted a new drug application to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration earlier this month. Goodman has been a consultant and advisor to Acorda for its fampridine studies in MS.

Multiple sclerosis is a disease of the central nervous system and is the most common cause of neurological disability in young adults. Worldwide it is estimated that more than a million people are affected by MS which is typically characterized by recurrent relapses followed by periods of remission early in its course. The symptoms of the disease vary from person to person, but usually consist of muscle weakness, gait difficulties, numbness or tingling in arms and legs, difficulty with coordination and balance, blurred vision, and slurred speech. Over time, the effects of the disease tend to become more permanent and debilitating.........

Posted by: Daniel      Read more         Source


February 26, 2009, 11:15 PM CT

Statins lower stroke severity

Statins lower stroke severity
Mayo Clinic scientists have shown that patients who were taking statins before a stroke experienced better outcomes and recovery than patients who weren't on the drug even when their cholesterol levels were ideal. The finding is published in the current issue of the Journal of Stroke and Cerebrovascular Diseases

"We were trying to determine if the daily use of statins had more of an impact on stroke patients than simply lowering their "bad" (low-density lipid) cholesterol," explains lead researcher Latha Stead, M.D. "We already knew statin use improved outcomes in general, so we focused on the patients who had optimal LDL levels and found it still had quite significant value".

Statins or reductase inhibitors are enzymes that are widely used to improve cardiovascular health and, more recently, for certain vascular conditions in the brain. One use has been to lower the level of LDL which can contribute to arterial blockages.



Significance of the Research


Prior scientists had shown a lower death rate and improved function in strokes when people had used statins. The Mayo team observed that statin used in this cohort also decreased the severity of the strokes and significantly improved overall outcomes. The scientists say this shows benefits far beyond lowering lipid levels. Scientists think the specific benefits may include plaque stabilization and improved cell function in vascular walls, as well as anti-inflammatory and antioxidant factors. More studies are needed to pinpoint the specific benefits.........

Posted by: Daniel      Read more         Source


February 26, 2009, 6:26 AM CT

New piece in Alzheimer's puzzle

New piece in Alzheimer's puzzle
Yale scientists have filled in a missing gap on the molecular road map of Alzheimer's disease.

In the Feb. 26 issue of the journal Nature, the Yale team reports that cellular prion proteins trigger the process by which amyloid-beta peptides block brain function in Alzheimer's patients.

"It has been a black box," said Stephen M. Strittmatter, senior author of the study and the Vincent Coates Professor of Neurology and director of Cellular Neuroscience, Neurodegeneration and Repair at the Yale School of Medicine. "We have known that amyloid-beta is bad for the brain, but we have not known exactly how amyloid-beta does bad things to neurons".

After an extensive gene expression analysis, the first step in amyloid-beta damage appears to involve cellular prion proteins. These proteins are normally harmless and exist within all cells, but on rare occasions they change shape and cause notorious prion diseases such as Creutzfeldt- Jacob disease, or its well-known variant, mad cow disease.

When the Yale team searched hundreds of thousands of candidates for potential disease-mediating receptors for the specific amyloid-beta form known to play a role in the development of Alzheimer's disease, the most likely candidate was cellular prion proteins. It seems that amyloid-beta peptides latch onto these cellular prion proteins and precipitate the damage in brain cells.........

Posted by: Daniel      Read more         Source


February 26, 2009, 6:24 AM CT

There is precise communication across brain areas during sleep

There is precise communication across brain areas during sleep
-By listening in on the chatter between neurons in various parts of the brain, scientists from the California Institute of Technology (Caltech) have taken steps toward fully understanding just how memories are formed, transferred, and ultimately stored in the brain--and how that process varies throughout the various stages of sleep.

Their findings, reported in the February 26 issue of the journal Neuron, may someday even help researchers understand why dreams are so difficult to remember.

Researchers have long known that memories are formed in the brain's hippocampus, but are stored elsewhere--most likely in the neocortex, the outer layer of the brain. Transferring memories from one part of the brain to the other requires changing the strength of the connections between neurons and is thought to depend on the precise timing of the firing of brain cells.

"We know that if neuron A in the hippocampus fires consistently right before neuron B in the neocortex, and if there is a connection from A to B, then that connection will be strengthened," explains Casimir Wierzynski, a Caltech graduate student in computation and neural systems, and first author on the Neuron paper. "And so we wanted to understand the timing relationships between neurons in the hippocampus and the prefrontal cortex, which is the front portion of the neocortex".........

Posted by: Daniel      Read more         Source


February 26, 2009, 6:11 AM CT

The genes you inherit and your risk of stroke

The genes you inherit and your risk of stroke
A Bayesian network showing the relationship and interactions between individual genetic predictors (blue spheres) and stroke (red sphere). The predictive influence of race on stroke is also included (yellow sphere).
A new statistical model could be used to predict an individual's lifetime risk of stroke, finds a study from the Children's Hospital Informatics Program (CHIP). Using genetic information from 569 hospital patients, the scientists showed that their predictive model could estimate an individual's overall risk of cardioembolic stroke -- the most common form of stroke -- with 86 percent accuracy. The findings are published in the recent issue of Stroke.

"For complex diseases like stroke, it's not just a single mutation that will kill you," explains CHIP researcher Marco Ramoni, PhD, the study's senior author, who is also an Associate Professor at Harvard Medical School. "More likely it is an interaction of a number of factors".

Ramoni, in collaboration with Karen Furie, MD, the director of the stroke unit at Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH), and Rachel Ramoni, DMD, ScD, of the Harvard School of Dental Medicine, identified 569 patients that had presented to MGH's emergency department and outpatient neurology clinics between 2002 and 2005 with symptoms of suspected stroke. They collected genetic information from the 146 patients with confirmed cardioembolic stroke, and 423 controls who were followed and found not to have stroke, and looked for 1,313 genetic variants (called single nucleotide polymorphisms or SNPs) known to correlate with stroke. The SNPs that each patient had were then entered into the model -- known as a Bayesian network -- which not only identified the genetic variants that correlated with stroke, but also determined how these factors interplayed and the strength of these interactions.........

Posted by: Daniel      Read more         Source


February 23, 2009, 10:05 PM CT

Who has greater risk after a mini-stroke?

Who has greater risk after a mini-stroke?
That first "mini-stroke" appears to be more of a non-malignant event for women than men, as per scientists at the University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB) and Yale University. The findings underscore the need to continue researching gender differences in disease prevention and follow-up care.

Data show 30 days after a transient ischemic attack (TIA), women are 30 percent less likely to have a stroke, 14 percent less likely to have heart-related problems and 26 percent less likely to die than men of the same age, the scientists said. TIAs are called mini-strokes because they produce stroke-like symptoms but rarely cause lasting damage.

The study appears online in the journal Stroke and was presented at the American Stroke Association International Stroke Conference in San Diego.

"We know that a number of TIA patients show up at medical centers with heart problems within a month of the first event, and even more show up within a year," said Virginia Howard, Ph.D., an associate professor in the UAB School of Public Health and a co-author of study. "Now we're seeing that warning signal may mean differing things for different people depending on gender, age and a number of other factors".

FARE BETTER LONGER

Besides the post-30-day period, the study authors analyzed the one-year-period after TIA and found women were 15 percent less likely to have a stroke, 19 percent less likely to have a cardiac event and 22 percent less likely to die than men.........

Posted by: Daniel      Read more         Source


February 23, 2009, 10:02 PM CT

Enzymatic Activity and Alzheimer's Disease

Enzymatic Activity and Alzheimer's Disease
(Mainz, Gera number of, 23 February 2009) In a project involving the collaboration of several institutes, research researchers of the Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz have succeeded in gaining further insight in the functioning of endogenous mechanisms that protect against the development of Alzheimer's disease. It was observed that the activity of the enzyme α-secretase is mainly responsible for the protective effect.

"In the past, we postulated that the enzyme α-secretase was involved in preventing the formation of cerebral plaques characteristic of Alzheimer's disease and also enhanced cerebral functions, such as learning and memory," explained Professor Falk Fahrenholz of the Institute of Biochemistry. His research group has been working in cooperation with the Clinic of Psychiatry and Psychotherapy of the university's Faculty of Medicine and the Central Animal Laboratory Facility (ZVTE) to discover the mechanism for the beneficial effects of α-secretase. The Journal of Alzheimer's Disease (JAD) presents the results of this project in its February 2009 issue.

α-secretase is an endogenous enzyme that is present in the nerve cells of the brain, where it is responsible for the cleavage of an Aβ into Aβ domain. The result is a soluble protein fragment that promotes the growth of nerve cells and thus prevents the development of cerebral deterioration caused by Aβ. However, if the enzyme β-secretase is active, a chain reaction is initiated that subsequently results in the development Aβ initializing the cascade of Alzheimer's disease through formation of Aβ. "You could say that α-secretase is the good enzyme, and β-secretase the bad en-zyme," Fahrenholz commented. "We now want to find out how to activate this 'good' enzyme or increase its concentrations in the brain as a way of combating this disease".........

Posted by: Daniel      Read more         Source



Older Blog Entries   1   2   3   4   5   6   7   8   9   10   11   12   13   14   15   16   17   18   19   20   21   22   23   24   25   26   27   28   29   30   31   32   33   34   35   36   37   38   39   40   41   42   43   44   45   46   47   48   49   50   51   52   53   54  

Did you know?
The drug Ativan is better than Valium or Dilantin for controlling severe epileptic seizures, according to a new review of studies.Ativan, or lorazepam, and Valium, or diazepam, are both benzodiazepines, the currently preferred class of drugs for treating severe epileptic seizures. Dilantin, or phenytoin, is an anticonvulsant long used for the treatment of epileptic seizures.

Medicineworld.org: Archives of neurology news blog

Acute bacterial meningitis| Alzheimer's disease| Carpal tunnel syndrome| Cerebral aneurysms| Cerebral palsy| Chronic fatigue syndrome| Cluster headache| Dementia| Epilepsy seizure disorders| Febrile seizures| Guillain barre syndrome| Head injury| Hydrocephalus| Neurology| Insomnia| Low backache| Mental retardation| Migraine headaches| Multiple sclerosis| Myasthenia gravis| Neurological manifestations of aids| Parkinsonism parkinson's disease| Personality disorders| Sleep disorders insomnia| Syncope| Trigeminal neuralgia| Vertigo|

Copyright statement
The contents of this web page are protected. Legal action may follow for reproduction of materials without permission.