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


June 8, 2010, 7:05 AM CT

Protein may repair damage from multiple sclerosis

Protein may repair damage from multiple sclerosis
A protein that helps build the brain in infants and children may aid efforts to restore damage from multiple sclerosis (MS) and other neurodegenerative diseases, scientists at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis have found.

In a mouse model of MS, scientists observed that the protein, CXCR4, is essential for repairing myelin, a protective sheath that covers nerve cell branches. MS and other disorders damage myelin, and this damage is associated with loss of the branches inside the myelin.

"In MS patients, myelin repair occurs inconsistently for reasons that aren't clear," says senior author Robyn Klein, MD, PhD, associate professor of medicine and of neurobiology. "Understanding the nature of that problem is a priority because when myelin isn't repaired, the chances that an MS flare-up will inflict lasting harm seem to increase."

The findings appear online in The Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences

Mouse models typically mimic MS symptoms by causing chronic immune cell infiltration in the brain, but, as per Klein, the ongoing immune damage caused by the cells makes it difficult for scientists to focus on what the brain does to repair myelin.

For the study, Klein and first author and postdoctoral fellow Jigisha Patel, PhD, used a non-inflammatory model that involves giving mice food containing cuprizone, a compound that causes the death of cells that form myelin in the central nervous system. After six weeks, these cells, known as oligodendrocytes, are dead, and the corpus callosum, a structure that connects the left and right hemispheres of the brain, has lost its myelin. If cuprizone is then removed from the mouse diet, new cells migrate to the area that restore the myelin by becoming mature oligodendrocytes.........

Posted by: Daniel      Read more         Source


June 8, 2010, 6:36 AM CT

Cost of caring for stroke patients

Cost of caring for stroke patients
Health-care costs for patients in just the first six months after they have a stroke is more than $2.5 billion a year in Canada, as per a research studypresented today at the Canadian Stroke Congress.

The Canadian Stroke Network's Burden of Ischemic Stroke (BURST) study observed that the direct and indirect health-care costs for new stroke patients tally an average $50,000 in the six-month period following a new stroke. There are about 50,000 new strokes in Canada each year.

Earlier and widely quoted estimates, based on the most recent data from Health Canada's Economic Burden of Illness (1998), indicated that the total cost of stroke in Canada was $2.4 billion a year for both new stroke patients and long-term survivors. There are 300,000 people living with stroke in Canada.

"Our old estimates of how much stroke costs the economy are way off base," says Dr. Mike Sharma, who together with Dr. Nicole Mittmann of Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre, led the BURST study, which is the first prospective national economic analysis on stroke costs.

"The cost of stroke is far more than we expected at least double prior estimates."

BURST scientists examined the health-care costs of 232 hospitalized stroke patients in 12 sites across Canada at discharge, three months, six months, and one year. The study looked at both disabling and non-disabling stroke.........

Posted by: Daniel      Read more         Source


May 6, 2010, 6:40 AM CT

Spouses who care for partners with dementia

Spouses who care for partners with dementia
Husbands or wives who care for spouses with dementia are six times more likely to develop the memory-impairing condition than those whose spouses don't have it, as per results of a 12-year study led by Johns Hopkins, Utah State University, and Duke University. The increased risk that the scientists saw among caregivers was on par with the power of a gene variant known to increase susceptibility to Alzheimer's disease, they report in the May Journal of the American Geriatrics Society

A few small studies have suggested that spousal caregivers frequently show memory deficits greater than spouses who aren't caregivers. However, none examined the cognitive ability of caregivers over time using standard, strict criteria to diagnose dementia, a serious cognitive disorder characterized by deficits in memory, attention, judgment, language, and other abilities.

To get some answers, Johns Hopkins psychiatry professor Peter Rabins, M.D., M.P.H., and a team led by associate professor Maria Norton, Ph.D., of Utah State University, examined 1,221 married couples ages 65 or older. These individuals were part of the Cache County (Utah) Memory Study, which has identified over 900 persons with dementia in the community since 1995. All of the study participants live in Cache County, whose residents topped the longevity scale in the 1990 United States census.........

Posted by: Daniel      Read more         Source


May 6, 2010, 6:39 AM CT

Dark chocolate may guard against brain injury

Dark chocolate may guard against brain injury
Scientists at Johns Hopkins have discovered that a compound in dark chocolate may protect the brain after a stroke by increasing cellular signals already known to shield nerve cells from damage.

Ninety minutes after feeding mice a single modest dose of epicatechin, a compound found naturally in dark chocolate, the researchers induced an ischemic stroke by essentially cutting off blood supply to the animals' brains. They observed that the animals that had preventively ingested the epicatechin suffered significantly less brain damage than the ones that had not been given the compound.

While most therapys against stroke in humans have to be given within a two- to three-hour time window to be effective, epicatechin appeared to limit further neuronal damage when given to mice 3.5 hours after a stroke. Given six hours after a stroke, however, the compound offered no protection to brain cells.

Sylvain Dor, Ph.D., associate professor of anesthesiology and critical care medicine and pharmacology and molecular sciences at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, says his study suggests that epicatechin stimulates two previously well-established pathways known to shield nerve cells in the brain from damage. When the stroke hits, the brain is ready to protect itself because these pathways Nrf2 and heme oxygenase 1 are activated. In mice that selectively lacked activity in those pathways, the study found, epicatechin had no significant protective effect and their brain cells died after a stroke.........

Posted by: Daniel      Read more         Source


April 29, 2010, 6:37 AM CT

Preventive Measures for Alzheimer's

Preventive Measures for Alzheimer's
A number of preventive measures for cognitive decline and for preventing Alzheimer's disease-mental stimulation, exercise, and a variety of dietary supplements-have been studied over the years. However, an independent panel convened this week by the National Institutes of Health determined that the value of these strategies for delaying the onset and/or reducing the severity of decline or disease hasn't been demonstrated in rigorous studies.

"Alzheimer's disease is a feared and heart-breaking disease," said Dr. Martha L. Daviglus, conference panel chair and professor of preventive medicine and medicine at Northwestern University, Chicago. "We wish we could tell people that taking a pill or doing a puzzle every day would prevent this terrible disease, but existing evidence doesn't support this".

The panel's evaluation of the available evidence revealed that progress to understand how the onset of these conditions might be delayed or prevented is limited by inconsistent definitions of what constitutes Alzheimer's disease and cognitive decline. Other factors include incomplete understanding of the natural history of the disease and limited understanding of the aging process in general. The panel recommended that the research community and clinicians collaborate to develop, test, and uniformly adopt objective measures of baseline cognitive function and changes over time.........

Posted by: Daniel      Read more         Source


April 25, 2010, 1:38 PM CT

Studying epilepsy

Studying epilepsy
Neuroscience scientists have zeroed in on a novel mechanism that helps control the firing of electrical signals among neurons. By isolating the molecular and electrical events that occur when this control is disrupted, the new research sheds light on epileptic seizures and potentially on other prominent diseases involving poorly regulated brain activity.

"By better understanding the detailed events that occur in epilepsy, we are gaining knowledge that could ultimately lead to better therapys for epilepsy, and possibly for other neurological diseases," said neuroscientist Douglas A. Coulter, Ph.D., the corresponding author of the research study, from The Children's Hospital of Philadelphia. "Temporal lobe epilepsy, in particular, often resists current therapys".

Coulter's research group, collaborating with a team led by co-senior author Philip G. Haydon, Ph.D., of Tufts University School of Medicine, published a study online today in the journal Nature Neuroscience

In epilepsy, excessive signaling between neurons, a major type of brain cell that communicates electrical signals across gaps called synapses, can lead to epileptic seizures. However, another class of brain cells called glia can regulate those signals. Among the glia are star-shaped cells called astrocytesthe particular focus of this research.........

Posted by: Daniel      Read more         Source


April 20, 2010, 6:53 AM CT

Adverse drug effects in epileptic patients

Adverse drug effects in epileptic patients
Scientists have observed that polytherapy with multiple anti-epileptic drugs (AEDs) did not result in greater adverse effects than monotherapy for patients with refractory epilepsy. This observational study also found AED load was not a factor in causing adverse effects, but suggests that individual susceptibility, type of AEDs used, and physicians' skills determine which patients suffer adverse effects. Results of this study are available today in Epilepsia, a journal published by Wiley-Blackwell on behalf of the International League Against Epilepsy.

There are more than 20 different AEDs used to treat epilepsy. However, only about one-half of patients become seizure-free with the first prescribed AED; an additional 20% of patients may find complete relief from seizures through a polytherapy AED regimen. The medical community has extensively debated the value of monotherapy versus polytherapy, not only for relative efficacy in reducing frequency of seizures, but also for impact on health-related quality of life (HRQOL). Past studies have indicated that polypharmacy therapy provides only modest advantages in controlling seizures, with the added burden of potentially increasing adverse effects. In contrast, other studies suggest AED toxicity appears to be better correlated with 'drug load' (the sum of ratios between actual prescribed daily doses and the average therapeutic dose of each drug) than with the number of AEDs administered.........

Posted by: Daniel      Read more         Source


April 19, 2010, 7:03 AM CT

A brain-recording device that melts into place

A brain-recording device that melts into place
Neural electrode array wrapped onto a model of the brain. The wrapping process occurs spontaneously, driven by dissolution of a thin, supporting base of silk.

Researchers have developed a brain implant that essentially melts into place, snugly fitting to the brain's surface. The technology could pave the way for better devices to monitor and control seizures, and to transmit signals from the brain past damaged parts of the spinal cord.

"These implants have the potential to maximize the contact between electrodes and brain tissue, while minimizing damage to the brain. They could provide a platform for a range of devices with applications in epilepsy, spinal cord injuries and other neurological disorders," said Walter Koroshetz, M.D., deputy director of the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS), part of the National Institutes of Health.

The study, published in Nature Materials, shows that the ultrathin flexible implants, made partly from silk, can record brain activity more faithfully than thicker implants embedded with similar electronics.

The simplest devices for recording from the brain are needle-like electrodes that can penetrate deep into brain tissue. More state-of-the-art devices, called micro-electrode arrays, consist of dozens of semi-flexible wire electrodes, commonly fixed to rigid silicon grids that do not conform to the brain's shape.

In people with epilepsy, the arrays could be used to detect when seizures first begin, and deliver pulses to shut the seizures down. In people with spinal cord injuries, the technology has promise for reading complex signals in the brain that direct movement, and routing those signals to healthy muscles or prosthetic devices.........

Posted by: Daniel      Read more         Source


April 14, 2010, 11:02 PM CT

Newly discovered RNA steers brain development

Newly discovered RNA steers brain development
How does the brain work? This question is one of the greatest scientific mysteries, and neurobiologists have only recently begun to piece together the molecular building blocks that enable human beings to be "thinking" animals.

One fundamental property of the mammalian brain is that it continues to develop after birth, and one of the biggest drivers of the formation of new links between neurons is experience. Every time a baby sticks her finger on a pin or laughs in response to an adult's embellished gestures, a cascade of genetic activity is triggered in her brain that results in new, and perhaps even lifelong, synaptic connections.

New research from the lab of Michael Greenberg, Nathan Marsh Pusey professor and chair of neurobiology at HMS, in collaboration with bioinformatics specialist and neuroscientist Gabriel Kreiman, assistant professor of ophthalmology at Children's Hospital, Boston, has observed that a particular set of RNA molecules widely considered to be no more than a genomic oddity are actually major players in brain developmentand are essential for regulating the process by which neurons absorb the outside world into their genetic machinery.

"This discovery may inform disorders of cognition such as autism spectrum disorders," says Greenberg. "It's incredibly important to know all about the brain's genetic regulatory mechanisms in order to think more deeply about how to develop therapies for treating these sorts of conditions".........

Posted by: Daniel      Read more         Source


April 12, 2010, 10:46 PM CT

Health insurance and migraine care

Health insurance and migraine care
People with no health insurance are less likely than the privately insured to receive proper therapy for their migraines, as per a research studyreported in the April 13, 2010, print issue of Neurology, the medical journal of the American Academy of Neurology.

Migraines, often characterized by excruciating headache and nausea, can cause significant distress. They can cause people affected by them to lose an average of four to six days of work each year. Study authors say migraine sufferers who lack private health insurance are twice as likely to get inadequate therapy for their condition as their insured counterparts. Migraine patients insured through Medicaid are one and a half times as likely to receive substandard therapy.

"The tragedy is that we know how to treat this disabling condition. But because they are uninsured or inadequately insured, millions of Americans suffer needlessly," said study author Rachel Nardin, MD, of Harvard Medical School and a member of the American Academy of Neurology. "Optimizing migraine care requires improvement in our health care systems as well as educating physicians to prescribe the best available drug and behavioral therapys".

Neurologists commonly recommend one of two types of drugs when a moderate-to-severe migraine strikes: "triptans" (such as sumatriptan) or dihydroergotamine. For the majority of people with migraine whose headaches are frequent or severe, neurologists also recommend a daily dose of one of several preventive medications. The scientists used these recommendations from the American Academy of Neurology to define standard migraine therapy.........

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   55   56   57   58   59   60   61   62   63   64   65   66   67   68  

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.