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June 26, 2006, 10:55 PM CT

Cell Phone Emissions Excite The Brain Cortex

Cell Phone Emissions Excite The Brain Cortex
Electromagnetic fields from cell phones excite the brain cortex adjacent to it, with potential implications for individuals with epilepsy, or other neurological conditions. This finding is published in Annals of Neurology, a journal by John Wiley & Sons. The article is also available online via Wiley Interscience (www.interscience.wiley.com/journal/ana).

More than 500 million people in the world use cell phones which emit electromagnetic fields (EMFs). Though many studies have looked at the effects of EMFs on the body, few have focused on their effects on the brain. Such effects could be harmful, neutral, or beneficial and might be particularly important for individuals with conditions involving cortical excitability, such as epilepsy.

Researchers in Italy, led by Paolo M. Rossini, M.D., Ph.D. of Fatebenefratelli, used Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (TMS) to investigate brain function under exposure to electromagnetic fields from a common type of cell phone. Their study reports the effects of EMF exposure on brain physiology for the first time.

The researchers developed a double-blind study in which 15 young male volunteers were exposed to EMF signals from a GSM 900 cell phone for 45 minutes. They measured Motor Evoked Potentials (MEPs) during motor cortex TMS before, and immediately after EMF exposure, and also one hour later.........

Posted by: Daniel      Permalink         Source


June 22, 2006, 9:32 PM CT

Music Enhances Intelligence

Music Enhances Intelligence
A recent volume of the Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences takes a closer look at how music evolved and how we respond to it. Contributors to the volume think that animals such as birds, dolphins and whales make sounds analogous to music out of a desire to imitate each other. This ability to learn and imitate sounds is a trait necessary to acquire language and researchers feel that a number of of the sounds animals make may be precursors to human music.

Another study in the volume looks at whether music training can make individuals smarter. Researchers found more grey matter in the auditory cortex of the right hemisphere in musicians compared to nonmusicians. They feel these differences are probably not genetic, but instead due to use and practice.

Listening to classical music, especially Mozart, has recently been thought to enhance performance on cognitive tests. Contributors to this volume take a closer look at this assertion and their findings indicate that listening to any music that is personally enjoyable has positive effects on cognition. In addition, the use of music to enhance memory is explored and research suggests that musical recitation enhances the coding of information by activating neural networks in a more united and thus more optimal fashion.........

Posted by: Janet      Permalink         Source


June 22, 2006, 8:55 PM CT

Genetics Facts For Alzheimer's Disease

Genetics Facts For Alzheimer's Disease
Researchers do still not fully understand what causes Alzheimer's disease (AD). However, the more they learn about AD, the more they become aware of the important function genes* play in the development of this devastating disease.

*Click the terms in bold italics for definitions in Key Terms at the end of this fact sheet.

Genes

All living things are made up of basic units called cells, which are so tiny that you can only see them through the lens of a strong microscope. Most of the billions of cells in the human body have one nucleus that acts as a control center, housing our 23 pairs of chromosomes. A chromosome is a thread-like structure found in the cell's nucleus, which can carry hundreds, sometimes thousands, of genes. In humans, one of each pair of 23 chromosomes is inherited from each parent. The genetic material on these chromosomes is collectively referred to as the human genome. Researchers now think that there are about 30,000 genes in the human genome. Genes direct almost every aspect of the construction, operation, and repair of all living things. For example, genes contain information that determines eye and hair color and other traits inherited from our parents. In addition, genes ensure that we have two hands and can use them to do things, like play the piano.........

Posted by: Daniel      Permalink         Source


June 22, 2006, 8:47 PM CT

Risk Of Being Fired Near Retirement

Risk Of Being Fired Near Retirement
Involuntary job loss near retirement more than doubles the risk of heart attack and stroke, scientists at Yale School of Medicine report in a major national study published in Occupational and Environmental Medicine.

The results are based on 10-year observations of 4,301 individuals between age 51 and 61 out of which 582 had lost their jobs during that period. The study is the extension of an earlier study, in which the same sample was tracked for six years. The earlier research indicated heightened risk of stroke, but not a definitive link between job loss and heart attacks.

"With longer follow-up and heart attack and stroke events, we were able to better assess the association between employment separation and the medical outcomes," said William T. Gallo, the lead author of the study and associate research scientist in the Department of Epidemiology and Public Health at Yale School of Medicine.

The scientists used 10 years of data from the nationally representative Health and Retirement Survey in their research. Starting with a sample of employed individuals, they identified 582 workers who were either laid off or left jobless because of a business closing. The study compared their risk of heart attack and stroke to a group that included 3,719 workers who remained employed. In considering the effect of job loss, the scientists also took into account other risk factors such as smoking, high blood pressure, obesity and depressive symptoms.........

Posted by: Daniel      Permalink         Source


June 21, 2006, 10:47 PM CT

Alzheimer's Disease: Searching For A Cure

Alzheimer's Disease: Searching For A Cure Healthy nerve cells in the brain (neurons) have support structures called microtubules, which guide nutrients and molecules from the cell's body down to the ends and back. A special kind of protein, tau, makes the microtubules stable. Tau is changed chemically in people with Alzheimer's disease. It begins to pair with other threads of tau and they become tangled up together. When this happens, the microtubules disintegrate, collapsing the neuron's transport system. This may result first in communication malfunctions between neurons and later in cell death.
It was 1997 when an alarm went off in Vivian Freed's head. She knew something was wrong with her 85-year old mother, who had always planned her trip to celebrate Thanksgiving with her children down to the last detail. But that year, she got the airline tickets for the wrong days. Freed also found out that her mother had been missing doctors' appointments and social engagements, so she flew from her home in Rockville, Md., to her mother's home in Florida to check on her.

"Everything that she had done perfectly before was a mess," says Freed. The bills weren't paid, and the medications that her mother had been giving to her ailing father weren't right. "We realized we needed to do something," says Freed, after a doctor diagnosed her mother with Alzheimer's disease.

Freed's sister, Annette Heller, later "adult-napped" her parents and moved them to Maryland under the pretense of just visiting." They didn't really notice that she was packing up more things than they would need for just a visit," says Freed.

Her parents were fiercely independent and would have objected to moving. "It would have been much nicer to give them closure, but it wasn't possible," Freed says.

Not long after Freed moved her parents into an assisted living facility in Maryland, her father passed away. "The day after he died, Mom remembered what happened, but never did again," she says. "Mom kept asking, 'Where's Daddy?'".........

Posted by: Daniel      Permalink


June 21, 2006, 10:20 PM CT

Changes in Experience Cause Brain Rewiring

Changes in Experience Cause Brain Rewiring
Howard Hughes Medical Institute scientists have discovered that neurons in the brains of mice sprout robust new connections when the animals are adjusting to new experiences. The new connections alter the circuitry of the brain by changing communication between neurons.

The scientists said their findings aid understanding of how procedural learning induces long-term rewiring of the brain. This type of learning is used in mastering skills such as riding a bicycle or typing on a computer.

Howard Hughes Medical Institute (HHMI) investigator Karel Svoboda and colleagues reported their findings in the June 22, 2006, issue of the journal Nature. Other co-authors of the paper included Anthony Holtmaat and Linda Wilbrecht in Svoboda's laboratory at Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory; and Graham Knott and Egbert Welker at the University of Lausanne in Switzerland.

Svoboda is one of a handful of scientists in the world who are pioneering the development of new tools and techniques that permit researchers to observe the brain as it rewires over a period of weeks or months. This summer Svoboda will move to HHMI's Janelia Farm Research Campus where he will pursue neurobiology studies and projects in optics and microscopy.

In the studies reported in Nature, the scientists used mice that were genetically altered to produce a green fluorescent protein in specific neurons in the neocortex, which is a region of the brain that is known to adapt to new experiences. The scientists followed the growth of dendritic spines in the region of the neocortex that processes tactile information from the animals' whiskers. Sensory information from the whiskers is vitally important for mice as they navigate their environment. Consequently, a significant portion of the mouse's brain is devoted to processing input from whiskers.........

Posted by: Daniel      Permalink         Source


June 19, 2006, 9:24 PM CT

Suggest your News Item To Medicineworld

Suggest your News Item To Medicineworld
As you are aware we are the leading publishers of health news on the web. We publish news items in various forms including numerous blogs and news items. We invite you to participate in our new collection.

We are looking for quality news items that would be interesting to our readers. Now you may suggest the news item from your site to be included at Medicineworld.org. Inclusion of news item at our site get instantaneous attention since the item is illustrated from various blog posts. Addition of pictures to the item adds additional attraction to your news item. Inclusion in the Medicineworld.org site brings quality links and visitors to your site.

If you have an interesting news item related to health, share it with Medicineworld.org and we share it with the world.

Suggest your News Item To Medicineworld........

Posted by: Janet      Permalink


June 18, 2006, 11:05 AM CT

Neuronal Inhibitions

Neuronal Inhibitions
A computer - or any digital system which processes and stores information - knows only two states: "on" and "off". While our brain may not be a computer, the signals of nerve cells can also represent "on" or "off" states, causing the receiving - "post-synaptic" - cells to either propagate the signal or to terminate signal transmission. The orchestrated interplay of stimulating and inhibitory signals is central to the development and functioning of the entire nervous system. If inhibitory neurons are prevented from carrying out their function, this causes major defects early in embryonal development - and these defects can even occur outside the nervous system. These are the results of a study recently published by researchers from the Max Planck Institute for Experimental Medicine in Gottingen (Neuron, May 18, 2006).

The most common inhibitory transmitters in the mammalian central nervous system are GABA and glycine. Nerve cells can release GABA or glycine where they contact other nerve cells at junctions called synapses. This typically prevents further signal transmission by the post-synaptic cell.

Most inhibitory nerve cells release either GABA or glycine. However, some inhibitory nerve cells appear to be "bilingual", releasing a mixture of GABA and glycine. These mixed-release cells are most common during nervous system development and seem to be crucial for normal spinal cord growth. For brain researchers, however, they have proven mysterious. Most nerve cells specialise in releasing only one type of neurotransmitter. They use transport proteins to pump the neurotransmitter into vesicles surrounded by a membrane and store it there until release is triggered.........

Posted by: Daniel      Permalink         Source


June 15, 2006, 10:44 PM CT

Enticing Nerve Cells To Muscles

Enticing Nerve Cells To Muscles
During embryonic development, nerve cells hesitantly extend tentacle-like protrusions called axons that sniff their way through a labyrinth of attractive and repulsive chemical cues that guide them to their target.

While several recent studies discovered molecules that repel motor neuron axons from incorrect targets in the limb, researchers at the Salk Institute for Biological Studies have identified a molecule, known as FGF, that actively lures growing axons closer to the right destination. Their findings are reported in the June 15 issue of Neuron.

"The most important aspect of our finding is not necessarily that we finally nailed the growth factor FGF as the molecule that guides a specific subgroup of motor neurons to connect to the muscles that line our spine and neck," says senior author Samuel Pfaff, Ph.D., a professor in the Gene Expression Laboratory, "but that piece by piece, we are uncovering general principles that ensure that the developing nervous system establishes proper neuronal connections."

Understanding how axons find their destinations may help restore movement in people following spinal cord injury, or those with motor neuron diseases such as Lou Gehrig's disease, spinal muscle atrophy, and post-polio syndrome. Failure to establish proper connectivity in the brain may also underlie autism spectrum disorders and mental retardation.........

Posted by: Daniel      Permalink         Source


June 15, 2006, 0:02 AM CT

Calorie Restriction May Prevent Alzheimer's

Calorie Restriction May Prevent Alzheimer's Image courtesy of Time
A recent study directed by Mount Sinai School of Medicine suggests that experimental dietary regimens might calm or even reverse symptoms of Alzheimer's Disease (AD). The study, which appears in the July 2006 issue of the Journal of Biological Chemistry, is the first to show that restricting caloric intake, specifically carbohydrates, may prevent AD by triggering activity in the brain associated with longevity.

"Both clinical and epidemiological evidence suggests that modification of lifestyle factors such as nutrition may prove crucial to Alzheimer's Disease management," says Giulio Maria Pasinetti, M.D., Ph.D., Professor of Psychiatry and Neuroscience, Director of the Neuroinflammation Research Center at Mount Sinai School of Medicine and lead author of the study. "This research, however, is the first to show a correlation between nutrition and Alzheimer's Disease neuropathy by defining mechanistic pathways in the brain and scrutinizing biochemical functions. We hope these findings further unlock the mystery of Alzheimer's and bring hope to the millions of Americans suffering from this disease."

Alzheimer's Disease is a rapidly growing public health concern with potentially devastating effects. An estimated 4.5 million Americans have Alzheimer's Disease and the number of Americans with Alzheimer's has more than doubled since 1980. Presently, there are no known cures or effective preventive strategies. While genetic factors are relevant in early-onset cases, they appear to play less of a role in late-onset-sporadic AD cases, the most common form of AD.........

Posted by: JoAnn      Permalink         Source



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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.

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