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  • August 9, 2016
  • 02:56 AM
  • 437 views

Anxiety spreads across various psychiatric labels

by Paul Whiteley in Questioning Answers

"Comorbid anxiety symptoms are ubiquitous among psychiatric patients with mood or schizophrenia spectrum disorders, and in almost half of them, reportedly severe."So said the findings reported by Karpov and colleagues [1] who sought to put some further research flesh on to the bones of the idea that clinically relevant anxiety symptoms might not be unstrange bedfellows with a variety of other psychiatric labels.Based on the analysis of various patient groups included in the "Helsinki University ........ Read more »

Karpov, B., Joffe, G., Aaltonen, K., Suvisaari, J., Baryshnikov, I., Näätänen, P., Koivisto, M., Melartin, T., Oksanen, J., Suominen, K.... (2016) Anxiety symptoms in a major mood and schizophrenia spectrum disorders. European Psychiatry, 1-7. DOI: 10.1016/j.eurpsy.2016.04.007  

  • August 8, 2016
  • 03:38 PM
  • 491 views

World's worst hickeys: Cupping is weird and potentially dangerous

by Rosin Cerate in Rosin Cerate

In an effort to reduce pain or fix other health problems, some people will submit to having suction temporarily applied to various regions of their skin, usually the neck, shoulders, and back, via a collection of plastic or glass cups. This is known as cupping, and is a great way to embrace your inner Polkaroo.... Read more »

Lin CW, Wang JT, Choy CS, & Tung HH. (2009) Iatrogenic bullae following cupping therapy. Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine, 15(11), 1243-1245. PMID: 19922257  

  • August 8, 2016
  • 01:54 PM
  • 442 views

Pesticides used to help bees may actually harm them

by Dr. Jekyll in Lunatic Laboratories

Pesticides beekeepers are using to improve honeybee health may actually be harming the bees by damaging the bacteria communities in their guts. The discovery is a concern because alterations can affect the gut's ability to metabolize sugars and peptides, processes that are vital for honeybee health.

... Read more »

Madhavi Kakumanu, Alison M. Reeves, Troy Anderson, Richard R. Rodrigues, & Mark A. Williams. (2016) Honey bee gut microbiome is altered by in-hive pesticide exposures. Frontiers in Microbiology. info:/10.3389/fmicb.2016.01255

  • August 8, 2016
  • 03:46 AM
  • 396 views

On staff training in the UK autism services sector

by Paul Whiteley in Questioning Answers

I tread carefully in discussing the findings reported by Karola Dillenburger and colleagues [1] (open-access) on the question of "knowledge and training with regards to autism" received by "health, social care, and education staff who work within the statutory autism services sector in the UK." The observation that "an acute lack of autism-specific training that has detrimental impacts" was apparent is a worrying sign indeed.Although not intimately involved in the autism services sector, I ........ Read more »

Dillenburger K, McKerr L, Jordan JA, & Keenan M. (2016) Staff Training in Autism: The One-Eyed Wo/Man…. International journal of environmental research and public health, 13(7). PMID: 27438846  

  • August 7, 2016
  • 02:35 PM
  • 523 views

Why you're stiff in the morning: Your body suppresses inflammation when you sleep at night

by Dr. Jekyll in Lunatic Laboratories

Feeling stiff first thing in the morning? It's not your imagination, new research has found a protein created by the body's "biological clock" that actively represses inflammatory pathways within the affected limbs during the night. This protein, called CRYPTOCHROME, has proven anti-inflammatory effects in cultured cells and presents new opportunities for the development of drugs that may be used to treat inflammatory diseases and conditions, such as arthritis.

... Read more »

Hand, L., Hopwood, T., Dickson, S., Walker, A., Loudon, A., Ray, D., Bechtold, D., & Gibbs, J. (2016) The circadian clock regulates inflammatory arthritis. The FASEB Journal. DOI: 10.1096/fj.201600353R  

  • August 7, 2016
  • 11:53 AM
  • 464 views

The (surprising) rate of ADHD in Taiwan

by Paul Whiteley in Questioning Answers

The idea that use of the diagnostic label called attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is on the increase, and pretty significantly so, is quite common-place these days (see here). Appreciating that not everyone is convinced that the increase is necessarily genuine (see here) I would like to discuss some interesting data coming out of the 'big data' country that is Taiwan in the form of the findings reported by Wang and colleagues [1].As regular readers might already know, Taiwan is th........ Read more »

  • August 6, 2016
  • 03:24 PM
  • 472 views

Microcephaly discoveries in non-Zika cases explain abnormal brain growth

by Dr. Jekyll in Lunatic Laboratories

Long before Zika virus made it a household word, the birth defect called microcephaly puzzled scientists and doctors -- even as it changed the lives of the babies born with it during the pre-Zika era. But new discoveries reported by an international team of scientists may help explain what happens in the developing brains of babies still in the womb, causing them to be born with small brains and heads.

... Read more »

Li, H., Bielas, S., Zaki, M., Ismail, S., Farfara, D., Um, K., Rosti, R., Scott, E., Tu, S., Chi, N.... (2016) Biallelic Mutations in Citron Kinase Link Mitotic Cytokinesis to Human Primary Microcephaly. The American Journal of Human Genetics, 99(2), 501-510. DOI: 10.1016/j.ajhg.2016.07.004  

  • August 5, 2016
  • 03:10 PM
  • 511 views

From Sci Fi to reality: Unlocking the secret to growing new limbs

by Dr. Jekyll in Lunatic Laboratories

Many lower organisms retain the miraculous ability to regenerate form and function of almost any tissue after injury. Humans share many of our genes with these organisms, but our capacity for regeneration is limited. So scientists are studying the genetics of these organisms to find out how regenerative mechanisms might be activated in humans.

... Read more »

  • August 5, 2016
  • 07:00 AM
  • 605 views

Friday Fellow: Beggar’s tick

by Piter Boll in Earthling Nature

by Piter Kehoma Boll What if the cure for cancer has been living in your garden all this time and you have been trying to get rid of it because it is an annoying weed? I cannot assure you that … Continue reading →... Read more »

Chiang, L., Chang, J., Chen, C., Ng, L., & Lin, C. (2003) Anti-Herpes Simplex Virus Activity of Bidens pilosa and Houttuynia cordata. The American Journal of Chinese Medicine, 31(03), 355-362. DOI: 10.1142/S0192415X03001090  

Kviecinski, M., Felipe, K., Schoenfelder, T., de Lemos Wiese, L., Rossi, M., Gonçalez, E., Felicio, J., Filho, D., & Pedrosa, R. (2008) Study of the antitumor potential of Bidens pilosa (Asteraceae) used in Brazilian folk medicine. Journal of Ethnopharmacology, 117(1), 69-75. DOI: 10.1016/j.jep.2008.01.017  

  • August 5, 2016
  • 02:59 AM
  • 468 views

Hospitalisation for mania following antibiotic exposure?

by Paul Whiteley in Questioning Answers

"Individuals hospitalized with acute mania have a markedly increased rate of bacterial infections, as evidenced by the recent prescription of antimicrobial agents. The prevention and effective treatment of bacterial infections may be important interventions for the management of individuals with mania."That was the research bottom-line reported by Robert Yolken and colleagues [1] (yes, that Robert Yolken) who continued a theme of how immune function/response might be something pretty important w........ Read more »

Yolken R, Adamos M, Katsafanas E, Khushalani S, Origoni A, Savage C, Schweinfurth L, Stallings C, Sweeney K, & Dickerson F. (2016) Individuals hospitalized with acute mania have increased exposure to antimicrobial medications. Bipolar disorders. PMID: 27425597  

  • August 4, 2016
  • 02:07 PM
  • 598 views

Biomimicry is a promising approach for driving innovation

by Dr. Jekyll in Lunatic Laboratories

A new case study shows that biomimicry, a relatively new field that seeks to emulate nature to find solutions to human problems, can potentially expand intellectual property, increase energy savings and accelerate product innovation.

... Read more »

Emily Barbara Kennedy, & Thomas Andrew Marting. (2016) Biomimicry: Streamlining the Front End of Innovation for Environmentally Sustainable Products. Research-Technology Management. info:/10.1080/08956308.2016.1185342

  • August 4, 2016
  • 03:11 AM
  • 495 views

Take your vitamin D says the UK Government

by Paul Whiteley in Questioning Answers

"Vitamin D supplements 'advised for everyone'" was just one media headline following the publication of a report (see here) - "a government commissioned report" - by the advisory board of the Scientific Advisory Committee on Nutrition (SACN) here in Blighty recently.After oodles and oodles of peer-reviewed research (quite a bit of it covered in that SACN report) potentially linking issues with vitamin D availability to everything from depression (see here) to schizophrenia (see here) a........ Read more »

Muscogiuri G, Altieri B, Annweiler C, Balercia G, Pal HB, Boucher BJ, Cannell JJ, Foresta C, Grübler MR, Kotsa K.... (2016) Vitamin D and chronic diseases: the current state of the art. Archives of toxicology. PMID: 27425218  

  • August 3, 2016
  • 01:52 PM
  • 472 views

New neurons created through exercise don't cause you to forget old memories

by Dr. Jekyll in Lunatic Laboratories

Fellow exercise enthusiasts, you can breath a sigh of relief and so can your brain. Research has found that exercise causes more new neurons to be formed in a critical brain region, and contrary to an earlier study, these new neurons do not cause the individual to forget old memories, according to new research.

... Read more »

  • August 3, 2016
  • 09:13 AM
  • 622 views

Do we need a doping Olympics? The ethics of doping in sports

by gdw in FictionalFieldwork

There is only her and the track. The people standing on her left and right do not matter now. She has only one adversary: time. In her head she plays how the future might…will unfold. Forty seven strides. That’s all she needs. All things on the periphery disappear. Her world, her universe becomes a single […]... Read more »

  • August 3, 2016
  • 03:57 AM
  • 467 views

Omega-3 fatty acids, gut bacteria and mouse behaviour

by Paul Whiteley in Questioning Answers

I read with great interest the paper by Ruairi Robertson and colleagues [1] (open-access available here) recently, talking about how "neurobehavioural changes induced by altering n-3 PUFA [omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids] status are closely associated with comprehensive alterations in gut microbiota composition, HPA-axis activity and inflammation" in mice.Coming out of the 'bacterial research powerhouse' that is University College Cork, such research potentially unites some im........ Read more »

  • August 2, 2016
  • 02:03 PM
  • 491 views

Cardiac complications from energy drinks?

by Dr. Jekyll in Lunatic Laboratories

The high levels of caffeine in energy drinks may lead to cardiac complications. A new case report adds to previous reports of adverse cardiovascular events related to consuming energy drinks, including abnormal heart rhythms (arrhythmias).

... Read more »

Sattari M, Sattari A, & Kazory A. (2016) Energy Drink Consumption and Cardiac Complications: A Case for Caution. Journal of addiction medicine, 10(4), 280-2. PMID: 27471919  

  • August 1, 2016
  • 10:43 PM
  • 472 views

Autism, urinary porphyrins and mercury

by Paul Whiteley in Questioning Answers

I appreciate that the title of this post is probably going to result in an immediate 'click away' for some folk but for those who've endured it I'd like to talk briefly about the findings reported by Eman Khaled and colleagues [1]. Namely the observation that: "ASD [autism spectrum disorder] children in the present study had increased blood Hg [mercury] and Pb [lead] levels compared with healthy control children indicating that disordered porphyrin metabolism might ........ Read more »

  • August 1, 2016
  • 07:36 PM
  • 594 views

This Month in Blastocystis Research - Interactive Edition

by Christen Rune Stensvold in Blastocystis Parasite Blog

What are your thoughts on Blastocystis carriage and age? Please comment!... Read more »

  • August 1, 2016
  • 03:10 PM
  • 407 views

FAMIN or feast? Newly discovered mechanism influences how immune cells 'eat' invaders

by Dr. Jekyll in Lunatic Laboratories

A new mechanism that affects how our immune cells perform - and hence their ability to prevent disease - has been discovered by an international team of researchers. To date, researchers have identified hundreds of genetic variants that increase or decrease the risk of developing diseases from cancer and diabetes to tuberculosis and mental health disorders.

... Read more »

M Zaeem Cader, Katharina Boroviak, Qifeng Zhang, Ghazaleh Assadi, Sarah L Kempster, Gavin W Sewell, Svetlana Saveljeva, Jonathan W Ashcroft, Simon Clare, Subhankar Mukhopadhyay, Karen P Brown, Markus Tschurtschenthaler, Tim Raine, Brendan Doe, Edwin R Chilvers, Jules L Griffin, Nicole C Kaneider, R Andres Floto, Mauro D'Amato, Allan Bradley, Michael J O Wakelam.... (2016) C13orf31 (FAMIN) is a central regulator of immunometabolic function. Nature Immunology. info:/10.1038/ni.3532

  • August 1, 2016
  • 04:10 AM
  • 435 views

Physical activity in children and youth: themes and consensus

by Paul Whiteley in Questioning Answers

'Physical activity boosts kids' brain power and academic prowess' went the press release accompanying the consensus statement published by Jens Bangsbo and colleagues [1] (open-access).The consensus statement brought together researchers from around the world "and from a variety of academic disciplines" to emphasise how undertaking all-manner of different kinds of exercise "are still a good investment in academic achievement" when it comes to children aged between 6-18 years of age.The stat........ Read more »

Bangsbo J, Krustrup P, Duda J, Hillman C, Andersen LB, Weiss M, Williams CA, Lintunen T, Green K, Hansen PR.... (2016) The Copenhagen Consensus Conference 2016: children, youth, and physical activity in schools and during leisure time. British journal of sports medicine. PMID: 27354718  

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