MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Professor Kamlesh Khunti Professor of Primary Care Diabetes and Vascular Medicine Co-Director of the Leicester Diabetes Centre University of Leicester Medical Research: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings? Prof. Khunti: Screening … Continue reading →
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Professor Kamlesh Khunti. (2015) Rethinking Efficient Screening For Diabetes. MedicalResearch.com. info:/
MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Dr. R. A. Badwe, MS Director, Tata Memorial Centre E. Borges Marg, Parel Mumbai -India Medical Research: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings? Response: The available retrospective clinical data suggested an overall survival … Continue reading →
The post Primary Tumor Treatment Doesn’t Improve Survival in Metastatic Breast Cancer appeared first on MedicalResearch.com.
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Dr. R. A. Badwe, MS. (2015) Primary Tumor Treatment Doesn't Improve Survival in Metastatic Breast Cancer. MedicalResearch.com. info:/
It's bad enough for the first kid when a new baby shows up to steal your thunder. But the injustice is compounded when you have to start wearing glasses while your little sibling stays as cute and non-four-eyed as ever. If this sounds familiar, you're not alone: firstborn kids are more likely to be nearsighted. Part of the reason might be that they get more education.
A study in the United Kingdom and Israel found that myopia—that's nearsightedness, if you're one of those lucky people who... Read more »
Guggenheim JA, Williams C, & UK Biobank Eye and Vision Consortium. (2015) Role of Educational Exposure in the Association Between Myopia and Birth Order. JAMA ophthalmology, 1-7. PMID: 26448589
"It's empathy that makes us help other people. It's empathy that makes us moral." The economist Paul Zak casually makes this comment in his widely watched TED talk about the hormone oxytocin, which he dubs the "moral molecule". Zak quotes a number of behavioral studies to support his claim that oxytocin increases empathy and trust, which in turn increases moral behavior. If all humans regularly inhaled a few puffs of oxytocin through a nasal spray, we could become more compassionate and caring. It sounds too good to be true. And recent research now suggests that this overly simplistic view of oxytocin, empathy and morality is indeed too good to be true.... Read more »
De Dreu, C., Greer, L., Van Kleef, G., Shalvi, S., & Handgraaf, M. (2011) Oxytocin promotes human ethnocentrism. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 108(4), 1262-1266. DOI: 10.1073/pnas.1015316108
Xu X, Zuo X, Wang X, & Han S. (2009) Do you feel my pain? Racial group membership modulates empathic neural responses. The Journal of neuroscience : the official journal of the Society for Neuroscience, 29(26), 8525-9. PMID: 19571143
Software tools are certainly our focus for most of our tips of the week. But a key aspect of using the software and data repositories is that they rely on quality data. So sometimes we’ll highlight specific projects that will provide data to researchers, and this tip is one of those cases. Researchers should be […]... Read more »
Siva, N. (2015) UK gears up to decode 100 000 genomes from NHS patients. The Lancet, 385(9963), 103-104. DOI: 10.1016/S0140-6736(14)62453-3
Halloween brings talk of vampires, but is consuming blood what makes a person a vampire? If so, almost everyone is a vampire. The vampire bat is an amazing biological exception, and it’s biology saves lives and has inspired a new drone. But not ever person who looks like a vampire sucks blood; several diseases mimic vampirism.... Read more »
Medcalf RL. (2012) Desmoteplase: discovery, insights and opportunities for ischaemic stroke. Br J Pharmacol. . DOI: 10.1111/j.1476-5381.2011.01514.x
Amy T. Gilbert, Brett W. Petersen, Sergio Recuenco, Michael Niezgoda, Jorge Gómez, V. Alberto Laguna-Torres and Charles Rupprecht. (2012) Evidence of Rabies Virus Exposure among Humans in the Peruvian Amazon. Am J Trop Med Hyg. DOI: 10.4269/ajtmh.2012.11-0689
How are cancer survival statistics like the British Cycling team? Answer: Improvements come from lots of little changes. Welcome, to Marginal Gains...... Read more »
Quaresma, M., Coleman, M., & Rachet, B. (2015) 40-year trends in an index of survival for all cancers combined and survival adjusted for age and sex for each cancer in England and Wales, 1971–2011: a population-based study. The Lancet, 385(9974), 1206-1218. DOI: 10.1016/S0140-6736(14)61396-9
AG McCluskey. (2015) Marginal Gains. Zongo's Cancer Diaries. info:/
I'm starting to sound like a broken record (those 'plastic circle things that used to play music' for the younger crowd) when it comes to the topic of vitamin D and depression on this blog. The idea that there may be an important 'correlation' between the presentation of depression, at least some types of depression, and lower levels of circulating vitamin D is something I've covered a few times in previous entries (see here and see here).Continuing the theme, I'm bringing the paper by Roland von Känel and colleagues  (open-access available here) to your attention today and findings that: "Low vitamin D levels are frequent in hospitalized patients with a current episode of depression." Further: "Especially 25-OH D levels <50 nmol/l were associated with cognitive/affective depressive symptoms, and anhedonia symptoms in particular." Anhedonia, as per another mention on this blog (see here), can be an important part of depression insofar as the inability to derive pleasure from activities usually found pleasurable.OK, so researchers "aimed to examine the association of vitamin D levels with the severity and dimensions of depressive symptoms in hospitalized patients with a current episode of depression taking into account confounding variables." To do this, some 380 inpatients at a clinic in Switzerland were probed in relation to their presentation of depression whilst also having their functional vitamin D levels measured via analysis of of serum levels of 25-hydroxyvitamin D3 (25-OH D). They were subsequently grouped into categories: "25-OH D concentrations >75 nmol/l were considered sufficient vitamin D. Levels between 50 and 75 nmol/l and <50 nmol/l of 25-OH D were defined insufficient and deficient vitamin D levels, respectively." Data on various other 'covariates' were also collected and measured including psychiatric comorbidity and levels of C-reactive protein (CRP), an important marker of systemic inflammation.Results: well, aside from depression, psychiatric comorbidity was present in quite a proportion of participants. About a quarter of the cohort also met criteria for anxiety disorder and about 7% could be diagnosed with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Also: "32.6% were obese." Over 50% of participants fell into the vitamin D deficiency grouping and only 12% were described as vitamin D sufficient.And the primary finding: "We found that vitamin D deficiency was significantly associated with increased levels of depressive symptoms in patients hospitalized with a depressive episode." That and the very specific link/correlation suggested with anhedonia symptoms led authors to conclude that there may be quite a bit more investigation to do in this area including whether: "it might be prudent to supplement this patient population with at least 800 I.U. [international units] daily of vitamin D."These are interesting data despite the fact that this was an observational study and as the authors themselves noted, did not adjust for factors such as physical activity levels nor actual exposure to vitamin D sources (outside of supplementation). One also has to bear in mind that this was another study of correlation over and above actual causation, so we can't get too carried away with things.But... in the context of quite a few other 'correlation' type studies including further data on a temporal association with depressive symptoms  I'd be minded to suggest that this is an emerging area in psychiatry. I know that vitamin D has been 'linked' to quite a few extraskeletal conditions in recent times (see here) and there is always the risk that it might be seen as something too generalised to be relevant. But in these days of increasing focus on reducing health inequalities in relation to psychiatry (see here), I'd be minded to suggest that one shouldn't lose sight of deficiency as and when it occurs and whether tackling said deficiency might not have other important repercussions...Music: Choral Stimulation's rendition of 'Addicted To Love' - The Naked Choir.---------- von Känel R. et al. Vitamin D Deficiency and Depressive Symptomatology in Psychiatric Patients Hospitalized with a Current Depressive Episode: A Factor Analytic Study. PLoS One. 2015 Sep 23;10(9):e0138550. Kerr DC. et al. Associations between vitamin D levels and depressive symptoms in healthy young adult women. Psychiatry Res. 2015 May 30;227(1):46-51.----------von Känel R, Fardad N, Steurer N, Horak N, Hindermann E, Fischer F, & Gessler K (2015). Vitamin D Deficiency and Depressive Symptomatology in Psychiatric Patients Hospitalized with a Current Depressive Episode: A Factor Analytic Study. PloS one, 10 (9) PMID: 26397113... Read more »
von Känel R, Fardad N, Steurer N, Horak N, Hindermann E, Fischer F, & Gessler K. (2015) Vitamin D Deficiency and Depressive Symptomatology in Psychiatric Patients Hospitalized with a Current Depressive Episode: A Factor Analytic Study. PloS one, 10(9). PMID: 26397113
Take Home Message: The FIFA11 program was effective at reducing injuries in Division I and II collegiate male soccer players. Compliance may be key, as those with the highest compliance had the lowest injury rates.... Read more »
Silvers-Granelli, H., Mandelbaum, B., Adeniji, O., Insler, S., Bizzini, M., Pohlig, R., Junge, A., Snyder-Mackler, L., & Dvorak, J. (2015) Efficacy of the FIFA 11 Injury Prevention Program in the Collegiate Male Soccer Player. The American Journal of Sports Medicine. DOI: 10.1177/0363546515602009
MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Jeffrey Rhoades, Ph.D. Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality Medical Research: What is the background for this study? Dr. Rhoades: The Medical Expenditure Panel Survey (MEPS) – Household Component (HC) which began in 1996 and is administered … Continue reading →
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Jeffrey Rhoades, Ph.D. (2015) Hispanics Most Likely To Lack Medical Insurance. MedicalResearch.com. info:/
MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Julie M. Fritz, PT, PhD, FAPTA Professor, Department of Physical Therapy Associate Dean for Research, College of Health University of Utah Salt Lake City, UT 84106 Medical Research: What is the background for this study? What are … Continue reading →
The post Physical Therapy Has A Small Beneficial Effect In New Onset Back Pain appeared first on MedicalResearch.com.
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Julie M. Fritz, PT, PhD,. (2015) Physical Therapy Has A Small Beneficial Effect In New Onset Back Pain. MedicalResearch.com. info:/
MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Grant L. Iverson, PhD Director, Sports Concussion Program MassGeneral Hospital for Children Director, Neuropsychology Outcome Assessment Laboratory, Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation Harvard Medical School Associate Director, Traumatic Brain Injury Red Sox Foundation and Massachusetts General … Continue reading →
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Grant L. Iverson, PhD. (2015) Many Adolescents Report Symptoms Mimicking Concussions. MedicalResearch.com. info:/
MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Dr. Jeffrey Cohen MD Director Mellen Center for Multiple Sclerosis Treatment and Research Director of the Experimental Therapeutics Program Cleveland Clinic Main Campus MedicalResearch: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings? Dr. … Continue reading →
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Dr. Jeffrey Cohen MD. (2015) Generic Multiple Sclerosis Drug Found Equivalent To Brand Medication. MedicalResearch.com. info:/
MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Iris Shai MD PhD Professor of Nutrition and Epidemiology of Chronic Diseases Dep. of Public Health Faculty of Health Sciences Medical Research: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings? Dr. Shai: Despite enormous contribution … Continue reading →
The post Moderate Red Wine May Improve Cardiac Profile In Type 2 Diabetes appeared first on MedicalResearch.com.
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Iris Shai MD PhD. (2015) Moderate Red Wine May Improve Cardiac Profile In Type 2 Diabetes. MedicalResearch.com. info:/
MedicalResearch.com Interview with: W.H. Wilson Tang, MD, FACC Assistant Professor in Medicine, Cleveland Clinic Lerner College of Medicine Staff, Section of Heart Failure & Cardiac Transplant Medicine Assistant Program Director, General Clinical Research Center The Cleveland Clinic Cleveland, OH Medical … Continue reading →
The post ESRD Patients May Experience Cardiac Improvement After Transplant appeared first on MedicalResearch.com.
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W.H. Wilson Tang, MD, FACC. (2015) ESRD Patients May Experience Cardiac Improvement After Transplant. MedicalResearch.com. info:/
Using advanced brain imaging, researchers have matched certain behavioral symptoms of schizophrenia to features of the brain’s anatomy. The findings, at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis, could be a step toward improving diagnosis and treatment of schizophrenia.... Read more »
Arnedo, J., Mamah, D., Baranger, D., Harms, M., Barch, D., Svrakic, D., de Erausquin, G., Cloninger, C., & Zwir, I. (2015) Decomposition of brain diffusion imaging data uncovers latent schizophrenias with distinct patterns of white matter anisotropy. NeuroImage, 43-54. DOI: 10.1016/j.neuroimage.2015.06.083
A quote to begin: "findings suggest that T gondii [Toxoplasma gondii] infection causes substantial and widespread immune activation indicative of neural damage and reactive tissue repair in the animal model that partly overlaps with changes observed in the brains of schizophrenia patients."So said the very interesting paper by Jakub Tomasik and colleagues  who set about comparing results from a mouse model of "chronic T gondii infection" looking for serum and brain signatures with those in postmortem "brain samples from 35 schizophrenia patients and 33 healthy controls." Researchers found that mice infected with T. gondii were pretty 'immune-stimulated' as a result; also manifesting with "neural damage and reactive tissue repair". Some of these immune consequences also seemingly 'overlapped' with what was observed in the very precious brain samples from those previously diagnosed with schizophrenia, particularly when it came to "C-reactive protein (CRP), interleukin-1 beta (IL-1β), interferon gamma (IFNγ), plasminogen activator inhibitor 1 (PAI-1), tissue inhibitor of metalloproteinases 1 (TIMP-1), and vascular cell adhesion molecule 1 (VCAM-1)." The authors conclude that any shared pathophysiology might be "a key step towards understanding their specific contributions to pathogenesis."I'd like to think that the Tomasik paper is an important next step in the whole idea that T. gondii infection might show some important links with at least some schizophrenia (see here). Still a point of discussion in some quarters  insofar as the hows and whys of any association (see here), there is nevertheless, some quite reliable research appearing in the peer-reviewed domain to suggest that there may a link, correlation if you will, between this parasitic protozoan and the appearance of some schizophrenia or schizophrenia-linked symptoms. Putting some scientific flesh on the bones of 'mechanisms' through which infection might link to schizophrenia is important.That being said, I do think we have to be slightly cautious when it comes to changes in immune function in relation to schizophrenia being solely pinned down to T. gondii infection. Given for example, the growing significance of something like CRP to schizophrenia in general (see here), I think you would be hard-pressed to say this is all down to T. gondii infection. Indeed, the maternal immune activation hypothesis may well play a role here (see here) as might the wider implications of something like inflammation when it comes to the wider arena of psychiatry (see here).---------- Tomasik J. et al. Shared Immune and Repair Markers During Experimental Toxoplasma Chronic Brain Infection and Schizophrenia. Schizophr Bull. 2015 Sep 20. pii: sbv134. Wolf PJ. & Hamilton FE. Flawed analyses undermine proposed relationship between childhood cat ownership and schizophrenia. Schizophr Res. 2015 Aug 14. pii: S0920-9964(15)00427-2.----------Tomasik J, Schultz TL, Kluge W, Yolken RH, Bahn S, & Carruthers VB (2015). Shared Immune and Repair Markers During Experimental Toxoplasma Chronic Brain Infection and Schizophrenia. Schizophrenia bulletin PMID: 26392628... Read more »
Tomasik J, Schultz TL, Kluge W, Yolken RH, Bahn S, & Carruthers VB. (2015) Shared Immune and Repair Markers During Experimental Toxoplasma Chronic Brain Infection and Schizophrenia. Schizophrenia bulletin. PMID: 26392628
Researchers have imaged in unprecedented detail the three-dimensional structure of supercoiled DNA, revealing that its shape is much more dynamic than the well-known double helix.
Various DNA shapes, including figure-8s, were imaged using a powerful microscopy technique by researchers at the Baylor College of Medicine in the US, and then examined using supercomputer simulations run at the University of Leeds.... Read more »
MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Eric Stephen White MD Associate Professor of Medicine and Director of Translational Interstitial Lung Disease Research, Pulmonary and Critical Care Medicine University of Michigan Health System Medical Research: What is the background for this study? What are … Continue reading →
The post Tyrosine Kinase Inhibitor Slows Progression of Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis appeared first on MedicalResearch.com.
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Eric Stephen White MD. (2015) Tyrosine Kinase Inhibitor Slows Progression of Interstitial Pulmonary Fibrosis. MedicalResearch.com. info:/
MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Kathleen Carey, Ph.D. Professor Department of Health Law, Policy and Management Boston University School of Public Health Boston MA 02118 Medical Research: What is the background for this study? Dr. Carey: Ambulatory surgery centers (ASCs) are a … Continue reading →
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Kathleen Carey, Ph.D. (2015) Ambulatory Surgery Centers Have Cost Advantage Over Hospital Care. MedicalResearch.com. info:/
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