Medical Xpress - latest medical and health news stories

Medical Xpress internet news portal provides the latest news on Health and Medicine.

05/22/2017 02:00 PM
People perceive attractive scientists as more interesting but less able, studies show
If you think of good science communicators, it's likely that the names Brian Cox, Alice Roberts or Neil deGrasse Tyson may come to mind. But do you consider them good science communicators because they look competent or because they are attractive?

05/22/2017 01:50 PM
Americans skeptical of corporate-backed health research
(HealthDay)—Most people don't trust health research when industry is involved, a new study finds.

05/22/2017 07:02 AM
Will short-term and long-term treatments for single-gene diseases survive?
Two weeks and several political disasters ago, the House of Representatives passed the American Health Care Act of 2017, and soon lists of "pre-existing conditions" festooned news feeds. We all ticked off a few. But the lists, although acknowledged as incomplete, offered a highly inconsistent menu of maladies as broad as "cancer" yet as specific as "cystic fibrosis." I don't know whether the focus on the familiar reflects editorial choices to appeal to the masses, or ignorance of or deliberate avoidance of mentioning many of the lesser-known rare diseases. More than 30 million people in the US have rare diseases, many of them genetic and some of those treatable with approaches more complex than those used for more common conditions.

05/11/2017 07:18 AM
Everyday chemicals may affect brain development, including foetal IQ
All vertebrates – from frogs and birds to human beings – require the same thyroid hormone to thrive. Every stage of brain development is modulated by thyroid hormone and, over millions of years, the structure of this critical hormone has remained unchanged.

05/09/2017 11:38 AM
Stereotactic partial breast radiation lowers number of treatments to five
UT Southwestern Medical Center researchers found in a recent phase one clinical trial that stereotactic partial breast radiation was as safe as traditional radiation but decreased treatment time from six weeks to just days.

05/04/2017 10:00 AM
Large data set brings precision to breast cancer diagnosis and care
Although the odds of developing breast cancer are nearly identical for black and white women, black women are 42 percent more likely to die from the disease. This mortality gap - driven by social and environmental, as well as biological factors - continues to persist.

05/03/2017 07:10 AM
Kalydeco, the drug that treats the cause of cystic fibrosis, not just symptoms
Kalydeco (ivacaftor) is a drug used to treat cystic fibrosis, a disorder that affects many organs, particularly the lungs. Cystic fibrosis is Australia's most commonly inherited disorder.

05/03/2017 07:00 AM
Feeling worn out? You could have iron overload
Feeling a bit tired and worn out? Vague symptoms like these are common in iron deficiency and anaemia. But before you reach for the iron supplements or chow down on steak, these symptoms are common in another condition related to iron. This time the trouble is too much iron, not too little, because of the iron overload disorder called haemochromatosis.

04/28/2017 12:30 PM
Brineura approved for rare genetic illness affecting kids
(HealthDay)—Brineura (cerliponase alfa) has been approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to treat a specific form of Batten Disease, a rare set of genetic disorders that typically begin in childhood between ages 2 and 4, the agency said in a news release.

04/25/2017 01:30 PM
Novel phage therapy saves patient with multidrug-resistant bacterial infection
Scientists and physicians at University of California San Diego School of Medicine, working with colleagues at the U.S. Navy Medical Research Center - Biological Defense Research Directorate (NMRC-BDRD), Texas A&M University, a San Diego-based biotech and elsewhere, have successfully used an experimental therapy involving bacteriophages—viruses that target and consume specific strains of bacteria—to treat a patient near death from a multidrug-resistant bacterium.

04/25/2017 09:37 AM
'Junk food' and the consumer blame game
People in the UK are hooked on takeaways and microwave meals, or so we are constantly told by TV chefs and the media. This apparent addiction to fast food is leading to an obesity epidemic.

04/24/2017 02:13 PM
Stem cells help researchers identify neuronal defects causing Angelman syndrome
Researchers at UConn Health used stem cells derived from patients with Angelman syndrome to identify the underlying cellular defects that cause the rare neurogenetic disorder, an important step in the ongoing search for potential treatments for Angelman and a possible cure.

04/21/2017 07:40 AM
Dueling BRCA databases—what about the patient?
The news release Monday morning grabbed my attention:

04/18/2017 07:37 AM
Expert endorses genetic testing for BRCA1 and BRCA2
Professor Kelly Metcalfe, of U of T's Lawrence S. Bloomberg Faculty of Nursing, is leading the charge against hereditary breast and ovarian cancers by helping establish the standard protocol for addressing cancers associated with BRCA gene mutations.

04/17/2017 03:50 PM
Leading medical groups join March for Science on April 22
(HealthDay)—More than two dozen U.S. medical groups say they will join the March for Science on Earth Day.

04/14/2017 06:30 AM
New research opens a window on eye health
Poets see the eyes as a window to the soul. Scientists increasingly view the eyes as a window to the inner workings of the body.

04/11/2017 03:12 PM
Epilepsy breakthrough: Implant helps stop brain seizures
Imagine a seismograph - the instrument that measures and records earthquakes and volcanic eruptions - for your brain. Except this one has a wireless link to a device implanted in your head that stops epileptic seizures at their source, halting the sudden and violent attacks before they happen.

04/06/2017 04:02 PM
FDA approves first direct-to-consumer genetic risk tests
(HealthDay)—The U.S. Food and Drug Administration on Thursday approved the first direct-to-consumer genetic health risk tests.

04/06/2017 12:20 PM
For some, too much sweat takes emotional toll
(HealthDay)—Don't sweat the small stuff. That's sound advice for most—but not if you're one of the 7 million Americans diagnosed with hyperhidrosis.

04/06/2017 09:25 AM
Scientists show how cells react to injury from open-heart surgery
Cedars-Sinai Heart Institute investigators have learned how cardiac muscle cells react to a certain type of injury that can be caused by open-heart surgery. The findings point to a new potential way to help these hearts recover more completely.

04/03/2017 03:10 PM
Guys, a good night's sleep might save your life
(HealthDay)—Adequate sleep isn't a luxury; it's essential. And for men, it might even mean the difference between life and death, a preliminary study suggests.

04/03/2017 02:00 PM
Meningitis bacteria adapting to STI niche, genetic analysis shows
Neisseria meningitidis, a bacterium usually associated with meningitis and sepsis, is the cause of a recent cluster of sexually transmitted infections in Columbus, Ohio and in other US cities. The bacterium appears to be adapting to a urogenital environment, an analysis of the organism's DNA shows.

03/29/2017 08:20 AM
A brain scan to tell if you're depressed—and what treatment is needed
We currently diagnose depression based on what individuals tell us about their feelings – or those of their loved ones. People with depression usually describe feeling sad or say they are unable to enjoy the things they used to. But in many cases they don't actually realise that they are clinically depressed – or feel uncomfortable talking to a health professional about it.

03/28/2017 08:57 AM
The life-saving treatment that's being thrown in the trash
A few hours before beginning chemotherapy, a man named Chris faces his cellphone camera with a mischievous smile and describes a perfectly absurd milestone at 1.37pm on a Wednesday. "There is no more beautiful moment in a man's life…" he says with puckish glee. Because how can you not laugh when you've been invited to bank your sperm in advance of being "Godzilla-ed" with chemotherapy and radiation, all just four days after being diagnosed with acute myeloid leukaemia at the age of 43 and given a 5 to 15 per cent chance of survival?

03/23/2017 04:20 PM
Scientists spot gene for rare disorder causing deafness, blindness
(HealthDay)—Researchers say they have found the genetic cause of a rare disorder that causes children to be born with deafness, blindness, albinism and fragile bones.

03/21/2017 04:39 PM
Family history of colon cancer calls for earlier screening
(HealthDay)—If you've got a family history of colon or rectal cancers, you probably need to start screening for these conditions before you turn 50, a cancer expert says.

03/20/2017 09:53 AM
DNA labels predict mortality
Various chemical modifications in the genome determine whether genes are read or deactivated. Methyl labels in the DNA play a key role in this "epigenetic" regulation of gene activity. Life style and environmental factors influence the methylation in the genome. Scientists have already well documented links between the methylation status of specific positions in the genome and cancer as well as other diseases.

03/17/2017 08:25 AM
Evolocumab significantly reduces risk of cardiovascular events
Evolocumab, one of the new targeted PCSK9 inhibitor drugs that has been shown to dramatically lower levels of low-density lipoprotein (LDL), or "bad" cholesterol, also significantly lowers the risk of cardiovascular events in patients with existing heart or vascular disease already on statin therapy, according to research presented at the American College of Cardiology's 66th Annual Scientific Session.

03/14/2017 07:00 AM
African-Americans must be proactive and reactive to fight heart disease
Sixteen years ago, Kinzo Evans was diagnosed with congestive heart failure. His stomach was swollen. At night, he couldn't lay prostrate to sleep because it was hard for him to breathe. He was also fatigued. Evans' deteriorating condition eventually necessitated a heart transplant, which he had at VCU Health in December 2016.

03/13/2017 11:36 AM
Genetic analysis better explains how uterine cancers resist treatment
Researchers have charted the complex molecular biology of uterine carcinosarcoma, a rare and aggressive gynecologic cancer, according to a study published on March 13 in Cancer Cell.