Health News

Promising new drug targets against kidney cancer identified

Promising new drug targets against kidney cancer identifiedWashington, Dec 30 : Scientists have laid the foundation of completely understanding the intricacies of distinct kidney cancer subtypes, which could lead to better treatments for the disease.

Van Andel Research Institute scientists conducted two studies. In one study led by Kyle Furge, Ph. D. and Aikseng Ooi, Ph. D., researchers provide a more complete understanding of the biology of Type 2 papillary renal cell carcinoma (PRCC2), an aggressive type of kidney cancer with no effective treatment, which lays the foundation for the development of effective treatment strategies.


Beer drinkers likelier to be in drunk driving deaths

 Beer drinkers likelier to be in drunk driving deathsWashington, Dec 31 : Beer drinkers are most likely to drive drunk and get involved in driving fatalities than wine or scotch drinkers, a new study has found.

In fact, the study found that states with higher wine consumption actually have fewer drunk driving deaths, Discovery News reported.

"Beer has the strongest link to traffic fatalities, then spirits, while wine has a negative impact on traffic fatalities," said Bradley Rickard, assistant professor of economics and applied management at Cornell University.


US rejects Chavez’s remark blaming country for cancer- stricken Latin America leaders

 US rejects Chavez’s remark blaming country for cancer- stricken Latin America leadersWashington, Dec 30 : The US has slammed Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez's comments in which he had said the former may be responsible for cancers affecting Latin American leaders.

US State Department spokeswoman Victoria Nuland said the comments were "horrific and reprehensible", and did not deserve a further response, The BBC reports.

Chavez had said it was "very strange" that he and other leftist leaders were suffering from cancer after Argentine President Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner was diagnosed with the disease.


Gene that may up risk of hereditary pancreatic cancer identified

Washington, Dec 30 : Scientists have discovered that mutations in the ATM gene may increase the hereditary risk for pancreatic cancer.

Pancreatic cancer is one of the most morbid cancers, with less than 5 percent of those diagnosed with the disease surviving to five years.

Approximately 10 percent of patients come from families with multiple cases of pancreatic cancer.


Meditation improves breast cancer survivors’ emotional and physical well-being

 Meditation improves breast cancer survivors’ emotional and physical well-being Washington, Dec 30 : Mindfulness-based meditation plays a vital role in improving breast cancer survivors' health challenges, which they face after treatments, a new study has revealed.

Yaowarat Matchim, a former nursing doctoral student; Jane Armer, professor of nursing and Bob Stewart, professor emeritus of education and adjunct faculty in nursing, found that breast cancer survivors' health improved after they learned Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR), a type of mindfulness training that incorporates meditation, yoga and physical awareness.


Promising new drug targets against kidney cancer identified

Washington, Dec 30 : Scientists have laid the foundation of completely understanding the intricacies of distinct kidney cancer subtypes, which could lead to better treatments for the disease.

Van Andel Research Institute scientists conducted two studies. In one study led by Kyle Furge, Ph. D. and Aikseng Ooi, Ph. D., researchers provide a more complete understanding of the biology of Type 2 papillary renal cell carcinoma (PRCC2), an aggressive type of kidney cancer with no effective treatment, which lays the foundation for the development of effective treatment strategies.

Despite obvious morphological, genetic, and clinical differences, hereditary PRCC2 is thought to share similar pathway deregulation due to genetic mutation with its counterpart, clear cell renal cell carcinoma


Gene that increases pancreatic cancer risk identified

Gene that increases pancreatic cancer risk identifiedWashington, Dec 30 : A gene that increases the risk of pancreatic cancer has been identified, experts say.

Mutations in the ATM gene may increase the hereditary risk for pancreatic cancer, researchers at the Johns Hopkins University have found. The findings were published in the latest edition of the journal Cancer Discovery Thursday.

Pancreatic cancer is one of the most morbid cancers, with less than five percent of those diagnosed with the disease surviving to five years.

Approximately 10 percent of patients come from families with multiple cases of pancreatic cancer.


Skin microbes affect humans’ attractiveness to mosquitoes

Skin microbes affect humans’ attractiveness to mosquitoesWashington, Dec 29 : Microbes on a person's skin determine how attractive an individual is to mosquitoes, a new study has found.

Without bacteria, human sweat is odourless to the human nose, so the microbial communities on the skin play a key role in producing each individual''s specific body odour.

The researchers, led by Niels Verhulst of Wageningen University in the Netherlands, conducted their experiments with the Anopheles gambiae sensu stricto mosquito, which plays an important role in malaria transmission.


High MP3 volume puts teens at risk for early hearing loss

High MP3 volume puts teens at risk for early hearing lossWashington, Dec 29 : One in four teens is in danger of early hearing loss as a direct result of using MP3 players at high volume, researchers say.

Today''s ubiquitous MP3 players permit users to listen to crystal-clear tunes at high volume for hours on end - a marked improvement on the days of the Walkman.

But according to Tel Aviv University research, these advances have also turned personal listening devices into a serious health hazard, with teenagers as the most at-risk group.


Lingonberries can protect blood vessels of BP and diabetic patients

Lingonberries can protect blood vessels of BP and diabetic patientsWashington, Dec 29 : Ligonberry has a much higher antioxidant level in certain capacities than blueberries or raspberries, and it can help protect blood vessels of people who have hypertension or have diabetic damage from too much blood sugar, a Finland researcher has claimed.

"It doesn't lower the blood pressure, but it stops the damage," Fox News quoted Dr. Peter Bongiorno of Innersource Health as saying.

A native of Sweden, ligonberries are found on low, evergreen shrubs throughout the forests of Scandinavia.

These tart, red berries are much smaller and juicier than their distant cousin, the cranberry.


Avastin delays ovarian cancer progression

Avastin delays ovarian cancer progressionWashington, Dec 29 : A targeted drug therapy called bevacizumab (Avastin), when used in combination with existing treatments like chemotherapy delays progression of advanced ovarian cancer, a new study has suggested.

Targeted drugs, which block or disrupt particular molecules involved in the growth of tumours, have been shown to be effective treatments against many types of cancer.

Patients with newly diagnosed advanced ovarian cancer now typically undergo surgery and chemotherapy, but a new phase 3 clinical trial conducted by the Gynecologic Oncology Group (GOG) suggests an additional avenue of treatment.


Chavez says US could have developed technology to give Latin America leaders cancer

Chavez says US could have developed technology to give Latin America leaders cancerWashington, Dec 29 : Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez has hinted that the United States may be behind a "very strange" bout of cancer affecting him and various South American leaders.

According to Bloomberg Businessweek, Chavez questioned in a nationally televised speech to the military, whether the US has developed a secret technology to give cancer to Latin America leaders.


Diet rich in vitamins and fish oils helps keep elderly brains healthy

Diet rich in vitamins and fish oils helps keep elderly brains healthyWashington, Dec 29 : Elderly people with higher levels of several vitamins and omega 3 fatty acids in their blood have better performance on mental acuity tests and less of the brain shrinkage typical of Alzheimer’s disease, according to a new study.

On the other hand “junk food” diets produces just the opposite result.

The research conducted by scientists from the Oregon Health and Science University in Portland, Ore., and the Linus Pauling Institute at Oregon State University found positive effects of high levels of vitamins B, C, D, E and the healthy oils most commonly found in fish.


Silent strokes or dead brain cells behind memory loss in elders

Silent strokes or dead brain cells behind memory loss in elders Washington, Dec 29 : A new study has suggested that ‘silent strokes,’ or small spots of dead brain cells, found in about one out of four older adults may have lead to memory loss in the elderly.

“The new aspect of this study of memory loss in the elderly is that it examines silent strokes and hippocampal shrinkage simultaneously,” said study author Adam M. Brickman, PhD, of the Taub Institute for Research on Alzheimer’s Disease and the Aging Brain at Columbia University Medical Center in New York.

A group of 658 people ages 65 and older and free of dementia were given MRI brain scans in the study.


Age no bar to quick decision making

Age no bar to quick decision makingWashington, Dec 28 - Age is no bar to quick decision making. Older people can be trained to respond faster in decision-making tasks even though ageing brains seem to slow down, reveals a study.

"Many people think that it is just natural for older people's brains to slow down as they age, but we're finding that isn't always true," said Roger Ratcliff, professor of psychology at Ohio State University and study co-author.

"At least in some situations, 70-year-olds may have response times similar to those of 25-year olds," he said, the journal Child Development reported.


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