Nearly one-third of women experience heavy periods each month. This means that unlike normal periods where women lose up to 40 mL of blood per cycle, some women lose as much as 80 mL (more than a quarter of a cup) in at least one cycle throughout their life. Scientists think they might have found the answer as to why this happens, and they are blaming it on a non-hormonal protein. A new small study suggests that low levels of a specific protein known as hypoxia-inducible factor 1 (HIF1, right) might be to blame.
HIF1 is a pretty handy healing molecule. When oxygen levels drop in parts of the body, a condition known as hypoxia, HIF1 activates more than 60 genes linked to tissue regeneration, and has already been shown to play a role in repai [ ... ]
Stan Larkin (pictured on the right), who's now 25, was diagnosed with familial cardiomyopathy. This form of disease results in the heart having difficulty pumping enough blood through the body. Faced with a lack of compatible heart donors, Stan underwent an operation in 2014 to remove his failing heart and replace it with an external total artificial heart, dubbed the Freedom portable driver.
This battery-powered device uses compressed air to pump blood around the body in the same way a heart does, and as the name suggests, it is portable and only weighs 6 kilograms (13 pounds). The device does an incredible job at keeping the patient in a healthy condition while a donor heart becomes available, but it isn’t considered a long-term option. [ ... ]
For the first time, scientists have discovered a link between heavy marijuana use and reduced dopamine production. Just so you know, dopamine is the hormone/neurotransmitter that is released during any kind of satisfaction - it's the same hormone that is released in your brain when you eat chocolate. In a recent study, lower dopamine release was found in the striatum - a region of the brain that is involved in working memory, impulsive behavior, and attention, in addition to subregions involved in associative and sensorimotor learning, and in the globus pallidus. Previous studies have shown that addiction to other drugs of abuse, such as cocaine and heroin, have similar effects on dopamine release, but such evidence for cannabis was mis [ ... ]
According to a new study published in Cell Metabolism, mice who spent their free time on a running wheel were better able to shrink tumors (a 50 percent reduction in tumor size) compared to their less active counterparts. Researchers found that the surge of adrenaline ( epinephrine) that comes with a high-intensity workout helped to move cancer-killing immune (NK) cells toward lung, liver, or skin tumors implanted into the mice.
While the research is hopeful for patients looking for inexpensive ways to manage their cancer, more needs to be learned about the effects of exercise on metastasis and longevity, as well as if the observations hold true in humans. Scientists also wants to explore the combined impact of anti-cancer treatments and ex [ ... ]
A medical doctor claims he has the cure for HIV, a cure so simple it's laughable. According to Dr. Samir Chachoua, the Caprine Arthritis Encephalitis Virus (CAEV) in goats milk "destroys HIV and protects people who drink it for life". The so-called researched voluntarily infected himself with Charlie Sheen's HIV-infected blood, and cured himself shortly after with this cocktail. The moral of the story is, if you are traveling across the countryside and see a goat limping, please stop and milk it for Charlie. It's the least you can do.
Joking aside, here's the interview with Bill Maher.
Isn't it strange, two FDA-approved drugs - topical ruxolitinib or tofacitinib - can reawaken dormant hair follicles! According to the study, within 3 weeks, mice that received topical ruxolitinib or tofacitinib had regrown nearly all their hair (right photo; drug was applied only to the right side of the mouse). Little to no hair growth occurred in control mice during the same timeframe (left photo). According to researchers at Columbia University Medical Center, inhibiting a family of enzymes inside hair follicles that are suspended in a resting state restores hair growth.
These drugs, known as JAK inhibitors have been approved to treat blood diseases (ruxolitinib) and the other for rheumatoid arthritis (tofacitinib). Both are being tested [ ... ]
Known an fibrodysplasia ossificans progressive, or FOB for short, this disease can suddenly turn a person’s tissues and muscles into bone, thereby permanently immobilizing parts of the bodies. Joints such as elbows or ankles may become frozen in place; jaw motion can be impeded and the rib cage fixed, making eating or even breathing difficult. Currently, no cure exists to combat this rare condition.
At only eights years-old, Zion Harvey is the youngest person with a double hand transplant ever. Four teams of surgeons worked over 11 hours to complete the complicated operation. Zion lost both of his hands and feet when he contracted sepsis at age two and experienced multiple organ failures. When he was four, he received a kidney transplant from his mother, and leg prosthetics have enabled him to engage in many activities.
A possible vaccine for lung cancer! In a country known for cigars, lung cancer is one of the major killers in Cuba. So for the past 25 years, they’ve been developing Cimamax, which is now available freely to Cubans. According to a Phase II trial conducted in Cuba in 2008, lung cancer patients who received the vaccine lived an average of four to six months longer than those who didn’t. This led Japan and some European countries to trial the drug as well.
The drug itself is far from flawless and, by attacking a cell’s protein rather than the tumour directly, can have severe side effects, including – of all things - causing a higher risk of cancer. It might not be a "cure" in the traditional sense, but it's a way of managing the disease. What t [ ... ]
The importance of adequate, non-distracted, deep sleep could not be emphasized enough. Recent research has put the brain yet again under the spotlight, this time only to shed some light on one more reason we should be getting our sleep and why. Make sure to watch the video above. It is hands down, one of the best TED talks I have listened to. As for now, I'mma go make my CSF flush my amyloid betas Nighty, night!
An injectable drug, called ATX-101, currently being tested melts away "submental fat", better known as the double chin. According to its makers, ATX-101 can be injected in a clinic and takes just five minutes. It consists of deoxycholic acid, a naturally-occurring molecule that helps us break down fat, which effectively destroys the membranes of fat cells, causing them to burst and then be metabolised by the body. [ ... ]
When a person dies from cancer, the culprit isn't usually the original tumor - it's metastasis, the spread of cancer cells throughout the body. Now, researchers have managed to package a drug in nanoparticles (a microscopic particle with at least one dimension less than 100 nm) so that it can target these cancer cells without, crucially, interfering with normal cells - and report that they've stopped cancer cells from spreading in mice. Nanoparticle research is currently an area of intense scientific research, due to a wide variety of potential applications in biomedical, optical, and electronic fields.
In a paper this week in Science, two scientists at John Hopkins have united biology and mathematics to propose a mathematical formula to explain the genesis of cancer.
Take the number of cells in an organ, identify what percentage of them are long-lived stem cells, and determine how many times the stem cells divide. With every division, there’s a risk of a cancer-causing mutation in a daughter cell. Thus, Tomasetti and Vogelstein reasoned, the tissues that host the greatest number of stem cell divisions are those most vulnerable to cancer. When Tomasetti crunched the numbers and compared them with actual cancer statistics, he concluded that this theory explained two-thirds of all cancers.
“Using the mathematics of evolution, you can really [ ... ]
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