Body

When we cut our skin, groups of cells rush en masse to the site to heal the wound.

But the complicated mechanics of this collective cell movement -- which are facilitated by rearrangements between each cell and its neighbors -- have made it challenging for researchers to decipher what's actually driving it.

"If we can understand the key factors causing cell migration, then we could perhaps develop new treatments to speed up wound healing," says Jacob Notbohm, an assistant professor of engineering physics at the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

Approximately one-quarter of patients who are prescribed opioids for chronic pain misuse them, with five to 10 percent developing an opioid use disorder or addiction. In a new study, published Jan. 14, 2020 in PNAS, researchers at University of California San Diego School of Medicine found that opioid dependence produced permanent changes in the brains of rats.

"Jumping genes" -- bits of DNA that can move from one spot in the genome to another -- are well-known for increasing genetic diversity over the long course of evolution. Now, new research at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis indicates that such genes, also called transposable elements, play another, more surprising role: stabilizing the 3D folding patterns of the DNA molecule inside the cell's nucleus.

The study appears Jan. 24 in the journal Genome Biology.

Irvine, CA - January 24, 2020 - Individuals with a history of early life adversity (ELA) are disproportionately prone to opioid addiction. A new UCI-led study reveals why.

Published in Molecular Psychiatry, the study titled, "On the early life origins of vulnerability to opioid addiction," examines how early adversities interact with factors such as increased access to opioids to directly influence brain development and function, causing a higher potential for opioid addiction.

There remains a controversy in scientific circles today regarding the value of lithium therapy in treating Alzheimer's disease. Much of this stems from the fact that because the information gathered to date has been obtained using a multitude of differential approaches, conditions, formulations, timing and dosages of treatment, results are difficult to compare. In addition, continued treatments with high dosage of lithium render a number of serious adverse effects making this approach impracticable for long term treatments especially in the elderly.

Family caregivers usually are not asked by health care workers about needing support in managing older adults' care, according to a study led by researchers at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health.

Biomedical data scientists at the Stanford University School of Medicine have shown that the number of genes a cell uses to make RNA is a reliable indicator of how developed the cell is, a finding that could make it easier to target cancer-causing genes.

Cells that initiate cancer are thought to be stem cells, which are hard-to-find cells that can reproduce themselves and develop, or differentiate, into more specialized tissue, such as skin or muscle -- or, when they go bad, into cancer.

A new study published in Seizure gives insight into the short-term outcome of patients treated for status epilepticus in Kuopio University Hospital in Finland. The researchers found a 9% risk of death and a 32% risk of functional loss at one month after status epilepticus. The patient's risk of death could be predicted relatively reliably already in the emergency room by using status epilepticus-related prognostic tools.

Particularly in the case of accelerated drug approvals and drugs for rare diseases (orphan drugs), the evidence available at the time of market access is often insufficient for the early benefit assessment of drugs. Often, the studies are too short or no data on patient-relevant outcomes were collected. Comparisons with the German standard of care are also often lacking. In order to close such evidence gaps, in future, routine practice data are also to be included in early benefit assessments of drugs.

Toxoplasma gondii is best known as the parasite that may lurk in a cat's litter box. Nearly a third of the world's population is believed to live with a chronic Toxoplasma infection. It's of greatest concern, however, to people with suppressed immune systems and to pregnant women, who can pass the infection to their fetuses.

STRASBURG, PA- A new study analyzes 30 years of patient data and details the clinical course of 184 individuals with genetically diverse forms of Maple Syrup Urine Disease (MSUD), which is among the most volatile and dangerous inherited metabolic disorders. Researchers collected data on survival, hospitalization rates, metabolic crises, liver transplantation, and cognitive outcome. This represents the largest systematic study of MSUD, with regard to both cohort size and the duration of clinical follow up.

Daily low-dose aspirin, from as early as the sixth week of pregnancy through the 36th week, may lower the risk for preterm birth among first-time mothers, suggests a study funded by the National Institutes of Health. The clinical trial, which involved more than 11,000 women in several low- and middle-income countries, found that women taking daily low-dose aspirin were 11% less likely to deliver before the 37th week of pregnancy, compared to those given a placebo.

A psychiatrist specialising in sexual dysfunction caused by antidepressants is calling for greater recognition of the problems that can endure after treatment stops. Professor David Healy, writing in the Journal of the Royal Society of Medicine, said problems may begin after only a few doses and leave someone affected for life, or a relatively mild dysfunction can worsen dramatically when the person stops treatment.

The new cluster of viral pneumonia cases originating in Wuhan, China, marks the third time in 20 years that a member of the large family of coronaviruses (CoVs) has jumped from animals to humans and sparked an outbreak. In a new JAMA Viewpoint essay, Anthony S. Fauci, M.D., director of the NIH's National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), looks back at two earlier novel CoV outbreaks that initially caused global havoc and describes steps needed to contain the current one.