Body

Removing a single gene from the brains of mice and zebrafish causes these animals to become more anxious than normal. Researchers from University of Utah Health show that eliminating the gene encoding Lef1 disrupts the development of certain nerve cells in the hypothalamus that affect stress and anxiety. These results are the first implication that Lef1 functions in the hypothalamus to mediate behavior, knowledge that could prove useful for diagnosing and treating human brain disorders.

One in four patients in a university hospital suffers from diabetes (22 percent), and again as many suffer from prediabetes (24 percent). These were the findings of a current study by researchers in Tübingen of the German Center for Diabetes Research (DZD) and Helmholtz Zentrum München. Further results of the study: Patients with diabetes have prolonged hospital stays and a higher risk of complications.

In mice that are given a high-fat diet, an increased production of the enzyme DPP4* by the liver promotes an increase in body fat, the development of fatty liver disease and insulin resistance. These were the findings of a current study by DZD-researchers in Potsdam and Tübingen.

DALLAS - Aug. 24, 2017 - Scientists from the Children's Medical Center Research Institute at UT Southwestern (CRI) have developed an innovative system to identify and characterize the molecular components that control the activities of regulatory DNA sequences in the human genome.

DALLAS - August 23, 2017 - UT Southwestern Medical Center researchers report for the first time that tumors stressed by cancer immunotherapy release their mitochondrial DNA into nearby immune cells, triggering a host alert system.

Bottom Line: Scientists have found distinctive portions of genetic material--known as lncRNAs--that help sperm develop. Male mice lacking a particular lncRNA have low sperm count, suggesting lncRNAs could represent novel infertility drug targets.

Journal in Which the Study was Published: Biology of Reproduction

PHILADELPHIA -- The "involuntary treatment" of unwilling psychiatric patients has long been accepted as necessary in some cases, for the sake of patients and society, though it can raise serious ethical concerns as well as legal barriers.

CHAMPAIGN, Ill. -- Tinnitus, a chronic ringing or buzzing in the ears, has eluded medical treatment and scientific understanding. A new study by University of Illinois researchers found that chronic tinnitus is associated with changes in certain networks in the brain, and furthermore, those changes cause the brain to stay more at attention and less at rest.

The finding provides patients with validation of their experiences and hope for future treatment options.

As the opioid crisis escalates, the science behind addiction remains poorly understood. To address this need, researchers at University of Utah Health devised a system that allowed zebrafish, a small tropical fish, to self-administer doses of hydrocodone, an opioid commonly prescribed to people for pain. After one-week, the fish had increased their drug-seeking behavior, even when doing so required them to put themselves in risky conditions. Further, 48-hours after the last exposure, conditioned fish showed signs of anxiety, a hallmark of withdrawal.

Key Takeaways:

A common type of flame retardant was associated with reduced likelihood of clinical pregnancy and live birth following IVF.

Couples undergoing IVF may want to opt for products that are flame-retardant free.

ROCHESTER, Minn. - A new study has found that a condition that threatens the lives of some pregnant women and the fetus may continue to put the mother at risk later in life.

Mayo Clinic researchers found that women with a history of pre-eclampsia are more likely to face atherosclerosis - hardening and narrowing of the arteries -- decades after their pregnancy. The findings are published in the September issue of Mayo Clinic Proceedings.

New Haven, Conn.-- Yale experts and their partners in a national research consortium have identified several genes and gene clusters associated with the immune response to flu vaccination. The findings point to the prospect of using genetic profiles to predict individual responses to the flu vaccine.

The research was published August 25 in Science Immunology.

Cancer treatments, including chemotherapy, have helped many of those who have been diagnosed with the disease to go on to live healthy lives.

Nevertheless, chemotherapy takes a toll on the body. During treatment, chemotherapy attacks all of the body's cells, not just cancer cells. The result destroys healthy cells, causing many patients to suffer major side effects during and after treatment.

And because current treatments aren't specifically targeted to cancer cells, only 0.01 percent of chemotherapy drugs actually reach the tumor and its diseased cells.

In the journal Current Aging Science, a research team has reviewed modifiable risk factors for Alzheimer's and Parkinson's diseases. The reviewers focus on the possible role of neuroinflammation (inflammation of the nervous tissue) in neurodegenerative disease mechanisms. Alzheimer's disease and Parkinson's disease are among the most common causes of dementia, and increasingly contribute to morbidity and mortality worldwide.

Orlando, Fla., Aug. 25, 2017 - Researchers at Sanford Burnham Prebys Medical Discovery Institute (SBP) in Lake Nona, Florida have shown that enhanced natriuretic peptide (NP) signaling in adipose tissue protects against obesity and insulin resistance. The findings suggest that boosting levels of NPs in adipose tissue may be an important avenue to explore for combating metabolic disease. The study was published in Science Signaling.