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Life Sciences - Health - 08.02.2010
Researchers reveal 3-D structure of bullet-shaped virus with potential to fight cancer, HIV
Researchers reveal 3-D structure of bullet-shaped virus with potential to fight cancer, HIV
Vesicular stomatitis virus, or VSV, has long been a model system for studying and understanding the life cycle of negative-strand RNA viruses, which include viruses that cause influenza, measles and rabies. More importantly, research has shown that VSV has the potential to be genetically modified to serve as an anti-cancer agent, exercising high selectivity in killing cancer cells while sparing healthy cells, and as a potent vaccine against HIV.

Health - Life Sciences - 05.02.2010
Genes influence aerobic training success
An international team of researchers has found an explanation for why some people seem to be more responsive than others to regular endurance exercise - which, in turn, might increase their chances of having a long and healthy life. The cause lies in their DNA, where the scientists have been able to identify 11 gene variants that are particularly important in the maximisation of the body's aerobic capacity.

Life Sciences - Health - 03.02.2010
Scientists Uncover Structure of Key Protein in Common HIV Subgroup
Scientists Uncover Structure of Key Protein in Common HIV Subgroup
PASADENA, Calif.—Scientists from the California Institute of Technology (Caltech) have provided the first-ever glimpse of the structure of a key protein—gp120—found on the surface of a specific subgroup of the human immunodeficiency virus, HIV-1. In addition, they demonstrated that a particular antibody to gp120 makes contact not only with the protein, but with the CD4 receptor that gp120 uses to gain entrance into the body's T cells.

Health - Psychology - 03.02.2010
High-risk populations may not accept an HIV vaccine, study finds
HIV vaccines are considered the holy grail of AIDS research. The availability of a safe and effective vaccine could prevent millions of new HIV infections. Yet the simple availability of a vaccine is not enough to ensure that it would actually be widely accessible and taken by people at risk for HIV.

Health - 02.02.2010
Stem cells rescue nerve cells by direct contact
Stem cells rescue nerve cells by direct contact
Scientists at the Swedish medical university Karolinska Institutet have shown how transplanted stem cells can connect with and rescue threatened neurons and brain tissue. The results point the way to new possible treatments for brain damage and neurodegenerative diseases. A possible strategy for treating neurodegenerative diseases is to transplant stem cells into the brain that prevent existing nerve cells from dying.

Health - 01.02.2010
New genes linked to diabetes
An international group of scientists - including several at the University - has identified a set of genes that control the body's response to glucose in the blood. The discovery of these new genes influencing blood sugar levels is the first step on the important journey to developing new therapies for diabetes.

Health - 01.02.2010
Scientists discover new treatment for chronic pain condition
Scientists discover new treatment for chronic pain condition
Liverpool, UK - 2 February 2010: Scientists at the University of Liverpool have discovered that treating the immune system of patients with Complex Regional Pain Syndrome (CPRS) leads to a significant reduction in pain. CRPS is an unexplained chronic pain condition that usually develops after an injury or trauma to a limb, and continues after the injury has healed.

Health - Life Sciences - 01.02.2010
Researchers find ’broad spectrum’ antiviral that fights multitude of viruses
Viruses are insidious creatures. They differ from each other in many ways, and they can mutate — at times seemingly at will, as with HIV — to resist a host of weapons fired at them. Complicating matters further is that new viruses are constantly emerging. One potential weapon is a small-molecule "broad spectrum" antiviral that will fight a host of viruses by attacking them through some feature common to an entire class of viruses.

Life Sciences - Health - 01.02.2010
Why the mirror lies
Why the mirror lies
In people with body dysmorphic disorder, distorted self-image could be the result of the brain's abnormal processing of visual input Everyone checks themselves in the mirror now and then, but that experience can be horrifying for individuals suffering from body dysmorphic disorder, or BDD, a psychiatric condition that causes them to believe, wrongly, that they appear disfigured and ugly.

Health - Psychology - 31.01.2010
Study investigates how people behave in pandemics
Study investigates how people behave in pandemics
Dr Alison Bish and Professor Susan Michie (UCL Clinical, Educational and Health Psychology) investigated the results of a number of studies into how people behave during pandemics, such as the recent swine flu outbreak, to better understand protective behaviour and to improve interventions and communication in the future.

Health - 28.01.2010
Low-sodium advice for asthmatics should be taken with a pinch of salt
Low-sodium advice for asthmatics should be taken with a pinch of salt
PA166/08 Following a low-sodium diet does not appear to have any appreciable impact on asthma control, according to new research. Contrary to past studies - which have suggested a link between low-sodium diets and improved asthma control - a new study by researchers at The University of Nottingham found no evidence that cutting back on salt helps patients with their symptoms.

Health - 28.01.2010
Possible link found between x-rays and prostate cancer
Possible link found between x-rays and prostate cancer
Researchers at The University of Nottingham have shown an association between certain past diagnostic radiation procedures and an increased risk of young-onset prostate cancer - a rare form of prostate cancer which affects about 10 per cent of all men diagnosed with the disease. The study, the first of its kind to report the relationship between low dose ionising radiation from diagnostic procedures and the risk of prostate cancer, was funded by the Prostate Cancer Research Foundation (PCRF) and is part of the UK Genetic Prostate Cancer Study (UKGPCS).

Health - Life Sciences - 28.01.2010
Smoking during pregnancy can put mums and babies at risk
Smoking during pregnancy can put mums and babies at risk
PA40/08 Pregnant women who suffer from the high risk condition pre-eclampsia - which leads to the death of hundreds of babies every year - are putting the lives of their unborn children at significantly increased risk if they continue to smoke during pregnancy. But experts at The University of Nottingham have also shown that if women give up smoking before or even during pregnancy they can significantly reduce these risks.

Health - Life Sciences - 28.01.2010
Researchers image earliest signs of Alzheimer's, before symptoms appear
Researchers image earliest signs of Alzheimer’s, before symptoms appear
Estimates are that some 10 percent of people over the age of 65 will develop Alzheimer's disease, the scourge that robs people of their memories and, ultimately, their lives. While researchers race to find both the cause and the cure, others are moving just as fast to find the earliest signs that will predict an eventual onset of the disease, well before any outward symptoms.

Health - Life Sciences - 28.01.2010
UCLA researchers image earliest signs of Alzheimer’s, before symptoms appear
While researchers race to find both the cause and the cure, others are moving just as fast to find the earliest signs that will predict an eventual onset of the disease, well before any outward symptoms. The reason is simple: The earlier the diagnosis, the earlier treatments can be applied. Now, through the use of sophisticated brain-imaging techniques, researchers at UCLA have been able to predict a brain's progression to Alzheimer's by measuring subtle changes in brain structure over time, changes that occur long before symptoms can be seen.

Health - 28.01.2010
New insights into breast-feeding hormone
A mechanism for regulating the hormone prolactin has newly been revealed by scientists at Karolinska Institutet. The results are to be published in the scientific journal Neuron, and may be significant for conditions and functions such as breast-feeding, sexual libido, and metabolism. The hormone, prolactin, is released from the pituitary gland in the brain and is the signal that triggers breast milk production during nursing.

Health - Agronomy / Food Science - 27.01.2010
Study shows weight loss breakthrough for overweight children
Study shows weight loss breakthrough for overweight children
Professor Atul Singhal of the UCL Institute of Child Health led the study, published in the journal Obesity , which showed that participants in the MEND (Mind, Exercise, Nutrition? Do It!) programme lost weight, lowered their body mass index (BMI) and waist circumference, and improved their self esteem and physical activity levels.

Agronomy / Food Science - Health - 27.01.2010
New method improves eating skills of dementia patients
A pioneering international study involving academics from the University of Sheffield has shown for the first time that it is possible to improve the eating skills and nutritional status of older people with dementia. The study, which was published in the International Journal of Geriatric Psychiatry and funded by the National Health Research Institutes of Taiwan, tested two separate intervention methods to assess the eating patterns of dementia patients in Taiwan.

Health - 27.01.2010
Improved air quality linked to fewer pediatric ear infections
A new study by researchers at UCLA and Brigham and Women's Hospital in Boston suggests that improvements in air quality over the past decade have resulted in fewer cases of ear infections in children. Ear infections are one of the most common illnesses among children, with annual direct and indirect costs of $3 billion to $5 billion in the United States.

Health - 26.01.2010
Pomegranate extract stimulates uterine contractions
Pomegranate extract stimulates uterine contractions
Liverpool, UK - 27 January 2010: Scientists at the University of Liverpool and the Suranaree University of Technology, Thailand, have found that a naturally occurring steroid, present in pomegranate seed, could be used to stimulate uterine contractions. The team identified beta-sitosterol - a steroid that can inhibit the absorption of cholesterol in the intestine - as the main constituent of pomegranate seed extract.